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Western Conference: Fantasy Hockey Playoff Preview

With the regular season concluded, playoff hockey is about to kick off and you are likely here because you need help or a second opinion on who to draft in fantasy playoff hockey. Playoff pools are different from the regular season in that the players that hold the most value are the ones that go the deepest and have the most games to provide points. This article previews theWestern Conference. You should also give our Eastern Conference Playoff Preview a read.

Fantasy Hockey Playoff Draft Strategy

Success in drafting in fantasy playoff hockey pools relies on choosing players on teams you believe will make it the furthest in the postseason. Drafting Logan Stankoven could be much more valuable than selecting Alex Ovechkin if the Dallas Stars make it to at least the conference finals and the Washington Capitals are out in four games.

To assist you with drafting, I’ve categorized fantasy-relevant players into tiers, acknowledging some playoff bias based on experience in fantasy hockey playoff pools.

Playoff Scoring System

Before looking at the different tiers of players, we must understand the standard playoff scoring system, such as the one utilized in Fantrax playoff pools:


  • 1 point for a goal
  • 1 point for an assist


  • 3 points for a win
  • 2 points for a shutout

Central Division

Dallas Stars

Tier 1: Jason Robertson (LW), Jake Oettinger (G)

Jason Robertson led the Stars in scoring this season with 80 points in 82 games, 13 points ahead of the next closest player. Oettinger has the potential to win 16 games and record a few shutouts. His play in the 2022 playoffs was incredible.

Tier 2: Roope Hintz (C), Joe Pavelski (RW), Miro Heiskanen (D), Matt Duchene (C), Wyatt Johnston (C)

Each of these players should remain at or close to a point-per-game pace during the playoffs, with each of them playing major roles throughout.

Tier 3: Tyler Seguin (RW), Jamie Benn (LW), Mason Marchment (LW)

These three could be just as effective as the players in the tier above and have a good amount of playoff experience and success.

Tier 4: Thomas Harley (D), Logan Stankoven (RW)

These players are wildcards in that they are young and dynamic, but could also very well struggle under the pressure of the postseason.

Winnipeg Jets

Tier 1: Connor Hellebuyck (G), Kyle Connor (LW), Josh Morrissey (D), Mark Scheifele (C)

If the Jets are going to go on a run, and they very well could, these four will be the main reason why. Hellebuyck should win the Vezina Trophy this season, Connor will score lots of goals, Morrissey is great at creating offense, and Scheifele was nearly a point per game this season.

Tier 2: Nikolaj Ehlers (LW), Tyler Toffoli (RW), Gabriel Vilardi (RW)

Ehlers has stayed healthy and risen to the occasion while Toffoli is a natural goal-scorer. Vilardi, when healthy, has been stellar and a crucial member of the top line.

Tier 3: Sean Monahan (C), Nino Niederreiter, Adam Lowry (C), Mason Appleton (RW)

Supplementary scorers who are crucial for the Jets’ playoff success. Monahan could easily move up as he’s experienced and has had a great season.

Tier 4: Neal Pionk (D), Vlad Namestnikov (C), Dylan DeMelo (D), Cole Perfetti (LW)

Players who offer secondary scoring on the back-end or from the bottom of the lineup.

Colorado Avalanche

Tier 1: Nathan MacKinnon (C), Mikko Rantanen (RW), Cale Makar (D)

Elite players in the NHL who all have proven playoff success. Could be stellar in playoff pools if the Avalanche go far.

Tier 2: Valeri Nichushkin (RW), Jonathan Drouin (LW), Artturi Lehkonen (LW), Devon Toews (D), Casey Mittelstadt (C)

Great secondary scoring options that could put up a good deal of points.

Tier 3: Alexandar Georgiev (G), Justus Annunen (G), Ross Colton (C)

Georgiev has not been great this season and Annunen could very well play more in the postseason, whether he starts Game 1 or not. Someone will have to get the wins. The Avalanche hope Colton can be a strong bottom-six piece.

Tier 4: Sean Walker (D)

Walker has shown the ability to chip in on the offense and will start the playoffs in a top-four role.

Vegas Golden Knights

Tier 1: Jack Eichel (C), Jonathan Marchessault (RW)

Both had great performances on the way to the Stanley Cup last season and led the team in goals and points.

Tier 2: Shea Theodore (D), Thomas Hertl (C), William Karlsson (C), Adin Hill (G), Mark Stone (RW)

Theodore has produced a lot when healthy this season and Hill was the goalie that led the Golden Knights to their first Cup. The two centermen should provide great secondary scoring down the middle. Stone may very well return at the start of playoffs and he’s known to take his game to another level in playoffs.

Tier 3: Chandler Stephenson (LW), Ivan Barbashev (LW), Noah Hanifin (D), Alex Pietrangelo (D)

Supplementary scoring options that are vital for Vegas’ hopes to go all the way again. A couple could find themselves in the tier above as well.

Tier 4: Nic Roy (C), Anthony Mantha (RW)

Depth scoring with the ability to make a difference in some games.

Pacific Division

Vancouver Canucks

Tier 1: J.T. Miller (C), Quinn Hughes (D), Elias Pettersson (C), Thatcher Demko (G)

All three skaters could lead the Canucks in scoring in the playoffs while Demko has been one of the best goalies in the league this season.

Tier 2: Brock Boeser (RW), Conor Garland (RW)

Boeser has scored a lot this season and plays with top players while Garland has been on a heater heading into playoffs and should surprise many with his production.

Tier 3: Filip Hronek (D), Elias Lindholm (C), Nils Hoglander (LW)

All three players offer depth scoring options and could exceed expectations.

Tier 4: Dakota Joshua (LW), Ilya Mikheyev (RW), Pius Suter (LW)

Additional depth scorers who could make decent contributions if the Canucks go deep this year.

Edmonton Oilers

Tier 1: Connor McDavid (C), Leon Draisaitl (C)

McDavid and Draisaitl have to be in a tier of their own here because of their place in the all-time playoff points-per-game rankings.

Tier 2: Evan Bouchard (D), Zach Hyman (RW), Stuart Skinner (G), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (LW)

The three skaters could very well put up point-per-game postseasons and benefit from the top power play while Skinner will be the reason the Oilers either advance far or are eliminated early.

Tier 3: Evander Kane (LW), Mattias Ekholm (D), Warren Foegele (RW), Adam Henrique (LW)

These players contribute to the Oilers’ offense and could pop off in the playoffs for better-than-expected production.

Tier 4: Ryan McLeod (C), Darnell Nurse (D), Corey Perry (RW), Dylan Holloway (LW)

Depth options are capable of making contributions in a playoff series.

Los Angeles Kings

Tier 1: Adrian Kempe (RW), Kevin Fiala (LW), Anze Kopitar (C)

These three top-tier scorers are crucial to the Kings’ playoff success, but be wary of this team’s chance at going far.

Tier 2: Drew Doughty (D), Quinton Byfield (LW), Viktor Arvidsson (RW), Trevor Moore (LW)

These players have had strong seasons and could elevate their game. They will make a big difference for the Kings.

Tier 3: Cam Talbot (G), Philipp Danault (C), Pierre-Luc Dubois (C)

Danault and Dubois should chip in, but while Talbot has had a strong season, he won’t get a ton of points if the Kings don’t advance.

Nashville Predators

Tier 1: Filip Forsberg (LW), Roman Josi (D), Juuse Saros (G)

If the Predators are going to go anywhere in the postseason, the three top players on the team will take them there.

Tier 2: Ryan O’Reilly (C), Gustav Nyquist (RW)

O’Reilly and Nyquist make up the other 2/3 of the top line with Forsberg and this trio has done a lot of the damage this season against opponents.

Tier 3: Tommy Novak (C), Luke Evangelista (RW)

Both young players add valuable depth scoring and have been solid this season.

Tier 4: Ryan McDonagh (D), Jason Zucker (LW), Colton Sissons (C)

Added depth scoring and players who could change the outcome of a game with a solid performance.

In fantasy hockey playoffs, success hinges on strategic drafting based on the teams you believe will advance furthest. Utilize these tier rankings to make informed decisions and maximize your chances of taking home the title.

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