Merry Christmas! I hope Santa was generous to all this year. So you woke up this morning with youthful glee, ran down the stairs, and hopped on your computer to check out the latest fantasy news… right?
Really, most of you should be spending this time celebrating the holiday with loved ones… not reading about the latest hot pickup in the fantasy world. Still, we here at DobberHockey.com will provide info for the most hardcore of fantasy junkies… even on Christmas Day. So, here are just a few tidbits to fill your fantasy stocking and hold you over until the next full slate of games tomorrow.
The Status Report:
Alexander Radulov, RW, NSH
If you are a believer, this is the time to satisfy your “Radulove.” Alexander might be the most highly valued “unproven” keeper league players around. The last ten games has been one of the roughest stretches of Radulov’s young career. He only registered three points and was a minus-6 during that span. You can look at this as a negative or as an opportunity to finally dislodge Radulov from the iron grip of your opponent… before it’s too late.
Jason Arnott, C, NSH
Ready “Arnott”, let him go. After a mini-slump in early December, Jason Arnott has rebounded with eight points in his last four games. One of those games was a four-point performance. The time is right to let this veteran star go. Arnott is on pace for over 70 points this season and he’s only finished with a total that high once in his 13 previous seasons. His pace is likely to slow and at the age of 33, Arnott is nearly at the end of his prime. Let someone else watch his decline, and avoid the injuries and prolonged slumps that often come with age.
From the Dust: The player who may have some value after all.
Antti Miettinen, RW, DAL
Now, here was an unexpected early Christmas present. Unless your name is ClevelandKid21 over in the forum, you probably didn’t consider this guy as a fantasy option a few weeks ago. Still, here he is, doing the best sponging of his career. At the age of 27, Antti is in an ideal situation on the top line in Dallas, receiving ample power play and ice time. With Lehtinen out of the picture for a while, Antti is soaking up the fantasy fumes of this season’s Ribeiro-Morrow chemistry. Before Miettinen put up these 12 points in 9 games, he only produced 60 points in his previous 185 games played in the NHL. Miettinen is also an unrestricted free agent after this season, which may be further motivating his success. Right now he is maximizing his potential, but considering his mediocre NHL and AHL history, this looks like a flash in the pan. He is useful now, makes for a smart sell high and will be lucky to become a 50-point producer in this league.
Cactus of the Week: The player you shouldn’t touch right now.
Alexander Frolov, LW, LA
Plagued by injury this year, Frolov has done little to relax his owners. His last few games have been even worse.
Last 4 Games: 0G, 1A, 0P, -6, 4PIM, 6SOG
Although on a great team for the future, Frolov has failed to progress and his goal total of four is especially troubling. His most recent struggles suggest he may still be dealing with groin issues. Otherwise, fantasy owners hope Frolov isn’t taking after new teammate Ladislav Nagy and reverting back to enigma status in the NHL.
Fantasy Flashback: Your weekly reminder that fantasy hockey is a rollercoaster.
Matt Carle, D, SJ
What a rough sophomore slump for owner’s of Mr. Carle. As a defensive liability, Carle has had little of the success he displayed as a rookie. Just look at how his numbers from this season compare to his first six games last season.
2006-07: 6GP, 1G, 5A, 6P, +5, 2PIM, 15SOG
2007-08: 28GP, 1G, 5A, 6P, -7, 10PIM, 6SOG
Sad but true. Matt Carle was a point-per-game defenseman after six games last season and equaled the goals and assists output he has provided in 28 games this season. After one month of games last year, Carle had already doubled the output he’s given owners this year. It is hard to imagine Carle was a 42-point player as a rookie. But on the bright side, he still has a long career (of healthy scratches) ahead of him to fix his problems.
Once again, Merry Christmas to all!