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Sleepers to remember
Jake Allen ((USATSI))
Is Jake Allen going to play enough for the Blues to matter this season? Jan Levine breaks down the top sleepers you're going to want to track. Full story
Related Links:
• Prospects preview: Central | Metro
• Eye on Hockey blog | Latest injury report
Rankings
 
Most Added Players
Player% ±
1Braden Holtby, WAS, G4
2Chris Kreider, NYR, LW4
3John Gibson, ANA, G4
4Jonathan Drouin, TB, LW3
5Jake Allen, STL, G3
6Johnny Gaudreau, CGY, LW3
7Marian Gaborik, LA, RW2
8Bobby Ryan, OTT, RW2
9Marc-Andre Fleury, PIT, G2
10Carey Price, MON, G2
Most Dropped Players
Player% ±
1Daniel Alfredsson, DET, RW-6
2Kimmo Timonen, PHI, D-6
3Cody Franson, TOR, D-5
4Frans Nielsen, NYI, C-5
5Niklas Hjalmarsson, CHI, D-5
6Mason Raymond, CGY, LW-5
7Chris Higgins, VAN, LW-5
8Fedor Tyutin, CLB, D-5
9David Perron, EDM, LW-4
10Jussi Jokinen, FLA, LW-4
Projections
 
 
Player News
Sidney Crosby
Pens' Crosby Practices Friday
Sidney Crosby, C, PIT
10:21 AM
News: Sidney Crosby (undisclosed) practiced Friday, despite an early report that stated the MVP would be held out of the beginning of training camp, ABC News reports.
Analysis: Not only did Sidney Crosby practice, but he did not wear a red non-contact jersey, and participated in most of the practice. If Crosby is still battling an injury, it appears that it is not serious enough to keep him off the ice. If he is already healthy enough to participate in training camp, expect Crosby to be near 100 percent when the regular season rolls around.

Mikhail Grigorenko
Sabres Pair Grigorenko With Armia
Mikhail Grigorenko, C, BUF
10:11 AM
News: Mikhail Grigorenko will open camp on a line with Joel Armia, reports The Buffalo News.
Analysis: Though Mikhail Grigorenko and Armia represent two of Buffalo's most offensively gifted players, neither can be expected to play with the Sabres this year. Grigorenko is coming off a rough two-year stretch after playing on three separate teams and Armia is coming off a tough rookie season hampered by a wrist injury. The Sabres have more experienced players to rely on for scoring and Brendan Lemieux, the line's third player, is not expected to make the team either. However, Grigorenko and Armia should form a dynamic duo in the AHL, and if both players perform beyond expectations they will both earn call-ups at some point during the season.

Luke Adam
Sabres' Adam On The Outside Looking In
Luke Adam, C, BUF
10:05 AM
News: Luke Adam is on the bubble and fighting for a roster spot based on the depth charts published by The Buffalo News.
Analysis: Luke Adam will play on center Johan Larsson's left wing and opposite of right winger Zac Dalpe. Dalpe was signed over the summer as additional depth while Larsson is also fighting for a roster spot. Adam returned to the Sabres after signing a one-year extension, but time is running out for the former second-round pick. In 12 games with the Sabres he recorded just one goal and 16 shots. When Adam is on his game, he can be a serviceable power forward, but his consistency has been poor. Adam will need to go through waivers if he is demoted, which provides an extra wrinkle to his situation. Last year, the Sabres waived Corey Tropp, and the same fate could await Adam if he has a poor showing at camp.

Tyler Myers
Sabres' Myers Begins Camp With Gorges
Tyler Myers, D, BUF
9:57 AM
News: Tyler Myers will be paired with veteran shutdown defenseman Josh Gorges to begin the training camp, reports The Buffalo News.
Analysis: As expected, the mercurial Tyler Myers will be paired with the dependable Gorges to begin the season as the Sabres' top pairing. Myers has struggled over the past few seasons since winning the Calder Trophy as the league's top rookie, and often looks overwhelmed by the amount of pressure placed on him. The 6-foot-8 defenseman has plenty of talent but just hasn't been able to realize it. Hopefully, Gorges will take some pressure off his shoulders and also allow Myers to take more of an offensive role. If all goes well, Myers could be in line for the best season in his rookie year. He is, without a doubt, the Sabres' best defenseman in fantasy, though the team is expected to finish near the bottom of the standings again.

Zemgus Girgensons
Sabres' Girgensons Centers Second Line
Zemgus Girgensons, C, BUF
9:52 AM
News: One of Buffalo's best players last year, Zemgus Girgensons is penciled in as the team's second-line center, reports The Buffalo News.
Analysis: Head coach Ted Nolan and the rest of the Sabres staff love Zemgus Girgensons. An excellent two-way player with great wheels, Girgensons was one of Buffalo's more consistent players and was the standout forward for Latvia at the Sochi Olympics. Delivering on their promise to give Girgensons a bigger role, the Sabres are experimenting with him in an offensive role, playing alongside playmaker Cody Hodgson on the left wing and former Habs captain Brian Gionta on the right wing. Girgensons is scratching the surface of his offensive ability, who scored just eight goals in 70 games last year. He's often overlooked because Hodgson and Tyler Ennis are more well-known names in fantasy, but it's possible Girgensons provides better value than both of them this season with faceoff wins and hits, if your league counts them.

Keith Ballard
Wild's Ballard Full Participant In Camp
Keith Ballard, D, MIN
9:42 AM
News: Keith Ballard (hernia) was a full participant in the first practice and scrimmage of Minnesota's training camp, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
Analysis: Keith Ballard had sports hernia surgery after the season, but looks at full strength as training camp begins. He played just 45 games last season as he struggled to stay healthy due to a groin injury and concussion.

Niklas Backstrom
Wild's Backstrom Full Participant In Camp
Niklas Backstrom, G, MIN
9:40 AM
News: Niklas Backstrom was a full participant in the first practice and scrimmage of Minnesota's training camp, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
Analysis: Niklas Backstrom underwent season-ending abdominal and hip surgery in March, but looks back to full strength. After a poor 2013-14 season, (3.02 GAA and .899 save percentage) Backstrom enters camp as the likely No. 1 goalie with Josh Harding out several months due to a broken foot. However, he'll face competition from Darcy Kuemper and possibly Ilya Bryzgalov for the starting role and the goalie situation with the Wild could be in flux again this season.

Rasmus Ristolainen
Sabres' Ristolainen Drops Weight, Gains Speed
Rasmus Ristolainen, D, BUF
9:35 AM
News: Rasmus Ristolainen reported to training camp at 205 pounds, 25 pounds lighter than he was the previous season, reports John Vogl of The Buffalo News.
Analysis: This is good news for Sabres and Rasmus Ristolainen, who said he shed some of his baby fat. The 19-year-old defenseman is one of the league's top young players and over a summer of training has increased his footspeed, agility and overall strength. Ristolainen is the team's future franchise defenseman and looks more like it with each passing season. Tyler Myers may still be the team's most valuable defenseman in fantasy, but there's a good chance Ristolainen takes over that top spot by the end of the season. Ristolainen is a potential sleeper defenseman and a key target in keeper leagues, if you can live with a few more seasons of growing pains and playing on a non-playoff team.

Patrick Kaleta
Sabres' Kaleta Focusing On Roster Battles
Patrick Kaleta, RW, BUF
9:30 AM
News: After being demoted to the AHL and suffering a season-ending ACL injury, Patrick Kaleta is ready to return to the lineup and says his focus has never been better, reports the Olean Times Herald.
Analysis: Patrick Kaleta was handed his fourth NHL suspension after a hit to the head of Columbus defenseman Jack Johnson. An aggressive player and a childhood Sabres fan, Kaleta is relishing a return into the lineup and noted his admiration for head coach Ted Nolan, who was coach of the Sabres in the '90s. Kaleta is vying for a spot on the team's fourth line and brings plenty of grit and experience to the lineup. If he can stay focused, he has a very good chance of earning a spot in the lineup. Though Kaleta was previously a reliable source of penalty minutes, cleaning up his game might serve him better in real life than in fantasy. His value is minimal at this point.

Josh Anderson
Jackets' Anderson To Get Look In Camp
Josh Anderson, RW, CLB
8:33 AM
News: With Nathan Horton sidelined indefinitely due to back trouble and Ryan Johansen not at camp due to a contract dispute, Josh Anderson will be one of the players looked at as a possible replacement among the Blue Jackets' top nine forwards.
Analysis: Josh Anderson could replace Horton's size and physical presence on the ice, if not his offense, but he'll need to have a very impressive training camp to leapfrog the more veteran players available to the Blue Jackets.

 
 
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