It is said that words often cut like a knife. Never is that more true than in the world of fantasy hockey.
Value is assigned to players and truly players are nothing more than chips or commodities. Have enough of these really solid chips and you usually have a very good team. However what if, for whatever reason, the expectations are not being met?
Personally I have several teams that have hit this crucial juncture. There are no quick fixes when your teams do this sort of thing. It is like a virus that infects your computer.
The first thing one has to do is contain the problem or problems. Do not be like the New Jersey Devils and just let the same mistakes happen over again. All you are really doing is just completing the execution for your competition. Why beat yourself after all?
The quarter pole is just about to approach and many fantasy experts I have talked to are saying the same things. This is like a year they have never know. Okay, what in the heck do you mean? Simply, there are so many variables this season unlike many previous that a fantasy owner (especially a new one) can find themselves in over their heads before a pin drops or a puck. Now what to do if your team is way below .500 or performing like that? Well all hope is not lost. There are several things that can be done.
First is to look for dead weight. If is a well established construct that there are quite a few players not pulling their fantasy muscle into the equation. The best thing is to not always cut that driftwood but to stash some of it away in the hopes that it snaps out of whatever funk it is currently in. Think of it not as a rainy day fund but more a you ride the pine until you play like a starter philosophy. Even guys like Mikko Koivu and Ilya Kovalchuk are being stashed on teams until they start scoring a few more goals. When these two have seven goals combined, it is a sign something is wrong. Yes Koivu has 12 assists but he is a player capable of 25-30 goals easy.
Less established players that are disappointing could be cut but that is up to the GM’s discretion. You are your own boss in a fantasy league. Never let peer pressure influence a decision but it can be used as a tool if there seems to be a consensus. Not everyone can notice the trend. So that gem you think is a gem may be dead weight to others. Keep an eye on that. It is said you can be the last one to know something but if you stay proactive, you never will be.
The other idea to keep in mind is this. It is only a quarter of the way into the season. Many great fantasy comebacks do not start until the midway through the season. Believe me, there are some legendary epic comebacks that we will explain in later columns right here. Some are truly incredible and yes yours truly has been on both ends of the spectrum. The losing part is never fun, but the comeback is so much sweeter when it is you that finds a way against all odds.
Next week we will conduct an examination of the quarter pole. If you have a team in peril or just have any question at all, just throw us a comment in the comments section. You can even send an email. The worst thing to do is leave the problem alone or panic. That middle ground is what we all strive for as a GM in fantasy hockey leagues.
See you next week.