Welcome once again to “An Expert’s Audit”. This audit will be posted here as well as on my fantasy hockey blog at Hockey Analysis . During the season I do weekly reviews of teams for people who email in to me for a look-see, they’re less indepth but just as much fun. Dobber audits will continue to appear here monthly and if you’re interested in having your keeper team “worked over” then you can begin by emailing Dobber about it before November 19.
This month, and every month through March, not only does a lucky entrant get his or her team audited, but he or she also receives a FREE book courtesy of Firefly Books . The winner can choose either "Shooting From the Lip " or "Hockey Now! "
Alexander Norman is a busy man. He’s a consultant type, and he’s lived all over the world. He even told me that he once sat with Mike Myers at a hockey game (YA BABY YA!). In fact, I barely saw Alex online the last couple weeks of our audit because he “had” to trek off to Frankfurt on business (I’d love to live in Europe one day). I’ve actually been to Frankfurt once, 20 years ago. It was cool then and I’m sure it’s just as righteous now.
Alex plays in a 14 team fantasy points league keeper. Many think that I’m talking about a simple tallying of points accrued but actually a fantasy points league gives arbitrary values for stat categories and totals everything up so that the highest point total wins the league. The stat categories and point are: G (1.5), A (1), +/- (1), PIM (0.2), PPP (1), W (2), L (-1), SV (0.05), SHO (3). These types of leagues are harder to evaluate than standard leagues but in general the system awards more for goals, devalues PIMs and hurts you with goalie losses.
Let’s take a look at Rock Radulov:
C Ryan Getzlaf ANA – can you believe there was actually talk of trading or turfing Getz after his abysmal start? He’s the sort of guy you never waive and only trade if you’re getting a monster back.
C Daymond Langkow CAL – he gets underrated in fantasy circles but playing with Iggy is going to create a series of career years for him.
LW Andrei Kostitsyn MON – the better Kostitsyn but that doesn’t matter because you also have little bro on your team.
LW Kristian Huselius CBS – I still see him as support scoring for his career. The young guns in C-bus will take the limelight for a lot of years to come.
RW Ales Hemsky EDM – sometimes you can just see the talent oozing out of him. He’s a very nice option for your team.
RW Dustin Brown LA – your league devalues PIMs but in standard leagues I really like him to be a power forward machine for a few years to come.
D Mike Green WAS – fantasy MONSTER. Resist nearly any offer you get for him. Really. Nearly ANY offer.
D Braydon Coburn PHI – solid option, decent keeper value and 40 pts a season for a lot of years to come.
D Kris Letang PIT – since you only start 3 D’s then you can do better here.
Util Derick Brassard CBS – ok, I was a bit surprised by his start too but nevertheless you need to keep him around in a keeper.
G Niklas Backstrom MIN – I liked him a lot before he started putting up elite stats this season. In keeper leagues he’s entering the top tier for goalie value.
G Michael Leighton CAR – well, he’s an AHL star but as a G2 in a start two goalie league, you have to do better.
BN Scott Hartnell PHI – too bad your league devalues PIMs, this guy goes snaky with the best of them on occasion.
BN Sergei Kostitsyn MON – well, there’s upside here but arguably he’s your weakest link up front.
BN Peter Mueller PHX – I think Olli Jokinen is just the sort of mentor for this kid. If Mueller becomes what Olli is now then the Yotes will be monstrous.
IR Daniel Briere PHI – he’s been hurt in the recent past. He was injured for 17 of the 31 days we’ve been discussing this audit but he’s back now. He won’t be the focal point to their offense in Philly but he won’t disappoint either.
There are 3 problems of varying “issue” for your team. First of all, when I came on the scene you had no RW3 option whatsoever but that resolved itself soon afterward because Mueller became eligible at RW. If that hadn’t happened you probably would’ve had to look at seeing what Hartnell could land you for a RW. However in a league that devalues PIMs like yours the answer to that would’ve been … not all that much actually.
The second problem was at D3. In a league your size, only rostering 3 D each, then you should be able to do better than Letang. That problem should be solved relatively easily as guys get frustrated with underperforming options early into the season.
The third and worst problem on your team was at G2. Holy crap is that a huge problem. Your league is a bunch of goalie hoarding so-and-so’s if you ask me. We spent a month on this problem alone.
Waiver Wire Options
Dwayne Roloson – backups are the only available options in your league. When Briere went on the IR you added Rolly and I see him putting up equal or better stats for your team as Leighton would.
Brent Burns – you added him as soon as you could. As a D3 we were both thrilled to roster him ahead of Letang.
Joe Corvo – well he’s kinda stunk it up so far this year and that’s why he got turfed to the wire. You had to choose between Burns or Corvo and you made the right choice.
Andrew Brunette – you’re strong at LW for many years to come but it’s worth noting that Brunette has some nice opportunity in Minny and I could see a return to 70 pts this season fairly easily.
Alex Burrows – you already have Hartnell who gives you pretty much the same thing that Burrows would give you. Still, it’s worth mentioning him as an option.
Jakob Voracek – he’s the best RW option on your wire but Mueller got RW eligibility so that problem was resolved. You have a lot of Jackets already rostered anyway so you should just leave this guy alone for now.
There are 2 frustrating elements in your league. There’s a lot of goalie hoarding and guys don’t respond to trade offers in a timely manner. We worked for a month JUST on getting a G2 and it looks like it’s going to take more time than that. The only rules for these discussions were that Mike Green is not on the table and we’d prefer that Ryan Getzlaf not be either.
Trade Daniel Briere to Addickted for Miikka Kiprusoff – now hear me out on this. At the time Kip was struggling to start the season and LOTS of guys were panicking, Briere was also healthy. Dick asked for Getzlaf and matters progressed so that the present offer being considered is Ryan Getzlaf for Carey Price. In your situation I think you should do that … if Dick ever gets around to responding to offers.
Trade Ryan Getzlaf to Mats? Or No Mats? for Marc-Andre Fleury – this is very doable, and yet there has been no response. I just don’t get this. Mats? would have Nabokov and Smith left for his team and Jeff Carter is his best C. This deal should get done and it hasn’t been, yet.
Trade Scott Hartnell to Joe Six Pack for Dan Boyle – this offer was made before Brent Burns had already been secured as your D3. Still, it’s a decent offer that went nowhere. Boyle has been hurt a lot over the recent past and Joe had been keeping him on his bench anyway. Well, it’s ok, Burns is still a nice add so you don’t have to worry about this much.
Your best trade bait has been and is Daniel Briere, but he’s spent much of the time during our audit on IR and nobody seemed to be all that interested in him when he was healthy. Of course, Ryan Getzlaf should be able to land you most any goalie option you want in a keeper league, so shop carefully. You’re going to want to make a move in the next few weeks if you want to make a run at the title for this year.
We did manage to address your D3 and your RW3 problems but those were solved with a bit of patience and use of a waiver priority. The addition of Brent Burns to your roster is phenomenal in a keeper and eventually he’ll get past the injury stuff that he’s been wading through in the recent past. I love that Yahoo gave Peter Mueller RW eligibility recently, that’s really good for your team.
Overall, once you make your move for a goaltender you’ll be on track toward competing amongst the top teams in your league. Make that move soon though. It might be wise to fire off an email to those guys listed in the Trade Options section and see if you can prime the pump as it were. In the meantime, enjoy Europe. Very cool.