29-Year-Old Right Wing – Free Agent
Justin Fontaine Contract Information:
Signed a one-year contract with Dinamo Minsk of the KHL in July of 2017.
Fontaine signed a one-year deal with Dynamo Minsk (KHL) on Monday, Igor Eronko of Sport-Express reports.
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Justin Fontaine: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Justin Fontaine.
A second straight year of declining production, including a knee injury that forced him to miss nearly a month, saw Fontaine score just five goals in 60 games, signalling the end of his tenure with Minnesota. An undersized winger with speed to burn, the Wild were moving in a different direction with a new coach who felt it was unnecessary to retain him in a bottom-six role. Fontaine is a depth player and occasional penalty killer, so draft him accordingly.
Fontaine improved in his second season with 31 points (.44 per game compared to .32 in 2013-14) and better reviews for his defense. Despite the gains, Fontaine had trouble winning playing time with the Wild's top forwards and was often benched or relegated to the fourth line. He could take another big step forward this season if he lands a more high-profile role.
Fontaine put up 13 goals and eight assists through 66 games in his rookie year. We'd like to say that the young winger will continue to improve and get more ice time in his sophomore year. But, the Wild's lineup continues to get deeper and the team's top-six looks nearly out of reach for winger and that will continue to limit his upside. His career upside is probably about 50 points -- there's a bit of puck luck, like an empty net on his hat trick or a bounce off the shin, in those 13 goals. He'll be a fantasy role player on the Wild's fourth line. There's not much value in that.
The former University of Minnesota Duluth star scored 56 points in 64 games with AHL Houston last season. He made a strong impression in training camp and skated frequently on the second line. He could carve out a role on a top-three line at some point this season.