Ma here, moving up in the world and finally getting a shot at the ramblings. This is my first go at it, so be gentle with the criticism.

 

Couple of potentially huge upsets on the horizon, with the Sens shutting out the Rangers tonight and the Kings pushing the Canucks to elimination tomorrow night. Who went into their playoff pools projecting both eighth seeds to knock out the top-seed in the first round?  Our Dobber “expert” picks certainly aren’t looking great at the moment.

 

Craig Anderson now owns a shutout streak of 116 mins and 32 seconds heading into Ottawa on Monday night. He’s so hot right now.

 

With two goals tonight, Jason Spezza now has 48 points in 50 career playoff contests. Is there anyone more clutch of a playoff performer in Ottawa than Spez?

 

Offensive depth was one of the factors that the Rangers had over the Sens. Somebody needs to send out a search party for both Brandon Dubinsky and Derek Stepan, as both have been MIA on the scoreboard this series.

 

Despite being the higher seed heading into the playoffs, the Panthers were clear underdogs compared to the Devils in many eyes. They pulled off a 3-0 shutout of the Devils and now have a chance to close out the series in New Jersey.

 

Jose Theodore stopped all 30 shots that he faced to pick up his 21st victory and second career playoff shutout.

 

The Panthers are seven for 22 (31.8 percent) on the PP this series. Talk about efficiency.

 

Kris Versteeg now has nine points and 29 SOG in his last 10 contests dating back to March 30th. He also has 10 points and 21 SOG against the Devils this season. If I were Pete DeBoer, I’d posterize his picture and make the entire team stare at it for half an hour tomorrow.

 

Huge 4-3 win by the Caps over the Bruins early last night, which has given them a commanding 3-2 series lead heading back to Washington for game 6.

 

Braden Holtby has convinced me that he is the goalie of the future for the Caps. He owns a 3-2 record along with a sparkling 1.86 GAA and monstrous .946 SP during the most important time of the year. He’s bringing back memories of the Cam Ward playoff run back in 2005-06. Keeper leaguers jump on while the price is still relatively low.

 

One of the biggest factors for success during the playoffs is scoring depth. Surprisingly, it’s coming from a non-typical source this season; Washington. 16 of the 20 players that have suited up for the Caps these playoffs have picked up at least a point.

 

Mike Green has just two points in his last 30 contests, granted much of it has been injury-riddled, but is he even fantasy relevant anymore? Where would you take him in fantasy drafts next campaign? Do you think the Caps will re-sign him?

 

Ho hum, another early playoff exit for the Sharks. My pick of them making the Stanley Cup Final certainly blew up in my face.

 

Something needs to be addressed with that team. They don’t need to blow it up entirely and partake in a complete rebuild, but they do need to shuffle some pieces just to change the culture of the locker room.

 

I mean if you look at the scoring potential of the team, along with the number of President’s trophies in the cupboard while comparing that to playoff success. It just doesn’t add up.

 

If you break it down Sharks vs. Blues, I don’t think the Sharks were out-talented by the Blues, I don’t think the Sharks were physically dominated by them or even out-coached. It came down to who wanted it more and the Blues clearly won that edge.

 

Joe Pavelski and Patrick Marleau were non-existent and were clearly being out-worked by Patrik Berglund and Andy McDonald.

 

If you handed me the keys to the Sharks, I’d look into moving Marleau as my primary option. His role is redundant when you have Joe Thornton and Pavelski playing similar roles. I wouldn’t even necessarily want a skilled player back, someone like a Ryan Callahan, Mike Fisher, Ray Whitney, Brian Boyle or David Clarkson, someone who’ll go out there and just lift the intensity/work-rate of the players around him. I don’t think they’re getting that from their leadership group at the moment. What would you do if you were given the reigns of the Sharks?

 

The Blues advance to the second round of the playoffs for the first time in a decade.

 

Lost in all of this has been the brilliant play of McDonald, he finished the series with four goals and four assists along with 18 SOG. He’s always been a fairly clutch performer. If it wasn’t for his band-aid-boyness, he’d be discussed in the same breathe as Spezza, Thornton, Daniel Briere and Anze Kopitar.

 

Patrick Berglund is another that has really impressed me in this series, just 38 points in 82 contests during the regular season, but has stepped it up immensely with seven points this series. The major reason behind the difference: ice-time (17:59 TOI per game average during the regular season and 21:26 during the playoffs). Try to convince me that ice-time doesn’t play a role in offensive production.

 

With how well Brian Elliott is playing, will Halak get back into another playoff game this year?

 

Chicago picked up a late 2-1 overtime victory over the Coyotes, to breathe a bit of life back into the series. It was the fifth consecutive time this series that has gone to overtime, which ties a 61-year NHL record.

 

Corey Crawford has been unimpressive, the Hawks have helped him the best they can by allowing just 27.8 SOG to the Coyotes, but he needs to do much better than a .906 SP if they are to go any further.

 

Raffi Torres’ 25-game suspension as justified by Brendan Shanahan. Pretty fair in terms of what he did in my honest opinon, but when you compare it to everything else that's been dished out, Aaron Asham (four games), Andrew Shaw (three games), Nicklas Backstrom (one game), James Neal (one game) and Shea Weber (none -for "Webering"), 25-games seems a bit excessive doesn't it? Coyotes fans plead their case here.

 

This column over at CopperNBlue piqued my interest. If Ryan Murray does make Team Canada for the World Championships and does reasonably well, do the Oilers still take Nail Yakupov at number one?

 

Make sure you head over to Dobber Prospects and give that a good gander. Brendan Ross and Matt Bugg are two of the most knowledgeable people in terms of hockey prospects.

 

Should you be so inclined, follow me on Twitter if you think that my article/tweets are useful.

 

Chris Neil hit on Boyle vs. Torres hit on Hossa, suspendable?

 

 

 


Write comment
Comments (28)add comment

Ross The Boss Palmer said:

Ross The Boss Palmer
McGinn Yes I was referring to McGinn, I thought that was a bad move by the Sharks. He was a valuable part of their line-up and has a bright future.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

jacques oeuf said:

hammer2003
... Good ramblings dude but lol @ pick up Holtby while his price is relatively low. Maybe if there are guys in your league who don't pay attention to the playoffs, otherwise his price is sky high right now.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

fzusher said:

fzusher
Sharks Nice job Ryan.

I think the Sharks' problem is that their core group is just too cerebral. Cerebral players - cerebral people - are rarely emotional. They internalize rather than externalize. And for them upping the ante means trying to be even sharper and more clinical and creative than usual. That's great for the regular season, but bad for the playoff when you need to up your emotional and physical intensity.

What they need, I think, is to insert 1 player into their core and leadership group who has the talent to be a legit core guy and the leadership skill to actually take over that lockerroom (so, not a secondary role player like Clarkson). And that player has to be given the C. Insert, say, Dustin Brown into that line up instead of Havlat or Marleau, and pass the C from Thornton to him, and you'll have a completely different team.

But this does require a shift in thinking from a GM and a head coach who themselves may be too cerebral to get it.
April 22, 2012
Votes: -1

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Marleau Nash for Marleau would make sense, but from what I've read the Jackets want a lot more, so what could the Sharks offer on top of Marleau, the prospect cupboards are pretty bare...
April 22, 2012
Votes: +1

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Kops/McDonald I'm thinking overall fantasy value, the way I go about "tiering" players, I go superstar (100+ point potential), point per game(ish) (80+), above average player (75-80), very good (65-75), roster filler/spot pickups (45-65), ww material (15-45).

So your Spezz's, Briere's, Thornton's and Kops are kinda that star/point-per-game player area, you're going to get somewhere around the 80-point mark.

If you kinda look at McDonald's numbers, he's been pretty close to that 80-point mark (when healthy*). If he's is healthy, they're certainly comparable in the same sentence. The problem is he's never healthy...
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Ross Are you referring to McGinn?

I dunno if McGinn is blue collar, I've seen a few times where he's not noticeable at all, but maybe that's cause he's buried on the 3rd line... They need a top-six guy who'll energize the team. Hartnell-type, from what I can tell they just don't have heart on their current team.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Alfy Maybe it's only the select few games that I do watch, but from what I remember with Ott, Pizza line days, and last night's game (without Alfredsson), it just seems something always happens when Spez has the puck on his stick.

Alfy I think he's more "at the right spot at the right time", but Spez is much more stir stick IMO.

But you're a bigger Sens follower than me, so I'd trust your opinion a lot more than mine.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Positive Comments Thanks for the comments guys as always very much appreciated.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

mike ormerod said:

mormerod
Marleau I think we may very well see a deal involving Nash and Marleau. SJ may not WANT to bring in another heavy contract. But there is no doubting the chemistry Nash and Joe have shown for Canada. And Marleau still has lots left in the tank, and would probably thrive as a #1 C again.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +1

RNS said:

sexymountain
Loved these ramblings. 1st one, but I enjoyed your ramblings as much as Dobbers!

You were referring to playoff production, right? Cause I dont think Anze Kopitar or Andy McDonald should be mentioned with Spezza, Briere and Thornton with so little playoff games. This year, maybe. But definitely not overall.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... Ryan I don't think you have seen too many Ottawa playoff games if you think Spezza is clutch. Guy has been their worst forward this series alone.

If you wanna talk clutch playoff performer, it's Alfredsson. Alfredsson is like fine champagne whereas Spezza has been orange juice
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

sentium said:

Dakkster
... Great ramblings debut! smilies/smiley.gif
April 22, 2012
Votes: +1

Christian said:

xtrain
Mattress line Re: His Dudeness

There's a blast from the past. I remember when he was playing with the Sedins they were being called the Mattress line (two queens twins and a king).
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ross The Boss Palmer said:

Ross The Boss Palmer
Awesome Job Awesome job Ma! Made my hungover a lot better smilies/smiley.gif
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ross The Boss Palmer said:

Ross The Boss Palmer
Blue Collar "someone like a Ryan Callahan, Mike Fisher, Ray Whitney, Brian Boyle or David Clarkson, someone who’ll go out there and just lift the intensity/work-rate of the players around him."


Didn't they trade someone like that away to Colorado? Hmmm...
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Chris Goodall said:

Mater
Rambling Nice work on the Rambling, solid writing.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Sharks I don't think they need that much change, but it's justifiable...

Marleau I think definitely needs to be shipped out. Just redundant in his role in SJ and seems disinterested and needs a new start somewhere else.

Handzus I think could be a keeper only because he does the peripheral stuff pretty well. After they brought in Moore, Galiardi and Winnik his role was completely diminished. Handzus makes a pretty good 3rd line center, if he's given and cemented that role...

White/Murray I think were decent, they're good for a bottom pairing shut down D, but because the Sharks didn't have offensive D, it forced them to play more offense which isn't their strengths. They need a 3rd after Burns/Boyle, Demers/Braun isn't cutting it.

Boyle I think they need to keep him, the thing is if they move him who can they replace him with? Not very many puck-moving PP QB D of his calibre floating around... So if they move him, they create another problem they'd need to solve.

Moore/Winchester/Vandermeer/Mitchell are all gone, once again they're redudant...

I agree with you I think the goaltending is fine, D they need a 3rd, kinda a Leddy/Josi/Carle type...

Coaching I don't think is a big deal, McClellan I think has done a great job with what he's given. It didn't work under Wilson, and hasn't worked under McClellan, so I think it's more of a dressing room issue than a coaching issue. If they make personelle changes and it still isn't working then they need to look at coaching...
April 22, 2012
Votes: +1

Lockedge said:

lockedge
Re:Sharks If I had the keys to the Sharks I'd be shipping out/Getting rid of:
Marleau (Still my favourite Shark, but the team needs a sea change of sorts)
Clowe (lacking heart, lacking grit, lacking brains, too inconsistent)
Handzus
White (Thought he would work in SJ, he didn't)
Murray (Too slow, too risky on D)
Boyle (Trade him while he still has value)
Moore
Winchester
Vandermeer
Mitchell

Get better on defense somehow. Finally. Grab some forward & Defense prospects or picks, and get something back in the cupboards.
I'm fine with the goaltending.
Maybe look at other coaches, but I think a large issue is the players in the locker room instead of coaching.
April 22, 2012
Votes: +0

Hek said:

87Flyer
Punishment, not possible I hate sounding like a homer and even worse beating a dead horse but it's this crap that makes the leagues disciplinary committee such a joke. If the shoe was on the other foot and a Flyer concussed one of the Pens key players would there be no discipline? Not likely. So how does this guy get away with absolutely nothing for clobbering a guy in the head? Isn't what the mandate was supposed to prevent? Absolute joke. And then 25 games for Torres. WOW. Talk about a double standard for top 6 players and bottom 6 players. Absolutely pathetic. To think I actually felt bad for Crosby when he got cheap shotted by Steckel. Now, I HOPE someone gives them what both deserve, payback!
April 21, 2012
Votes: -2

Jeff Angus said:

angus
... Massimo - Thanks.

Sent - I concur. Malkin continues to throw dangerous checks that go unpunished.
April 21, 2012
Votes: +0

Massimo Cinelli said:

rticinelli
Calder "finalists" Angus, just a small correction. You mentioned the three Calder finalists as "nominees." That's incorrect, and a common misconception. Nominee implies that someone (presumably the league) selected these three players and the voting will now take place, when in fact the voting has already been done (in this case, by a select group of PHWA) and these are simply the three highest vote-getters (with the actual winner already being decided).

Not a potato po-ta-to situation here and, as a site that strives to be one of the best for hockey (not just fantasy hockey) on the web, should be presented correctly.
April 21, 2012
Votes: -2

sentium said:

Dakkster
... Malkin not getting any supplemental discipline is a joke.
April 21, 2012
Votes: +0

His Dudeness said:

His Dudeness
King There's a blast from the past. I remember when he was playing with the Sedins they were being called the Mattress line (two queens and a king).
April 21, 2012
Votes: +0

Jeff Angus said:

April 21, 2012
Votes: +1

Marc said:

MGW
Weber Although I agree that Weber should have been suspended, "slamming" is not what Weber did...pushing or shoving would be appropriate terms. Slamming or smashing is not at all indicative of the force Weber used on Zetts.
April 21, 2012
Votes: -2

Austin said:

austeane
... Haha thats kinda funny... Typo on a typo correction!smilies/grin.gif

Lapierre to second, Booth stays on firstsmilies/cool.gif
April 21, 2012
Votes: +0

Austin said:

austeane
Small error Tiny typo but Lapierre was promoted to be on the second line with booth on the second.
April 21, 2012
Votes: +0

Larry said:

Rollie1967
Malkin was a little reckless, probably should get suspended a game or two for that hit to the head....on Crosby! yikes, Crosby didnt look great after that, gotta wonder if his head isnt a little scrambled now.
April 20, 2012
Votes: -1
You must be logged in to post a comment. Please register if you do not have an account yet.

busy