Fantasy Guide is updated, including more deets on the 3-Tiered Invitational and my team-by-team goals-for analysis.
Here's an interesting one - the Flyers have announced that Michael Nylander has accepted a pro tryout offer for training camp. The Jagr - Nylander stuff never dies, eh? I think he would have to beat out Schenn for a spot, which is not likely.
I delayed the Guide update because I’m hoping to get in information on my annual Three-Tiered Invitational Rotisserie League. That’s my job this morning – gather up all that stuff.
Today’s ramblings are brought to you by Twitter. And man, it makes doing the ramblings easier when there is absolutely no news. Sorry, I stand corrected – Andre Deveaux signed with the Rangers. Um, yeah.
I was asked about this year’s top European and NCAA free agent signings, but that’s too broad. Anyone specific? Generally speaking, none of them (except Jagr) will make an impact this season. But there should be a few who make an impact over the next three years. And I’d be interested to see Janne Pesonen make the Jets.
Steve Downie – Carcillo or Shanahan? Closer to Shanahan than Carcillo. But obviously not that good. The thing with Downie is the injuries. He strikes me as a lock to miss at least 10 games a season, and will frequently miss 20. That should see to it that he never reaches 65 points and will make it tough for him to ever reach 60. But I think of him as a 50-point, 200-PIM player, in 65 or 70 games.
Tomas “Flash” Fleischmann – can he make it through a whole season and be consistent? Can he make it through a whole season – no. But I don’t believe the blood clots will be a problem. But he was somewhat fragile to begin with. So I think 80 games will be rare for him – he’ll be one of those players who plays 70 or 75 per season. And he’s very streaky. However, because he’s making so much money, the Panthers are going to play the hell out of him. This obviously would help anyone play their way out of a funk. So this is why I think Flash will become a star in Florida. The guy has shown that he can be a point-per-game guy in spurts. And those spurts will happen often now thanks to prime ice time.
Someone asked about my difference of opinion with Ryan Ma about Patrik Berglund. Ma said in his recent article that his feeling is that Berglund will fall short of 50 points. I predicted 59 in the Guide and a dark horse for 70 in his fourth NHL season. It’s just a difference of opinion. He went from 26 points to 52 and I don’t think Ryan is buying it. But I think it was the 26 that was the aberration and I put my money where my mouth is by acquiring him in one of my leagues last month. Ryan sees that Berglund got some ice time thanks to injuries to Oshie, McDonald and Perron. And now Oshie and McDonald are fine. Whereas I see Berglund as a key part of the top-six core and a future first-line center. The coach is trusting him more and more and I think we’ll see that this year.
I was asked about defensemen with the least amount of turnovers per minute – I don’t have that at my fingertips, but if you go here in Frozen Pool you can see a list of defensemen and their giveaways.
Why did New Jersey wait until now to address goaltending post-Brodeur? Well, they didn’t wait until now, per se, but they waited until 2010. That’s the year they drafted Wedgewood and Clermont. But those guys are years away. They signed college prospect Keith Kinkaid in April, who was ECAC’s best goaltender last season. Yes, these should have been moves done in 2008 and 2009, not two years later. So I’m thinking that the team was hoping to sign a free agent goaltender next summer. And why not? For two straight years it has been a buyer’s market on goalies. To the point where Nabokov leaves and Vokoun signs for pocket change.
I don’t think Anaheim prospect Devante Smith-Pelly makes the team this season. I think it will be Kyle Palmieri, whom I also think will have a surprise rookie season. DSP is a power forward and they generally need a couple of AHL seasons. So this year he will dominate the OHL. Next year he breaks into the AHL. And the season after that he’ll be 50-50 NHL/AHL. He has been extremely impressive in the national junior camp, but he’s got the size and strength that 90 percent of his fellow players don’t have. In the NHL, that number becomes one percent. I would be shocked if he made the Ducks – it’s possible, but extremely slim.
With Franzen, Zetterberg and Datsyuk all signed until 2097, what do I expect from Tatar, Nyquist, Pulkkinen, Järnkrok and Jurco? Keep in mind that the first two are a year away, the next one is two or three, the next one is two and the latter guy is four years away. And then, you have consider that over the course of the next two years, there is a reasonable chance that one will be moved to acquire immediate help (i.e. Detroit gave up Shawn Matthias for Todd Bertuzzi). And then factor in that none of these players will be in the top six as rookies – after all, it didn’t happen to Zetterberg, Datsyuk or Franzen. So now we’re looking at Tatar (two years), Nyquist (two), Pulkkinen (four), Jarnkrok (three) and Jurco (five) – with one of them either flopping or traded. In five years, we have Datsyuk at 38 and Franzen at 36. Lots of room. Like I always say – this Detroit conveyor belt is a thing of beauty.
What we have in Patrik Berglund: