Welcome once again to "An Expert's Audit". This audit will be posted here as well as on my fantasy hockey blog at www.fantasyhockey.hockeyanalysis.com . I also do weekly reviews of teams for people who email in to me for a look-see. These 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 (contact link at bottom of website) about it. But send it in by the 15th, as I will be starting on my next one at that point.
Let me introduce you to Dean Calder, you might know him as "What the Puck?" around the Dobber boards. Dean lives in Portage la Prairie Manitoba and he commishes a salary cap league amongst some friends out here in Manitoba. I selected him for an audit this month because many guys play in salary leagues but few actually do all that is necessary to make sure they're as well prepared for the auction as they should be.
I wanted to have a conversation with Dean about inflation as it relates to your fantasy keeper league and if your reaction is "huh?" then you need to go read this immediately. Seriously, it's a brilliant piece written up for dobberhockey that deals with inflation in salary auctions. Yes, I realize that I wrote it, it's still brilliant. Anywho, Dean and I had that conversation and if you read that column then you're well on your way toward helping yourself in your own salary auction this fall.
Dean has up to 11 keeps to determine, contracts to buy out or extend and he's got a $40 salary cap to stay under during the course of his auction. It's a straight points league for skaters but things get interesting when you consider the goaltending. Goalies get 8 pts for a win, 10 pts for a shuttie, 4 pts for an OTL but his point total is then divided by his GAA so that the great goalies are pure gold and the decent goalies are still well worth rostering. Some teams use up half their cap rostering the best goalies around and then they sign him to forever contracts handcuffing themselves like many actual NHL teams do.
Let's take a look at the Dufferin Stingrays.
*Alex Ovechkin WAS – $6.50 signed through 2016. This price is more than reasonable and you have a lot of lead time with him on the roster. LOVE. IT.
*Alexander Semin WAS – $1.50 signed through 2010. I love the price and I'm a bit worried about his brittleness over the years to come. If you're not succeeding this season then you can look to move him for some other assets in the new year. What am I saying? There's no way that you won't be succeeding with this lineup.
*Nicklas Backstrom WAS – $2.80 signed through 2014. I expect you'll begin to get tremendous value out of him for the duration of this contract. It's pretty astute to have him locked in like this when he's so young.
Joe Thornton SJ – $9.30 signed through 2011. This is jus