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NHL Picks for the 2017-18 Season

With the hockey season just weeks away, we've polled our expert pucksters on how everything should shake out over the course of the 2017-18 campaign. Interestingly, everyone picked a different Stanley Cup champion, and only yours truly appears to be bullish on 2017 Hobey Baker Award winner Will Butcher right out of the gate. The criteria for making the picks was loosely defined (by design), but here's hoping it will help you get a basic idea of who to look out for or even avoid in drafts. Hint: None of us seem to like Jeff Carter this year. Agree? Disagree? Let's hear your take!

Mike GayKyle RileyTim SchulerAJ ScholzJordan BuckleyDoug GreenbergJoe Mahoney
Rising in SeptemberAlex WennbergAlex WennbergDavid PastrnakMatt MurrayRyan StromeArtemi PanarinJohnny Gaudreau
Falling in SeptemberBrock BoeserAndreas AthanasiouJeff CarterConnor HellebuyckBrandon DubinskyJoe ThorntonMike Smith
2 Players I Want on My TeamsLeon Draisaitl, Justin SchultzJack Eichel, Brady SkjeiJack Eichel, Auston MatthewsPatrick Marleau, Mark ScheifeleJamie Benn, Aleksander BarkovBrad Marchand, Jeff SkinnerLeon Draisaitl, Erik Karlsson
2 Top-50 Players to AvoidNazem Kadri, Steven StamkosPekka Rinne, Henrik LundqvistJamie Benn, Jeff CarterJeff Carter, Wayne SimmondsCorey Perry, Anze KopitarClaude Giroux, Eric StaalPekka Rinne, Corey Perry
Forward I'm Optimistic AboutMitch MarnerJohn TavaresJakob SilfverbergLeon DraisaitlJordan EberleRyan JohansenNik Ehlers
Forward I'm Pessimistic AboutAlexander OvechkinViktor ArvidssonEric StaalMike HoffmanArtemi PanarinJeff CarterEric Staal
Defenseman I'm Optimistic AboutAnthony DeAngeloMark GiordanoZach WerenskiDustin ByfuglienJohn CarlsonDougie HamiltonMatt Dumba
Defenseman I'm Pessimistic AboutShayne GostisbehereAndrej SekeraMark GiordanoDougie HamiltonJustin SchultzVictor HedmanKevin Shattenkirk
Goalie I'm Optimistic AboutMatt MurrayCorey CrawfordCraig AndersonMarc-Andre FleuryBen BishopAndrei VasilevskiyCraig Anderson
Goalie I'm Pessimistic AboutBen BishopHenrik LundqvistMarc-Andre FleuryMike SmithBrian ElliottPekka RinneCorey Crawford
Draft Crosby or McDavid first overall?McDavidMcDavidMcDavidMcDavidCrosbyMcDavidCrosby
Select Will Butcher in top half of drafts?YesNoNoNoNoNoNo
Outside Top-100 to Finish Top-25Jonathan DrouinJordan EberleZach WerenskiJames NealNathan MacKinnonJonathan DrouinAleksander Barkov
Top-15 to Finish Outside Top-40Sergei BobrovskyCam TalbotJamie BennNikita KucherovMatt MurrayJoe PavelskiCarey Price
2017 Fantasy MVPConnor McDavidPatrick KaneAuston MatthewsConnor McDavidNikita KucherovConnor McDavidSidney Crosby
Stanley CupEdmonton over ColumbusChicago over ColumbusWashington over St. LouisPittsburgh over EdmontonSt. Louis over New York RangersEdmonton over PittsburghAnaheim over Pittsburgh