|(8/20/16) Ekholm broke out offensively last season, potting eight goals to complement 27 assists over a full 82-game schedule. Still, Nashville's assistant coach Phil Housley expects the blueliner to take another step forward in the 2016-17 campaign.|
While it's not clear if Ekholm will join celebrated newcomer P.K. Subban to form the first defensive pair, the smooth-skating Swede is almost assuredly set for a top-four role with a Predators team that averaged the fewest shots against in the NHL last year (27.3 per game). A fourth-round draft choice in 2009, Eklholm earns his keep in fantasy leagues due to his ability to move the puck for scores, plus he's posted shooting percentages of 8.1 and 7.0, respectively, over the last two seasons. Ekholm is in the thick of his prime at the age of 26 and deserves consideration in the vast majority of league formats.