Cody Eakin
Cody Eakin
28-Year-Old CenterC
Vegas Golden Knights
2019 Fantasy Outlook
Eakin is entrusted with a bevy of responsibilities for the Golden Knights, but perhaps none more important than his two-way tasks on special teams. Last season, the Winnipeg native averaged 1:19 of ice time on the penalty kill, which translated to three shorthanded goals, and coach Gerard Gallant increased the crafty center's power-play role by 40 seconds per game compared to his output from the previous campaign. Unfortunately for Eakin, his hit on Joe Pavelski -- one that led to his ejection from a crucial Game 7 playoff contest against the Sharks -- unceremoniously drew the curtain on his 2018-19 campaign. The third-liner has one year remaining on his contract before he'll be eligible to hit the open market as an unrestricted free agent, though he may already have one foot out the door given that Vegas has five forwards signed to long-term deals. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a four-year, $15.4 million contract extension with the Stars in August 2015.
Fills empty cage
CVegas Golden Knights
November 19, 2019
Eakin notched an empty-net goal on five shots and added two hits in Tuesday's 4-2 win over the Maple Leafs.
Eakin's late tally confirmed the win for the Golden Knights. He led all Golden Knights forwards with 18:58 during the game. Eakin has goals in consecutive games and points in three straight. He's at six points in 19 contests for the year, but he's now trending in the right direction.
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
After struggling through injury and consistency issues in 2016-17, Eakin was left exposed by the Stars and chosen by the Golden Knights in the expansion draft. While the 27-year-old managed 11 goals and 27 points in 80 regular-season games, he was largely invisible during the team's Stanley Cup run. Eakin has always had a strong shot and sees plenty of time on the penalty kill, but his hot and cold tendencies make him a tough sell in fantasy leagues. The third-line center hasn't been seeing power-play time in Vegas and the team will likely regress in its sophomore season, making it unlikely Eakin takes any major leaps in 2018-19.
A preseason knee injury delayed the start of the energetic forward’s campaign, and when he returned to action in November he found himself ping-ponging around the lineup and being forced into roles he couldn't quite handle. The result was the least productive season of Eakin’s career, and he managed only three goals and 12 points in 60 games. Selected by the Golden Knights in the expansion draft, the 26-year-old could once again find himself seeing significant minutes as a Swiss Army knife on a roster with a lot of mismatched parts. Eakin’s scoring can't help but rebound after last year’s disaster, but he lacks the pure skill or scoring touch to become an impact player on the offensive end.
Eakin bounced all around the Dallas lineup last year, occasionally seeing big minutes, but the end result was 35 points – right in the same range that he’s occupied for three seasons now. His minutes and shots on goal actually fell a bit from the two prior campaigns, and with Tyler Seguin and Jason Spezza comfortably ensconced as the top two centers in Big D, there’s little reason to look for an age-25 spike from Eakin. Still, he’s a valuable third-liner (albeit more in reality than fantasy) who’s excelled as a penalty killer, having put home five shorthanded goals in the last two seasons.
After posting 16 goals and 35 points in 2013-14, Eakin made incremental progress in the scoring column this past season. The 24-year-old rattled home a career-high 19 goals, including a whopping six game-winners. Along with hitting the 40-point barrier, Eakin held down a role on the Stars' second power-play unit, where he contributed two power-play goals and two shorthanded markers. With Tyler Seguin and Jason Spezza centering the top two lines, Eakin may not have much further room to raise his production, as a third-line role likely awaits him in 2015-16. Eakin's relative youth makes it difficult to put a firm ceiling on his fantasy upside, but he'll probably need a long-term Seguin or Spezza injury in order to see the type of minutes that would lend itself to a more notable scoring total. In the meantime, he'll function as a perfectly useful depth scorer for the Stars, though his lack of activity in the non-scoring categories makes him a less attractive option to stash on the bench in deeper formats.
Eakin is certainly not lacking in potential. But Dallas' addition of Jason Spezza means that Eakin will spend most of this season in a third-line role. Dallas' third line is no lame-duck checking line, though -- they can score. Eakin figures to start the season with former 30-goal scorer Erik Cole and Ryan Garbutt on the wings. The addition of Ales Hemsky, along with Spezza, may mean Eakin gets slightly less power-play time as well, but the Stars still want him to develop and be a key part of a future Cup contender. Forty points are within reach, but only you know if that output fits your fantasy needs, particularly in those leagues with positional requirements.
Acquired for Mike Ribeiro in the summer of 2012, Eakin managed seven goals and 17 assists in 48 games last year as the second-line center, far exceeding even the most optimistic of projections. He could end up sliding back down to the third line with the offseason arrivals of Rich Peverley and Shawn Horcoff, so temper your expectations a bit. Dallas' scoring just doesn't go deep enough to yield a ton of value outside the top six.
Eakin projects as a nice checking center, something the Stars need after Vern Fiddler struggled in that role last season. He's not going to contribute much on the stat sheet and is unlikely to take over the second-line center duties when Derek Roy is sidelined to begin the season (Roy is expected to be out until early November).
Eakin played in the WHL last season and amassed 83 points during the season. Just under six-foot, the young center shows the skill to someday make it to the NHL level. A few factors come into play when assessing when he could make it, and weighing those it figures to be a few years away before he gets a shot.
Eakin was part of Ahl Hershey's run to the 2010 Calder Cup championship. A third round pick last year, he was named the rookie of the year in the WHL. The young center looks like he may have a chance at making it to the NHL, but will probably be a year or two before he gets a shot.
More Fantasy News
Nets first goal of 2019-20
CVegas Golden Knights
November 17, 2019
Eakin scored a goal on five shots and dished two hits in Sunday's 6-0 win over the Flames.
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Full participant at practice
CVegas Golden Knights
November 15, 2019
Eakin (lower body) was a full participant at Friday's practice, David Schoen of the Las Vegas Review Journal reports.
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Dealing with minor injury
CVegas Golden Knights
Lower Body
November 14, 2019
Eakin is considered questionable for Friday's practice due to a lower-body injury, David Schoen of the Las Vegas Review Journal reports.
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Exits with injury
CVegas Golden Knights
November 13, 2019
Eakin departed Wednesday's game early in the third period due to an apparent injury, Jesse Granger of The Athletic reports.
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Powers up with helper
CVegas Golden Knights
November 10, 2019
Eakin registered a power-play assist Saturday in a 5-2 loss to the Capitals.
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