NHL.com Fantasy Insider Pete Jensen released his top-10 fantasy sleeper list today. Coming in at No. 7 is Minnesota Wild sophomore defenseman Jonas Brodin.
Here’s what Jensen had to say:
Ryan Suter was one of the most valuable fantasy defensemen during his first season with Minnesota, which bodes well for the long-term value of his partner, Brodin. The Swede played 45 games in his first NHL season, sharing nearly 75 percent of his total ice time with Suter. Brodin is not quite a seasoned offensive player, but he did finish 43rd among defensemen and second among Wild skaters in ice time, adding 11 points, a plus-3 rating and 51 shots. This 20-year-old is the perfect fourth, utility or bench defenseman to target once the top 35 are off the board in your draft. He’s likely to see major minutes again in 2013-14 and is under the tutelage of Suter, who led the NHL in time on ice last season.
Projection: 8 G, 22 A, plus-2, 28 PIM, 7 PPP, 115 SOG
As a hardcore fantasy hockey GM (and Minnesota Wild supporter), I would be jumping for joy if he actually was able to meet these projected stats. However, as outstanding as he is, he is human and only 20 years old. Wild fans shouldn’t be too surprised to see him struggle at times. But there’s no question Wild GM Chuck Fletcher found a kid nothing short of special with the 10th overall selection in 2011.
In addition to Jensen’s selection of Brodin as a sleeper, fellow Fantasy Insider Matt Cubeta lists Wild forward Mikael Granlund as another possible sleeper candidate.
In the list of players in the top 200 Overall Fantasy Hockey Rankings, Zach Parise leads all Wild players at No. 30, followed by Ryan Suter (No. 48), Mikko Koivu (No. 69), Jason Pominville (No. 91), Niklas Backstrom (No. 117) and Dany Heatley (No. 177). Granlund just missed the list, but is in good company with players such as Mikhail Grabovski, Brent Seabrook, Kyle Okposo, Nathan Horton and Kris Versteeg.