This was by far the hardest one to do due to the amount of amazing centers there are in the NHL. This means many people will have different opinions but ESPN and NHL got the rankings wrong, and I will show you the exact top 5, and yes you can quote me on this and at the end of the year when we are all celebrating our fantasy championships you can buy me a drink.
5. Steven Stamkos - Tampa Bay Lightning
NHL 2015-16 Stats: GP: 77, G: 36, A: 28 +/-: 3 , PIM: 38
Projected 2016-17 Stats: GP: 75, G: 40, A: 30, +/-: 2 , PIM: 46
Steven Stamkos is ranked out of the top 5 Centers on most websites which is fucking stupid. Stamkos is in the top 3 most gifted goal scorers in the NHL and this year and will most likely be playing with Alexander Killorn and Jonathan Drouin, which means his numbers will go up. I think Stamkos will get 40+ goals this season and will also add more than 25 Powerplay Points this year as they will improve on their 28th ranked power play from last year. Tampa will be a President's Trophy candidate and will win the Atlantic Division all thanks to his goals.
4. Tyler Seguin - Dallas Stars
NHL 2015-16 Stats: GP: 72, G: 33, A: 40 +/-: 2, PIM: 16
Projected 2016-17 Stats: GP: 74, G: 35, A: 42, +/-: 5 , PIM: 22
Before you say something about his injury, Seguin will be back for the start of the season and will be back with linking up and scoring goals with his buddy Jamie Benn. Seguin is going to have a big year with a boost in points (hopefully some power play). The only reason he isn't higher is that the front three are so good it would be impossible for him to crack it.
3. Connor McDavid - Edmonton Oilers
NHL 2015-16 Stats: GP: 45, G: 16, A: 32 +/-: -1 PIM: 18
Projected 2016-17 Stats: GP: 78, G: 33, A: 54, +/-: 5 , PIM: 32
Connor McDavid had a great season last year which earned him the honor of being the youngest captain in NHL history at age 19. McDavid is going to most likely start the year with NHL veteran Milan Lucic and Jordan Eberle. Even though McDavid will have a big year his team isn't 100% ready yet to make the jump where the top two players teams are.
2. John Tavares - New York Islanders
NHL 2015-16 Stats: GP: 78, G: 33, A: 37 +/-: 6 PIM: 38
Projected 2016-17 Stats: GP: 80, G: 36, A: 42, +/-: 5 , PIM: 42
John Tavares is looking to keep the momentum going as he is coming off a fantastic World Cup of Hockey for Team Canada. JT has been the Islanders leading man for years (obviously) and will need to be that to be the second best center in fantasy and to help the Islanders make the playoffs again. Even though ESPN are predicting 78 points for the Islander captain, I think he will break the 80 point mark and will be up there in the Hart Memorial Trophy race.
1. Sidney Crosby - Pittsburgh Penguins
NHL 2015-16 Stats: GP: 80, G: 36, A: 49 +/-: 19 PIM: 42
Projected 2016-17 Stats: GP: 79, G: 36, A: 59, +/-: 17, PIM: 44
Sidney Crosby is coming off another Stanley Cup win as the Pens are prime for a huge year. Sidney Crosby is predicted to have 31 powerplay points this season which is a huge reason why he is number one on this list. Crosby and his team have it all, decent goaltending, good defenseman (who can score) and amazing forwards. Crosby will be a top three fantasy hockey player this season and obviously if you are lucky enough to draft him...DRAFT HIM.
As these come to a close, thank you to everyone who got involved with reading, commenting and following us on Twitter (@DST_Tweets). Now that the season is about to start we will be doing weekly pickup blogs. Much Love.