Fantasy Guide is updated as of right NOW. Draft List updated as of today as well. iPhone draft app too. After this, I’ll update Wednesday…and there will then be one final one on Friday. So two updates to go!

 

PS – problems with a “corrupt file”? It’s not. It’s your browser. I would say one in 50 of you get a “corrupt file” message when downloading the document, but if you just used Explorer or Chrome it will be fine (the problem usually lies with FireFox).

 

Answering questions - I would still prefer Byron over Horak in a keeper, as I don't think Horak can hang in there all season but I've been wrong before. And Horak is absolutely on the radar as a very promising player. And as for Radulov - yes, I believe that if the CBA is resolved he will be back in the NHL next year - he will get permission from his KHL team.

 

It's Dobber today. You're stuck with me, as Chris Nichols is on a long-planned mini-break. He's back next Sunday.

 

It’s important to quickly admit when you missed a call and react to it. I called Paul Byron to make the Flames – he was a new, coveted acquisition by a team in desperate need of what he provides, which is offense. But he was beaten out by another new, coveted acquisition. Roman Horak. Naturally, the smart move preseason is to pick the older, more mature player. Byron has two years on Horak. But Horak beat him out, plain and simple. Those who follow me on Twitter may have seen my note late Thursday night. I said that it was distressing to see Byron’s ice time fall to the second lowest amongst Flames forwards. I noted that and immediately saw the writing on the wall. I drafted him in two of my leagues (out of three drafts, at that point) and immediately replaced him in one. Then I updated the Fantasy Guide with reduced projections for him. He’ll be back, but it may be a month or two. As for Horak, perhaps he steps in and does what I thought Byron would do. Since, generally speaking, Sunday is not as busy as Monday – I’ll probably repeat this blurb, or something like it, later in the week for those who missed. So bear with me.

 

Had my third keeper league draft last night. I still owe you the summary for one, last week I gave you the rundown on one. The one last night was the least serious of the three, but it holds a lot of meaning. Without this one, there would be no DobberHockey. This was our 22nd draft. We started off with 12 pro and 5 farm and 13 teams. Very simple. We got it up to 12 pro and 8 farm, 14 teams. Still quite simple and basic. When a team quit this summer, rather than sell the team, we dispersed it. And last night we voted to contract to 19 roster spots next year. To me, these are signs of a slow death. I am not thrilled with making a league “easier” or going through any changes that “simplify”. I want more reality, which means let’s add players, add owners, and grow the league.

 

Anyway, it was an easy draft for me, since I picked first, third and 15th. I earlier decided on my three dropsies – Tangradi, Matthias and Perreault. So I traded the three of them to get my second round pick back in 2012. Never waste an asset if you can help it. Then I drafted Hopkins, Strome (because, unfortunately, Huberdeau went second) and then I took a flyer on Anton Lander. Now, I know that Lander would have slipped to 45th. I wasted a good pick on him. But I tried trading down, but failed. I wasted an asset. Oh, well, I really wanted to take a chance on this guy. He’s reminding me of Kesler in that he comes in with a “defensive forward” pedigree, yet impresses offensively. Peter Forsberg is another example of that. Plus I had RNH and MPS and liked the idea of adding another Oiler.

 

My team – 12 pro, 8 farm, full keeper, points only, playoffs also count: Malkin, Evgeni ; Nugent-Hopkins, Ryan; Berglund, Patrick; Sharp, Patrick; Yandle, Keith; Paajarvi, Magnus; Fleischmann, Tomas; Strome, Ryan; Staal, Jordan; Kostitsyn, Sergei; Karlsson, Erik; Granlund, Mikael; Frolik, Michal; Turris, Kyle; Gerbe, Nathan; Omark, Linus; Lander, Anton; Tatar, Tomas; MacLean, Brett; Jeffrey, Dustin. In order of my preference, Year 1 of a rebuild.

 

I was shocked to see Tim Erixon get cut. It was funny when I mused that on Twitter, about 15 people – no exaggeration – replied to me “yeah, he needs to go down for more seasoning”. Uh, really? Is that why players go down? Haha, anyway, I found that funny. But seriously though, I had figured that Del Zotto would go down. Erixon has the full package and he left Calgary because he didn’t think he could make that team. So I thought for sure he was “guaranteed” a spot in New York. The thing with Del Zotto is, that although he starts out strong, by about the 20-game mark he tapers off. That’s how it has been the last two seasons. So I felt that he would go down for half a season and then get the call for good by December. But Erixon I felt was safe. But not so. It speaks volumes for Del Zotto, really.

 

Also surprising – Brian Elliott beat Ben Bishop. I thought it was Bishop’s job to lose, and that teams generally favor home-grown talent over invites or new signees. Bishop’s value plummets.

 

My pick for the four best offensive forwards not in the NHL, in order:

  1. Alexander Radulov
  2. Nail Yakopov
  3. Evgeni Kuznetsov
  4. Vladimir Tarasenko

What’s the common theme here? This is just off the top of my head, perhaps I missed someone – call it “post-draft” drunkenness. But I’m thinking those are my four. Maybe someone corrects me in the comments below…

 

With Kubalik and Moore being sent down, and Boll getting injured (broken thumb), it suddenly looks like Cam Atkinson and David Savard will make Columbus – at least to start. Atkinson has done nothing but produce since he’s turned pro – and you know I love those small, skilled guys. That means he’ll suck. I joke of course, I’m just down on the odds of a smaller NHLer getting things rolling. But seriously, I do like Atkinson for the long term.

 

Craig Smith is at it again. The OT winner last night and by most accounts the star of the game. How do they send him down? I don't know. But somehow, some teams find a way, taking "name" and "contract" over "better". Smith made the Preds, as they made their last three cuts Saturday. But when Mike Fisher comes back, who sits? Cal O'Reilly?

 

Mikhail Grabovski left the game last night after taking a puck off the foot. That could be anywhere from one to five weeks, depends if it's broken.

 

Ryan Malone may get a few games for this hit to the head of Chris Campoli. Campoli will probably miss some time as well:

 

 


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Comments (17)add comment

Renaldo? said:

Teh Doktor
Advice / Request for Draft List What's the chances of you putting a date that the draft list was updated on it somewhere (if you haven't already done so and I'm missing it.).

Every time it's updated or I think it is, I download it then go through and mark off everybody that's being kept. It takes quite a while and trying to find a change (especially if there isn't one) can be time consuming.

Thanks.
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Sk said:

crackho1976
San Jose Starter So Harri Sateri has the best sv% in the pre-season for the Sharks? Is he the #1 to start the season?
October 02, 2011
Votes: -1

fzusher said:

fzusher
Bulmer Hey Dobber, any words of wisdom on Brett Bulmer, 2010 2nd rounder who survived the final cuts in Minny, to the surprise of everyone including the Minny brass?

Or at least cut and paste of Bugg's write up from the 2010 prospect report, filed under 'off everyone's radar except ours' smilies/wink.gif when credit's due, credit's due smilies/cheesy.gif
October 02, 2011
Votes: -1

flamesfan4life said:

Flamesfan4life
"keep your head up" Guessing Eric Lindros missed that line his whole career
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1

lusshouse said:

lusshouse
Bowman's article http://lejournaldemontreal.can...60231.html

Here's the article, if you know some French.
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

lusshouse said:

lusshouse
Mayorov Still on team despite the cuts. Is he making the team? I seem to count one more forward that needs to go down. Atkinson? Mayorov? Johansen?


Oh and what happened to "keep your head up"? Well, this is an old saying that we well realize today was not really clever. I wish you could read Scotty Bowman's article today (it's in French) in Montreal's paper, saying how before, hits were definitely more present, but were mostly hip checks and at worst waist down (and reactions were made to protect better the knees of players, which were targeted back then. Check : Orr, Bobby). Now, guys with harder shoulder pads go at it with both shoulders-to-shoulders or shoulders-to-heads, if not elbow-to...

So, yeah, "keep your head up" sure sounds 1985 to me. Welcome in the new NHL. It's not "keep your head up" anymore, it's "keep your shoulders down, or you'll be suspended". I'd rather see Crosby play 80 games and Malone 70 than Malone 80 and Crosby 40. What do you think?
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

UKflames said:

UKflames
Radulov & Malone @Kevin - Is that the same agent that he had when he walked out on Nashville? Contracts mean nothing to this boy.

@Anze - I wasn't saying you could keep your head up all of the time but that needs reinforcing to players as well as handing out suspensions like cold cokes. Also Campoli maybe in a vulnerable position but that is because he loses control of the puck as he comes around the net and reaches out to regain it, lowering his head. I think we may have to disagree on this one smilies/cheesy.gif
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1

Kevin said:

mrmojorisin
re: Radulov Radulov will NOT be back in the NHL any time soon. He just signed another 3 year contract in the KHL last season meaning that it will be another 2 years before he even has the option of returning. As per Radulov's agent Yuri Nikolaev, on returning to the NHL: "There is no such provision in the contract. There are oral agreements, no more than that. If Radulov really wants to go to the NHL, it can only happen after mutual consent. He has a contract until 2013. Whether Radulov leaves or not, I don't want to get so far ahead. And I don't want to discuss it. I am only asking a person to do his job. To play hockey. The season only just begun…"

Not really promising news as far as a return to North America IMO...
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Darren McCaskie said:

BC Bandits
Do you see Alexander Radulov back in the NHL next Season? Do you see Alexander Radulov back in the NHL next Season?
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

MLG said:

MLG
Top forward list any top forward prospect list needs to have Granlund on it. skill level is as high as anyone listed there...
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Anze said:

Anze
Malone hit Campoli is in a very vulnerable position, but not by his own fault. He is chased by another guy, and he is off balance coming from behind the net, he couldn't "keep his head up". It's like some guys never played that game to think that you can play "with your head up" all the time.

And if you saw the whole game, Malone tried to fight Subban ( after Subban hit Lecavalier legally and not that hard ) and gave a slash to Campoli that was lying on the ice at that time. So no pity for Malone, 5 games like Brendan Smith.
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Killer67 said:

Killer67
Horak/Byron Neither one would make my lineup this year but do you take Horak over Byron now? Even if just for trade bait or do you think Byron is still the front runner long term?
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

UKflames said:

UKflames
Malone hit Here lies the problem with these suspensions for every hit to the head, Campoli was stretching for the puck so his head was down at Malone's shoulder level, so are we saying that Malone should (could)have pulled out of the check, I don't think so not at the speed of the game nowadays and not if he wants to keep his job because no coach is going to play a player that pulls out of checks.
The emphasis seems to have gone over to the checker rather than the player with the puck. Whatever happened to "keep your head up kid or your going to get nailed"?? Players will learn to put this to their advantage and start trying to play lower because even a moments hesitation by the checking player could create an opportunity for a pass or to go by them.
Suspensions are good, if warranted, but we also need to stop expecting a suspension for every hit and for Shanahan to say no that is not a suspension the players also need to remember to keep their heads up as well.
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1

paul said:

donpaulo
... wow rangers talk, and it isn't caustic. amazing.
NY had a top 5 defense last year and they will be better this season so I think the competition on the blueline was pretty much closed despite claims to the contrary.

Having watched just about every pre-season game so far I can only report what I saw. In my opinion, Valentenko came into camp with quite a lot of support from the fan base hoping he would be another guy to clear the crease in front of Hank. Yet V-tank never really seemed to stand out, he was slower than average, didn't take the body very often due to his "slowness" and seemed to cough up the puck when it found its way to his tape. Perhaps under different circumstances he would be just the kind of player NY needs but after September's play he wasn't. I wouldn't blame him if he left, but I think he will get a shot after thanksgiving to loosen some teeth and patrol the crease in from of the leagues best goalie. obviously depending on injuries.
Erixon did not really stand out either. He played a ton of minutes, especially on the powerplay. He made the right play but never really made the great play so perhaps he was playing within himself. After all its a new country, new language, new team alot of pressure from the family history. I think the fact that he didn't make the club while Horak did make Calgary tells me more about the state of the Flames blueline than it does about Erixon's ability. He will be back up and hopefully will get in a half season similar to how Sauer and McDonaugh were handled.
Talking about lack of depth, another former ranger farmhand Correy Potter appears to have made the Oilers with their injury concerns.
Bickel is a place holder, nothing more. I think NY still feels they need a tough guy after Boogaard's death. Not sure Bickel makes the cut after the EU trip but I for one would prefer to see Erixon and Vtank playing big minutes in the AHL than from the pressbox of MSG.
Del Zotto was still making unforced turnovers but his upside is enough for Tortarella to give him another shot at it. Many rangers fans assumed Erixon was in and MDZ was out.

It wouldn't surprise me to see a trade or player movement by Thanksgiving.

NY's blueline is not only young, but as I have argued on this website, established, and getting better. Were they the Leafs blueline you would be hearing how Toronto will be finals bound within 3 seasons.

I am half expecting to see NY make a move to find Staal a partner with more upside, thus shifting Girardi to the 2nd pairing where I think he becomes among the best 2nd pairing guys in the league. I think the hope in rangerland was that MDZ would be able to grow into the position... As the one thing NY's backliners truly are missing is the offensive guy with the game breaking speed and skills. Could MDZ be that guy ? I guess the jury is still out on that one.

What I know for sure is that NY is in a heck of a good position for the first time in quite awhile.

LGR
October 02, 2011
Votes: +0

Jason Banks said:

Jason_Banks
Rangers D Im a little frustrated with them sending down Pavel Valen-tank-o

Fell in love with this guy in Hamilton and his 'Balls to the Wall' play... He takes no prisoners be it power forwands, pucks or pains of glass... Everything takes a beating when he is on the ice, he's isn't a bad skater and a FUCKING ROCKET of a shot (we are talking high 90s getting into triple digits)... doesn't offer much offencivly but isn't a liability either. One of the better stay at Home Defenders I've seen...

He skipped out of Montreal/Hamilton to go home after he couldn't make Montreal after 2 years... Rangers aquired him and talked him back over and was a last cut at Ranger camp last year, put out a great year earing praises from his coaches in Conneticut as one of the toughest players to play agaisnt he's ever seen... and this year was an early cut again...

Yet Stu Bickel (who offers nothing but an enforcer on the backend) and Brendan Bell make the team? (now I like Brenden Bell very much and dislike how he got screwed By the Leafs)

Valentenko 'The Russian Tank' should be competing with Mike Sauer and Steve Eminger for 5-6-7 spot and making Hendrik Lundqvist's life easier... Rather than destroying his body for Piss-Poor Goalie prospects in Conneticut (yea all 4 are below average), and compete with 7 other guys (including Wade Redden) for icetime...

Don't be surprised if he bolts... But this is a rather huge insult in the Ranger organization and is a much bigger issue than Erixon being cut after refusing to sign in Calgary, which was very Minor League in my opinion and screams Mamma's Boy...

/ . End Rant
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1

UKflames said:

UKflames
Erixon He will be a good D in the future but after the stunt he pulled to go to the Rangers, because "he didn't think he would see NHL ice time", this is sweet justice. Down to the AHL he goes and the double irony is that he may well have made the flames blue line this year and that Horak, who came over in the trade, is likely to make the flames out of camp.
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1

Massimo Cinelli said:

rticinelli
Erixon Before camp, I would have been surprised if you told me Erixon wouldn't make the team straight away. After seeing him in game action, though, it seemed inevitable. For the most part, he looked lost out there. Maybe it was just the smaller ice surface, and he'll be able to make the adjustment early on in the season and get a callup. He should be a great, solid two-way defenseman in the mold of Marc Staal before long. The Rangers blue line is really shaping up nicely, though, and should be one of the best and most balanced in the league within a few years. They have everything - two-way guys (Staal, Erixon, McDonagh), stay-at-home bruisers and shot-blockers (Girardi, Sauer, McIlrath), power play QB (Del Zotto).
October 02, 2011
Votes: +1
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