New Surroundings: Mike Knuble

Mike Knuble's numbers have a chance to balloon in Washington.
Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) - With the NHL Draft and the most hectic day of the free agency period behind us, we can start to sort through the rubble of all the moves that have occurred over the last several weeks and see how they will affect the upcoming fantasy season.

Several big name players have changed teams making their new teammates more valuable, fantasy-wise, while several very potent teams have added players whose numbers will jump based on their new surroundings.

Maybe no name that has changed addresses this offseason is more intriguing than Mike Knuble. Playing with the first line in Philadelphia over the last four years, Knuble has been a viable fantasy option, scoring 20 goals-a-year while adding decent assist and penalty minute numbers. What made Knuble even more valuable was his presence on the Philadelphia power play, where he netted 10 or more goals a season.

Now that Knuble finds himself down I-95 in Washington, his numbers have a chance to balloon.

Early reports out of Washington suggest that Knuble is going to get first crack at playing alongside Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, and if so, Knuble will be a very, very valuable asset to your fantasy team. Even without playing on a full-strength line with Ovechkin and Backstrom, Knuble's abilities on the power play will help the Capitals sixth-best unit a year ago become even stronger, which in turn will add to Knuble's stat line.

It'll be interesting to see, though, given Knuble's age, if this comes to fruition. At 37-years-old, eventually a player's body, and skill level, begins to fade. Especially a player who plays as physically tough as Knuble has throughout his career.

But until Knuble shows signs of this slowdown, be sure he is on your radar come draft day.

Mike Knuble Career Statistics
Season Team GP G A Pts +/- PIM PP SOG
2005-06 PHI 82 34 31 65 25 80 13 217
2006-07 PHI 64 24 30 54 2 56 10 160
2007-08 PHI 82 29 26 55 -3 72 15 177
2008-09 PHI 82 27 20 47 5 62 11 173

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