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Shootin’ High, Shootin’ Low: Fantasy hockey’s streakiest players right now

William Karlsson can’t be held at bay for long

Getty Images/Pete Rogers Illustrations

Here are a list of people who are abnormally high and low in NHL shooting percentage and one could assume to see some regression or bump in their upcoming numbers. (stats as of 10/25/2019)

For reference on all of this, the league shooting average over the last three years is 8.9%. This has been on the rise, three years ago it sat at 8.7% and last year it rose to 9.1%. This year just 154 games into the 2019-2020 season, we are sitting at a 9.1% which is right on target for last year. Given the sample size, there are obviously some players who sit in the 14%+ and some players (cough cough) defensemen who will be in the 5% and below space. Below are some players who are hitting above (or below) their normal averages.

Shootin’ High

Brayden Schenn

10 games into this season he has a decent shots going in his favor with 23 shots and eight goals for a 34.8% shooting percentage. His career high is 14.6% and while he is a power play specialist, 2 of his eight goals have come on power play so there are two considerations here. First, his shot % will come down to 13-15% BUT he will also continue to score on Power Play where he can run as high as 17 PPG (as he did in 2016-2017 season).

David Pastrnak

Brad Marchand and Pastrnak are trying to give Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid a run for “most team goals contributed by two players”. David currently has 31.8% shooting. He has never had a year above 16.2% but I will note that he has seen an increase each of the last three years so I don’t think 17% is unachievable for him this year. We could be looking at a 42 goal scorer this year with his 10 goals across 32 shots and nine game start so far.

TJ Oshie

With 7 goals and 4 power play goals across 23 shots, TJ is in the top 10 in goals scored and he is fifth in the league in power play goals. He is not shy about getting down low and fighting for his goals. The crazy part about TJ is he has 23.1% in 2016-2017 so while his current 30.4% is high, it’s not absurd to think that regression will be minor in comparison here.

James Neal

Nine goals and league leading six goals from the ONLY player in the league who has over five goals and is playing less than 20 minutes a night, I’m running far away. Sure he has Connor McDavid on his side but this 28.1% is vastly unsustainable for the 33 year old who is eight years removed from his amazing 40 goal season. I’m selling as high as I possibly can.

Arizona Coyotes v New York Rangers Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images

Shootin’ Low

Clayton Keller

With 25 shots and no goals to show for it (0%), Clayton is about to emerge in a BIG fashion. I’m expecting to see AT LEAST five goals in his next two weeks. He showed severe regression in year two, dropping from a rookie 10.8% shooting to 7.0% last year. Derek Stepan and Phil Kessel are too good not to get him chances to start lighting the lamp. I am optimistic on a strong year despite the slow start.

James van Riemsdyk

He finally scored one against Chicago after going 0 for across his first 30 attempts. Obviously his 2.7% is way too low but I feel as if fantasy hockey community at large was cautious on him. In spite of all of this he has now had 25+ goals in each of the last three years and 12%+. I think he will have more of a streak where he scores across 3-4 straight games rather than one big game.

Taylor Hall

I associate his struggle with the Devils who at large were working to find their niche early on. 32 shots and 1 goal (3.1% shooting) from a former Hart Trophy winner. I’m not sweating this one, just a slow team start which will come about soon as they sync and that’s when he will thrive.

William Karlsson

I am buying this stock in every location possible right now. 29 shots and 1 goal (3.4% shooting) from a player who a player who scored 24+ goals in each of the last two season, scored at a 14%+ in those seasons, had at least 7 power play goals and at least five game winners. He’s not padding the stats, he’s a legit scoring threat who has faced Pekka Rinne, Tuukka Rask, Brian Elliott and Darcy Kuemper (a list of goalies off to great starts).