Monday, March 30, 2015

Week Twenty-Five Newsletter

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It was another good race for the Player of the Week nod, but in the end, forward versus goalie, the forward is going to win pretty well every time. Scoring goals is a big tie-breaker in this pool.

Of course, saying that, Ryan O'Reilly made it really close in the week, only scoring 1 goal and 7 assists in his 8-point week, taking the cake for the best player in the pool in Week Twenty-Five.

The 24-year old forward in Colorado played in four games in the week and registered points in every game in the week.  Monday, it was a pair of assists against the Flames, Wednesday saw a goal and 2 assists against the Oilers, there was another pair of assists against the Canucks on Thursday and then an assist against the Sabres on Saturday.

This brings O'Reilly's totals to 14 goals and 52 points in 75 games this season, good enough for 86th overall in pool scoring, to this point of the regular season, with only a couple weeks of action left to go.

Allan picked the forward in the 4th round, 74th overall, which isn't too far off where he has landed to this point, and since he's running hot at the moment, Allan may recover this pick to somewhere a little closer to his draft position.  O'Reilly is his best forward this season, having had to drop his highest picked forward, thanks to injury concerns.  It has just been that kind of season for him.

PhotobucketIt's feast AND famine for Dale B.'s team, who has now made it three straight weeks in the Newsletter, thanks to his second appearance in the Mover & Shaker over those three weeks.  If the other appearance wasn't a Basement Dweller nod, he could have moved into the last money position, instead of still being a ways back.

Week Twenty-Five saw his team rack up 35 points, which boosted him back a few more positions, now sitting in 7th place, up from 10th after Week Twenty-Four, but still down a couple spots from Week Twenty-Three, where he finished 5th.

This past week, it was a duo that led the way for Dale's team, as Wild forward Mikko Koivu and Sharks forward Patrick Marleau, each finished with 5 points a piece.  Four more players each had 4 points, while there were a trio of 2 points and a load of singles through the week, so there was lots of help from throughout his lineup, it just seems kind of funny that his team took a week off, completely, between two Mover & Shakers.

Dale is only 18 points out of 3rd place and made up 13 points in the past week on the position, so it isn't completely out of the question for these last two weeks, that he could jump into that spot, but he will have to avoid the basement in the coming week, getting out of the pattern, in order to achieve that.

PhotobucketThe Basement Dweller race was also quite tight and came down to the last few games on Sunday, but in true dweller fashion, Grant K.'s team failed to register any points to keep them out of the Basement for the week and with only 15 points to his team's name, the nod is all his.

This is Grant's first team visit on the Newsletter and unfortunately, it is in an infamous fashion.  His team got off to a pretty good start, opening Week One in 3rd place, but dropped off, hovering in the middle of the pack until the end of the second segment, when the bottom kind of fell out from underneath his team and it has been in 20th spot for the last month.  Remarkably, this is his first Basement Dweller nod this season, giving that his team has seen a pretty good slump this year.

Grant had a pretty good team on paper at the beginning of the year, but injuries and some horrible luck with some of his Waiver Draft pick-ups have really sunk his boat this year.  His team holds a -16 points ratio from the Week Nine Waiver Draft and is only a +1 from the Week Eighteen Waiver Draft, which has definitely hurt his side.

All three teams in the Olli bobblehead race did make up some ground on Grant this week, but his team still holds a 27-point gap ahead of 21st, which should hold him from joining the race... in theory.

TROPHY TALK

Kristy & Don have had 1st place locked up for too long, Grant S.'s lead in 2nd over 3rd is 26 points, which isn't impossible, but fairly improbable at this point to close up.  Wes, who holds 3rd place, now only sits 10 points clear of Benson in 4th, 14 points clear of Scott & Clayton in 5th & 6th, and as mentioned above, Dale B. is only 18 points out.

Wyllie moved back into the Olli lead, now with a 5-point gap between his team and Allan's, while Ryan's team is only 8 points out and still somewhat in the mix, with a couple weeks left to go.

For the third segment, Benson is beginning to run away with the nod, as his team is now 15 points clear of Brian & Mike, while Scott is 22 points back.  Benson has had the hottest team and could still come away with money, if his team continues at this pace.

WINNING EVERY WEEK

Kristy & Don's goalies are still dominating, posting 5 wins in the week and with two weeks to go, they could have a team that posts a win in every single week this season.  This hasn't been measured before in any other pool, so I can't tell if this has happened before.  I would imagine that it probably has.

ROOKIE SCORING

The key to Dale B.'s team at the moment is his rookies, it would seem, as his team posted another 7 points in the rookie race, opening up his team's lead again, which now sits at 8 points.  Wilton would need a couple of pretty good weeks from his single rookie to beat Dale's trio.

LIGHTING THE LAMP

Goal scoring doesn't seem to be much of an issue for the teams that are streaking still.  Every team is still in this one that was in it from last week.  I don't think there is much reason to waste much more time on this, unless a team or five drops out in the next week or so.

CHRIS STEWART VS ERIK COLE

Well, out of the two players in the side bet, only one of them managed to play all week and that was Chris Stewart of the Wild, who finished the week with 3 points.  Erik Cole suffered an injury with the Red Wings this week and failed to play much hockey at all, failing to register a point.  Cole still holds a 14-13 lead in the points since the Week Eighteen Waiver Draft department, but the injury is putting a damper on the money, going from one pocket to the other.

ROUND 1 IN THE DRAFT

Pick # Round Pool Player NHL POS Points
16 1 Wes Moroz Carey Price MTL G 101
8 1 Clayton Corley Marc-Andre Fleury PIT G 85
1 1 Stuart Greenley Sidney Crosby PIT F 79
14 1 Grant Saskiw Jonathan Quick LOS G 79
4 1 Brian Towers John Tavares NYI F 77
9 1 Kristy & Don Alex Ovechkin WAS F 74
23 1 Scott Gilmore Jamie Benn DAL F 72
19 1 Allan Scott Antti Niemi SAN G 71
11 1 Leo Macht Evgeni Malkin PIT F 70
5 1 Troy Berkley Claude Giroux PHI F 69
6 1 Ryan Miller Tyler Seguin DAL F 69
2 1 Cam Wagner Ryan Getzlaf ANA F 68
12 1 Dale Bradley Tuukka Rask BOS G 68
3 1 Grant Kanwischer Steven Stamkos TAM F 67
13 1 Stacey Campbell Patrick Kane CHI F 64
15 1 Stacey McDonald Jonathan Toews CHI F 62
18 1 Benson Greenley Semyon Varlamov COL G 62
20 1 Brenda Farrell Henrik Lundqvist NYR G 61
17 1 Mike Somerville Jordan Eberle EDM F 60
10 1 Tony Dourado Phil Kessel TOR F 57
22 1 Dale Corley Corey Perry ANA F 52
21 1 Derek Wilton Matt Duchene COL F 50
7 1 Derek Wyllie Taylor Hall EDM F 34

Out of the 23 players taken in the 1st round of the pool draft, only 12 of them would be considered worthy to be 1st round picks, given the scoring that has happened this season.  Ryan Getzlaf would be the last pick in the 1st round, if we were to conduct the draft, as per the points, as of today.

Of course, Patrick Kane would have been in the mix, if it wasn't for his injury and there may have been some merit for a couple other players, like Henrik Lundqvist or even Taylor Hall, if injuries didn't cut their season short.

Carey Price is the only player to hit the 100-point mark this season and is the leading candidate for pool MVP and to think, he was the 16th overall pick in the draft this year.  That's 15 players that should have been taken after him... that's a big season.

STATISTICALLY SPEAKING

I'm not sure where all the points came from this past week, especially since the well was looking awfully dry for the last couple weeks previous.  The pool almost hit the 600-point mark in the week, averaging 11.2 points per NHL game, which is a pretty decent week, by this year's standards.  Skater games and goalie minutes were both up, meaning that players were getting healthier, which certainly helps.  Hopefully, with the playoffs right around the corner, more players will get healthy and we'll see another increase in production.

NEWS AND NOTES

The news and notes will be somewhat abbreviated this week, as there is lots to go through and very little time before the new week starts to get them done.  It will look a bit rushed here.

Hampus Lindholm was the next Anaheim defenseman to take a seat in the team's rotation of blueliners on Saturday night.  Sunday, he was back in the lineup, as all the pool defenders were, but in that game, forward Matt Beleskey was a late scratch, as he suffered a lower-body injury in the warm-up.  He is listed as out day-to-day.

Also a scratch on the weekend, Devante Smith-Pelly had a seat for the Canadiens, as they work towards a division title in the Atlantic. Smith-Pelly was brought in to bring a physical element to the team and hasn't quite given the side what they've wished for, it would seem.

Nashville was without their captain on the weekend, as defenseman Shea Weber didn't play Saturday or Sunday, due to a lower-body injury, which he had suffered in the week. With only a few games left before the end of the season, the team will likely rest their best player for a long playoff run. He is on the list as day-to-day right now.

Sounds like a touch of the flu hit the Flyers dressing room and it cost defenseman Mark Streit a game down the stretch. The Flyers are now running on fumes for their playoff hopes and they had to tap the minor leagues to try and help them out. Fortunately, Streit should be ready to go again for the team's next game, which is good news.

A couple of notes from the St. Louis Blues, as forward T.J. Oshie missed out on Saturday's game with a bit of an illness as well, but he appears to be ready to play on Monday night, while Alex Steen suffered a lower-body injury in that same game and won't be able to go on Monday.  Steen is currently listed as out day-to-day.

The Tampa Bay Lightning were feeling awfully confident this season, but now that it is crunch time, some injuries may have put a dent in that confidence.  Forward Tyler Johnson is out day-to-day with an upper-body injury and will miss Monday's contest, while forward Cedric Paquette is a game-time decision with a lower-body injury and defenseman Jason Garrison will miss the next 3-to-4 weeks with an upper-body injury.

Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask had to exit Saturday's game a little earlier than expected, to which the coaching staff attributed dehydration as the reason why he left early. That didn't stop Rask for making a quick comeback, playing and winning on Sunday, as the Bruins beat the Hurricanes, the next afternoon.

The Panthers are scratching and clawing for points and in order to do so, they're scratching some veterans, as some of their younger players have been giving the lineup a bit more pop. On Sunday, Brad Boyes was a healthy scratch for the team and the team pulled off a big win, so there is a chance that he may find his way to the press box again.

Forward David Perron was held out of Saturday's contest for the Penguins, due to an illness, but was able to return for Sunday's contest against the Sharks, so this is only to mention the one game he missed, since he was back in the lineup right away. No big deal here.

A lower-body injury on Saturday against the Flyers sidelined Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic for Sunday's game against the Penguins, as he awaits some tests to tell him how long he expects to be out of the lineup. He'll be on the list as out day-to-day for right now, something we should hear about in the next day or two.

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