The Seven Million Dollar Man

12/26/2009
Rangers Sign Chris Drury And Scott Gomez

How does a team know their investment will pay off?  Better yet, What would inspire a team to devote a large percentage of their cap space to one single player? This article plans on analyzing the production from “top-tier” forwards based on a seven million dollar cap hit or higher.

As of this writing there are 14 forwards making this salary or higher, with most of these players filling the scorecard adequately.  These 14 forwards discussed are Jason Spezza, Joe Thornton, Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards, Sidney Crosby, Jarome Iginla, Alexander Ovechkin, Scott Gomez, Evgeni Malkin, Vincent Lecavalier, Thomas Vanek, Dany Heatley, Chris Drury and Eric Staal.

A quick glance at this list screams Drury and Gomez as the noticeable busts.  Coming into a weak free agent year for centers the two cashed in on GM Glen Sather’s ludacris spending.  However, a deeper look into their 2009-2010 season makes other players current production look similarly as bad.

In addition, this article will identify the best of the bunch showing exactly if and why the top salaries are actually worth it.  Impending free agent Ilya Kovalchuk believes his worth to be 20 percent of the current cap, an enormous 11 plus million cap hit. With his current production, not to mention countless intangibles would you consider the 27-year-old worth it?

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Daily Fantasy 3 Stars 12/16/2009

12/17/2009
Carolina Hurricanes v New Jersey Devils

In this section, I break down the top three fantasy hockey performers every night and cite why I chose them in particular. In addition, I will track the amount of times the players have received this honor and tally them at the end of the season. For the sake of clarity, I will be using Yahoo! standard categories (Forwards – G,A,+/-, PP, PIM, SOG; Goalies – W, GAA, SV%, SHO) and thus exclude player’s salaries.

A completely even disparity between offense and defense as exactly eight teams finished with two goals or less.  Of course 16 teams were in action.  Here are our standout fantasy stars for the evening:

THIRD STAR: Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks (0-0-1) –  Kane really acted like an MVP last night for the Hawks.  The former first overall pick assisted on all three of his teams goals, including a powerplay tally from Brian Campbell, to lead his team to a 3-0 victory.  A native of Buffalo, New York the 21-year-old also fired two shots on goal, sat two minutes in the box and finished the evening a plus two.  Certainly an easy selection for third star of the evening.

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Trade Rumors: Busy Day in Carolina

12/03/2009
Pittsburgh Penguins v Toronto Maple Leafs

TSN’s Bob MacKenzie reported a trade of former first rounders.  The last place Carolina Hurricanes moved their most recent first round selection, Phillipe Paradis, to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Jiri Tlusty.

The Hurricanes get an NHL ready player who can be inserted in their lineup immediately.  Similar to their deals last year for Jussi Jokinen and Eric Cole the team gets a player who has shown flashes of offensive ability but fallen out of favor with their teams.  Considering that Tlusty is only three years removed from his 13th overall selection giving up a young prospect like Paradis does not hurt as much.

Held scoreless in his two games with the Leafs, the 21-year-old put up 15 points in 18 games with their AHL affiliate.  In 66 games last year in the A, the Czech native averaged a point per game with the Marlies.  At his age, his production at the AHL level translates to the ability to hold a regular shift.  Partner that with familiarity with coach Paul Maurice and the youngster should make a seamless transition to the Canes

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Restoring the Rosters: Carolina Hurricanes

11/30/2009
Carolina Hurricanes v Colorado Avalanchee

Based on Matthew Pouliot’s series on Circling the Bases, I have decided restore the rosters for every NHL team. Like Pouliot, I have established some ground rules for my selections.

  1. Each team contains players they originally drafted or signed before any other NHL team. This includes players drafted and not signed, as well as European free agents coming over at an older age.
  2. I have chosen to leave retired players off the list, and lean toward players in the AHL rather than those deported (KHL, SEL, DEL, etc.).

Essentially I am choosing the best available players for a team to succeed in the current NHL season. All 30 teams will be covered, with grades assigned to forwards, defense and goaltending. After all 30 articles are written, they will be ranked in order. This series’ intent is to reward or shame NHL scouts.

Looking at the roster, there are a few names most casual fans would know, and then a few only Hurricanes fans and prospect enthusiasts have knowledge of.  Despite carrying a few superstar players the Canes have to rely on a plethora of young and unproven players.

The lineup for the Carolina Hurricanes is as follows.

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NHLHS Endorsed Pickups

11/26/2009
Columbus Blue Jackets v New York Rangers

Any player written about is under 50 percent owned in Yahoo! leagues.  Here are today’s picks:

D: Brad Stuart, Detroit Red Wings – The 30-year-old is first in line to take Niklas Kronwall’s PP time.  Although scoreless in his last two, Stuart did score a goal on the PP against Montreal.  The former 3rd overall pick can assume most roles and has scored 9+ goals three times in his career.

Prognosis: Stream him for the points, as mentioned in the most recent ‘Keeper Watch’ Derek Meech of Jonathan Ericsson could replace him.

D: Joe Corvo, Carolina Hurricanes -The veteran defenseman showed life recently with three points in his last three games.  Injuries have taken over a strong Hurricanes team that made it to the Conference Finals but things can only go better with Eric Staal returning.  The departure of Anton Babchuk opened up a spot for Corvo and if this team gets going so should he.

Prognosis:  See if the offense turns itself around.  If it does, Corvo would be a suitable #3 or #4 d-man.

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Injury Updates 11/25/2009

11/25/2009
Ottawa Senators v Florida Panthers

Here are some fantasy-relevant injured players around the league.

Tonight’s Status Updates:

  • Tim Thomas may have a broken hand. [TSN]
  • Adam Foote and Scott Hannan play tonight. [All Things Avs]
  • As we’ve been saying all week, Marian Hossa returns tonight. [Tribune Icing]
  • Rene Bourque remains day-to-day with an undisclosed injury. [Flames Insider]
  • Eric Staal back with the Hurricanes tonight. [Canes Now]
  • The Senators play without Pascal Leclaire, Alexei Kovalev and now Mike Fisher. [Ottawa Citizen]
  • Chuck Kobasew set to return. [Russo’s Rants]
  • Chris Drury all set to return, Ales Kotalik questionable. [Rangers Rants]
  • Dan Boyle will play tonight, Devin Setoguchi still not ready. [Working the Corners]

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Injury Updates 11/23/2009

11/23/2009
Rangers Chris Drury

Here are some fantasy-relevant injured players around the league.

Tonight’s Status Updates: