New Isles

 

Has Ted Nolan done it again? Has he taken a mishmash cast of underachievers and molded them together to form a cohesive, productive unit?

Two impressive wins over the Buffalo Sabres and it would seem so. Nolan is making GM Garth Snow look like a brilliant man for bringing Mike Comrie, Bill Guerin and Ruslan Fedotenko on board.

 




Comrie will have a career season this year. I said it in my pool guide. I said it in my ramblings. I say it every time somebody will listen. That being said, his career high is 60 points and beating that total shouldn’t be too difficult for him. I had figured 65 points or so. I should probably revise this number. With four goals and six points in his first two contests, Comrie is showing the stuff that made him a hot commodity in fantasy leagues back in his Oiler days. Back then, poolies saw a future in which he would regularly tally 85 to 95 points.

Maybe it’s time to revisit that optimistic upside.

It’s early in the season of course, but all the indicators are there. He just turned 27 – a year commonly believed to be the beginning of a player’s prime. He is getting 18 or 20 minutes of ice time per game. He tore it up in preseason as well. He has obvious chemistry with linemates Guerin and Fedotenko.

The only problem is – his current fantasy owners have jacked up the price. As well they should. I often preach the “buy low and sell high” philosophy, but in Comrie’s case I think he is worth hanging onto unless somebody places a proven 80-point player at your feet.

In the meantime, I have conservatively moved my expectations of Comrie up to 70 points, Guerin up to 65 and Fedotenko up to 55…

Meanwhile…

The Isles have placed rearguard Freddie Meyer on waivers in what is likely an effort to clear a roster spot for Bryan Berard. Berard would be an absolute steal off the waiver wire, although there are always health questions. In a rotisserie league, however, he will get his points early and often and can always be replaced if and when he does go down…

Alexei Ponikarovsky looked so good on the top line with Mats Sundin and Nik Antropov that it is likely that Jason Blake will remain on the second line. Barring an injury to one of Sundin’s linemates (and with Antropov, that’s always a possibility), Blake may find 35 goals and 60 points out of reach for this season…

The Calgary Flames have five goals in two games and center Daymond Langkow has four of them. Langkow has been seeing over 20 minutes per game and is back – and firmly entrenched – on the first line…

Kristian Huselius has seen 18 to 19 minutes of ice time per game, for those of you who were considered about his relationship with coach Mike Keenan…

The up/down, up/down career of Vaclav Prospal is continuing. The 32-year-old Tampa forward has had seasons of 55, 79, 54, 80 before dropping to 55 again last season. Can you guess where I had him pegged in my fantasy hockey guide? He has four points in two games, so his expected resurgence is clearly on track.
 


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