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Wheelin' 'n' dealin'

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

The NHL deadline is just less than two weeks away and many fantasy leagues use the same date for their own deadline – it’s crunch time! Let’s get to some letters…

Dobber, I'm in a single-season fantasy league and looking for some advice on a trade that was offered to me. I'm leading the league by a large margin in assists, however I am struggling with goals-against average and save percentage (last in both). The proposed trade is Mike Richards, Andrei Markov, Brenden Morrow and Martin Brodeur (his players) for Jason Spezza, Joe Thornton, Sergei Zubov, and J-S Giguere (my players). I'm also second-last in goals in the pool, however I recently picked up Ilya Kovalchuk in a trade, which should help. My big question is who do you think will have a better final two months, Giguere or Brodeur? Historically I would think Brodeur, but this year I'm unsure. I'd love to know your thoughts.

Brodie, Vancouver

Hi Brodie, I think Giguere will have better numbers in the final two months – especially wins – but it will be close and Anaheim has fewer games remaining. Their numbers will be so close that to consider trading both Spezza and Thornton in the same deal is ludicrous. Since you are so high in assists, use Thornton to get a better second goaltender. Giguere and a good No. 2 goalie will get your numbers back to where they should be.

Hi Dobber! I am in a keeper league and I have this offer: Alex Tanguay (me) for Alexei Kovalev. Tanguay is one of my keepers, but in the left wing spot I also have Malkin, Ovechkin, Semin, Erik Cole and James van Riemsdyk. In my right wing spot I have Iginla, Kessel, Radulov and Afinogenov (Cole is RW/LW). Do you think Kovalev will keep it up? Thanks!

Jonathan, Montreal

Jonathan – pull the trigger. Kovalev will keep it up for this season at least and you have an impressive stockpile of left wingers. On the right side, however, you are weak this year with Kessel and Afinogenov, so bring in Kovalev to shore up that position.

Dobber, I'm in a keeper league where each year you have to drop five players, minimum, into the draft pool. I could use advice on draft choices. Our draft happens before the NHL draft, which makes it even trickier. Our league only counts points from forwards and D-men, so the focus is on getting the highest possible point production from your 16 players. Here is what is available: Anyone from the 2008 draft and current undrafted players. The top 15 are currently Mark Streit, Tobias Enstrom, John Madden, Eric Perrin, Brent Burns, Antti Miettinen, Rob Blake, Craig Rivet, Adrian Aucoin, Joe Corvo, Paul Gaustad, Ron Hainsey, Jeff Halpern, Pavel Kubina and David Booth. Other options: David Perron, Sergei Kostitsyn, Brian Boyle, Ted Purcell. My question is: I'm thinking Steven Stamkos for the first overall pick. Who is the best second? I am in a rebuilding phase so long-term projects are a good thing; players who may retire in the next few years are not (although with high production next year I could trade them for picks/prospects). Thanks,

Jeremy, Los Angeles

Your league is similar to mine, but I will assume you are required to have a certain amount of defensemen in your lineup. After Stamkos I like the following in order: Fabian Brunnstrom (trust me), Purcell, Kostitsyn, Enstrom, Perron and Boyle (he may end up being classified as a defenseman for you). If Corvo does well in Carolina I would slot him next. Defensemen take a long time to come into their own, so I am not sure I would look at 2008 draft defensemen. Instead take prospects such as Ivan Vishnevskiy (Dallas) or Bobby Sanguinetti (Rangers) who are a little further along.

Hey Dobber, I picked Philippe Boucher from the Stars in my pool, any idea when I can expect him back?

Doug, Barrie, Ont.

About two more weeks, Doug.

I am in a Yahoo non-keeper league; categories are goals, assists, plus-minus, penalty minutes, power play points, and shots on goal. Can I count on Joe Sakic at all this season? My other centers are Scott Gomez, Brad Richards and Peter Forsberg.

Mike, Columbia, S.C.

Yes, Sakic skated with the team Monday, although he did not take any contact. He is due back in the middle of March, but I cautiously feel he could make it for March 1.

Darryl Dobbs’ Fantasy Mailbag appears Wednesdays only on The Hockey To send the Dobber your question, click HERE.


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