Mats Zuccarello

Mats Zuccarello

34-Year-Old Right WingRW
Minnesota Wild
2021 Fantasy Outlook
The veteran missed the first month of the season while recovering from arm surgery, but once he was on the ice, Zuccarello more than made up for lost time. Unlike prior seasons in which he racked up strong totals, he didn't do much damage on the power play, offering some possibility that even if his scoring pace regresses over the upcoming campaign, he might be able to make up the difference on the man advantage. The Wild's lack of elite talent up the middle could be an issue for a winger who doesn't create a lot of offense for himself, but it's one that wold be mitigated with regular shifts alongside the dynamic Kirill Kaprizov. Zuccarello isn't an impact player, but he can be a strong complementary asset, and Minnesota needs him to lock down a top-six spot. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a five-year, $30 million contract with the Wild in July of 2019.
Draws assist in return
RWMinnesota Wild
December 2, 2021
Zuccarello recorded an assist, two shots on goal and a plus-4 rating in Thursday's 5-2 win over the Devils.
ANALYSIS
Zuccarello missed two games with the hand injury, but it didn't seem to bother him much as he set up the second of Kirill Kaprizov's tallies in the game. Through 17 outings, Zuccarello has six goals, 11 assists, 35 shots on net and a plus-13 rating. He should continue to play in a top-six role, where he's been highly productive throughout the season.
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2021–22 Time On Ice Stats
  • Average Time On Ice:
    18:15
  • Average Power Play TOI:
    3:25
  • Average Short-Handed TOI:
    0:07
 
Ice Time
Power Play
Short-Handed
2019–20
15:56
2:27
0:02
2020–21
16:41
2:21
0:00
2021–22
18:15
3:25
0:07
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Recent RotoWire Articles Featuring Mats Zuccarello
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FanDuel NHL: Tuesday Targets
3 days ago
Jason Chen recommends Boston’s Taylor Hall on Tuesday against Detroit as part of an eight-game FanDuel slate.
Past Fantasy Outlooks
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Zuccarello produced 15 goals and 37 points in 65 games in his first year with the Wild, matching his output from the year before. The short-statured veteran is an interesting case for fantasy managers -- he's now missed the 50-point threshold in consecutive years after reaching that mark in four of his previous five campaigns with the Rangers. Given a full season, it's likely the Norwegian winger would be able to at least reach the 40-point mark, but at 33 years old, it's unclear how much of his decline has been related to age and how much has been connected to circumstances outside of his control. Fantasy managers won't want to overspend on Zucc expecting a rebound performance in 2020-21.
The 31-year-old was having one of the best campaigns of his career with the Rangers, scoring 11 goals and 37 points in 46 games, when the Stars elected to make Zuccarello their big trade-deadline acquisition ahead of an anticipated playoff run. That plan nearly ended in disaster when Zucc broke his arm blocking a shot in his Dallas debut, but the team still made the postseason and he was dynamite in his return, scoring four goals and 11 points in 13 playoff games. That performance was good enough to earn the free agent a five-year, $30 million contract with Minnesota, where the undersized winger will slot into a top-six role and look to reach the 60-point plateau for the second time.
While the Rangers team around him in 2017-18 declined significantly compared to past years, Zuccarello was his usual, productive self with 53 points -- right in line with the 57 he averaged over the previous four campaigns. His rating took a major hit, however, plummeting to a career-low minus-10 after Zuccarello had never previously finished in the negatives. The diminutive winger hasn't missed more than five games in any of the past five campaigns, so his prominent role and ability to stay healthy give him a high floor, even if he's unlikely to challenge his 2015-16 career high of 61 points.
The 2016-17 campaign was a real test of Zuccarello’s patience. Although he finished with a useful (and pretty typical) 59 points, he and his fantasy owners were often left wanting more; after all, the Norwegian winger put up a career-high 189 shots, only to be limited to 15 goals by a career-worst 7.9 shooting percentage. Indeed, Zuccarello went through three stretches of 12 games or longer without a goal and managed just one multi-tally effort in the regular season. Even so, he remained a key weapon on offense for the Rangers and a solid contributor in fantasy, and there’s no reason to think that'll change in 2017-18. One of the shortest players in the NHL, Zuccarello nonetheless has a remarkable track record of staying healthy despite his willingness to battle for the puck in high-traffic areas, an attribute that his coaches will always appreciate. Look for a rebound in his goal total -- maybe not to 2015-16’s fortune-favored 26, but 20-plus seems quite reasonable -- while he continues to serve as the Blueshirts’ top playmaker.
There are few NHL players shorter than Zuccarello – but there are also pretty few who are more productive. A brilliant creator on offense, he set new career marks in goals (26) and points (61) last season, leading the Rangers in the latter category. The key was Zucc’s resurgence on the man advantage (seven goals, 18 points) after a 2014-15 in which he scored zero power-play goals. With his cap-friendly contract and high-end playmaking skills, Zuccarello will remain a fixture on the Blueshirts’ top line, which should make him a popular fantasy selection. It wouldn’t be surprising in the least to see him end up right around 60 points again.
Fantasy owners who entered last year looking for a growth season from Zuccarello ended up being disappointed, as his production dropped to 49 points from the 59 he gathered in 2013-14, but the 5-foot-7 Norwegian remains a top-six forward on one of the league's best teams. A shoulder injury seemed to sap his effectiveness early last year, and although he came on strong toward the end of the season, he suffered a brain contusion after taking a puck to the head in the Rangers' first-round playoff series against Pittsburgh, which knocked him out for the remainder of the postseason and even temporarily rendered him unable to speak. However, he’s seemingly already recovered from that ailment and is expected to be ready in time for training camp. Zuccarello’s ice time remained steady at about 17 minutes last year, but his power-play time dropped for the second consecutive season; he’ll likely need to find his way to the top man-advantage unit to have a good chance at cracking 60 points for the first time.
Having already eclipsed the 50-point total twice overseas, few can say 'The Norwegian Hobbit's team-leading 59 points (40 assists) were completely unexpected. Add in four game-winning goals, Zuccarello's durability (77 regular season games), speed and offensive output having seamlessly continued in the Rangers' postseason run and we wouldn't rule out increased ice time for the 5-foot-7 forward, possibly including more power-play minutes as a top-six winger. Zuke's price tag at this year’s draft will likely come as quite a shock and will probably be worth the gamble.
Avoiding arbitration with forward Zuccarello, the Rangers agreed to one year contract, reportedly worth $1.15 million. After playing most of the season with Magnitogorsk Metallurg of the KHL, Zuccarello returned to the Rangers late in the 2012-13 season and had three goals and eight points in 15 regular-season games. He also contributed a goal and seven assists in 12 Stanley Cup Playoff games. Through parts of three seasons as a Ranger, the speedy winger 11 goals and 34 points in 67 games. He could end up as a late-round draft on deeper leagues, but is very streaky. Buyer beware.
Zuccarello was frustrated by his limited playing time in 2011-12 and signed a 1-year deal with Metallurg Magnitogorsk of Russia's KHL. He is eligible to return to the Rangers as a restricted free agent in 2013-14, but he likely won't be on any fantasy rosters for 2012-13.
After leading the Swedish Elite League in scoring, the Rangers signed Zuccarello for two years last May. He has fantastic hands and on-ice vision but opened the past season in the minors, specifically to learn the defensive side of the North American game. Recalled mid-season, he was a constant spark in creating offensive chances, having fired 72 shots in 42 games. He also set up 17 scores, which is the kind of production you want to see from your young fantasy defensemen. One might wonder how long Zuccarello's small, 5-foot-7, 174-pound frame can withstand NHL pounding, but a full season with the parent club will go a long way to determining his future prospects.
The �Norwegian Hobbit� will take his game to the bright lights on Broadway after two excellent seasons in the Swedish Elite League. Zuccarello-Aasen was the league MVP after totaling 64 points in 55 games last year. That coming after he put up 12 goals and 40 points in just 35 games as a rookie for MODO. Zuccarello-Aasen also shined playing for Norway in the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, and several teams noticed, with the Rangers quickly scooping up the talented youngster. Mats will be 23 years old in September and should be given every opportunity to crack the Rangers� lineup. There is an outside chance he finds himself on the wing of the second line, which could result in a 40-point season. While the Norwegian winger has plenty of skill and great hands, the only potential road block seems to be his size. Listed at just 5�7�, Zuccarello-Aasen will have to make a major adjustment to play in the much more physical NHL.
More Fantasy News
In action versus Devils
RWMinnesota Wild
December 2, 2021
Zuccarello (hand) will return to the lineup for Thursday's matchup with New Jersey, Michael Russo of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Remains sidelined
RWMinnesota Wild
Hand
November 30, 2021
Zuccarello (hand) won't play Tuesday against Arizona, Sarah McLellan of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
ANALYSIS
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Could practice Monday
RWMinnesota Wild
Undisclosed
November 28, 2021
Zuccarello (hand) will try to join practice Monday, Michael Russo of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Not playing Sunday
RWMinnesota Wild
Undisclosed
November 28, 2021
Zuccarello (undisclosed) is not in the lineup Sunday against Tampa Bay, Michael Russo of The Athletic reports.
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Game-time call
RWMinnesota Wild
Undisclosed
November 27, 2021
Zuccarello (undisclosed) will be a game-time decision for Sunday's matchup with Tampa Bay, Sarah McLellan of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.
ANALYSIS
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