It is early in the pre-season, but Ryan Dadoun brings a round up of the news so far. Nothing earth shattering, but lots to keep an eye on. McKeen's will do an update end of day Monday based on injuries, camp performance, etc.
In the meantime here is what you need to know.
Hampus Lindholm – Shoulder injury will probably keep him out until early November. That’s not surprising given the initial projections from when he had surgery in May, but it’s his absence is more probable now than it was over the summer.
Ryan Kesler – The hope is to have him back by Christmas after he underwent hip surgery in June. Over the summer it looked like he might be back in November, so the recent news here has been discouraging.
Antoine Vermette – Might end up being the one to fill the void left by Kesler. He’s been practicing on a line with Andrew Cogliano and Jakob Silfverberg. If we’re talking about standard fantasy leagues though, Vermette’s value is still borderline at best.
Jason Demers – The Coyotes acquired him from the Florida Panthers. Arizona views him as a top-four defenseman, but it’s not clear who his defensive partner will be. He got a decent, but not great, amount of power-play time in Florida last season while Keith Yandle/Aaron Ekblad served as the team’s primary defensive options with the man advantage and he’ll probably end up in a similar situation in Arizona behind Oliver Ekman-Larsson/Alex Goligoski when it comes to power-play ice time.
Torey Krug – He suffered a non-displaced jaw fracture on Tuesday and was projected to miss at least three weeks from that date. That will cost him most of training camp and at least three regular season games.
Alexander Nylander – He suffered a lower-body injury on Sept. 8 and hasn’t skated at all in training camp as a result. Good news is that the Sabres think he’ll resume skating in near future, so maybe he’ll still return with enough time to spare to make his case for a roster spot.
Lee Stempniak – More of a side note for now, but he’s been dealing with an undisclosed problem that might be more serious than initially believed. He has soreness in his hip/back and had an MRI on Thursday, so we’ll see what the results of that are.
Andreas Athanasiou – Still hasn’t signed. There’s the threat of him heading to the KHL and even if he does re-sign in the not too distant future, he’ll be a young player that’s missed a good chunk of training camp/preseason play.
Ryan Strome – It’s a bit of a stretch to mention at this stage, but the Oilers seem to be going with a top line of Maroon, McDavid, and Strome so far. As a fun aside, McDavid also thinks Strome is a good sleeper pick in fantasy leagues. (https://www.nhl.com/news/edmonton-oilers-connor-mcdavid-sees-ryan-strome-as-fantasy-sleeper/c-290885390?tid=277729150)
Drake Caggiula – Similarly, it might be too early to read into it, but so far Drake Caggiula is being tested on the second line with Draisaitl and Lucic.
Marian Gaborik – Is taking some contact as he recovers from a knee injury. Still unclear if he’ll play in the preseason, but it’s progress.
Ryan Ellis – This happened a couple weeks before training camp, so you probably already have it in your projections, but just in case he’s out for four-to-six months with a knee injury. That has led to them mixing up their defensive pairings though. Ekholm and Subban were split up so that Ekholm is now with Josi (although Ekholm-Weber has also been experimented with) and Subban is with newcomer Emelin.
Nico Hischier – Another stretch, but for what it’s worth Nico Hischier has stood out in preseason games so far, upping what were already good odds of him making the team. Hynes suggested that Hischier has forced talks of him having a bigger role than previously projected. Hischier-Hall is an interesting combo, though of course it’s another preseason pairing so who knows.
Alan Quine – Quine sustained an upper-body injury in mid-September that was projected to cost him four-to-six weeks. So he’s missing training camp and a couple weeks of the regular season in all likelihood.
Colin White – Suffered a broken left wrist on Monday and is projected to miss six-to-eight weeks. He had been seen as being in a good position to make the team, especially due to Derick Brassard being a question mark. Although…
Derick Brassard – His recovery from shoulder surgery is ahead of schedule, per what Guy Boucher said today. He still might not be ready for the start of the regular season.
Clarke MacArthur – Unfortunately even after his strong playoff showing, he ended up failing his physical. Sucks to say, but it may be that his playing career is over.
Erik Karlsson – As of Thursday he still wasn’t skating due to his foot injury. He’s unlikely to be ready for the start of the season and who knows if he’ll be begin the curve once he finally is given the green light to play.
Travis Sanheim – It’s still tentative, but he’s off to a good start and seems to have improved his chances of making the team. Had 10 goals and 37 points in the AHL last season.
Sean Couturier – The Flyers are toying with using Claude Giroux as a left winger. Couturier could be the beneficiary if that happens as he could move up in the depth charts as a result, possibly even on a line with Giroux and Jakub Voracek (which they did test out in practice, but that doesn’t mean they’ll actually use it in games).
Zach Sanford – Suffered a dislocated left shoulder that will keep him sidelined for the next five-to-six months.
Jay Bouwmeester – Has a fractured left ankle that will be re-evaluated in three weeks. Along with Sanford, these ones are fringe just because they didn’t have much in the way of fantasy value even when healthy.
Alexander Steen – Suffered a hand injury in the Blues’ first preseason game on Tuesday that will cost him at least three weeks (at which point he’ll be re-evaluated). Certainly he’s the most noteworthy of the three fantasy wise.
Patrick Marleau – It’s looking like Patrick Marleau won’t play alongside Matthews in even strength as Babcock’s preference appears to be a trio of Zach Hyman, Matthews, and William Nylander. Marleau and Matthews should share the ice in power play situations though.
Joffrey Lupul – Team’s says he failed his physical, but now it looks like the league wants to look into it after Lupul’s claim of cheating followed by his retraction(deletion)/apology. Probably doesn’t matter fantasy-wise either way. Even if Lupul is deemed fit to play he’ll probably end up in the AHL at most.
James Neal – Has a broken hand that was projected to sideline him for two-to-four weeks. He’s one week into that timetable at this point so perhaps he’ll be okay for the season opener. Still sucks to miss training camp on a brand new team though.
Jakub Vrana – More grain of salt stuff, but the Capitals have been giving him top-six opportunities. He played alongside Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov in Wednesday’s preseason game and tonight it looks like he’ll be with Backstrom and Oshie (Kuznetsov/Ovechkin aren’t playing).
Tyler Myers – Feels 100% after only playing in 11 games last season.