From NHL.com: David Satriano believes that both New York Islanders Andrew Ladd and Ryan Strome should have bounce back years this coming season and fans should look at putting them into their fantasy teams.
Andrew Ladd, LW, New York Islanders (ADP: 84.8; NHL.com: 90)
Ladd has provided underrated category coverage through the years, and has a chance to see an offensive boost after signing with the Islanders. He scored 25 goals between the Winnipeg Jets and Chicago Blackhawks last season, but took steps back in points (46), rating (minus-13), PIMs (45), PPP (14) and SOG (181) after finishing among the top 30 fantasy assets in 2014-15 (62 points, plus-9, 72 PIMs, 19 PPP, 224 SOG). Playing on the top line with elite center John Tavares and right wing PA Parenteau could mean big numbers across the board again for Ladd.
Stat projection: 24 goals, 34 assists, plus-6, 54 PIMs, 16 PPP, 190 SOG
Ryan Strome, RW, New York Islanders (ADP: N/R; NHL.com: N/R)
Strome didn’t come close to expectations in his third NHL season; he had 50 points (17 goals, 33 assists) and was a plus-23 in 2014-15, but followed with 28 points (eight goals, 20 assists) and a minus-9. Strome also took fewer shots, had a worse shooting percentage (6.1 compared to 9.5) and was held without a goal in his final 17 regular-season games. Luckily, the Islanders’ lack of forward depth gives him a chance to earn second-line minutes alongside Anders Lee and rookie Mathew Barzal, a line with sneaky fantasy upside. Strome is going undrafted in most 12-team leagues, but is worth monitoring on the waiver wire in case he snaps out of his funk.
Stat projection: 18 goals, 31 assists, plus-6, 36 PIMs, 7 PPP, 164 SOG
My Take: I completely agree with David in projecting +55 points for Ladd, maybe even higher as a first line left winger with John Tavares, who should see his overall totals improve as well. As for Strome I’ve said this for months, he’s a big catalyst for the Islanders success this year. If he produces numbers that David suggests, then this is similar to acquiring a free agent over the summer. Now as far as what position he’s playing, we’ll find out at camp, but it’s believed he’ll be at center this year and only training camp will decide who he actually plays alongside as Islanders coach Jack Capuano likes to go with chemistry, so don’t read to heavily on Mathew Barzal being on the team no less playing with Strome. Even though this is a fantasy write-up from David, it emphasizes the fact that if these two players, along with a full season from Shane Prince, Ryan Pulock and a few others, you’ll see Tavares’ numbers improve and you’ll see an improved Islanders squad as the season progresses.