Draft List and Fantasy Guide are updated now.

 

Some camp notes - the Oilers have cut a bunch, including Toni Rajala (back to Finland)

 

Bobby Ryan (groin) was held off the ice today. He's taking it day by day.

 

Steve Sullivan (just a groin tweak) did not skate today.

 

As I speculated in the Guide, Adam Larsson saw some time on the top PP unit. He was with Kovalchuk on the back end - that was surprising as I thought they would try out some other blue liners and a forward would be a Plan B.

 

Ray Emery will get the start for the Blackhawks tonight - this info you would have over an hour ago over at Goalie Post. Justin, Jeff and myself plan to be the leaders in starting goaltender information over there. If you were a member, and you selected the "Chicago" box as one of your team boxes, then you would receive an email notification the minute this sort of news is released. Never miss a start again in your daily league!

 

Preseason hockey is here!

 

This is where we’re teased by strong performances of young players who are on the cusp of a breakout. Sometimes they actually do break out. Often it’s just a forecast of a future season, but just not this one. And sometimes the player just pulls a Brandon Bochenski and winds up with nothing substantial in any NHL regular season.

 

Last night’s hero – Nathan Gerbe. A goal and two helpers in a 3-1 win. Bad sign here is that he was playing Patrick Kaleta and Paul Gaustad. This success, and continued success like it, will see to it that he remains a third-liner for this season, albeit a productive one. But being on the third line caps his production at 40 points. So Gerbe owners are hoping he can move up the depth chart.

 

Another big winner from last night is Sergei Kostitsyn, who had a lot to prove a year ago – and still has a lot to prove this year. He has a first-line spot to hold onto and so far so good. Three assists for him.

 

Jonathon Blum had a goal and an assist. Blum has the potential (key word) to be everything that Shea Weber is in terms of two-way play. Obviously not the size, though. Weber’s huge.

 

Speaking of big defensemen, Jared Cowen had two goals for the Senators in his bid to make the team. He also managed 19 penalty minutes. It’s assumed that David Rundblad makes this team but Cowen doesn’t have the same assumptions despite having all the tools and the pedigree. Offensively, Cowen lacks Rundblad’s prowess. Rundblad was minus-1.

 

So far so good for Nikita Filatov – two assists on the two Ottawa goals. The fantasy hockey world is keeping an eye on how this guy does.

 

Tyler Bozak scored twice and added an assist. To get anywhere on the Leafs, he’ll need to move to the wing. And even then, he won’t get into the top six without an injury. Good thing for him, both Tim Connolly and Joffrey Lupul are Band-Aid Boys. That’s his only hope this year.

 

One thing a young, unproven player cannot afford in training camp is too many “minus” games. Joe Colborne (Toronto), Patrick Wiercioch (Ottawa) and Zach Boychuk (Carolina) were each minus-2.

 

Not that I’d run out and get him, but so far Wojtek Wolski is looking pretty good on a line with Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik. Really, he needs to be on that line or in the press box. There is no middle ground here. He needs to float and set up offensive plays. Ask him to check and be gritty and you’ll be disappointed. So if keeps this role he gets 60 or 65 points. If not, then 30 points. Naturally, this is fantasy hockey, where nothing is black or white – meaning he’ll be on that line sometimes and sometimes not. That would put his points – wait for it – somewhere in the middle.

 

Marc Staal is suffering from post-concussion symptoms and will miss at least most of the preseason. This one could go on a while, it certainly doesn’t sound promising. Ironically, it was brother Eric’s big hit that probably caused the concussion.

 

Zdeno Chara took a puck off the leg and is day-to-day with a bruised leg. Won’t impact the season.

 

I’ve never seen a team bend over backwards to tell us everything is okay as much as I’ve seen the Jets pump out the propaganda about Dustin Byfuglien’s weight. Seriously, the guy was up 40 pounds versus last November. But since then, we’ve heard that he “gained weight throughout the season last year” and that he’s “in camp this year at a lower weight than his camp last year” (those two statement contradict, by the way). And now I’m seeing hourly articles on how he is in shape. Listen, I don’t believe he is completely in shape, but I also don’t believe he needs to be. This is how he is and it’s the same guy that got all the points a year ago. He won’t top last year, but he’ll hover around there I’m sure.

 

Here’s a nice piece about St. Louis prospect Ty Rattie’s strong performance at the recent prospects tournament. He had six points in four games.

 

Kurtis Foster has a thigh ailment that will sideline him for 2-4 weeks. That probably takes him out for a game or two to start the season.

 

Here’s an interesting story on Martin Erat’s back ailment and how he “will continue to have back pain for the rest of his career”. I didn’t know it was such a long-standing injury.

 

Those of you who are interested in running a casual “office pool” type of contest with your co-workers, I have created a Facebook Page and stuck in there three FREE box pool spreadsheets. They range in complication from “Basic” to “Medium” to “Full”. Download ‘em, print ‘em, pass ‘em around and have a little fun. I decided to create this page and every season and every postseason (and Olympics, for that matter) I’ll put together player boxes to save you some work. Just spreading the fantasy hockey excitement any way I can! Please like the page so that the word spreads about these free spreadsheets.

 

Cowen vs. Phaneuf – if Cowen makes this team I could see 25 points and 100 PIM:

 

 

 


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Comments (16)add comment

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... Yes but if David Rundblad is not better than Karlsson, Gonchar, or Lee then he won't play.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

lcbtd said:

germant
Gerbe Dobber.

I just don't get your logic re: Gerbe.

If he continues to score, he'll stay on the third line and to out at 40pts. That, in itself is contradictory. But what I really don't understand is, how is he going to move up to the top 6? By NOT scoring? I don't get it.

Either way, I'm pulling for the little guy to do what he's accustomed to doing, working and hustling until he forces the coach to use him in the to 6, and the only way he'll do that is by continuing to score.

Cheers!
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... There is really no other comparison to use. Bad or no, it's the only one. Do you have another?
Coaches love left or right D, but if a D is better than another D he's not going to cut the better D based on that one fact. Not buying it, but solid arguments guys.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
Left Side/Right Side & Center/Wing Agree w/Big Ev on this issue.

A defenseman's preferred side, especially for a rookie, can be a limiting factor.
A coach/GM is not going to have the defenseman work on the switch at the NHL level.
If they ask the defenseman to switch, it will be at juniors or AHL level.

Switching a junior center to an NHL wing is not an appropriate comparison.

These are completely different topics/concepts.
Bad comparison.

September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... I'll readily admit it's a huge preference for coaches, but it won't keep a better player off a team. Never that

Not saying he's a better player than Cowen either. But he is a better player than three or four other D on the team
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... ask user rooneypoo about the left side/right side thing. He is one of the people who greatly informed me on the subject.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... I didn't before either, but after being persuaded by others and watching players play their off-side, I have come to relaize that it really is a big deal. It's not like a centre switching to wing, completely different. Seeing Gonchar play his off-side last year was awful, and you certainly don't want to do that to a rookie. You only play him if he is comfortable, and if he isn't comfortable on the left side then you don't play him there. Right now Rundblad has Gonchar, Karlsson, and Lee in front of him on the right, so he will have to beat out Lee. Could happen, still lots of time before main roster is set. But you can't just say "switch Rundblad to the left". Doesn't work like that. Right now they will only take one of COwen and Rundblad most likely, and Cowen was and is still ahead of him.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... I don't put a lot of stock in the right/left stuff Big Ev. If a defenseman is a star, they won't keep him off just because he is accustomed to one side. Just like junior centermen coming up and if they're good they often stick as a winger. Means nothing.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Tim New said:

timnew
Finally found draft List It seems I didn't get the link in my email when I bought the package OR it failed to open from my email; just found it on the site link. I knew I had the Guide, Prospects, and site memberships but didn't remember any lists. Now I have it.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... Don't know why it's assumed that Rundblad makes the team. There is no room for him on the right at the moment. There is room for Cowen, though, and he is more NHL ready than Rundblad. Rundblad will need time to adjust.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Craig Miles said:

bizzy
Big Buf Actually my buddy did Buf's weigh in at the Jets camp and he sent a text saying he was 266 before any reporters knew of the info, and this guy is as legit as it gets.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Santo (aka Ross10019( said:

ross10019
Byfuglien Dobber, no one knows whether that "40 lbs over playing weight" (i.e., the 286 lbs number) that he allegedly weighed in at the police station is true, by all accounts it is not because for the team he weighed in at 266 and it's highly unlikely he lost 20 lbs in a couple of weeks. Then again even the team's weight is suspect, the Jets wouldn't be the first team to play games with people's listed weight. I think in the end, it's exactly as you say, it doesn't matter, he is still going to be the impact player he was last year (hopefully the 1st half version). For my part, just watching the interviews with him (see http://www.winnipegfreepress.c...50258.html), he looks pretty fit for a guy his size.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... Mark - Bozak has Lombardi to contend with as well. Lombardi is a pretty good hockey player, he's just fragile.
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Dobber said:

Dobber
... Tim - I didn't update projections - those were done Saturday. I updated information - my draft list has potential (upside AND likely potential), G, A, P, Salary, Cap space, plus my notes on many players. Plus goaltending, Plus PIM projections. And NOW I have added plus/minus and power-play unit information for all players - four printable spreadsheet tabs. And that comes free with my 121-page Fantasy Guide
September 20, 2011
Votes: +0

Tim New said:

timnew
Which draft list? Which draft list was updated? Top 300? I'm using Pool Geek so as long as it flows through I guess it doesn't matter but with a draft starting tomorrow, I am curious which one is updated.
September 19, 2011
Votes: +0

Mark said:

slapper75
Bozak Bozak should see more icetime than your typical 3rd liner this year. Wilson will likely use Connoly on the point freeing up a spot at Centre for Bozak. (Grabovski will play on the 2nd PP unit).
September 19, 2011
Votes: -1
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