From Rebuilding to Contention: Part I

Austin Wallace



DobberHockey reader Austin Wallace goes in-depth to share his fantasy experiences with us.

In deep keeper leagues, from salary cap and dynasty leagues to the NHL, there will be a time for each team when the chances of winning with the current core is slim to none. Detroit Red Wings need not read. For most GMs, smart drafting and trading can only do so much in a competitive league.


A fantasy team can become derelict in a multitude of ways. A combination of poor trades, drafts gone wrong, and injuries can derail even the best of teams. Sometimes it is your fault for trading the obviously-declining Zdeno Chara, going all in for the win too early, or banking on a full season from Ryan Kesler. Assuming your league is competitive enough, a rebuild can just be the nature of your league. As I am sure you have heard around here, if you can't win in the next three years without unusual movement and luck, it's time to rebuild.

For the team that I was on, to win in three years would need more than luck. It would need Jakub Kindl becoming a top end defensemen. Two years ago. It would need Dwayne Roloson, Jose Theodore and Sergei Bobrovsky to all be top 20 goalies. Two years ago.  With nonexistent goaltending, holes on defense and no immediate prospect help on the way, I took over the team with full knowledge of the depth of the rebuild that I had to engineer.