Honestly folks this is getting ridiculous. If you care about your star players please, do the right thing, lock them up somewhere safe, padded and guarded, because we haven’t played a single game that matters yet and key guys are dropping like flies.The pain train continues to chuggeth along around the league and picked up not one, not two, but three new passengers guaranteed to make their owners bust out the sadface. I’m not sure what the hell is going on this preseason but it seems like everyone and their mama is getting hurt before a single game that means anything is played! At any rate, all we can do is take it in stride and not get stuck drafting the wrong guys and the wrong guys start with Derek Stepan. Step broke his leg in an apparent non-contact injury during a conditioning drill. So not only did the Rangers no. 1 center break his leg at a time where nothing counts, he wasn’t even in a game. He couldn’t be in a game because he missed the previous tilt with the Devils due to a foot injury. Yikes. He followed that up by fracturing his fibula and unfortunately there is no timetable for his return. It sounds like he could easily be out 4-6 weeks and possibly as long as two months or more. I know his deal was way out of whack for what he could contribute, but you have to think that Brad Richards stings the Rangers just a little bit right now. This injury really leaves them in a bind and J.T. Miller seems like a possible replacement for Step on the top line with Rick Nash and Chris Kreider. Whoever it is it’s someone you don’t want to bother with. Drop Stepan off your draft sheets because baby, he isn’t even worth drafting right now unless you’re in a very deep league with IR slots to burn.

Stepan wasn’t the only guy to break a leg last night, Jordan Staal didn’t want him to feel lonely so he went ahead and broke his lower leg in a game vs. the Sabres last night. Like Stepan there is no time table for his return and he could be out for as long as two months, or more. Staal wasn’t high on my list o’ wants this season, but he’s a serviceable guy at least. Unlike Stepan I wouldn’t bother rostering Staal in any leagues, IR slots or not.

Pavel Datsyuk decided to join the party and to a chorus of “Why always us?!” from the Wings faithful he suffered a second-degree shoulder separation taking a hit from Rob Scuderi the other night, he’ll be out for up to a month. The Wings drop the puck on their regular season opener in just a bit over two weeks, so expect Dats to miss the first week or two of the season. This doesn’t really affect his rankings or projections much as we all expected him to get hurt sooner than later, just not so soon.

  1. Pennypacker says:
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    Im in a 20 team keeper league where we keep 12 players, so our draft’s first couple rounds are usually focussed on Rookies and up-and-comers… Are you doing a post on this years draft class and new players to watch this season? Draft is on Tuesday and Im terribly under-prepared… especially with 1st pick over all..
    Thanks

    • JD

      JD says:
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      I’ll do my best to make that a post over the next few days, check back often!

      • @JD: I am in a 10 teamer w/2 keepers. I would also like to see you do a story maybe including some guys like Strome, Roussel, Kreider, Hertl, Kuznetsov, Maatta, Monahan, Galchenyuk, Silfverberg, Teravainen, Kucherov… 20 teamer tho, yikes! That is some deep digging there.

        • JD

          JD says:
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          Working on it!

  2. Pennypacker says:
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    Always do JD!!! Best Fantasy Site on the NET!!! Keep up the good work!

  3. goodfold2 says:
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    back with the 16 team dynasty that i won a championship with last year. 16 teamer, we can keep up to 23 players per team. we can only have 2 active goalies at a time (1 starts per day). also 4 C/4 LW/4 RW/6 D (we’re set up like a real life team). also, i’m allowing everyone to keep their NA guys predraft in word as NA guys (yahoo for some stupid reason doesn’t allow this). only problem is that right now since camps aren’t over the NA tag isn’t on guys since they could make the NHL roster. our categories are G/A/+/-/PIM/PPP/SHP/GWG/SOG/Shot %/FW/Hits/Blocks
    1. do you know when the NA tags get attached (our draft is Oct 5th, i’m hoping it’s before then, i’m now comish and i told people to get their keepers to me by the 2nd)

    These are the definite keepers: pavelski/doughty/backes/pietrangelo/bouwmeester/johansen/steen/oshie/ladd/o’reilly/perron/callahan/sekera/c.smith/perrault/
    g.reinhart/m.subban/pouliot (i think only reinhart might make his team, and the other two can be counted as NA guys as soon as they get their tags)
    – also i’ll keep one goalie out of f.andersen/khudobin and try to draft elliot (i need by rules to have at least 6 STL players, i lost sobotka to KHL). if i miss on elliot i’ll grab jaskin at end of 1st round (16th overall non snake draft).

    -i’m definitely dropping grossman (elite hits/blocks, but these stats can be streamed)/fiddler/arcobello/gaustad/richardson/sobotka/bartkowski/polak
    -but am on the fence about purcell (if he’s on good line he’s a keep for sure, he gets PPP)/legwand (faceoffs/assists/PIM, but assists will go down a bit on OTT, and plus/minus)/beauchemin (elite blocks and plus/minus, and it’s hard to find elite plus minus)/beleskey (right on margin between streamable player and keeper)
    2. which of those on fence guys would you keep?
    3. if i don’t get elliot at 16th overall (this is assuming some super propsect doesn’t fall to me), should i just stream my 2nd goalie spot if only 32 goalies are gone out of the pool (by end of draft)? I did this for a while last year, and it worked fine (i had that german WAS goalie and got khubodin and f.anderson doing this). Right now unowned goalies are elliot/mason/halak/greiss/backstrom/jones/lack/stalock/khudobin (when i don’t keep him)
    thanks.

    • goodfold2 says:
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      @goodfold2: that’s PIT’s pouliot the D prospect.

  4. Slimbooo says:
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    howdy 🙂

    so we have a NA spot on our roster…who is the guy you would wanna put there? any NA player

    Thx pal

    • JD

      JD says:
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      You’ll have to give me a list of options available on the wire for me to give you advice here…

      • Slimbooo says:
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        @JD:

        whoever has NA beside there name..thx 🙂

        • JD

          JD says:
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          Sorry mate it doesn’t work like that. I need to know if it’s Yahoo or ESPN and you need to give me some options to choose from and by that I mean you have to list out 5-10 names you want me to consider. I also need to know your league settings, size, etc. to give you good advice.

          • Slimbooo says:
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            @JD:

            my apologizes 🙂

            keeper league

            Goals (G), Assists (A), Plus/Minus (+/-), Powerplay Points (PPP), Shots on Goal (SOG), Hits (HIT)

            NA spot keeper will be sitting on my roster for years

            Andrei Loktionov
            Michael Zalewski
            Roman Horak
            Adam Payerl
            Nicolas Deschamps
            Zach Nastasiuk
            Maxim Kitsyn
            Stephen Harper
            Kurtis Gabriel
            Eric Selleck
            Edgars Kulda
            Victor Crus Rydberg
            Kenton Helgesen
            Brandon Alderson
            Laurent Dauphin
            Derek Mathers
            Darby Llewellyn

            sry for all the names…and would u drop Alex Stalock , Beau Bennett , P.A. Parenteau for one of these players based on those league settings

            Jussi Jokinen
            Mike Ribeiro
            Mike Richards
            Jakob Silfverberg
            Sam Gagner
            Tyler Ennis
            Frans Nielsen
            Nikita Kucherov

            few of the guys went hitter friendly for some reason…makes me wanna draft our hometown big boy Brian McGrattan lol

            thx for all your help! look foward to working with you this seson…love me some razzball they help win championships

  5. Get Indignant says:
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    New to hockey and fantasy hockey. Became a huge fan of baseball through fantasy so I’m giving hockey a shot. Any chance you do a strategy right up? There’s one in the archives from 2011. IS that still relevant advice? Any major differences?

    • JD

      JD says:
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      It’s hard to keep up with all the requests but I’ll do my best to get one up as soon as I can. I haven’t seen that post you’re talking about but if it’s three years old I would take the advice with a grain of salt and a boatload of caution. In the meantime I’m happy to answer any questions you might have…

      • Get Indignant says:
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        @JD: I’m following your rankings since I know very few players. It seems that the consensus is to wait on goalies. How late would you say? And who are good targets. In football, a general rule of is to draft RB’s and WR’s with your early picks. What about Hockey? Which positions should i focus on early?

        • JD

          JD says:
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          @Get Indignant: Generally speaking you want to focus the early rounds on elite scoring forwards. I generally use my first two picks on the best scoring forwards I can find. Then I buck conventional wisdom and I take an elite goalie with my third pick. Then I go back to forward one more pick and then grab my first defenseman. Some rules of thumb:

          Forwards over defenseman almost always. Yes, the gap between elite defenseman (guys who score 50+ points) and the rest of the pack is somewhat larger than the gap between elite scoring forwards and the rest of the pack, but the best defenseman can only hope to match a middle tier forward. I tend to try to get one elite defenseman, though.

          Plus/minus is a fickle stat and largely team dependent, so don’t draft for it. The best way to avoid getting murdered on plus minus is to draft guys from solid possession teams like San Jose, LA, Chicago, Anaheim and Boston.

          It is good to wait on goalies, but don’t wait too long and I advice trying to get a top 10 goalie. There are always injuries and up and comers that break onto the NHL scene and can be streamed for their good numbers, so success in goal isn’t wholly dependent on a good draft, but a good draft is critical for success nonetheless. With your third or fourth pick I’d advise going after the best goalie available and then after you’ve added some D and a few more forwards, go grab a good no. 2 (Kari Lehtonen, Corey Crawford, Pekke Rinne). Finally, later in the draft look for upside guys (Jake Allen, John Gibson, Frederik Andersen, Darcy Kuemper). You can carry just 2 goalies, but 3 helps.

          Don’t get swept up in draft rushes. If you see a string of goalies go off the board in a row, don’t freak and grab the best goalie you can because it’s likely that in getting caught up in the rush other owners are leaving good forwards out there for you to grab. You have to keep your position scarcity in mind at all times, but don’t lose yourself in those waves.

          • Get Indignant says:
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            @JD: Thanks for the response. By balancing your rankings and Yahoo, the only guys that is ranked relatively close is Corey Schneider. Yahoo seems to rank goalies early, so the top guys are gone pretty early. Mock drafter have been taking a few of your early ranked guys relative to yahoo so I’m feeling confident with your rankings.

            • goodfold2 says:
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              @Get Indignant: i’ve done mostly JD’s draft strategy for 2 years and it works well. make sure you get one top 12 goalie for sure (even if it’s back end of that 12), 1 middle guy like he said, and you can do very well streaming that 3rd goalie spot. 12 team leagues always have good backups laying around when they play. last year johnson/talbot/stalock and occasionally others being streamed you ended up with great stats.

              • goodfold2 says:
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                @goodfold2: make sure you have enough pickups per week to do that streaming though. All of mine have at least 5-7 per week. If less you really won’t be able to do that.

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