It's summer and hot outside in most parts of the world. Naturally, the best way to cool off is to talk about fantasy hockey.
Forwards comprise the largest group on the ice, but all are not created equal. When it comes to categorizing them, there are several levels to consider.
The following groupings will work in any fantasy format using a 12-team setup. The standard scoring categories have been used to rate these players, so hits, blocked shots, or Twitter followers are not included.
We'll go from the cream of the crop down to the projected disappointments and round out with unknown achievers and filler material. Pick and choose from each section to end up with a solid, well-rounded lineup:
Tier 1: Royalty
This is the top of the heap. McDavid stands alone from the others in this section by continuing to do more with less supporting talent. Ovechkin now has his Cup, but that doesn't mean he's lost his drive to keep winning. Malkin missed some time during the playoffs but should be dominant enough to keep his place among the elite.
Tier 2: Nobility
Nathan MacKinnon, Taylor Hall, Blake Wheeler, David Pastrnak, Patrik Laine, John Tavares, Brad Marchand, Vladimir Tarasenko, Steven Stamkos, Tyler Seguin, Jamie Benn, Mark Scheifele, Claude Giroux, Auston Matthews, Patrick Kane, Artemi Panarin, Evgeny Kuznetsov