Nathan MacKinnon
Nathan MacKinnon
23-Year-Old CenterC
Colorado Avalanche
2018 Fantasy Outlook
While MacKinnon posted promising showings in his first four campaigns, he truly cashed in on the talent that made him the No.1 overall pick in 2013 for the first time last season, racking up 39 goals and 58 assists. Still just 22 years old and on a team-friendly deal through 2022-23, MacKinnon has all of the tools and the talent surrounding him on the Avalanche's top line to rank among the league's elite again in 2018-19. Considering he dressed for just 74 games last season, topping 100 points for the first time in his career isn't out of the question skating beside Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a seven-year, $44.1 million contract extension with the Avalanche in July of 2016.
Provides apple in win
CColorado Avalanche
February 14, 2019
MacKinnon assisted on left wing Gabriel Landeskog's game-winning goal in Thursday's 4-1 victory over the Jets.
MacKinnon added seven shots on goal in the contest. With the helper, MacKinnon reached 75 points for the year (29 goals, 46 assists) -- his second consecutive season at the mark. If he remains healthy, he's a threat to challenge for the century mark.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
It’s easy to overlook him after Colorado's dreadful season, but MacKinnon is still one of the game’s most exciting young players. The 2013 first overall pick earned the second best point total of his career (53) last year despite scoring on a career-low 6.4 percent of his shots, and he’s already racked up 206 points in four seasons before his 22nd birthday. MacKinnon also thrived in the 2017 IIHF World Championship, leading Team Canada to a silver medal finish with six goals and nine assists in 10 games. The talent is undoubtedly there, but taking the next step into elite territory will be difficult without better play from his teammates.
MacKinnon may very well have hit 60 points for the second time in his early career, but a MCL sprain cut his season short and left him at 21 tallies and 31 assists to go along with 245 shots on goal. Colorado had seen enough from the 2013-14 Calder Trophy winner to deem him worth retaining for the long haul, as he was signed to a seven-year contract worth $44.1 million in the offseason. The 20-year-old has his best hockey ahead of him and he could blossom into one of the most potent power-play attackers in the NHL (seven goals and nine helpers this past campaign). The first overall pick of 2013 is licking his chops for the upcoming year next to Matt Duchene and Gabriel Landeskog, and the Avs offense is not to be overlooked. It wouldn’t be surprising to see MacKinnon flirt with 60-plus again. The extension – and rising draft stock – is warranted and could reward owners who pounce.
MacKinnon had a season to forget in 2014-15, managing just 14 goals and 38 points in 64 games. Call it the dreaded sophomore slump or whatever fits your fancy, but MacKinnon just couldn’t find consistency last year, going through frequent scoring slumps and flat-out disappearing some nights. We wouldn’t be too worried, however, as MacKinnon was still scoring at a more than half-point-per-game clip as a 19-year-old. In fact, he looked on track to dig himself out of last season's rut after tallying five goals in his final five games, before suffering a season-ending foot injury in March. Now back to 100 percent in advance of 2015-16, the youngster is locked into a top-six role in Colorado and will continue to see plenty of power-play time to aid his bounce-back effort. The former Calder Trophy winner has just 146 career NHL games under his belt, so it's likely we're still a few years away from even seeing his peak. Have him on your radar, as the memory of last season's disappointing numbers will likely reduce his draft stock in the minds of less savvy fantasy owners and create a nice buy-low window.
The "Other Kid from Cole Harbour" dazzled in 2013-14, breaking camp with the Avs as an 18-year-old and leading all rookies in goals (24), assists (39), points (63), power-play goals (eight), game-winning goals (five) and shots-on-goal (241). It comes as no surprise, then, that he took home the Calder Trophy by a landslide over Tampa Bay's Ondrej Palat and Tyler Johnson. MacKinnon also skated to a terrific plus-20 rating, which is particularly impressive considering he often lined up against the opposition's top defenders in the ultra-competitive Central Division. In addition to the exclamation mark that was the Calder Trophy on an already special season, MacK broke Wayne Gretzky's record for the longest consecutive point streak by an 18-year-old with a 13-game, 18-point run in February and March. A natural center, the 2013 No. 1 overall pick spent much of the season on the wing, but that could change come October. Veteran star center Paul Stastny (who racked up 60 points of his own last year) signed a four-year deal with the Blues, leaving a void at the pivot for someone like MacKinnon or Ryan O'Reilly to move back to the middle. With that being said, there's no doubt MacKinnon will have a permanent home in Colorado's top-six, but where and with whom he'll line up with remains unclear, especially with power forward Jarome Iginla entering the mix. Nonetheless, with a strong supporting cast around him, there’s no reason to believe MacKinnon will succumb to the dreaded sophomore slump. Flirting with 70 points is a definite possibility for the teenager.
MacKinnon looks like a sexy draft pick, but his fantasy effectiveness this season will be tied to how quickly his ability adjusts to the NHL level. The lightning-fast center can both score and set up his teammates as he showed last season with the Halifax Mooseheads of the QMJHL ... to the tune of 32 goals and 43 assists in only 44 games. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft will center Jamie McGinn and Steve Downie on the Avalanche's third line, a place where he can be eased into potential stardom.
More Fantasy News
Pots lone goal in loss
CColorado Avalanche
February 10, 2019
MacKinnon was the only Avalanche player to score in their 2-1 overtime loss to the Bruins on Sunday. He also had six shots on goal.
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Manages apple in big loss
CColorado Avalanche
February 6, 2019
MacKinnon recorded an even-strength assist against a minus-2 rating in Tuesday's 6-3 loss to the Blue Jackets.
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Preparing to play Saturday
CColorado Avalanche
February 2, 2019
MacKinnon (foot) is expected to return Saturday night against the Canucks, Ben Kuzma of The Vancouver Province reports.
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Won't skate at All-Star Game
CColorado Avalanche
January 25, 2019
MacKinnon (foot) will take part in the off-ice aspects of the All-Star Game, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet reports.
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Headed for MRI
CColorado Avalanche
January 24, 2019
MacKinnon will undergo an MRI on his foot Thursday and could miss the All-Star Game, John Shannon of Sportsnet reports.
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