Slap Shot

 

I have decided to spice things up a bit this week while Dobber is off enjoying a few cervezas in sunny and warm Mexico. Each day this week, I will be auditing a different fantasy hockey team submitted to me by DobberHockey members and readers. Wondering what your plan of attack should be this summer? Preparing for a draft? Upset about some trades you made in the past? I’ll weigh in with my thoughts on the interesting and important issues.

 

I will be running these audits on a weekly basis throughout the summer. Fire me an e-mail if you want to get in line!

 

Today I’ll be taking a look at the team submitted to me by DobberHockey reader Nathan, who has a talented young roster in an auction keeper league.

 

The League

 

Auction Keeper League, 12 teams

 

($0.25 minimum salary for a player, $55.00 salary cap max)

 

The salary cap only matters on draft/auction day (more on that in a bit)

 

At the end of the 2nd year, a player can be signed for up to three additional years at $1.25 extra per year (for example, if they make $3 per year now, it would rise to $4.25 for the first year, $5.50 for the second year, and so on).

 

21-man rosters; 13 forwards, six defensemen, two goaltenders

 

Can keep 12 skaters, or 11 skaters and one goalie

 

Rotisserie scoring


Categories:

 

Goals

Assists

+/-

PIM

Special teams goals (1 PP, 2 SH)

Wins

 

 

The Roster

 

Nathan has the choice of keeping either 12 skaters or 11 and a goaltender

I’ll include salaries since it is an auction league

 

Player

Salary

Contract

Keep?

Forwards

 

 

 

Kulemin,Nikolai

2.50

Signed

Nope. Too expensive.

Mueller,Peter

2.50

Signed

Nope (concussion scares me off).

Demitra,Pavol

2.50

Signed

Nope.

Downie,Steve

2.50

Signed

Yes.

Fleischmann,Tomas

2.50

Signed

Nope.

Neal,James

.75

Signed

Yes.

Giroux,Claude

.75

Signed

Yes.

Tavares,John

2.75

Signed

Yes.

Jokinen,Olli

7.25

Signed

Too expensive, KHL rumours too.

Kessel,Phil

4.75

Signed

Yes.

Backes,David

2.50

Re-sign at $3.75 per?

Yes.

Carter,Jeff

4.50

Signed

Yes.

Parise,Zach

3.75

Must be let go (more on that)

N/A

Spezza,Jason

5.50

Must be let go

N/A

Langenbrunner,Jamie

.25

Re-sign?

Yes at that salary. Langenbrunner will decline offensively, but worth keeping.

Defensemen

 

 

 

McBain,Jamie

2.50

A

Yes (Nathan believes he can redraft McBain and get him for less money)

Poti,Tom

2.50

A

Not a chance.

Wisniewski,James

.25

A

Too injury prone.

Kubina,Pavel

1.25

A

Yes (UFA, many contending teams will be interested)

Byfuglien,Dustin

3.25

Re-sign?

No.

Gonchar,Sergei

2.00

Re-sign?

Yes.

Blake,Rob

1.00

Re-sign?

Maybe (how’s that for a clear answer).

Goaltenders

 

 

 

Halak,Jaroslav

2.50

A

100% yes.

Nabokov,Evgeni

6.25

Must be let go.

N/A

 

The Breakdown


Firstly, auction leagues are very different than other league types. So if you are confused as to how or why I am valuing a player a certain way, it is probably because of salary-related issues. Most fantasy hockey leagues are free of salary cap constraints, which tend to make player valuations considerably more difficult.

 

Nathan has no choice but to let a few players walk (Parise, Spezza, and Nabokov).

 

Here are his salary options with the keepers:

 

David Backes

Keep one year at 2.50

Keep two years at 2.50 then 3.75

Keep three years at 2.50, then 5.00, then 5.00

Keep four years at 2.50, 6.25, 6.25,6.25

Jamie Langenbrunner

One year at 0.25

0.25, 1.50

0.25, 2.75, 2.75

0.25, 4.00, 4.00, 4.00

Dustin Byfuglien

3.25

3.25, 4.5

3.25, 5.75, 5.75

3.25, 7, 7, 7

Sergei Gonchar

2

2, 3.25

2, 4.5, 4.5

2, 5.75, 5.75, 5.75

 

Backes will return to his 2008-09 totals. Consider last year an aberration (it seems like every single forward outside of Alex Steen struggled offensively for the Blues). I’d sign him for two more years.

 

Langenbrunner is an extremely low risk move at that salary. I’d drop him if Mueller is kept, but Nathan believes he will be able to redraft Mueller. With auction leagues, you often don’t keep your best players because of salary issues, and often times you have to take risks and make assumptions as to what certain players will fetch in the open market. Sometimes it works and you can save a few bucks, while other times it backfires and you lose a player you would have otherwise kept.

 

I wouldn’t give Byfuglien that much money. He has elevated his game in the playoffs but he doesn’t bring the intensity on a consistent basis over the 82-game season. I WOULD keep Byfuglien if you are 100% confident that he will maintain his defensive eligibility for the term of the contract (something I don’t see happening). Outside of a few games at the end of the season and the Nashville series where he played on the back end because of injury issues, Chicago likes him on the wing.

 

Gonchar still has two or three good years left in him – I suspect we will see him slowly transition into a bit more of a power play specialist.

 

Nathan is confident/hopeful that he can reacquire one of Parise or Spezza through the draft in October. He also wants to target young defensemen like PK Subban, McBain, John Carlson, and Erik Karlsson. I’d say that sounds like a decent strategy, wouldn’t you? His defense is pretty mediocre, and I’d definitely be targeting that position at the draft.

 

Considering wins is the only goalie category counted, it is very easy to rank them. Look at the team they are playing on, estimate how many games they will play, and viola! Someone like Marc-Andre Fleury becomes one of the best goalies to own. In most leagues, where statistics like shutouts, save percentage, and goals-against average are counted, he slide down the list a bit.

 

My keepers for you:

 

Downie,Steve

2.50

Neal,James

.75

Giroux,Claude

.75

Tavares,John

2.75

Kessel,Phil

4.75

Backes,David

2.50

Carter,Jeff

4.50

Langenbrunner,Jamie

.25

McBain,Jamie

2.50

Halak,Jaroslav

2.50

Gonchar,Sergei

2.00

Kubina,Pavel

1.25

Total

27.0

 

Recommendations

 

For less than half of your league’s salary cap, you have a pretty decent list of keepers. You mentioned that you believe you can redraft McBain for less. If you are 100% sure of that, then drop him. If not, hold on to him. He is one of the best young defensemen to own in the entire league.

 

I’d focus on getting good value at the draft, be it with younger players or veterans. Obviously common sense, but in an auction league this is imperative.

 

Halak is a great goalie to build around. Your forwards are on the young side, but I see Neal, Tavares, and Giroux all taking big strides next season. Auction leagues are so unique that it is difficult for me to give comprehensive advice - I hope I have given you some clarity with your keepers. Nathan will have a lot of cap space to use at the draft, so spend wisely!


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Comments (1)add comment

Nathan said:

Teh Doktor
... Jeff,

I was out most of yesterday - this is great!

As for Byfuglien - no matter where he plays next year (or any year), he stays on Def as long as I have him (or even if I trade him).

If I throw him back, he can be redrafted as a D as long as two things happen - some printed material lists him as D eligible (which I'm sure at least one will), and whoever throws him out for auction specifies that he's on D not F. I'm relatively sure because of these playoffs that he will be targeted by someone - or at least some of the owners will know who he is.

When I compare him to other defenseman he is 2nd in goals, 79th in assists, 37th in points, 6th in PIM's and 7th in PP goals. Pretty good in three of five categories for a defenseman.

Some of the more expensive D-men in the league are:

Rafalski is 3.50
Lidstrom 5.25
Boyle 3.75
Phaneauf 5.75
Chara 3.25
Kronwall 4.00


I think I may just keep McBain now and possibly Meuller. I may wait and see what happens in the pre-season. You just never know in an auction league because everything depends on the other 11 owners in the room at that particular moment and everything else that happened.

I really appreciate the time and effort that was put into looking over my squad. I'll be rereading this and making adjustments all summer. Thanks a bunch Angus!

Girth
May 23, 2010
Votes: +0
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