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Draft Guide


by Brian Rosenbaum
Updated On: October 4, 2018, 4:04 pm ET

Which player, who is off to a surprisingly quick start, is most likely to have a breakout or bounceback season?

Brian Rosenbaum: I think Brayden Point is the real deal. In 68 games last season, Point registered 40 points without the benefit of playing regularly with Steven Stamkos or Nikita Kucherov. He's at it again this season with five points in two games while playing on Tampa's third line. Although he is skating alongside an effective Ondrej Palat one wonders what Point could do if he skated with the Bolts' big boys. Without them, he's great. With them, he could be outstanding. 
Corey Abbott: Evgeny Kuznetsov was a bit of a disappointment last year when he recorded 19 goals and 59 points in 82 games.  He was expected to take his game to another level after he had 77 points the year before.  The 25-year-old center appears to be ready to take that leap forward this campaign.  Kuznetsov already has seven assists in two games and every helper has come on a goal by Alex Ovechkin, who has been a scoring machine in the early going.  He is also playing on Washington's top power-play unit now and it's shaping up to be a huge year for him offensively.

Ryan Dadoun: Evgeny Kuznetsov was going to be my pick as well.  I'll go with Johnny Gaudreau instead.  He was a bit of a disappointment with his 61 points last season, but missing Calgary's training camp in 2016 was a significant part of that.  As long as he stays healthy this season a 70-80 point showing seems like a reasonable expectation.
Michael Finewax: I cannot argue with Kuznetsov. If I was a frontrunner I would go with Ryan Hartman who has a goal and five assists playing alongside Patrick Kane.  But I'm going to go with Evander Kane who is in a contract year and playing with Jack Eichel. Kane had 28 goals last season and didn't score his first one until December 3. He already has two in two games this season. I'm looking for a big season from the Thrashers number one pick and 4th overall in 2009. He has four points in two games and had 204 penalty minutes over 135 games in his last two seasons.

Brian Rosenbaum
Brian Rosenbaum is the Senior Hockey Editor of Rotoworld.com. He's run the hockey coverage since its inception in 2000.