Welp, it's too late. I mused below that the Flyers would fire Peter Laviolette by Game 6 if they don't get rolling, and suggested you acquire some of the slumping players in a game or two. But the team acted faster than I thought and so that strategy goes by the wayside. Ah well...

*

One thing I forgot to note this morning - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is making his season debut tonight. Returning from the injury too soon? I think so. Given his recent injury history, I'd give him two more weeks. But we'll see in a couple of weeks (if he gets injured again) if that's the right move. The Oilers obviously need him.

Mark Arcobello blew his big chance. He made an impression, but not a big enough one. It was enough for him to stick a few more games, but not enough to get the PP time and ice time... and linemates, for that matter... needed to thrive.

*

I'm no longer getting asked the question of which young gun I like better in a keeper, Nathan MacKinnon or Jonathan Drouin. But instead, I'm asked line-related things about MacKinnon. Things like "MacKinnon is on the third line, do you stick to your projection of 70 points?" or "P-A Parenteau is on the third line now, should I panic?" And when I respond to these, I get questioned (or slightly insulted) about said response the way I do when I take one of my stubborn little stances. Actually, I believe one word used was "ridiculous". My response?

By December, I think MacKinnon's line will be considered the first line and people will be asking "who gets to play on MacKinnon's line?" It's another one of those strong stances I take, that could easily come back to haunt me. He could get injured, and in January the people who took the opposing stance would bring it up in jest. But, barring injury I believe there is a good chance that this will be true. That's not to say that I could be wrong. I'm just stating what way I believe things will go.

*

Most of you probably remember that back in the late winter/early spring I was firmly in the Jonathan Drouin camp. So what happened? Why did I do such a complete reversal to the point where not even getting Steven Stamkos as a likely future linemate brings me back? The Memorial Cup happened. The biggest exposure to MacKinnon that I had prior to that was the WJC, where he was used in a defensive capacity. Yet Drouin was used in an offensive capacity and I got to really see what he could do. But I certainly don't go by my own eyeballs. I'm not a professional scout. I also go by what I hear and read from GMs, scouts and experts. The Memorial Cup performance put on by MacKinnon put everything to rest. No more chatter about it being a close race. And while I'll gladly put Drouin in the Taylor Hall, RNH, Nail Yakupov category - I'll put MacKinnon a level above that, in the John Tavares territory.

*

If you want to put together a late draft with the colleagues in your office, I put together several box pools that are easy to print off and implement. I set them up right here.

*

The Flyers are in trouble and I get the feeling that they will not get any better until the coach is fired. Peter Laviolette seems to be one of those coaches who loses the room after a few years, that's all this is. And with the new coach will come a win streak - and some hot players. After six games, if they only win one or two by then, start trying to acquire the players. A perfect buy-low scenario.

Steve Mason played well, stopping 32 of 34 shots, with one of those shots actually a save if it were 2012-13 with the bigger pads. I really do think those smaller pads make a difference - and if you love fantasy hockey, that difference is for the better. Mason is 0-2-0, but a decent save percentage of 0.915.

*

Concerned about Elias Lindholm. I doesn't look as though he sticks beyond nine games. Just nine minutes of ice time in Game 1 - and make it seven minutes of ice time in Game 2. I've seen this trend a million times with 18-year-olds, and rarely does it result in sticking around for the full year.

*

Like most of us, Kirk Muller loves what he sees in Nathan Gerbe's natural talent. He is averaging nearly 20 minutes of ice time per game, which means that as long as there are no prolong slumps or injuries, he's a solid sleeper. Gerbe has nine shots on goal in two games.

*

Love this question that I was asked on Twitter last week: "Matt Moulson or Matt Duchene?"

And so we have come full circle.

Do you remember back in the John Tavares rookie and sophomore seasons in which Matt Duchene beat him in terms of points? It was pretty much 500+ days of arguments in the forum over who was the better guy to own in keeper leagues - Tavares or Duchene. It's a great example of why you should remain patient and focus on the upside (as with MacKinnon). Three years later, Tavares has buried Duchene in that conversation to the point where now the question asked is "who is better, a linemate of Tavares or Matt Duchene?" When I saw that Twitter question it really hit home.

For the record, I generally make it a point to favor "the guy" rather than "the guy's linemate", which would indicate Duchene. But because Moulson never gets hurt (knock on wood), that is so very valuable to me so it's Moulson. Also, wingers are harder to get than centers.

*

Sean Monahan was a minus-3 Sunday, but he scored, had five shots on goal and was the third star. He's playing on a line with Lee Stempniak and Sven Bärtschi:

Frequency

Strength

Line Combination

22.36%

EV

11 BACKLUND,MIKAEL - 39 GALIARDI,T.J. - 24 HUDLER,JIRI

20.73%

EV

20 GLENCROSS,CURTIS - 54 JONES,DAVID - 38 STREET,BEN

20.33%

EV

47 BAERTSCHI,SVEN - 23 MONAHAN,SEAN - 22 STEMPNIAK,LEE

8.54%

EV

17 BOUMA,LANCE - 8 COLBORNE,JOE - 16 MCGRATTAN,BRIAN

You can get all line combos for any range of games, from yesterday or a playoff game in 2010 - right here.

*

Speaking of clicking things, a lot of you probably don't know this but if you click on the name of a player in my ramblings, you will be taken to his profile page. On it you will see a log of the players news (transactions, injuries, etc - with source links), season-to-date stats, "last six games" stats, his line combinations at ES and PP - and more. Test it out - James Neal. Go on. Click it. You know you want to.

I'll be giving Michael and Steve the program to do this so their ramblings will have this feature soon.

*

Eddie Lack stopped 32 of 36 shots in his debut, and he got the win.

Meanwhile, the Flames are scoring goals just fine, but goaltending has been suspect. Joey MacDonald has given up eight goals on 60 shots, while Karri Ramo has been better but not too much better stopping 35 of 39. Meanwhile, in the AHL Reto Berra has been pretty solid boasting a 1-1-0 record and a 0.924 SV%.

*

In case you missed it last week, here is my Puck Daddy article from Thursday - and here is my Hockey News article, also from Thursday. The THN piece is some hunches that I have.

*

My THN article for today will be on the impact of the "real" Alex Ovechkin's return. Part of that is Marcus Johansson, who has 24 points in his last 25 games.

*

Mathieu Perreault has been dynamite for the Ducks. I love it when my small, skilled guys get an opportunity and pounce on it. Perreault has three points in his last two games, after a rather rocky first outing with his new team. He's clicking with Jakob Silfverberg.

*

Viktor Fasth made up for his weak outing last week by getting the win and allowing just two goals. Or did he? Fasth only faced 17 shots. At this point, a strong outing from Hiller next game puts him firmly in the driver's seat.

*

From the pages of Frustrating. Michael Frolik, still no PP time. Zip for PP time Sunday. He's not going to manage even 40 points without that, regardless of the hot start.

*

Teemu Selanne played his final game in Winnipeg. I love the crowd reaction:

*

Selanne's famous goal:

*

Look at this Zach Bogosian gaffe:

 

 

 


Write comment
Comments (23)add comment

ynotzz said:

ynotzz
... Woodrow: yeah, I know smilies/smiley.gif or, I could hold down CTRL and press the link. All of this is a hassle on my cell phone though.
October 08, 2013
Votes: +0

rattus rattus said:

rattus rattus
? "Yakupov Category" I'm thinking that, had he played his draft year season, Galchenyuk would have gone #1.
Edmonton would be in a better place down the middle than they are now.
Columbus would have taken Yakupov.

And we in Habs' Land would be watching.................
It hurts to think about it.

Should be "Galchenyuk Category", in my humble opinion.
Think the future will bear me out.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Rinsseux said:

Rinsseux
Schwartz In every magazine, they have Schwartz for 35-40 pts. Ill go bold: 55 pts
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

Daydream Nation said:

Daydream Nation
... I see it didn't take long for Winnipeg to realize that Frolik is a plow and not a Porsche.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

coldsquad2002 said:

coldsquad2002
... Top three prospects in our keeper league draft went this way
Drouin
Yak
MacKinnon

I took the Yak attack. But this early, MacKinnon looks like a monster !
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
... Avs are more than a puck moving D away from dominating the western conference.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

Magnum said:

Magnum
Forsberg & Sakic Thanks for the great ramblings Dobber....looking forward to Mackinnon and Duchene living up to some lofty expectations for years to come. Now they need that Ozolinsh and Bourque type player to dominate the west. Funny how the Avs have almost completed the rebuild while the Oilers (with all those 1st overalls) are getting worse
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... rataylor, that is only a verbal agreement most likely as Hampus Lindholm was under contract last year in Sweden and still came over

If you sign an NHL deal you can get out of your Swedish contract at any time
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

woodrow said:

woodrow
... ynotzz: Right click on the link and select "Open link in new tab". Voila, read the link whenever you're ready to.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

mabus said:

mabus
... I was misinformed then. Someone stopped by my office asking if I could believe that you projected 71 for MacKinnon, and I said that I thought it was another crazy rookie projection. If Tavares didn't have all those tools, then why did you project him at 69 during his rookie year? What about Stamkos? How about your Eberle projection of 72 the next year or Hall at 70? You are like the boy that cried wolf - eventually someone will hit 70, but nobody will believe you when it happens.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
... I do believe Lindholm cannot play in the AHL. I believe part of his transfer agreement stated that he can only play for Carolina or Brynas since he is still technically under contract with that club.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... @IsleB

Lindholm can play in the AHL, however it is probably agreed upon that he would return to Brynas in Sweden if he gets cut.

Hampus Lindholm did play in the AHL last year though.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

SavageGardener said:

SavageGardener
... Hey Dobber, any change in your opinion on Dubnyk after Saturday's performance?
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
Lindholm Can't players drafted out of European leagues just get demoted to the AHL?
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Enapai said:

Enapai
Elias Lindholm Regarding E. Lindholm, the Canes are clearly giving him sheltered minutes, but he went off injured in early on in the third period last night, which likely impacted his overall TOI. In the second period, Lindholm was on the top PP unit with E. Staal, Semin, Tlusty, etc. While the Canes PP looked mostly disorganized, Lindholm made a couple of nice plays along the boards to sustain pressure. Due to Lindholm going out hurt, his PP time went to Riley Nash and/or a defenseman (holding a 2-1 lead late) in the third period. With that said, I would not be surprised to see Lindholm being sent back to Sweden (?) after 9 games.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
... Disagree MacKinnon will be the L1 center. Teams play players by more than fantasy value, and this year Duchene is a better real NHL player than MacKinnon. He won't be long term, but he won't be passed this season.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +3

Dobber said:

Dobber
... Mabus - two things. One, I projected MacKinnon to have 69 points. And two, Tavares didn't have Duchene, Parenteau and Stastny. Tavares had you, me, the hot dog guy, and an usher from Section 12G.

Jeffl97 - I didn't know Lindholm made his NHL debut.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

jeffl97 said:

jeffl97
RE: Ducks game A little surprised you didn't mention this game was also Hampus Lindholm's debut. He played alongside Beauchemin at even strength, and was also on the 2nd PP. He looked good. A little nervous due to first game jitters, but that seemed to subside as the game went on. Was fairly impressed
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

mabus said:

mabus
MacKinnon He has looked great. it is interesting that you compare him to Tavares to defend your projection when Tavares only had 54 points as a rookie. You projected MacKinnon at 71 points. How many 18 year old rookies have hit that mark? In the last 20 years is has been done once, and MaKinnon isn't Crosby.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

Dobber said:

Dobber
... New Window - I have it set up in my Word document that all links open up in new windows, but when I paste it into the site it removes that setting. Sorry, I wish I could fix that, but short of editing each hyperlink on the page manually, I can't.

You take Duchene in a keeper league because of the trade value associated with the name, but if you traded him for Moulson and got something extra you would get the better fantasy own - plus that something extra.

Barkov is in the Hall, Yak, RNH category
October 07, 2013
Votes: +0

Noma said:

Noma
... If MacKinnon is in "Tavares" category and Drouin in "Hall, Yakupov, RNH" category, where'd you rank Barkov?
October 07, 2013
Votes: +1

ynotzz said:

ynotzz
... Agree with Isle B on the Duchene vs Moulson, but I guess you are talking one year leagues? Is it possible to make the links on this page open on a new tab/page? So that when I click on Neal it doesnt re-use this window.
October 07, 2013
Votes: +2

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
... That is very un-Dobber to go with consistency (Moulson) over upside (Duchene). I gotta go with Duchene, but the fact that is so close is a point taken. BTW, it is only 2 games in but the Avs could be the surprise team in the NHL, sort of like they were in 2009-10 in Duchene's rookie year.
October 06, 2013
Votes: +2
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.

busy