Fantasy Hockey 201: Taking a Short Nap?

This week we are taking a short fantasy nap. Now to be completely different, Have you ever sat there and fell asleep while working? Unfortunately, I did thatt last night and as a result, the sliding netbook woke me up at 6 a.m.

Let this be a lesson to any writer out there and very luckily I did not have to buy a new netbook.

So what happened during this great three hour snooze you may ask? Oddly enough there was a dream or two about fantasy hockey. It is funny what mysteries we can solve in our sleep. Taking this next level even meant sometimes analyzing one’s own dreams. This was definitely a different experience to say the least.

Here is what I can remember anyway……..

The key going into this short week was remembering that fantasy trade deadlines were fast approaching. This is the time of year where sleepers are in extremely short supply because the rest that most players get is good for them. That is why you will start seeing players return this week. There is a correlation between rest time and injury numbers going down. This is the most brutal schedule ever for NHL players with so many back to back games.

No wonder why quite a few players wanted to “skip” the All-Star game.

Sadly it is what Gary Bettman and company fail to realize that have so many fantasy GM’s scratching their eyes out. At one point last week there were 157 players on the injury list with some kind of ailment.That does not include personal leaves or suspensions so imagine the kind of sleepless nights the GM has out there who is missing three or four top level guys to injury. The amount of effort to keep a team respectable under such conditions is mind boggling but we will try to quantify this.

This is how. In this dream, I thought of ways that increase or decrease the amount of time a GM has to spend on his or her team. Factors that were included were the following:

  • Amount of injuries
  • Ease of access to internet
  • Transactions needed to be made that week
  • Opponent being played
  • Place in the standings
  • The weather?

Yes we did put the weather into this discussion. These are widely believed to be the six biggest factors included in whether or not GM’s have to spend more or less time on their fantasy team.

There are other minor and not so minor factors as well. Injuries play the biggest role because of their “domino effect”. If your team has several high profile injuries, everyone knows it. News like this travels faster because of the high level of technology we live in today. Trades and rumors often work the same way. It is getting harder and harder to be the “only one” who has that special information.

The “Injury Ninja” was created originally as a joke in 2007 but now has evolved into a sort of reporter of injuries and the length of time players could or could not be out for. Using social media as a conduit, the goal is to try and get fantasy GM’s that information correctly to as many people as possible. There is nothing worse than having the wrong information and using it to create an even bigger mistake. Then more time is needed to correct the mistakes that could have been easily avoided if the time had been taken to get the right news in the first place.

It is why we do what we do here at Fantasy Hockey 201, to go that next level, so you do not have to. Injuries like we said are at least partially caused by the excessive “bunch scheduling” that the NHL has created. Though they are not the only ones at fault because arenas have commitments, they have to take the lion’s share of the blame. There is no Olympic Break to point a finger at this year. That is something to be really emphasized and heavily as well.

It was also said to look over schedules for the week of those in your league. Maybe there is that opportunity to push hard and gain a spot or two or even gain in categories for tiebreakers. Your league standings have a huge role in how you play. Those at the very bottom are just playing for next year and if it is not a keeper league may just give up altogether. A chance this to the fortuitous to take a shot at acquiring players from those teams for next to nothing. Also, any chance to take advantage of an opportunity is a good one so do not miss it.

This is the time of year where you do not want to ever get caught napping. When the season picks up again, it will already be February 1st. Just think about that for a second ladies and gentlemen, it will be the second month of 2011 but nearing the homestretch for fantasy leagues out there (unless its a non-playoff league).

Next week we will delve into the Fantasy Hockey 201 gameplan. Tighten up the chinstrap, tie up the equipment and get ready, it is going to be a bumpy ride. Pinch me to make sure the dream is over.

See you next week and good luck in another shortened week.


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