September 18, 2010

Jeff Angus

2010-09-18

I’ll be running a live blog during my first draft this afternoon. I’ll keep it going at the bottom of the ramblings.

 

A significant shift in team building philosophy has occured over the past few years in the NHL. Many teams have gone from two scoring lines, one checking line, and one energy line to three scoring lines and an energy line. I’ll have a column dedicated to this next week.

 

Fantasy Mailbag is open for business today! Ask me your questions here.

 

Take from this what you will – New Jersey is starting camp out with Parise-Zajac-Kovalchuk on the same line.

 

The Bruins announced today that Marc Savard has started to experience post-concussion symptoms recently and they have shut him down. He has been training and skating all summer, so for the issues to arise at this point is terrible news for Savard.

 

His absence obviously opens up a spot at center for Tyler Seguin.

 

Today is the first of five hockey drafts for me this summer, and all five will occur over the next nine days.

 

The Ducks have extended Matt Beleskey through the 2012-13 season. His extension carries a cap hit of about $700,000, and is a one-way deal for both years.

 

The Red Wings are splitting up Lidstrom and Rafalski, according to Mike Babcock.

 

Lidstrom will skate with Kronwall, while Rafalski will skate with Stuart. This will hurt Rafalsi's even strength production, and help Kronwall's. The third pairing as of right now is Ericsson-Salei, but I don't see that duo sticking together for long (not a lot of mobility).

 

Jordan Schroeder was decent during the recent four-game tournament for Vancouver prospects, but he strikes me as the kind of player who will elevate his game with better linemates. At many times during the tournament you could tell he was looking for a play or a certain passing lane, but none of his linemates were on the same page.

 

Daymond Langkow isn't close to being 100%. If he misses any extended time, Mikael Backlund's short-term value rises dramatically. He'd probably center the second or third line, with Jokinen or Stajan on the top unit skating with Iginla and Tanguay.

 

John Tortorella shares a few thoughts in this interesting read. The highlights:

 

He wants to play Dubinsky at wing, to allow him to play more of a north-south physical game. The center position on the top line will be filled by one of Christensen, Prospal, or Anisimov.

 

Dubinsky was a solid playmaker in the WHL, but he hasn't translated those skills to the NHL level yet (aside from a few hot stretches, one with Jagr and another with Voros and Zherdev).

 

Frolov will skate with Gaborik.

 

He really liked what Derek Stepan showed at the recent Traverse City tournament. Stepan plays a sound two-way game and he sees the ice very well (he has been compared to Paul Stastny). He's the long-term fit for Gaborik on the top unit. Probably a year away from NHL action.

 

The Ducks are going to try (emphasis on try) Bobby Ryan at out center in training camp. The idea is to build three strong scoring lines. Ryan is a terrific playmaker, but a move to center would hurt his fantasy value tremendously. I don't see this working out,