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Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Fantasy Mailbag: Brodeur no longer elite netminder

Fantasy Insider Pete Jensen answers your weekly fantasy hockey questions

Saturday, 11.12.2011 / 4:55 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Pete Jensen - NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com fantasy insider Pete Jensen has you covered all season long with the weekly Fantasy Hockey Mailbag. The most compelling questions posed each week will be answered in an effort to provide you with the best chance to succeed in your particular league.

Submit your best questions for the NHL.com Fantasy Mailbag by contacting PJensen@NHL.com.



TYLER FROM SAN JOSE
currently has Johan Hedberg as his backup goaltender. With Martin Brodeur back from injury, he is wondering if he would be better off picking up an available netminder like Jonas Gustavsson, Jonathan Bernier or Sergei Bobrovsky.


Brodeur may have started four of the New Jersey Devils’ last five games, but Hedberg (5-3-1, 2.34, .920, 1 SO) has proved to be the much more productive goalie over the last year and change. Having already missed nearly three weeks because of injury, Brodeur (2-3-0, 3.02, .880) continues to drift from his standing among the League’s elite fantasy goalies. All six of Brodeur’s starts this season have come at home, but the 39-year-old has been unable to shoulder the load for the League’s 25th-ranked scoring offense (2.21 goals per game). Your best bet is to hope the Devils grant “The Moose” the semi-regular starts he deserves moving forward.
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Right of Way: 11 fantasy notes about the No. 11

Matt Cubeta - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every Friday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey expert Matt Cubeta will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy right wings in our weekly segment: "Right of Way." From updated right wing rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Cubeta is your fantasy right wing expert all season long.

Before we get into our weekly right wing update, we figured today deserved some sort of fantasy hockey reference to the number 11. After all, today is a day that only occurs once ever century. With that, here's a look at 11 fantasy hockey notes regarding the number 11:

1. Both Evgeni Malkin and Nicklas Backstrom's average draft position on draft day were exactly 11.0. Malkin is currently rated 102nd among all players, while Backstrom is 14th overall.

2. The No. 11 overall player in standard Yahoo! Leagues coming into the 2011-12 fantasy season was Bobby Ryan -- he is currently rated 176th.

3. NHL.com's No. 11 overall player coming into the season was Ryan's teammate Ryan Getzlaf -- he is currently rated 292nd in Yahoo! Leagues.

4. The current 11th-rated overall fantasy player in Yahoo! Leagues is defenseman Sheldon Souray -- he came into the season at No. 190.

5. Three players are tied for the NHL-lead with a plus-11 rating: Souray, Tyler Seguin and Loui Eriksson.
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Center Stage: Time to give up on the Detroit duo?

Wednesday, 11.09.2011 / 2:40 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Matt Cubeta - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every Wednesday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey expert Matt Cubeta will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy centers in our weekly segment: "Center Stage." From updated center rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Cubeta will be your fantasy center expert all season long.

As you're perusing through the box scores to see how your fantasy players did, you quickly notice the Red Wings scored five goals en route to a 5-2 victory over the Avalanche Tuesday night. You're thinking to yourself, "Datsyuk and Zetterberg must have done something, right?"

Sadly, you are let down. Again.

While both players recorded a plus-2 rating in the victory, only Datsyuk's name appeared on the scoresheet with an assist -- Zetterberg was held pointless for the eighth time in 13 games this season, something his fantasy owners are definitely not accustomed to.

Zetterberg has just 3 goals, 2 assists, a minus-1, 2 penalty minutes, 52 shots on goal and no power play points. He was drafted on average with the 26th pick this year and rated 22nd coming into the season in Yahoo! Leagues -- he's currently rated No. 333 among all players.

Datsyuk has a more respectable 2 goals, 8 assists, minus-4, 6 penalty minutes, 3 power play points and 44 shots on goal. He was drafted on average with the 11th pick this year and rated seventh coming into the season in Yahoo! Leagues -- he's currently rated No. 138 among all players.
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On the 'D'-fence: Kulikov becoming offensive threat

Brian Metzer - NHL.com Correspondent

Every Tuesday during the season, NHL.com Correspondent Brian Metzer will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy defensemen in our weekly segment: "On the 'D'-fence." From updated defensemen rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Metzer will be your fantasy d-man expert all season long.

One of the biggest stories of this past summer's free agency period was the extreme roster makeover done by Florida Panthers General Manager Dale Tallon. He wanted to change the culture of a team that has been losing for far too long and decided to try and right the ship by bringing in a number of new faces.

Kris Versteeg, Sean Bergenheim, Tomas Fleischmann and Brian Campbell joined a number of other players as part of the facelift. Lost in the shuffle was the fact that some of the fruits of those years of losing were starting to pay off, none more so than 21-year-old defenseman Dmitry Kulikov.

Though Kulikov was selected with the 14th selection of the 2009 Entry Draft, he is in his third season in the League and is beginning to come into his own on both sides of the puck.

Some, such as Campbell, who co-quarterbacks the Panthers' fifth-ranked power play with Kulikov, think that he is playing well beyond his years and that is a boon for fantasy owners.
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In the Cage: The Toronto goalie quandary

Justin Goldman - NHL.com Correspondent

Every Monday during the season, goalie specialist and founder of The Goalie Guild Justin Goldman will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy goaltenders in NHL.com's weekly segment: "In the Cage." From updated goalie rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Goldman will be your fantasy goalie expert all season long.

Poolies are facing quite the quandary with three Maple Leafs goalies right now. James Reimer is out for the foreseeable future due to his curious whiplash injury. Jonas Gustavsson is 3-2 in his last five games, but has a weak 3.68 goals-against average and .880 save percentage. Ben Scrivens won his NHL debut, but quickly went from hero to zero when the Bruins lit him up on Hockey Night in Canada.

Even though Toronto has excelled through October, our advice is to stay away from the goalies. There's simply not a lot of positive energy surrounding their fantasy value right now. Nobody knows how much time Reimer will miss, and while Gustavsson is expected to carry the workload this week, even if the Leafs right the ship quickly after being blown out at home, he's still not posting quality stats.
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The Real Spiel: Kane blossoms at new position

Sergei J. Feldman - NHL.com Staff Writer

Given the complex, never-steady landscape of fantasy hockey, each week, NHL.com Fantasy Insider Sergei Feldman will give you The Real Spiel on some of the quirks and trends that permeated your week of fantasy hockey by way of in-depth analysis.


YES KANE, YES GAIN

There has to be a reason why Patrick Kane is owned in 100% of Yahoo! standard fantasy hockey leagues, right? In case you're still trying to figure it out, the answer is an emphatic Yes! Since breaking into the NHL in 2007-08, the Chicago Blackhawks right wing has done nothing but impress and dazzle and fantasy team owners have benefited greatly, in the process. When you rack up no fewer than 21 goals, 45 assists and 70 points year in, year out and throw no fewer than 191 shots on the cage, too, the hockey world takes notice. Just like it did when the idea of playing Kane at center was being thrown around prior to the start of the year. So far, so good. But can Kane reach greater heights as the anchor of a top scoring line?


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Fantasy Mailbag: Don’t overestimate Khabibulin

Fantasy Insider Pete Jensen answers your weekly fantasy hockey questions

Saturday, 11.05.2011 / 10:50 AM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Pete Jensen - NHL.com Staff Writer

NHL.com fantasy insider Pete Jensen has you covered all season long with the weekly Fantasy Hockey Mailbag. The most compelling questions posed each week will be answered in an effort to provide you with the best chance to succeed in your particular league.

Submit your best questions for the NHL.com Fantasy Mailbag by contacting PJensen@NHL.com.



JAMES FROM CALGARY has Corey Crawford and Jonas Hiller occupying the crease for his fantasy team. Because of a mediocre start to the season for the Anaheim Ducks, he is considering dropping Hiller for Nikolai Khabibulin:

The only goalie in the League with 5-plus wins and no regulation losses is finally getting legitimate attention. At 38, Khabibulin (6-0-2, 0.98, .963, 2 SO) has been untouchable this season, and the Oilers have found confidence offensively as a result. He's a trendy pick-up these days (ownership hike in Yahoo! leagues from 57 to 71 percent this week), but don't drop a top-15 goalie like Hiller (4-4-3, 2.61, .904, 1 SO) for "The Bulin Wall" just yet.

Anaheim's offense has been inconsistent early on, but everyone's favorite hockey quote, "Ducks fly together," still applies to this team. When Teemu Selanne is out-racing 20-year-old's and Corey Perry is in MVP form, few can contend with this flock on both ends of the ice. Therefore, disposing Hiller a month into the season is ludicrous. But if Khabibulin is still available in your league, it's worth dropping your worst skater for him. Having a trio of Crawford (6-2-2, 2.33, 9.19), Hiller and Khabibulin gives you the depth to contend for a championship. You don't want to be left empty-handed if Khabibulin does his best Tim Thomas impression and somehow keeps this up.
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Right of Way: Can Toronto's dynamic duo keep it up?

Matt Cubeta - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every Friday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey expert Matt Cubeta will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy right wings in our weekly segment: "Right of Way." From updated right wing rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Cubeta is your fantasy right wing expert all season long.

When will Phil Kessel and Joffrey Lupul slow down?

Maybe they'll hit a cold streak when the Leafs embark on a lengthy road trip at the end of the month -- from Nov. 20 to Dec. 5, Toronto plays 6 of 7 games on the road. Maybe opposing teams will start to pay a bit more attention to the dynamic duo. Maybe the return of Tim Connolly will affect the chemistry they've found in the early stages of the season.

Or, perhaps they won't ever slow down. Maybe this is their season to shine and become mega-watt stars in the NHL. 
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Turn Left Here: Parise, Ryan among struggling LW's

Thursday, 11.03.2011 / 2:43 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Matt Cubeta - NHL.com Staff Writer

Every Thursday during the season, NHL.com fantasy hockey expert Matt Cubeta will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy left wings in our weekly segment: "Turn Left Here." From updated left wing rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Cubeta will be your fantasy left wing expert all season long.

In last week's edition of "Turn Left Here" we discussed how the left wing position is quickly becoming extremely deep for fantasy owners. And while that’s true, we've also seen plenty of elite left wingers underachieve in the early parts of the 2011-12 season.

Alex Ovechkin, our No. 1 overall fantasy player coming into the season, is currently rated 34th in Yahoo! Leagues. Hopefully his recent hot streak (7 points in his previous five games) will get him going.

Devils forward Zach Parise, our No. 3 left wing coming into the season, has gotten off to a miserable start with 4 goals and just 1 assist in 10 games. Bobby Ryan has been equally as disappointing with the same amount of goals and points as Parise and no points on the power play.

Detroit's Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg continue to struggle, with both players rated below the 159 rank in Yahoo! Leagues.
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Fantasy Spin: Miller’s misery continues in latest loss

Wednesday, 11.02.2011 / 11:19 PM / Fantasy Hockey Draft Rankings, Advice and Analysis

Eric Lipschutz - NHL.com Staff Writer

Ryan Miller is officially slumping. In his most recent outing against the Philadelphia Flyers, Miller was pulled from the game early in the first frame after allowing three goals in just 11 shots. All this after not looking very sharp in his previous three games. Four straight losses for a high-end netminder?
    
In his most recent "In the Cage" segment, NHL.com's fantasy hockey goalie guru Justin Goldman targeted Miller as trending downward and after his latest and most disappointing outing, there now has to be some cause for concern.  Miller has played well at times this year, particularly early on, but he clearly has not lived up to his billing as one of the League's elite goaltenders so far this season.
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