As part of NHL.com’s 32 in 32 series, the fantasy hockey staff identifies relevant players from the Toronto Maple Leafs. For more coverage, visit NHL.com/Fantasy and subscribe for free to the “NHL Fantasy on Ice” podcast.
MORE FANTASY COVERAGE: Top 250 rankings
NOTES: These fantasy projections (for 82-game season), a collaborative effort by Pete Jensen, Anna Dua and independent correspondent Jonathan Baron, have been quantified based on factors including but not limited to past performance in the regular season and Stanley Cup Playoffs, projected line combinations, power-play usage, team goalie situations, injury history or concern, sleeper upside, anticipated regression or bounce-back candidacy, age, contract status and overall upside for this season. The below totals are safe estimates and do not necessarily indicate each player’s ceiling or floor and should be used as a basis for decision-making in all fantasy leagues. Players are listed below in order of NHL.com top 250 rank.
[Maple Leafs 32 in 32: Season preview | 3 Questions | Top prospects]
Auston MatthewsVS — The Toronto Maple Leafs center led the NHL with career highs in goals (60) and shots on goal (348) last season and also had his highest totals in points (106 in 73 games; tied for sixth in the League), assists (46 ) and power play points (29). Matthews, the first NHL player with 60 goals in a season since Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2011-12, has scored at least 40 in three straight seasons with 19 more goals (148 in 195 games since 2019-20) than any other player in that span. He is third in NHL.com’s fantasy rankings behind Edmonton Oilers forwards Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl.
NHL.com point projection for Matthews: 110
Video: Top 10 Auston Matthews Plays from the 2021-22 Season
Mitchell MarnerRW — He was 10th in the NHL in points (career-high 97 in 72 games) last season, had his highest goal total (35) and led the Maple Leafs in assists (62). Matthews and Marner were tied for the fourth-best point pair in the NHL (49 team games with each having a point).
Marner, who was also second on Toronto in plus/minus (plus-23; behind linemate Michael Bunting‘s plus-27), should be considered a top five right wing, top 20 overall player and among the 15 best options in most keeper leagues.
NHL.com point projection for Marner: 99
Video: Top 10 Mitchell Marner Plays from the 2021-22 Season
Morgan RiellyD — He had an NHL career-high 58 assists last season and was tied for sixth in the League among defensemen in points (68). Rielly was one of 15 defensemen to play in all 82 games, brings exposure to Matthews, Marner and valuable center John Tavares on Toronto’s power play (led NHL with 27.3 percent conversion rate last season) and should be considered a top 10 fantasy defenseman option and top 60 overall player.
NHL.com point projection for Rielly: 56
William NylanderLW/RW — He led the Maple Leafs in power-play points (NHL career-high 31; tied for 13th in the League) last season and also had his highest totals in goals (34), assists (46), points (80) and shots on goal (256). Nylander is also quietly better than a point per game (15 in 14 games) over the past two Stanley Cup Playoffs combined and should be considered a fringe top 75 overall fantasy player.
NHL.com point projection for Nylander: 84
John Tavares, C — He was one of 20 NHL players with at least 25 goals (27), 75 points (76 in 79 games), 25 power-play points (26) and 230 shots on goal (237) playing on mostly the second line with Nylander. Tavares should be considered a fringe top 25 fantasy center and top 75 overall player with a solidified top-six and first power-play spot for an offense that ranked second in goals per game (3.80) behind the Florida Panthers (4.11) last season.
NHL.com point projection for Tavares: 70
Other TOR players to consider in fantasy: Michael Bunting, LW; Matt MurrayG; Ilya SamsonovG; Mark GiordanoD; Alexander KerfootLW/RW
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