Ramblings: Rinne, Gostisbehere, Islanders & more

by Dobber on February 8, 2016

Rambling about Pekka Rinne, Shayne Gostisbehere, the Isles seem to be waking up, and more…

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Sorry for the late Ramblings Sunday. Behind the scenes we upgraded the platform and didn’t know that some plugins wouldn’t jive with it. On the surface, you wouldn’t have noticed a difference. But in the back end, we were unable to post. Got that all fixed up later Sunday afternoon. Dobber Sports and Dobbernomics were down as well, but at this time of year and on Super Bowl Sunday, it probably went unnoticed.

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In my one keeper league I need goaltending. In fact, with two goaltenders in the top five, I would probably be sitting in second place with my eyes squarely on the prize. So it was an interesting offer I received yesterday of Pekka Rinne for my Anders Lee and Shayne Gostisbehere. The fact that Rinne is doing so poorly right now is the only reason I’m getting such an offer. But it’s the fact that he’s doing that poorly, combined with ‘Ghost’ looking like the second coming, that made me turn this down. Normally I put a lot of stock in the track record. I wouldn’t hesitate to acquire Crosby, Ovechkin, Malkin, Price, Karlsson, Tavares, Benn or Seguin when they’re in a lengthy slump. That’s how I got Ovechkin one year – he had such a horrible first half and he became available (I stepped over my own mother to get him). But is Rinne in that category? I’d have more faith if he wasn’t 33 years old.

But on the plus side, he’s had a bad year like this before and bounced back. And he’s also making $7 million over each of the next three years, so you know he’ll keep getting thrown out there night after night. With that contract, the Preds have hitched their wagon to him. And in his last six starts: 4-2-0, 2.01, 0.921

(You can get that information using the easy goalie calculator tool here – just plug in the dates)

So I’m willing to acquire him. And I’m willing to still hold him in reasonably high regard. Not elite, but not below-average despite the season’s 0.904 SV%.

But then I look at Gostisbehere and…wow. Is 33 games too soon to give him Karlsson/Burns/ Subban/Klingberg status? He has points in eight consecutive games, 11 points in all over that span. The Flyers are really leaning on him. His season average %PP (percentage of the team’s available power-play time in which he is on the ice) is an astonishing 71.5%, but it’s actually been closer to 80% over the last month. Can I give that up for an upgrade in net? This year, the upgrade is from Halak or Anderson to Rinne. Is that a worthy upgrade? Next year, I think my No.3 goalie Cam Talbot will be in the mix – take the two best numbers out of my current three goalies and would Rinne add much of an improvement to that?

For example, I think between Halak (75 points under our system last year, 27 so far this year), Anderson (42 last year, 45 so far this year), Talbot (21 so far, but most of those in the last month) I’ll get two players at around 65 points next season. Last year Rinne had 83 and he has 37 so far this year. So next year…what, 70 to 80 points for Rinne? So acquiring him gains me 10 points this year and next. Is that a gain that’s worth giving up ‘Ghost’? Any question revolving around that ends with Anders Lee. I’m pretty high on Lee’s potential to be a 70-point player and I’d like to hang onto him for another year if I can.

I hope you took something from my walking you through my reasoning on a trade offer.

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I’m afraid to click things on NHL.com now because they all seem to shoot me to a new tab. Please NHL, let that be my decision. If I press the mouse scroller, it opens a new tab. If I don’t, then it opens in the same window. But it’s my decision. Thank you

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Speaking of Jaroslav Halak, I have him in a second league and I don’t feel comfortable playing him this week. Three games – CBJ, LAK, CAR. The alternative is Jonathan Quick, four games (BOS, NYI, NYR, NJD) and those are some hot teams. Another alternative – I have Anthony Stolarz. The Flyers play four games this week, though Michal Neuvirth should be back by the end of the week. I could dress Stolarz and get zero points, or possibly one game and generally speaking I feel good about rookies getting into their first game. Zero points would beat the negative points that Halak and Quick have been getting lately. My other goalie is Bishop so thankfully I have one guy rolling at least. So that’s my big decision for the week – who would you go with?

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Pointless in eight games for Mike Richards. Are you surprised? Believe it or not, some people actually did roll the dice on this guy. He saw 14:55 of ice time Sunday which was a season high. I’m sorry if you took a chance on him and somehow felt that he’d become even a 55-point player again. It wasn’t happening, it won’t happen. I don’t think the Capitals were hoping for that when they signed him and I don’t think Richards himself was hoping for that. From the very start he was brought on board as an experienced checking-line center who could chip in the odd point. Here were Washington’s line combos:

#1           24.2%    CHIMERA,JASON – RICHARDS,MIKE – WILSON,TOM

#2           24.2%    BACKSTROM,NICKLAS – OSHIE,T.J. – OVECHKIN,ALEXANDER

#3           21.5%    BURAKOVSKY,ANDRE – KUZNETSOV,EVGENY – WILLIAMS,JUSTIN

#4           11.4%    CAREY,PAUL – LAICH,BROOKS – LATTA,MICHAEL

 

No change at all to their top two lines (the above is in order of usage, not an actual ranking of the lines). And why would they change? They’re on fire. And how can the opposing coach move his top guys off of Ovechkin? That’s suicide. But while they do that, the Kuznetsov line runs rampant. Andre Burakovsky has 13 points in his last 10 games. I’m taking a chance on him by offering Sharp and Marleau for him and Perron (plus a pick upgrade). I need the hot players in what is a tight race and only 30 games left.

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Well this is interesting. Ben Scrivens has won two games in a row. Yep, true story. And what’s more is – he’s stopped 57 of the last 59 shots faced. Cautious optimism?

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I don’t know what to make of Jordan Staal and his 15 points in the last 14 games. I wouldn’t hang my hat on it by any means, but I didn’t think there would ever be a 14-game span in which he gets 15 points. Not since leaving Pittsburgh, I mean. And now he’s done it so… I’m interested in seeing a larger sample size. He’s 27 years old, the heart of his prime. If Eric Staal goes, does that make Jordan better or worse? I suspect it makes him better.

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For some reason they televised the New York Islanders practice yesterday. They were doing scoring drills, just brushing up on their shooting, puck control and tip-ins.

Wait…that was a game? And the Oilers were playing too?

With three points Sunday, John Tavares has nine in his last six games. Sometimes market corrections come later than you’d like, but they usually do eventually take place.

With three assists Sunday Nick Leddy has 14 points in his last 16 games. How many of you were patient with him? There’s that market correction thing again…

As a Halak owner it worries me that Thomas Greiss is playing so well. How can you not play a goalie who is 14-6-2, 2.26, 0.929? Those are stellar numbers and I suspect this will be a bigger goalie controversy by the end of March than anywhere this side of Anaheim.

 

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I hope you took my advice and picked up Zack Kassian. Even when he’s not picking up any points, such as on Sunday, he’s racking up the PIM, such as on Sunday(21).

Griffin Reinhart was a minus-4. It’s just not getting any better for that guy…

Anders Nilsson got a rare (these days) start and was pulled after four goals on 11 shots. Talbot was better, but not much better as he gave up four on 20.

 

Nineteen of Kassian's PIM Sunday right here…