Thanks to one of my Twitter followers (Blaine Robinson) who mentioned that Eric Fehr will miss the first six weeks of the season after recent shoulder surgery (alarm bells should be ringing regarding Fehr and injuries). Blaine’s source is Eric’s brother, and I couldn’t find a corroborating source – I'll confirm when I can.
The Jets are arguably the thinnest team in the league on the right side – without Fehr, their RW group includes Blake Wheeler, Chris Thorburn, and…. I guess they could move Nik Antropov to the right side if Burmistrov plays on line two.
Matt Stajan had six goals last season. I knew he had a poor year, but six goals equates to about $600,000 per goal. Ouch.
A great breakdown of the potential Nashville lineup – here’s the mock third line from Section 303 – Bergfors-O’Reilly-Wilson.
Nashville is a hard team to draft from because they have so many similar forwards, but if you have a hunch on a certain player rising above the rest, it would be a worthwhile risk. Someone has to produce. I have a feeling O’Reilly will bump Legwand down to the third line sooner rather than later.
Which defensive group is worse, Colorado or Edmonton? There are some fantasy relevant players, both for shorter term (Whitney) and longer term (Johnson) pools, but make no mistake about it, both teams are going to allow a lot of goals.
A great read on Mark Streit and what he means to the Isles and their 2011-12 playoff chances.
“Reports have Streit looking good this offseason skating in Switzerland. Let's hope these reports are correct because Garth Snow did absolutely nothing (although he did try) to sure up the blueline for the Islanders in 2011-12. In my opinion, besides goaltending, Mark Streit and a return to form is the most important factor in determining if we will see the Islanders playing hockey come the second week in April next year.”
According to multiple sources, Jonas Hiller is healthy and ready for training camp. Huge news for poolies and Duck fans, as Hiller is an elite talent. As I alluded to back when I ranked my top 10 keeper league goaltenders, he’d make the list if it weren’t for the vertigo issues (which now appear to be in the past). Without Hiller, the Ducks would have been lucky to come 3rd or 4th in the Pacific.
Ilya Kovalchuk failed on the RW last season, but will the Devils try to move him to his off wing again? In Lou We Trust explores the question. With Zajac out, one would assume the Devils would try to balance out two scoring lines. Josefsen/Elias at center, Parise/Kovalchuk on the left side, and Palmieri/Tedenby on the right side. The Devils could also stack up a line with Parise and Kovalchuk, but who would play center?
Josefson isn’t proven but it is natural position, and he’s got the upside – why not give him a shot? Elias has skill and has proven himself, but he hasn’t been the same player since a bout of hepatitis during the lockout, and he’s much better on the wing.
The Sabres will likely pursue the trade market to shed some of their unwanted cap space. Die By the Blade breaks down the likely trade contenders – looking at the roster, it has to be one of Pominville or Boyes on the move. You can’t have three non-physical offensive right wingers all making $4 million or more per season.
An interesting read for the stats junkies out there. Cam Charron breaks down how and where players shoot from in the offensive zone, and how it impacts production totals.
“I decided to take my amateurish mathematical skills to the formula and, through trial and error, come up with something that would reflect pretty accurately the number of goals a player would score over an 82 game stretch if he took all his shots from the same area on the ice. I started the opposite direction, by dividing the distance of the shot by the number of shots taken. This puts Corey Perry, Phil Kessel and Jeff Carter high in the NHL over the course of last season.”
“Columbus is going to be fun to watch if they attract a couple of more skaters—they have two of the best shooters in the NHL playing for them.”
Chris Drury retired yesterday – a video tribute: