Fantasy Guide is updated as of TODAY (Friday, September 23). To grab your update, please go to your "Downloads" section. Then download the same guide again - it will be the updated one.

 

Dobber here - see my dark horses piece on Yahoo! Puck Daddy right here.

 

I wrote a piece on Mikael Samuelsson and his importance to the Canucks this season – check it out over at the Hockey Writers right here.

 

Why are some Edmonton fans high on center Anton Lander? Read this. Lander may get the Jordan Staal treatment, though (good enough for a top six role, but more suited to a two-way third-line role with two star centers ahead of him on the depth chart).

 

An interesting topic over on the forum – who is the best candidate to be the next Zach Parise? That is, a hard working player who combines tenacity and a burning desire to win with an elite skill level? Matt Calvert was my first suggestion, but he lacks Parise’s star upside. Another name I came up with was Washington prospect Cody Eakin.

 

Speaking of Eakin, a good read on him here (and a few other Caps roster hopefuls).

 

“Eakin's season also included a blockbuster trade shortly after the WJC and he helped his new club to a Western Hockey League title and within one victory of the Memorial Cup.


"It's been long, but it has been really exciting," Eakin said. "I'm really happy to have experienced all the things that I did this past year. It was a pretty memorable year and one I will cherish for sure."


Eakin is young enough and slight enough that more seasoning in the AHL won't hurt him, and the contract situation of other players (Perreault specifically would have to clear waivers) could work against him, but he has become a favorite of many in the organization because of his speed, feistiness and lightning-quick release on his shot.



"I think you have to come into camp with a little swagger and that can carry you a long way," Eakin said. "It's not necessarily a cockiness, but just know that it is there to be picked and I could be the guy who they choose to do it. I've come into camp with one goal in mind and now I've got to go do it."

 

Jacob Josefsen has a huge opportunity ahead of him for the first few months of the season.

“While coach Pete DeBoer appears to be counting on veteran Patrik Elias as his No. 1 centerman, Josefson is very much in the picture to center a top line, as he has this week in training camp with wingers Ilya Kovalchuk and David Clarkson.”

Clarkson lost a lot of fantasy value last season because he didn’t see much PP time, but in a top six role he should get back on your radar (if you are in a league that counts PIM). Clarkson is a decent offensive player and he’s a lock for 150 PIM or more.

 

An interesting interview with Dmitri Orlov. Orlov is a solid defenseman with upside, but there’s a bit of a logjam in Washington with mobile, two-way defensemen right now (Green, Wideman, Hamrlik, Carlson, etc). He’s probably two years away from regular duty.

 

Brandon Saad has had a great camp for the Blackhawks. On a team with less forward depth, he could challenge for an opening night roster spot. Saad already has NHL size and he has impressed Chicago’s brass with his smarts.

 

Owen Nolan had a good game, scoring the first goal and showing jump throughout each of the three periods. He may get a shot with the Canucks, but if not look for him to stick somewhere in the league.

 

Cody Hodgson looks the best I have seen him since the 2009 World Junior tourney. Strong on the puck, speed is way better, and just seems more comfortable moving around on the ice.

 

Right now I’d say Vancouver’s second line will likely be Sturm-Hodgson-Samuelsson.

 

Brendan Shanahan already doing what Colin Campbell never could – applying logic and common sense to suspensions. The video is a great way of keeping an open forum and explaining each decision, instead of picking some arbitrary number out of the sky.

 

A PIM sleeper pick – Vancouver winger Steve Pinizzotto. The feisty forward has starred for the dominant Hershey Bears of the past few seasons, but wanted to get a shot at an NHL roster, and he saw the openings on Vancouver’s fourth line before signing with the Canucks. Decent size, good wheels, and very hard on the forecheck.

 

I’m taking part in a Social Media Night coming up on October 1st at the Canucks/Oilers preseason game. There is a little contest going on to join a few of us in the suite:

 

There are two sets of tickets (in the form of a sticker) on two posters within Vancouver and the Lower Mainland. Fans need to find one of these posters with the tickets and take their photo with the poster. From there, once they tweet the photo to @VanCanucks with the hashtag #ifoundthetix, they are entered to win. There will be 8 contest winners.

 

A DobberHockey member has entered the ownership ranks with the ECHL’s newest team – the San Francisco Bulls. Very cool and best of luck to VV and the rest of the team down in San Francisco.

 

'Got a burning fantasy hockey question? Who to trade, draft, release, or pick up? Let Dobber answer it for you, live on this Sunday's episode of Dobber Nation.

 

This is your chance to get one-on-one advice from Dobber about your fantasy team! Just dial (647) 247-8010 and leave your name, hometown, and question after the beep.. simple as that. (And get your questions in before 11:59pm EST on Thursday for the best chance of having them answered)'

 

I was never personally a huge fan of Modano, but he has been one of the best forwards over the past 15 years in the NHL. Great career:

 


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Anze said:

Anze
Isle B I agree that Grabner is somewhat unfairly grouped with these guys, but Dobber feels he should come with a warning that he might see a decrease in production. I like Grabner, he is an amazing skater, with good hands and should be a perennial 30-goal scorer, may be getting to 40 in a good year. But he may not take the next step immediately, a bit like Corey Perry who had an amazing year, and a lot of people expect a slight decrease in his numbers.
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
Re: Puck Daddy Article Wow.

The gratuitous hammering of Grabner continues. The guy scored 23 goals, 15 assists, 38 points and a +11 in the last 39 games of last season, won the NHL's Fastest Skater competiton and was nominated for the Calder, yet he gets singled out as a 'fake dark horse' and grouped with Sheldon Souray, who hasn't played in the NHL in two years, Da Costa, an undrafted NCAA defenseman who hasn't yet played a game in the NHL, and MDZ, who is even money to even make the Rangers this year. And all because he was slightly older than the average rookie. This notion that rookies under 21 progress while rookies over 21 regress seems to me like a classic case of correlation without causation. By this logic, every single player the Detroit Red Wings have brought up this decade would have been more likely to have a sophomore slump simply because they spent a year or two extra in the AHL. Yet, Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Kronwall, Franzen, Hudler and Filpulla all were age 22+ in their rookie year and all progressed nicely in their second season.
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

Jaxx said:

Jaxx
suspensions ... i will give shanny a thumbs up on the suspenions. but keep in mind, players only earn their salary for the regular season. so really, shelley's 10 gamer only hits him financially for the 5 regular season games. I'd like to think that if shelley's hit occurred in november, shanny would still give him the same 10 games (with shelley feeling a full financial hit). i think shanny will do a better job than campbell but i'm curious to see how a regular season infraction will be dealt with.
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

Anze said:

Anze
Gallagher and Shanahan I was happy with the nomination of Shanahan, and for now he doesn't disappoint. But the real test will be when a star player ( Chara, Ovechkin, Pronger ) commit similar offense, will they get the same kind of suspension ? I hope so.

Brendan Gallagher is opening a lot of eyes in Montreal this week, and his tenacity reminds me of Parise, he just never stop trying. He may not have Parise upside, but as a 2-time 40-goal scorer in the WHL he is not too shabby. Angus, you probably saw him play often, was his your opinion of him ?
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

justin said:

joos
.. lol, i used to go to high school with pinzzotto.

not at all surprised @ the role he plays on hockey teams !

but definitely good for him
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

Bret Taylor said:

TheRook
... Pinizzotto - not a big fan of an enforcer wearing a shield. If you are going to be a fighter in the NHL you cant wear a shield and put the other guy you are lining up against at a disadvantage and the possibility of hurting his hand on the shield.
September 23, 2011
Votes: +1

Ryan said:

letnry
... As I Clarkson owner, I am curious what makes you think he is a lock for 150 or more PIM? Two seasons ago he had 85 in an injury shortened 46 game season, which prorates to 151 PIM. Last year he only had 116 PIM over the full season. Over the last 4 seasons we have seen his penalty totals slowly decline, and I am curious what makes you so confident he'll return to his sinning ways?
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0

ERIC BOYER said:

nofear94
... Finaly a suspension that make sense!!!

Hope that Mr. Shanahan continu this way!

Good Job!
September 23, 2011
Votes: +0
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