Baseball season is around the corner, pick up the Fantasy Baseball Guide at DobberBaseball – fantastic job again this year by Snyder, I’m truly impressed. And while you’re in the buying spirit, you can preorder my Playoff Draft List.
Do the Sharks even want in the playoffs? What will they do when they get there, start playing well? Seriously guys, if you wanted in you would be in. Just pack up. This isn't Jamie McGinn. I can't believe a third-liner's trade impacts the team like this. This is weak goaltending, a Ryane Clowe who is playing through injury and an under-achieving Patrick Marleau. And the lack of scoring depth is finally catching up to them.
I'm amazed that Ray Whitney is at 73 points right now and is on pace for 76 by the time it's all done. He turns 40 in May. His next point will be No. 1000. I still remember when he teased us in San Jose with his skill, but they weren't playing him properly (ice time/ linemates). They let him walk, Edmonton gave him a tryout and soon waived him. The rest, shall we say, is history. At the age of 25 and written off by all poolies, the Florida Panthers picked him up. He's since had 10 60-point seasons, four 70-point seasons and a career high of 83. Exhibit A as to why I don't 100% write off a prospect even when he's 25 and hope seems to be lost, I always keep the door open a tiny crack (ahem, Patrick O'Sullivan - why I still had a tiny bit of hope for him 18 months ago in Carolina).
I’m covering for Angus today. He’ll grab Monday for me – the day after April Fool’s… but the anniversary of the day that the REAL Fool was born: ME. I fooled my mom 38 years ago by coming a day late.
In my Hockey News article from yesterday, I go over 10 players who I feel will see a boost in production next year.
This is funny – a lot of frustrated poolies this time of year. Claude Giroux and Scott Hartnell, two of the biggest fantasy studs of the year, were pointless in a game in which the Flyers scored seven. Sidney Crosby takes a puck to the face, leaves the game, lots of blood… but later returns. Tomas Vokoun also leaves the game with an injury. With each blow, someone vents on the forum. Here is the funny (and telling) snippet:
Josh Bailey had five points last night. In fact, he had 12 points in 14 games heading into last night, and now has 17 in his last 15. Before that he had 14 points in 60 games. If he’s even half that good next season and the Isles add Ryan Strome and Tavares takes yet another step, then they’ve made it. I should also add Kyle Okposo’s name here, as he was one of the 10 players I note in the aforementioned Hockey News column.
Evgeni Malkin – your first player to hit 100. Your only player? Stamkos needs nine in five games…
I am always careful to put a caveat into it when I say “the Penguins will walk through everybody”. That caveat? No, not based on Crosby’s health. Or Malkin’s. They can lose one of those two. The caveat is Kris Letang. For some reason, he’s the glue that holds everything together and when he’s gone the Penguins become mere mortals.
Paul Martin, the most hated player on the team by the fans two months ago, has pushed his numbers up enough to actually beat last year’s. He has 26 points and is plus-7. Reasonable shot at 30 and plus-10.
Michael Grabner will bounce back next year, but only as a 40-point third liner. His speed, with Casey Cizikas’ hustle and energy, I think will go perfect together. To make that dream a reality, the Isles would need a formidable first two lines – which means Bailey and Okposo need take that step forward and Strome makes an impact.
Jordan Staal needs five points in five games to set a career high – in a season in which he’s missed 20.
Start paying attention to Carter Ashton whenever you see him. Not for his skill – I think he’ll be a second liner, but not for two or three years. But for the fact that he looks worried. Every picture, every camera shot, live on TV or in an article he looks worried. Reminds me of Zoolander’s Blue Steel look:
Matt Read has five points in three games. With 46 points and plus-11, he’s creeping towards Adam Henrique for that No.3 Calder vote spot. No, I don’t think Justin Faulk should be there – in fact, I’ve like what Jake Gardiner has done this year over Faulk. Right now it’s Landeskog, RNH, Henrique, Read, Gardiner, Faulk, Hagelin, Couturier, Hodgson in that order. My opinion.
With three last night, Jaromir Jagr is up to 52 points. When he signed with the Flyers, I said he’s good for 55-60 points and you should treat him like a 57-point player. Not bad, I hit them sometimes.
With the hatty last night, Ryan Malone has 17 points in 19 games. He’s no Bailey, but that’s still pretty damn good, salvaging a season that I thought was a write-off.
Sebastien Caron got into the game after Dwayne Roloson gave up six goals on 34 shots. Caron stopped all four shots that he faced.
Vinny Lecavalier was back in the lineup, but was pointless and minus-1.
Phoenix has signed prospect Chris Brown to a contract. He is ranked 156 on my Fantasy prospects List, but as a power forward I don’t see any impact in the near future (thus the lower ranking).
The Flames sent down Roman Horak. Barring sudden chemistry with a very talented linemate in the next two or three years, I’m not seeing the offensive talent to put him in the top two lines at the NHL level.
The Sharks signed UFA college rearguard Matt Tennyson. He has some potential as a second-pairing defenseman in about three years. He has great size, too.
Chimera could face suspension for this hit on McQuaid. I love Jack Edwards skewing the call with his homerism though – 14 strides my ass. Chimera had zero strides the final 10 feet, he was just cruising. Not defending the hit, I just think the opinion was a stupid one: