Early Returns

Dobber Sports




'The Reporters' shouldn't join a fantasy league any time soon.


It's no secret that more often than not, when a player with any semblance of offensive ability gets traded he makes a quick impact on the scoresheet. Usually, this impact fizzles out within a matter of a few games, although in many cases the numbers that he continues to produce is still an improvement on what he was doing in his former city.


We are seeing that now more than any time I can remember, with Alexei Ponikarovsky, Denis Grebeshkov, Teddy Purcell, Peter Mueller, Wojtek Wolski, Scott Walker, Lee Stempniak and Luca Caputi all posting points in their first games with their new team. But two of those cases in particular have caught my attention as they have :

a) a ton of potential and

b) are likely available in most rotisserie leagues and even some keeper leagues.


I remember on Wednesday hearing the news that Jeff Halpern had been traded to Los Angeles and thinking that was a pretty nice depth pickup for the Kings. The talking heads on the various networks spent the next 20 minutes talking about the merits of having Mr. Halpern in the lineup before it was finally disclosed – as an afterthought – that Teddy Purcell went the other way in the deal.


When you're picking out dark horses in this business, you tend to get very excited over news that gives a six-point player a slim chance at becoming a 75-point player. So even though the odds are small that Purcell pans out, I became quite excited about this deal more than any other. I remember Dave Hodge on TSN going around the table with the other journalists having an informal fantasy hockey discussion about the traded players and which one would get the most points going forward that people would least expect. All I'm thinking is "Teddy Purcell. Teddy Purcell", but I'm also thinking – he won't even get a mention.


Sure enough, as Damian Cox, Steve Simmons and Michael Farber bounced around obvious names like Joe Corvo and Wojtek Wolski, I am reminded once again about why the hockey experts would get pummeled pretty badly in a fantasy league.

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Here are the facts. Vincent Lecavalier has had a plethora of wingers this season. Often Alex Tanguay is there, and so is Steve Downie. Howe