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Fantasy Spin: Don't sweat Gibson situation

by Pete Jensen

Anaheim Ducks goalie John Gibson is being sent down to the American Hockey League, but there's no reason to overreact if you're one of his NHL fantasy owners.

Gibson will have a two-game stint with the Norfolk Admirals to stay fresh while Frederik Andersen (3-0-0; six goals allowed this season) rides his hot streak. Gibson is expected to return to the Ducks after his short reassignment; until then, Jason LaBarbera will be Andersen's backup.


Anyone who watched the Ducks in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs knows coach Bruce Boudreau will not sit back and watch after his team loses. Boudreau likes to change things up, and that goes for line combinations and goalie starters. He will stick with the hot hand and is not afraid to tinker with something that is not working out.

Gibson is not necessarily being demoted here. The 21-year-old allowed six goals in his hometown against the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Ducks' season opener and has not played since. He was a popular middle-round fantasy pick after a near-flawless three-game stretch to close the 2013-14 regular season and making four postseason appearances against the Los Angeles Kings that featured highs (a Game 4 shutout) and lows (four goals allowed in a Game 7 home loss).


He was drafted in 98 percent of Yahoo leagues and is owned in 55 percent for a reason: his high upside entering this season. His keeper-league value is off the charts, but he has a chance to finish among the top 15 goalies by this season's end.

If you're a fantasy owner who targeted the Ducks goalie tandem as a whole, there's absolutely nothing to worry about. Even if you're relying on Gibson alone to be the second goalie on your roster, you still cannot drop him, regardless of league format. If Gibson being sent down becomes a trend in the weeks and months to come, we'll revisit the strategy. But, for now, we're one week into the regular season and Gibson should be stored on your bench.

If he's somehow on the waiver wire, pick him up immediately, even as a third goalie in a shallow league.


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