Derek Roy vs. Mikko Koivu

steve laidlaw

2011-09-28

Roy

 

In the recent Dobber Hockey Expert's League draft I was faced with a difficult decision. It was the seventh round and I had yet to pick a centerman. Worst of all, the cream of the crop had been picked clean. It was to be expected but I was nevertheless disappointed. Clearly I needed to grab the best centerman available and had plenty of options with upside just nothing that was a sure fire winner. All the options I considered had upside but every one of them came with a possible deal breaker. It was like when Barney describes the fatal "Ohhhh…" moment on How I Met Your Mother only instead of chicks I was judging NHL players.

 

Paul Stastny: I play for the Colorado Avalanche!

Me: Ohhhh…

Mike Ribeiro: My career high is 163 SOG.

Me: Ohhhh…

David Krejci: You ever hear of the Stanley Cup hangover?

Me: Ohhhh…

Patrice Bergeron: And then I got another concussion…

Me: Ohhhh…

Jordan Staal: So I guess you heard Malkin and Crosby are back.

Me: Ohhhh…

Jason Spezza: Hi, I'm Jason Spezza.

Me: Ohhhh…

 

And it went on like this for a while until I whittled it down to just two: Derek Roy and Mikko Koivu. To be fair, these two are not without their own "Ohhhh…" moments but I just didn't see these as deal breakers the way I did with the above. So in this week's Cage Match it is Derek Roy vs. Mikko Koivu where we will see which one I took in the Expert's League draft and why.

 

The "Ohhhh…" moment for Derek Roy is quite simple; he missed the entire second half of last season, playing in only 35 games. The counter to that is two-fold. First of all, prior to last season, Roy had only missed an average of five games per season since the lockout. He does not fit my mold of injury prone. Secondly, Roy was looking like he had taken another step forward scoring at a point-per-game pace through those 35 games, a pace that would have had him score his second career 80-point season. He truly looked like the Sabres best forward.

 

Things are a little more crowded for Roy with the deadline acquisition of Brad Boyes and the offseason signing of Ville Leino on top of the pressure he was already receiving from the Sabres other midgets Tyler Ennis and Nathan Gerbe. All these players are really non-issues however as Roy is clearly the top centerman on the team and all of the aforementioned threats can be moved to the wing. Roy has chemistry with both of the Sabres top two goal scorers from last season (Vanek and Stafford) and should team up with them once again to make up the Sabres top line. Playing with two 30 goal scorers has never hurt anyone and certainly not someone with the playmaking skills of Roy.

 

Mikko Koivu's "Ohhhh…" moment is quite similar to Roy's. He has battled injury over the past few seasons including surgeries on both his knee and shoulder. He has not missed many games (only 16 total over the last three seasons) but has still been hampered by these injuries. It's a catch 22. If he didn't exert so much effort he wouldn't get so banged up but he also wouldn't be as effective. He's fantasy hockey's version of the chubby girl with great breasts and you gotta love him for it.

 

I would be remiss if I did not also discuss the elephant in the room. Koivu plays for Minnesota, and that is kind of a death sentence for fantasy hockey but it also affords him the opportunity to play first line, which is not an opportunity he'd have on