Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+

Hey everyone!  With only a few days left in the season, it’s time to set up the Razzball Bracket Challenge!  For those who didn’t partake last year, you simply fill out the Stanley Cup Playoff Bracket once it’s released.  You can join the Razzball group by clicking here and creating a free account if you don’t already have one.  It’s a good way to keep the Razzball Hockey community in touch throughout the playoffs.

I will be writing almost every weekday through April with the occasional post from May through July before I kick into full gear in August. Same goes with the podcast; we’ll be staying active through April and then probably have a podcast every two or three weeks come May.  Monday’s post will go along with Thursday’s podcast where Reid and I ranked the top 30 guys.  My plan is to put out a Way Too Early Top 50 on Monday although there will obviously be plenty of chances over the summer.  If there’s anything you want me to write about over the next few weeks, please let me know and I’ll almost certainly be willing to accommodate.  Anyways, with only three days left in the season, producing a large set of daily notes wouldn’t provide much value.  I’m just going to highlight a few things that I believe have an impact either over these last three days or going into the playoffs / next season.

Viktor Arvidsson scored two goals and two assists with three shots on Thursday night.  We are going to do an award show next week and I think Arvidsson will be the winner of “Waiver Wire Pickup of the Year.”  I don’t think he’ll crack my top 50 but he’s not far off.  Since it did come out of nowhere, there is some risk that Arvidsson is a one year wonder but with his shot rate, I find that hard to believe.

Kris Letang‘s neck surgery will force him out of action for 4-6 months jeopardizing his status for next season’s opener.  Obviously it’s a tough beat for the Penguins this season but as we talked about on the podcast linked above, Letang can’t come close to the top 50 overall with this news.  I think this will force the Penguins to resign Justin Schultz which could make him a #1D again.

Thoughts and prayers with Kyle Okposo and his family as he goes through a terrible illness.  He’s in intensive care at the moment which is obviously frightening.

The Ducks clinched the division setting up a matchup between the Oilers and the Sharks in the first round with home ice still undecided.  I can not wait for that series.  I also think the Ducks are on upset alert in the first round whether they play the Predators or Flames.  Cam Fowler‘s injury really opens things up.

Congrats to the Senators making the playoffs.  They’ve overcome so many injuries this season; Guy Boucher deserves a ton of credit.

I expect to be all in on a few guys next year.  My quick list of second-tier players that I expect to be extremely high on in no particular order: Alex PietrangeloJacob TroubaMatthew TkachukBo HorvatAndrei Vasilevskiy.  Towards the top end, I expect to be higher on David Pastrnak and Nikolaj Ehlers than consensus again.  Not sure it’ll work out as well as this year though!  I’m sure there will be plenty of others as I do more digging in the offseason but this is my quick outline.

Things to watch over the weekend:

One playoff spot up for grabs in the East with Toronto being a big favorite.  If Toronto wins both, they could move into the Atlantic Division bracket but if they win one, they’ll draw Washington in the first round.  That would effectively end their playoffs before it starts.

Nashville needs to have a better result than Calgary to play the Ducks in the first round, otherwise they’ll play the Blackhawks.  The good news for them is that they play the Jets while the Flames play the Sharks. San Jose will be fighting for home ice against the Oilers.  The Jets are on a 6 game winning streak but I still like the spot for Smashville.

That’s all for now guys.  Please any questions or comments below, I would really appreciate any suggestions you have for future posts and podcast talks.  Enjoy the last weekend of regular season hockey, take care!

  1. Saints says:
    (link)

    Hay viz great stuff at always 🙂
    After my season is over for me in the dynasty its draft time. I read that the 2017 draft isnt going to be very good, But the 2018 draft should be amazing.(“one of the best drafts all time”)
    I know you are not a prospect expert but what is your opinion about that?
    I consider changing my picks in these Years draft to future picks or players if thats true.

    Things i would like to read and hear in the offseason are (i think most things are planned anyways):
    -as much coverage of the draft as you can do (and know)
    -little review of your rankings (where you were right and where you were wrong)
    -Some bounceback players for next year (like Eric Staal this year)
    -Some young breakout players for next season.
    – talking about the expansion draft

    I was just playing Fantasy hockey because of the Fantasy aspect. Than i found you and you made me a hockey fan keep doing your work I’m loving it 🙂

    • Saints says:
      (link)

      @Saints:
      PS: loved your quick list in the post above

    • Viz

      Viz says:
      (link)

      @Saints: Thanks! I haven’t done much research for the 2018 draft but I can tell you that the top pick, Rasmus Dahlin, is absolutely incredible. Think another Karlsson but he blows Karlsson away when Karlsson was 16. For 2017, it’s definitely a down year. That said, there are still plenty of guys that I like and the top two guys (Patrick and Hischier) should be great and play right away.

      As far as your list goes:

      I’ll probably do a board for the draft trying to focus on things from a fantasy perspective. I don’t know how successful that will be but I’ll try 🙂

      A review is already in the cards, there will be two separate posts, one on right and one on wrong

      As of now, my plan would be to do bounceback and breakout posts in August instead of the team previews. Not many people seemed to get much out of them outside of the short prospect lists so doing sleeper and schmohawk posts like Grey does for baseball seems like a better use of my time. Thoughts?

      There will definitely be expansion talk. I’m thinking it’d be better as a podcast with Reid but not sure if we’ll be able to do it. Regardless, there will be something although that probably won’t happen until June when things get clearer.

      Thanks man, I really appreciate it. It makes things easier when I get a bunch of comments and questions so I know I’m helping people.

      • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
        (link)

        @Viz: 100% interested in the prospect stuff for sure.

          • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
            (link)

            @Viz: no i mean year in year out, not particularly to this year.

            • Viz

              Viz says:
              (link)

              @Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: Alright cool. My hope is that we get a second guy writing hockey stuff again to lesser my burden and allow me to spend some more time doing prospect research. At the least, I can try to do another post of top 5 prospects for each team or maybe a top 50 list. Not sure at this point.

              • Saints says:
                (link)

                @Viz:
                The board for drafts would be amazing 🙂
                I really loved your team previews. They were great stuff it would be sad if you wont write them.
                But on the other hand those bounceback and breakout posts would be nice as well. If i have to choose i would choose the team previews where you can maybe highlight those “bounceback and breakout guys”.
                Those little prospect lists are great as well keep doing them and if you could do more it will be even better 🙂

                i will try to keep asking but sometimes i’m not sure if i ask to many questions 😀 😀

                • Viz

                  Viz says:
                  (link)

                  @Saints: Haha all questions are welcome… Alright, I’ll have to weigh the pros and cons of both and figure it out over the next couple months.

  2. Ron says:
    (link)

    Just a note, but the Ducks have not yet clinched the division as far as I understand. The still lose the tiebreak to the Oilers on ROW if they lose their last game and Edmonton wins both of their last games.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
      (link)

      @Ron: You’re right, I should have checked myself instead of going by what they said during the Ducks game. My fault.

      • Ron says:
        (link)

        @Viz:
        BTW, I’ve read dozens of different fantasy hockey blogs, and I consider you to be head and shoulders above any other “experts” I’ve read. This has become the only place I check regularly to gain insight beyond what I already have.

        Let’s say we give the Oilers a 50% chance of sweeping their home and home with Vancouver. That leaves the Ducks’ season finale against the Kings as a critical game where they need to get to OT. I’d give them a 70% chance of doing that, given the spoiler incentive to the rival Kings looking to end their season on a good note, so we are left with a small, but significant 15% chance the Oilers win the division. Personally, I hope they don’t, because I bet against my friend’s preseason prediction that the Oilers would make to the 2nd round of the playoffs this year.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
          (link)

          @Ron: Thanks, I really appreciate it! That sounds about right odds wise.

  3. Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
    (link)

    crap, now i have to actually take seriously offers that try to rob my chychrun and fiala in 20 team dynasty where i’m PIT and need at least 8 of them at all times. the schultz guy is trying to sell me him and i’m telling him not TILL he’s resigned at PIT. i don’t see how they will afford this though, even when fleury’s contract comes off the books, they have the big contracts of all of crosby/malkin/letang/kessel already clogging up a ton of cheese. i got a chychrun/fiala for schultz/zucker deal. hits/blocks/faceoffs/PPP/SHP start real life rosters. i’m at around 340 moves on year in this league. weak and/or injured last 2-3 D man spots most of year. kind of league where you stick with c.murphy/del zotto/goligoski when you can obtain them.

    my memory might be off, but didn’t okposo have some very suspicious issue at start of year, and now that, along with whatever is going on now (equally suspicious) lead me to believe he’s got something like AIDS or somesuch? i do remember having suspicions of the earlier event being something like a covered up bar fight or something like that. figured you as a BUF guy might have more insight here.

    • Viz

      Viz says:
      (link)

      @Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: They can make it work with Kunitz, Dupuis and Daley coming off the books. Assuming they move Fleury, that’s enough to give raises to Sheary, Doumulin and Schultz. It’s no guarantee because it could really make things tough in the future but I think it’s more likely now than a few weeks ago. I’m with you though, I would make sure they actually keep him before making that move.

      No, I don’t think it’s anything like that, he’s been in the hospital and then ICU for far too long. I’m thinking more along the lines of a stroke or something like that, but again this is speculation. Otherwise, it’s probably an extremely rare illness.

      • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
        (link)

        @Viz: what was the suspicious stuff back at start of year? i’d assume by now BUF fans would know about this in a more definite light.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
          (link)

          @Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: At that time, a lot of people had the flu so nobody thought much of it. I did some more digging and he’s in a Neuro ICU. It almost guarantees it’s something to do with his brain or spinal cord making the stroke more likely. It could be something like meningitis or some degenerative disorder but based on what I’ve read, the majority of people in neuro ICU’s are there for a stroke.

          • Aubrey Plaza's Pillow says:
            (link)

            @Viz: i’d read meningitis (due to less likely strokes of his age group) into that.

            and “flu” comment refers to the early season stuff. i remember the manner it was dealt with was pretty clandestine.

            • Viz

              Viz says:
              (link)

              @Aubrey Plaza’s Pillow: Recent report is that he’s improving so here’s to hoping that continues. I had completely forgot about that earlier in the year until you said something to be honest.

  4. T-bone says:
    (link)

    Hey Viz, great content this season. Early keeper question for next year, keep 3, $250 budget:
    Laine $26
    Matt Murray $8
    Huberdeau $9
    Kadri $6
    Eichel $27
    Bobrovsky $8

    Thanks, and always keep your stick on the ice!

    • Viz

      Viz says:
      (link)

      @T-bone: Thanks! A couple questions before I give you a definitive answer. How many teams are in your league, what categories do you have and can you keep the guys forever at that price? Let me know and I’ll be sure to reply fairly quickly.

      • T-bone says:
        (link)

        @Viz: 14 teams, its a points league so I’m not gonna get into all that, and prices increase by $5/yr.

        • Viz

          Viz says:
          (link)

          @T-bone: Man, the increase by 5 a year makes this tough. I almost want to say keep both goalies given the points league depending on your system. Then I’d lean Eichel with the last although I could see going Kadri if you’re trying to save money.

Comments are closed.