The Contrarian looks at buy low options, and some false buy low options.
I am going to give you a buy low candidate to avoid and a different one to buy that was not supplied in Dobber’s article Buy Low - Players To Target.
It just so happens that the players I will focus played against each other on Friday in the New Jersey / Carolina game.
The player to avoid is Jiri Tlusty. He is a tempting target being only 25 years old but he has only had one good season and that was off of the lockout where if you had a good start you capitalized on your opponents weaknesses.
This is what his career statistics show:
I am not saying that he will always be stuck around 0.28 points per game but what I am saying is that he had an aberration in 2012-13.
On November 1, 2013, Peter Koutroumpis of the Triangle Sports Network wrote an article Hurricanes’ Top Guns Firing Blanks. He suggests that the top line, consisting at the time of Eric Staal, Alexander Semin and Jiri Tlusty, is simply not getting the job done.
He writes, “They’re shooting, but are getting blocked or missing the net. When they shoot on net, they’re getting stopped” and “If this is all the top line has to offer, then the focus on the defense may be a little overbearing because as much as you need to defend, you must equally attack and score.”
As such, there is no reason to believe that Tlusty will remain on the top line. As the table of statistics shows his time on ice is already about three minutes lower than the previous season.
Even if he were to produce at half a point a game for the remainder of this season, he would be close to getting 35 points.
One irrational reason to be selling him, an owner in my pool dropped him off his roster for Mathiew Perreault in mid-October. This owner has tended to be quite fortunate with his player movements. I did say that this was an irrational reason but so is flipping a coin to make your March Madness bracket picks and that works fine for me.
So if you have Tlusty and someone wants him cheap, show them Dobber’s article and up the price a touch but be ready to sell.
Which brings me to the other player not on Dobber’s list that I feel is a buy low candidate is Cory Schneider. Recently Schneider expressed his emotions about his ice time in an article written by Rich Chere of The Star-Ledger.
“It’s Groundhog Day for me. I can’t seem to escape it, I’m just trying to work hard and do what I can. I’d just like to see the ice a little bit more, that’s all.” With tonight’s victory he now has three in 11 games played. Martin Brodeur has seven in 15 games played.
The low victory numbers are not entirely Schneider’s fault. Eric Duhatschek writes at the end of his November 18, 2013, article about his struggles this year:
“Both are playing well, but only Brodeur is winning regularly. That’s because, for reasons unknown, the Devils simply cannot give Schneider any goal support”. The result of the game tonight could be the start of the upswing for Schneider.
At any rate, even if he splits his time with Brodeur for the remainder of this season it is highly unlikely that the same will occur next year. Brodeur is on the final year of his contract and it would be shocking for New Jersey to bring him back for the type of money that he would want. Plus Brodeur has said in the past that he would not want to play in a backup role.
If the Devils are in playoff contention then I see Marty retiring after the season is over. If, however, the Devils drop out of the playoff race then I think they will shop him to a contender for a prospect or a package of picks to make up for what they lost in the Ilya Kovalchuk mess.
I think Brodeur would be willing to be traded to a playoff team for one final chance at the cup and neither, he or the team would look bad for wanting it.
In either scenario this leaves Cory the prime goaltending duties for the Devils for the next season.
Grabbing him should be a good long term purchase. If you need to knock his price down a bit show his current owners the article by Rich Chere. It might be enough of a push to get what you want.
Read More from The Contrarian: