|Is Geno Worth It?||Tweet|
|Written by Ryan Goddard|
|Wednesday, 21 December 2011 20:35|
Owning Pittsburgh players on your fantasy roster can be tough at times (interchangeable parts up front), but malkin’ Evgeni for points when he's healthy is as easy as it gets. Malkin has seen a resurgence of sorts after a slow start to the season after recovering from knee surgery. Poolies have been happy to see him return to his dominant ways, one that includes a recent five-point performance and puts him on pace for an expected 103 points over 74 games. If Malkin could ask for anything for Christmas it would be brand new knees, but poolies are already getting what the want from Santa, and that's top-notch production.
Comparing Malkin's cost/point ratio to Ovechkin's and Crosby's puts his production into an elite perspective. Like Crosby, Malkin will miss a handful of games each year due to his knee issues, some where he will avoid the IR for “maintenance” days, so any season under 65 games played will consider his pace rather than his actual production.
Not generally considered a goal scorer, Malkin has 50-goal potential which is evident from his 47-goal campaign in 2007/08. His big shot is utilized from the point on the Penguin's first power-play unit which translates into plenty of shots on goal and, in turn, goals. His penalty minute totals are as consistent as they come and his cost/pim ratio of $141,158 is better than Ovechkin's $185,508 whom, at one point, I would have considered the better PIM option. The biggest fluctuation will come in the goals category and his power-play totals are the only negative trend (the Penguin's PP has struggled the last couple of years), but Malkin's averages are very consistent and his current pace is right on superstar track. His power play production is on pace to obliterate his previous totals, a fantastic sign for all Penguin's players. Let's see how his averages compare to his biggest fantasy rivals in Ovechkin and Crosby.
In bold is the best average for each category. Malkin looks to be the odd man out as the only one without a categorical win. Looking closer, though, Malkin comes out ahead of Ovechkin in every category that Crosby leads. Ovechkin is the leader in the categories that he “should” be, but with his declining production, neither Malkin nor Crosby are very far of his averages. One or two more years could easily see those even out, especially considering the extra $800,000 cap hit that comes with owning Ovechkin.
With Crosby out, Malkin becomes the leader of this team and his production actually increases. Malkin has put his team on his shoulders and posted 15-points in a six game streak since Crosby went back on the IR with concussion-like symptoms. His ice-time should remain high and the offense will run through him. We'll look at how his ice-time has trended in the past five years and how it correlates with his production.
While Malkin may have lost a minute of ice time since his biggest season in 07/08 and 08/09, if his current pace is any indicator it will not hold him back. It's safe to say the numbers tell us that the more ice-time he gets the more he will produce, but that can be said for most players. The important part to note is that his averages are very consistent and the slight dip in ice-time is more representative of a better team around him as well as the injuries that may force the team to hold him back just a bit. His resurgence has been a blessing to frantic poolies wondering whether to hang on to the once sputtering superstar, considering his injuries and off-year, but to those who hung on, kudos. Malkin is, and always will be a superstar – health permitting. Play him with confidence in your salary cap league.
Next up will be a look at a couple of players who come with a price tag big enough to choke a horse, but are a step below the elite three previously discussed. Rick Nash and Eric Staal are fantastic NHL players and extremely important to their respective teams, but are they worth owning considering the massive amount of cap space they demand?
|Last Updated on Wednesday, 21 December 2011 23:53|