FH 201: Mercurial Musings

We are going to have some fun here as Christmas approaches. Can anyone believe that there is only nine days till the holiday? Add in the holiday trade freeze is even less of a time away.

Fantasy hockey right at this moment is all about riding what you have until the wheels completely fall off. Then there is the night of hockey hat tricks.

So there were four hat tricks tonight and well the most impressive was between Nicklas Lidstrom and Ryan Kesler. When you think about how fantasy hockey works for a second, a defenseman getting a hat trick is like liquid gold. Now Kesler nailed the game winner in OT which is big but let’s take a next level look here.

  • Ryan Kesler:  3 goals, +2, 4 shots, 21:40 TOI, GWG
  • Nick Lidstrom: 3 goals, 1 assist, +2  with 5 shots and 22:00 TOI

Both players tallied once on the man advantage. Now I do understand that Kesler scored some pretty sick goals but the bottom line is sick goals do not count fantasy wise. Points are never even at this juncture.

Doing the quick math, Lidstrom would help the most out of roto leagues but Ryan Kesler would benefit. Most scoring systems tonight indicated that Nick Lidstrom did help rosters out more than Kesler and even Drew Stafford as well as Tomas Fleischmann. Now Fleischmann had two goals on the power play but was a -1 and that hurt as he scored on all three shots on net. See how things appear on the surface to be much better than they actually are?

Like I said, that defensive value is intrinsically paramount to the debate here. So whether it was a natural hat trick or not, it all becomes a moot point.

What has to be said here is when you look at this from a one night point of view, Lidstrom wins this debate easily. Yet when you look at it on the surface, it i not quite as clear. Go figure that one out.

Then there is this one twist. Despite four hat tricks, Martin Brodeur still scored the most points on the night with a 29-save shutout. Again, it is a case of it did not look like much on the surface but a shutout, the win and the nearly 30 saves has more weight than a hat trick? Oddly enough, it does. In keeper leagues, it gets more interesting however.

If you yank Brodeur and Lidstrom out of the equation, then you have to give the nod to Kesler. That is why dynasty leagues dictate a different set of decisions. When being prudent, 40-year-old players have less fantasy value. In year to year leagues, they come back in with a force of  nature unleashed.

So in this night of hat tricks, it was actually the near 40 year goalie who had the most fantasy points. Even in roto value, the goalie still wins out. It is an odd combination of statistical mumbo jumbo that gives the fantasy gm tons of indigestion.

Let’s learn our lesson and give the award to the old man in the net while the other four hat trickers battle for second place.


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