|Not With a 10-Foot Pole (Part I, 2012)||Tweet|
|Written by Ryan Ma|
|Thursday, 18 October 2012 10:09|
Season after season there’s always a list of players who just don’t tickle my fancy. This is for a variety of reasons, ranging from my dislike of some players, changes to the team during the off-season, recovery from off-season surgery, overvalued rookies/prospects, or just plain over-inflated stats from last season. Here’s the first set of my “not with a 10-foot pole” players this campaign.
Bobby Ryan – LW- Anaheim Ducks
If you break Ryan down, he does have plenty of fantasy upside, but if you look at it on a whole, there are many factors to dislike. One factor is the Ducks team as a whole. They have Corey Perry, Ryan Getzlaf, Teemu Selanne and of course Ryan. When you’re on a team with three other offensive superstars, something’s got to give right? Unfortunately for Ryan it’s the PP TOI aspect. Over the last three seasons, Getzlaf has averaged 3:36 PP TOI per contest, Selanne 3:32, Perry 3:38 while Ryan garnered a lowly 2:28. If you’ve bought the 2012-13 Dobber Guide, then you’ve probably read about the importance of PPP production as a key to overall point production. A second factor that I majorly dislike is his overall ranking in Yahoo! draft lists. He’s on average being selected with the 37th pick, ahead of proven players like Jarome Iginla, Nicklas Backstrom, and Martin St. Louis, which to me is unjustifiable. A third factor that I dislike is divisional play. When you play six contests against the teams within your division, then consider the defensive strength of their opposition within the Pacific division, Kings (second), Coyotes (fifth), Sharks (eighth) and Stars (15th), will it even be possible for the Ducks to excel offensively against some of the league’s stingiest defences?
Milan Lucic – LW- Boston Bruins
Similar to Ryan, Lucic does have plenty of areas where he’d be a golden fantasy own. The problem is if you’re playing in a standard settings league based mostly on points, SOG and PIM, Lucic really isn’t all that great of an own, especially not given his ADP of 34 in Yahoo! leagues. Yeah, the G, A and PIM are great, but the plus seven, 11 PPP and 149 SOG certainly leaves a bit more to be desired, given that he’d most likely cost you a third round pick. You might not get as many G or A from David Backes, but his plus 15, 17 PPP and 234 SOG at least provides much more “across the board-ness” than Lucic, and is probably available a round later too.
Ville Leino – LW- Buffalo Sabres
When the Sabres poached Leino from the Flyers it certainly left plenty of poolies scratching their head, myself included. I mean, investing $27 mil over six seasons based on one “decent” season, was a bit of an overreach in my opinion. How much of his 53 points that he tallied that season was really because of “Leino” as opposed to the benefit of playing on a line with Daniel Briere and Scott Hartnell? If you look at the stats from that one season, he averaged 0.65 points and 1.44 SOG per game. If you look at the stats from all of the other seasons, he’s averaging 0.32 and 1.24. You won’t find Leino on my fantasy radar this campaign.
Roman Cervenka – C- Calgary Flames
Fresh blood arriving from overseas always makes for interesting gambles, but I don’t think this one will pan out as well as others. If you look at the Flames’ line up of Iginla, Alex Tanguay, Mike Cammalleri, Jiri Hudler, Curtis Glencross, Lee Stempniak, Blake Comeau, Mikael Backlund and now toss in Cervenka, there isn’t a lot of room for him to excel offensively above the others. Also consider the “unknown” factors of ‘will he pick up PIM, how many SOG will he take, or will he get PP time?’ There’s just too much guessing work for my liking. Take a pass on him on draft day.
Joe Corvo – D- Carolina Hurricanes
I don’t doubt Corvo’s offensive upside, but the big problem for me is depth charts. If you take a look at the Canes’ blue-line corps, they have Joni Pitkanen, Jamie McBain, Justin Faulk and of course Corvo all competing for top four slots. The last time Corvo suited up for Carolina, he did post 40 points along with 191 SOG, but he also averaged 24:46 and 4:01 on the PP, but I don’t know if he’ll be given that much opportunity this time around with McBain and Faulk also pushing for additional responsibility. His name might be tempting at the draft table, but there’s someone nine slots lower (Oliver Ekman-Larsson, shhhhh!), who may just be a better option.
Brent Seabrook – D- Chicago Blackhawks
I had him on my list last campaign, and I’m going to rinse and repeat. Seabrook is great for leagues with a stronger focus on HIT and BS, but if you’re talking standard Yahoo! leagues, his value plummets dramatically. Take a look at the below table.
He’s currently the 37th drafted blue-liner in Yahoo! leagues, but I could probably find half a dozen that I would prefer over Seabrook at the moment.
David Jones – RW – Colorado Avalanche
Jones managed to ink himself a great contract in the off-season, but I have a feeling that we’re going to look back at it and say what were the Avs thinking? The upside with Jones is that he’s one of the game’s purest snipers (16.3 percent career shooting efficiency), but the drawback is that he doesn’t really provide much else. The assists are well below average, plus/minus isn’t helpful, PIM are essentially non-existent, lacks any quality amount of PP TOI, and the SOG is right around the league average. Now if you also take into account team depth, Paul Stastny, Gabriel Landeskog, Matt Duchene, Milan Hejduk, Ryan O’Reilly, Steve Downie, P.A. Parenteau, Jamie McGinn and also Jones, will the situation actually allow Jones to become a fantasy force in 2012-13? Probably not!
Sergei Bobrovsky – G- Columbus Blue Jackets
I don’t really have a lot of facts and figures on this one, so basically chalk this one up to a plain ol’ hunch. First of all, the Jackets aren’t exactly a defensively sound team, there are still quite a few holes in the lineup for them to address before I’m ready to anoint Bob as the saviour for Columbus. Second, there’s something fishy about the whole situation. If the Flyers really trusted Bobrovsky, then why would they let him go at such a discounted price of just a second and a fourth round pick, then go out and sign a “weaker” alternative in Michael Leighton instead especially given the inconsistency from Ilya Bryzgalov that they had to deal with last campaign? The conspiracy theorist in me says that the Flyers knew something was up, and abandoned ship before it sunk.
Michael Ryder – RW – Dallas Stars
The chemistry between Ryder and Mike Ribeiro is certainly undeniable, if you look at the seasons where the both of them have been on the same team, Ryder has churned out 63, 55 and a 62 point campaigns. In the seasons without Ribeiro, Ryder averages just 43.2 points. If you follow the theme of the column and also consider the Stars depth charts, Jamie Benn, Loui Eriksson, Ray Whitney, Jaromir Jagr, Derek Roy and Brendan Morrow will essentially push Ryder back closer towards the 43 point total than the 62 that he posted last campaign. I’m not touching this one with a 10-foot pole.
Jimmy Howard – G- Detroit Red Wings
In the off-season, the Wings lost the “greatest defender” of the modern era and replaced him with Carlo Colaiacovo. That’s not exactly going to give off the vibe of complete confidence is it? I honestly don’t trust Howard enough to completely dive head first with him given how important the goalie position is to fantasy hockey. Give me Tuukka Rask, Mike Smith or Bryzgalov instead.
Nail Yakupov – RW- Edmonton Oilers
Yahoo! always has the tendency to over-rate rookies. Gone are the days of 85+ point rookies of Sidney Crosby, Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin. Nowadays rookies generally tally roughly 50-55 points, which isn’t exactly ground breaking numbers. Given the “unknown factor” associated with them in the plus/minus, PIM, SOG and PPP areas, there are just too many risks involved in selecting them with any confidence.
Scottie Upshall – RW- Florida Panthers
Upshall was once drafted as a sixth overall pick back in 2002, with plenty of offensive upside, but injuries have majorly hampered his career (a la Cam Barker as mentioned by Dobber). The Panthers already have Stephen Weiss, Tomas Fleischmann, Kris Versteeg and toss in new signee Peter Mueller and possibly teenage sensation Jonathan Huberdeau there probably isn’t much room for Upshall to play a pivotal role in the Panthers’ offense.
I decided to chuck in the double for the Kings on this one. Once again, it’s not that I doubt both of their offensive abilities, but it’s the depth charts and team philosophy that I’m worried about. If you take a look at the Kings, you have Anze Kopitar, Dustin Brown, Justin Williams, Simon Gagne, Dustin Penner and Jarrett Stoll, then you add in Carter and Richards and the Kings are filled to the brim in terms of offensive depth. To compound that problem even more, the Kings ranked 29th in terms of goals scored, while winning the Stanley Cup. Chances are they’re going to want to keep things as close to status quo as they possibly can, which will really limit the point totals from their forwards. Carter (150th) is a little bit more worthwhile since he’s fairly low on Yahoo! draft lists, but Richards at 58th is definitely over-valued.
Devin Setoguchi – RW- MinnesotaWild
I had plenty of faith in Seto last campaign, but heading into 2012-13, I’m completely turning my back on him. He had a prime opportunity to shine facing no competition from his team and he completely let me down. This time around he has to compete with Zach Parise, Mikko Koivu, Dany Heatley, Ryan Suter and possibly Mikael Granlund. I fell for the trap once, and I won’t do it again.
Max Pacioretty – LW- Montreal Canadiens
Patches is kind of in that dangerous mid-round area where a couple of wrong picks could mean the difference between winning the league or joining plenty of others as a loser. Once again, talent isn’t the issue for me, Max Pac kind of fell into an optimal situation (long-term injuries to Brian Gionta/Scott Gomez, subpar play of Tomas Plekanec) last campaign, which allowed him to excel. Heading into this campaign, those issues should be resolved, which will bring Mac Pac “back down to Earth”. That tricky eighth round is probably prime position to snag a high quality blue-liner in Keith Yandle, Duncan Keith, Alex Edler, Dion Phaneuf, Mark Streit or Michael Del Zotto over Patches.
Any players that you wouldn’t touch with a 10-foot pole? Question or comments are always greatly welcomed below.
Should you be so inclined, follow me on Twitter if you think that my article/tweets are useful.
Recent posts from Ryan Ma:
|Last Updated on Friday, 19 October 2012 12:07|