Ramblings: Jake Guentzel, Anthony DeAngelo, Derek Ryan, Gustav Nyquist and more
Happy New Year everyone! I hope you enjoyed the holidays. I know I did, even though it was pretty busy – the usual Christmas stuff, plus we had a surprise birthday party midweek for my daughter (who was born on Christmas Day in 2008) and then we hosted a little New Year’s shindig. Now, as I type this on January 1, I can finally get back to fantasy hockey.
And that includes breaking ground on the Midseason Guide. Not just the setup, but actually writing (just the stuff that is less time-sensitive for now). This will be out on January 13. And to let you look behind the curtain a little – the point projections and injury notes get put in on the 11th, 12th and yes even on the 13th. This Guide stays quite relevant for a couple of weeks and can still be referred to even at the trade deadline.
I’ve been wrong about a lot of things this year, as always, but the one thing that I’m the most ‘off’ on I am being let off the hook. I get razzed about some of my calls, but nobody says a thing to me about my worst one. The Columbus Blue Jackets. I had them projected for 29 wins and finishing 29th in the NHL. They have 26 wins already! On pace for well over 50! I guess because everyone was off on them, and maybe my steadfast Cam Atkinson hype has helped sooth your anger? And I had faith in Sergei Bobrovsky being a great goaltender, with injuries as the only concern, I suppose that helped some people grab what they thought was a decent No.2 back in September. Regardless, this team has been phenomenal and I’m firmly on the bandwagon. Exciting to watch. And full props (and apologies) to John Tortorella, whom I thought was done as a coach because he failed to adapt his style to the changing game.
Columbus went 14-0-0 in December, which is the second best month in NHL history. They’ve won 15 in a row and if they win Tuesday, then on Thursday they could tie the NHL record of 17. They play Edmonton Tuesday and Washington Thursday.
I really enjoyed this article on Jake Guentzel. I had no idea he was so small. Before the Penguins took him 77th overall in 2013 they actually sent him to a doctor to measure his bone mass to see if there was potential for further growth! Guentzel leads the AHL in goals (18) and points-per-game (34 points in 26 games). He’s ‘only’ second in the AHL in overall points because he was too busy getting three goals and four points in five games with Pittsburgh during a three-week call-up. Read our scouting notes on Guentzel here.
Carolina’s Derek Ryan has gone six games without a point. This is notable because six games ago I suggested here that he had some short-term value and long-term potential. He’s still on my bench, I’ll give him another week.
John Gibson is 7-2-4, 2.56 GAA and 0.916 after Sunday’s 51-save performance. He was actually pulled earlier in the game, Jonathan Bernier came in to face one shot, and then Gibson was put back in. It was at that point when he closed the door and played out of his mind. A turning point, perhaps? The Ducks have been winning games despite Gibson, so if he’s going to start contributing now then you will obviously see them move back up the standings (and Gibson will rack up the W’s).
To this point it’s been mostly the second line leading the charge and Sunday was no exception – Ryan Kesler had a hat trick and Jakob Silfverberg tallied an assist. Silfverberg’s 53-point pace is a big step forward above his career high of 39. Still only 26, I think there’s one more step yet.
Shayne Gostisbehere picked up another secondary assist Sunday. That’s the good thing about owning Gostisbehere during his sophomore slump season – he’ll still pick up secondary assists. They’re letting him work through it, putting him out there as much as possible, giving him all the PP time and he’s out there a lot in overtime. So even if he comes up blank, he’s still fluking a few second assists. That will be enough to see to it that he reaches 40 points. Then he’ll bounce back next year and become that 50-plus star that we envisioned. So far 10 of his 14 assists were secondary ones, which leads the team (tied with Mark Streit). You can get that report here.
Brooks Orpik has three assists and 14 hits in his last three games. His hitting has been way down this year, a bit of a disappointment actually, but perhaps this is a sign of things to come.
Gustav Nyquist has just four points in his last 16 games, suddenly making a decent season into a terrible one. But he’s shooting the puck a lot and has just a 5.1% SH% to show for it. That’s about half of where it should be for him, meaning he should have eight goals and 22 points instead of 18 points, if the bounces went his way. At this point, poolies are giving him away. So at that price, I’d be interested in a “buy and hold”. He had four shots on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Anthony Mantha is having no such trouble. The youngster is on a six-game points streak with six goals and 10 points in that span, including three on Sunday.
Anthony DeAngelo was suspended three games for abuse of official. DeAngelo has problems controlling his temper, which was no doubt a big reason why Tampa Bay traded him. Who knows what he did while he was in that organization. But he shot off his mouth in 2013-14. Twice. Once to an official. And now this. So maybe we don’t strip the ‘risk’ label off him just yet.
The Preds placed Reid Boucher on waiver, the experiment over. One goal in 26 minutes of total ice time with Nashville for the 23-year-old. Another example where the waiver rules work against a player. If he’s 23 or 24 and needs another year in the minors, it’s too soon to force him to be on waivers. The rules need to be tweaked. How many teams do you see keeping a player in the press box all year instead of playing hockey?
The Jets put Alexander Burmistrov on waivers. In today’s cap era, a player like that (price tag) can actually sneak through.
Most points in 2016:
Pittsburgh 119 (83 games)
Anaheim 111 (84)
Washington 109 (80)
NY Rangers 108 (83)
San Jose 107 (83)
You can run stats – by player – for 2016 (i.e. across the end of last season and start of current one) in the Report Generator right here. Just set the drop box to “Custom Regular Season” and then select the date window January 1 to December 31. Then run whichever report you want, from points to advanced stats to shot data to the “most productive linemates”. Yes, you really don’t use that fun tool enough…
Just to update you on the slow websites around here – I am moving everything to a new server. A fantastic server with amazing disk speed and processing power (I’m starting to sound like Trump!). The best server, an amazing, wonderful server. Anyway, we have a lot of the stuff moved to the new server but haven’t flipped the switch. We’re still preparing Frozen Pool and Dobbernomics – optimizing them before bringing them over. So right now, the ‘old’ server is running slower than usual. I hope to flip the switch by the end of this week. And then you’ll see lightning-quick speed. Loading pages, running Frozen Pool reports, navigating Dobbernomics, etc. If you want a sample of how fast things will be, check out the forum – that site is already on the new server. FAST AS LIGHTNING!
This week’s 20 Fantasy Thoughts
- Top 100 Roto Rankings – July 2019
- Ramblings: Rookie Projections & A Minor Trade (July 17)
- Ramblings: Stewart and Compher sign; Chicago's goaltending; Ellis; Green; Teuvo - July 18
- Ramblings: Burakovsky, Heinola, Cozens sign; East odds; Ovi; Barrie - July 16
- Fantasy Poll: Which Players Will Suffer The Most From Off-Season Movement?
- Eastern Edge: Players coming off career years
- Wild West Summer Series 2019: Edmonton
- Capped: Introducing cap league tools and top cap league values