Well it took almost until Christmas but the Wolves have jumped up into the top half of the league. Climbing from 8th to 5th in one night, the Wolves' rise in the standings has been ongoing for a few weeks now. Sporting the best total in the league so far this week (31.25pts) and relying on more prospects and RFAs than the rest of the league combined, the east coast terrors are laying notice that 2008 could be the year of the Wolf.
The big jump of the Wolves overshadowed a couple of other developments. There are now 7 teams over the 400pt mark, with the Lost Boys less than a point out. Further down the charts, the other big story of the week has been the Scourge (thank-you M.Gaborik) who have passed the Edge to move into 9th place. The Highlanders had a very good Thursday night and now have built up a 16pt lead on the Vendetta (awaiting the next Red Wing game to close that gap) and now lead the 12th placed Knights by over a 100pts.
Have a great weekend everyone as we cruise to the Holiday break.
The Shadowmen, who only days ago were dueling with the Wolves for 8th spot, have jumped several spaces up the ladder with a strong week after two days (16.75pts). The Wolves haven't moved out of 8th but have moved the pack to within 30pts of the leader and with the return of R.Luongo (who had another shutout last night) they expect to continue to move up the standings. The Bladerunners have become the third team to make it over the 400pt mark with at least 5 other teams expected to get there before the week is out.
Since Richard didn't post it yet, here are the Line-ups as I have them in the spread sheet (including all the pts players have as of Monday's stats). I got line-ups from everyone except Mike, who is using his week 11 line-up.
If anyone notices a problem, let me know.
Twas a Week Before Christmas and All Through the Pool Not a Creature Was Stirring, Except the Personal Vendetta!
There were only two games in the NHL last night and the Detroit game in particular was a points festival for the Vendetta. They become the 2nd team to cross the 400pt threshold.
Everyone else gets a chance to catch up starting tonight.
Hi Guys, sorry no post yesterday but the spreadsheet is now becoming too big for my Hotmail account and I'll have to try some changes to the data-transfer plan. Not a big problem but I have a few bugs to work out. That said, I had to pop into the office this morning so here are the stats as of Saturday night.
The Highlanders continue to hold on to their lead and become the first team this season over 400pts. The gap is still close between them and the Personal Vendetta, under 12pts, but there is some separation (just shy of 10pts) now between 2nd and the trio (Bladerunners, Lost Boys and Severed Heads) filling slots 3-5. Another triplet (Ramapithicines, red-hot Wolves and Shadowmen) follow (again, around 10pts) furhter back. The Scourge have had the week's best total so far (43+pts) and have moved 30pts clear of the cellar, passing the Great Whites along the way. As noted in the Title, the Knights Templar have become the last team to cross the 300pt mark but are now almost a 100pts back of the leader.
The Wolves, with the week's 2nd highest total, are currently tied in their game with the Challenge Cup leading Highlanders with only Sunday's games to come. With both the Personal Vendetta and Severed Heads poised to win their games the bunching at the top of the standings looks to get even tighter.
The Severed Heads continue to lead in the Omnivore race but the big change is at the bottom of the standings where the Personal Vendetta have finally (thanks to the WD) been able to begin to recover from the season-opening goaltending fracus that put them so far behind the curve. Expect them to continue to move up the standings in the weeks to come. Because the Vendetta trade so infrequently, it is much harder for them to out-perform thier baseline - which you need to do to gain in the Omnivore - but the WD can have the same effect as a big trade and that is what is happening for them.
Wow! A big night for almost everyone last night with only the Highlanders and Knights Templar failing to join in on the points-party. The Bladerunners and Shadowmen led the way with 13pt evenings followed closely by the Scourge (12.5pts), Wolves (12pts), Edge (11pts) and Great Whites (10pts). 10 out of 12 teams (the exceptions being the Ramapithicines and Knights Templar) are now sporting 20+pt weeks as we head into the weekend. This has resulted in a tightening up of the Challenge Cup games with every single game 5pts apart or closer (convieniently Corey and Mike are playing each other this week). While the good night for the Severed Heads (8pts) was enough to push them back into the lead in the Omnivore standings.
Have a great Friday everyone. Hopefully I will be able to post on the weekend but there may be some technical difficulties.
Great Whites Respond To Challenge With Great Night - Wolves Have Even Better One, Threaten To Overtake Shadowmen
One night after being called out on this very blog, the Great Whites go to the well and pull out an 8pt night. Led by WD pick up P.Sharp's 3pts, the Great Whites also gained a lot of ground in the Omnivore as almost all of thier points were from off their baseline. The best night, however, went to the Wolves (10pts) who are now within 5pts of the 7th placed Shadowmen. The field has spread out over the last week an a half but I still think we are much tighter than we have been in years past.
One other tweak to the Challenge Cup standings. In setting up the post-WD spreadsheets I took away a point and a half from Richard's Lost Boys. I gave it back when I realized what I had done ("You go to 'da box and you feel shame.") Anyhow, in Week 9 the Lost Boys and Ramapithicines tied there game. I had previously given the point to the Lost Boys (took it away a day ago) and have now given it back. I had mistakenly credited the Ramapithicines with the win but they actually only get the one point for the tie. Confused? Good. All you need to know is that the Challenge Cup standings are, as far as I know, correct. Sorry for the mix-up all. (Mix-up update. Found another one for this week - was playing 7 d-men for the Ramapithicines. Corrected. BTW, Corey E.Johnsson is having a 3pt week so far on your bench. I'd be interested in trading for him since you haven't promoted him.)
It is a tale of the two winningest franchises in the FunHL, both 3-time Predator Cup Champions, heading in decidedly different directions. While the league-leading Highlanders have had solid performances from the expected sources of Crosby, Thornton and Pronger; a rebound year from Kariya; and breakout years from Williams and Boyes the Great Whites, early season favourites, have been beset by injuries through their defense corps a devastating slump to thier intended star winger, Cheechoo, and a 2nd FP slot that has failed to produce regardless of who is there (Marleau and then Whitney).
The Highlanders managed 12.53 pts last night, giving them 21.53pts for the week so far, as M.Kipprusoff (3.33pts) is now displaying the skills which had him drafted first overall; B.Boyes (3pts) continues his unexpected season; S.Crosby's Pens were blown out but the Kid (2pts) was in on both Pittsburgh goals; WD pick-up A.Voros got into a fight (1.25pts); while P.Kariya, J.Thornton and S.Souray (now back from IR) all chipped in with a point. By contrast the Great Whites had 4pts last night, thier first points of the week, the good news was recently acquired S.Horcoff had a three point night and his second FP, R.Whitney, got another point and is starting to look like the player so saught after at the entry draft. The Great Whites did not have many players take the ice yet this week so this capsule it not a fair reflection of the team's abilities but with injuries to two centers and two right wingers (not to mention both benched defensemen) the lean weeks may continue for a while yet.
Phew. Glad that's done. The WD is like two straight weeks of Bob's trades all rolled into one day. Lots of shifting and cutting and pasting to get all the players on the right teams (and only counting those points that they get after coming on board). Still, I think I have it all done now.
Some things cropped up when I was pouring over the spreadsheets making sure that I didn't make any mistakes. I found a couple of old ones. I've lost one of Bob's points. Don't know where but between Monday morning and today, Bob has one less point. This is clearly a line-up snafu but I can't see what I did so I've given Bob the print-out of his line-ups, benchings, trades, waives, etc to see if he can figure it out. Does anyone recall if Dan ever (specifically in Week 4) benched Brodeur to play Bryzgalov? I don't think he did but, unfortunately, I had him playing both for week 4. I've gone back and benched Bryzgalov and taken away the extra pts (no resulting changes to the Week 4 Challenge Cup Game, Great Whites still beat up on the Wolves).
I've also noticed a mistake in the Challenge Cup results themselves. In Week 9 the Ramapithicines beat the Lost Boys in a close game and got 2pts for the win however I inadvertantly gave the Lost Boys one point for the tie. That point has been taken away. The current Challenge Cup standings reflect all relevant tie-breakers so the Shadowmen are in 2nd, the Ramapithicines are in 9th, etc.
The Omnivore standings have had some shifting, principally as a result of GMs using TGs from their original list that had never dressed before. This "revelation" to the baseline has hit a couple of teams.
Good WD everyone, trade lines remain open.
From 'Cult of Hockey' comes this defense of Kevin Lowe's handling of the Pronger situation;
Where people go off the rails is when they blast Lowe for what he might have got for Pronger from other teams, if only he had held out for a better deal.
I've heard many, many people say the Oilers should have got more for Pronger, but do any of us really know how this might have been done? What were the other offers?You know, I wonder if Lowe really had so many options as his critics imagine he did. Is it possible, for instance, that Chris and Lauren Pronger gave the Oilers a very, very short list of teams he would play for, and thus greatly limited Lowe's trading options? It's not hard to imagine Mrs. Pronger being extremely picking about where she might want to live and calling the shots here.
Of course, this scenario is utter speculation on my part, but I have no doubt there really is some kind of inside information about the Pronger trade that I lack and which limits my ability to judge whether Lowe could have got more in a trade."Thoughtful and to the point.
That said, the Oilers still got bent over by Pronger who used them to get an overpaid-to-be-here contract, and then demanded out after less than a full first season.
The return of Smid, Lupul, etc. was simply pitiful, but one wonders if it would look so bad, if Lupul were playing as well last year (28pts in 81games) as he was for the Flyers over the first 17 games this year in which he registered 15 pts.
(Personally I suspect that the real Lupul is the guy who put up 2 points in 10 games since then)
Here's another sample from the Oilogosphere that I adored;
From Tyler at mc79Hockey;
"Following the 2002 Olympics, Tommy Salo finished out the season with a 9-5-2 record, a 1.86 GAA and a .929 save percentage. The narrative is a lie. "
Be sure to check out the comments too.
Good WD everyone.
Not a lot of time this morning so here is where we are (sort-of) after Saturday.
I say "sort-of" because Cam has noticed I was short changing him on at least one player, Gonchar. I had hoped that CBS and NHL.com will square with each other and give Gonchar both points for this week but the opposite has happened. NHL.com is now saying that he has 25pts this season - just like CBS. The same thing happened to me earlier this season when Souray had 7pim simple disappear. This sucks for Cam (and previously for me) but the NHL does, from time-to-time, change the stats retroactively. They are the official stats source not only for the pool but for all other stats providers so we are sort of stuck with their call. Has anyone else noticed any disappearing points? Did we want to do anything about Cam's?
The Highlanders are the Predator Cup leaders at the WD1 mark, holding a 9pt lead on the latest in a series of 2nd place teams, the Personal Vendetta. The only team to have crossed the 350pt mark this year's race is markedly closer than this time last year. At the WD1 mark last year the Bladerunners held a 16pt lead on the second place Shadowmen. The eventual winners, the Highlanders, sat in 4th - almost 40pts back. This year 1st thru 7th are separated by less than 25pts!
The Severed Heads have moved back into first place in the Omnivore standings but expect a lot of movement in the Omnivore now that the WD has arrived. The Vendetta, for example, are still recovering from some unlucky benchings of their goaltenders early on and haven't been able to make up any ground because, absent new players, their gains in the Predator Cup race are mirrored by their Omnivore baseline.
Good luck with the WD everyone.
Based on the standings at the end of Week 9, here is the draft order fot WD1:
1 - Knights Templar
2 - Scourge
3 - Great Whites
4 - Edge
5 - Wolves
6 - Shadowmen
7 - Severed Heads
8 - Lost Boys
9 - Ramapithicines
10 - Bladerunners
11 - Personal Vendetta
12 - Highlanders
Reprinted from my earlier e-mail, here are the drops from everyone's teams:
The Highlanders will drop:
LW - T.Ruutu CHI rfa 12pts
C – J.Pavelski SJ rfa 9pts
RW - P.Eaves OTT rfa 8pts (inj?)
D – C.Schubert OTT rfa 9pts
D - P.Mara NYR 5pts
D – E.Brewer STL rfa 6pts
D – B.Berard NYI rfa 5pts
G – M.Legace STL rfa 32.87pts
The Personal Vendetta drop:
LW: Ponikarovsky-TOR (RFA) [14/22]
C: Weight-STL (RFA) [6/24]
RW: Samuelsson-DET (RFA) [13/22]
D: Van Ryn-FLA (RFA) [2/20]; Seabrook-CHI (RFA) [7/26]; Ballard-PHX [7/24]; Salei-FLA (RFA) [10/28]
G: Mason-NSH (RFA) [GP 19, 3.15 GAA]
The Wolves drop:
LW - Hecht rfa buf 16
RW - Recchi - pit 8 ?
D - Preissing RFA LA 9
D - Carle SJ 6
D - Kalinen BUF RFA INJ
G - Khabibulin RFA CHI 2.79gaa
C - Sillinger NYI RFA10
C - Comrie NYI RFA 21
The Edge drop:
L - Eager Phi 0 pts 55 pim
C - Fisher Ott 17 pts
- McDonald Ana 16 pts
R - Laperriere Col 6 pts, 31 pim
- Knuble Phi 16 pts
D - Witt NYI 3 pts, 23 pim
- Malik NYR 3 pts
G - Fernandez Bos
The Shadowmen drop:
LW Stempniak-STL RFA
C Zubrus-NJ RFA
RW Kotalik-BUF RFA, Stafford-BUF RFA
D Kaberle-CAR RFA, Klesla-CLB RFA, White-TOR RFA
G Budaj-COL RFA
The Great Whites drop:
LW: Shelley Cbs (RFA) - zero pts, 28 PIM in 13 games
C: Bergeron Bos (too dizzy to walk), Stoll Edm (RFA) - 12 in 27 games
RW: Ryder Mtl (RFA) - 10 in 26 games
D: Martinek NYI (RFA) - 5 in 24 games, Boucher Dal (shoulder surgery), Bieksa Van (out till January)
G: Bryzgalov Phx (RFA) - 7 GP, 2.57 GAA in Phoenix
The Bladerunners drop:
L: Penner-EDM (RFA) 14/28
C: Lombardi-CGY (RFA) 16/27
R: Bernier-SJ (RFA) 8/24 45pm
D: Johnsson-MIN (RFA) 5/25
D: B.Jackman-STL (RFA) 2/24
D: Zhitnik-ATL 2/26
D: Commodore-CAR (RFA) injured d to d 4/19
G: Roloson-EDM (RFA) 2.97 gaa
The Severed Heads drop:
Roberts-L Pit RFA
Forsberg-C UFA RFA
Picard-D Pha RFA
Sydor-D Pit RFA
Allen-D Fla RFA
Suter-D Nsh RFA
Emery-G Ott RFA
The Knights Templar drop:
Samsonov CHI, LW RFA (4/19)
Zajac NJ, C RFA (13/26)
Murray BOS, RW (15/24)
Coburn PHI, D RFA (8/25)
Vlasic SJ, D RFA (4/24)
Clark COL, D (6/25)
Blake LA D, (7/25)
Fleury PIT, G RFA (14.333)
The Scourge drop:
Clowe SJ RFA LW (6 in 11) INJ,
Fedorov CLB RFA C (15 in 26),
Tucker TOR RFA (7 in 20..24PIM),
Regher CGY RFA D (6 in 27), Foster Minn RFA D (7 in 20), Stuart LAK RFA D (7 in 25), Poti Wash D (7 in 21)
Huet RFA MTL G (about 27pts)
The Ramapithicines drop:
(note, GMs who fail to provide stats with their drops are in a poor position to ask to delay the waiver draft so that others can update them on the stats of dropped players :-)
L: Kozlov.S ATL
C: Wellwood TOR rfa
R: Ouellet TB rfa
D: Leopold COL rfa, Westcott CBS
rfa Salo VAN rfa, Sopel CHI rfa
G: Smith DAL
The Lost Boys drop:
LW: Modin CBS (RFA)
C: Morrison VAN (RFA)
RW: Walker CAR (RFA)
NOTE: The Lost Boys actually don’t have Walker, he was waived to acquire Selanne UFA (RFA), but both can be picked and both still have their RFA status.
D: Wideman BST (RFA), Staios EDM (RFA), Krajicek VAN (RFA), Michalek PHX (RFA)
G: Toskala TOR (RFA)
The Lost Boys are the lastest contestants on "Who Wants To Be Second". The Ramapithicines also move past the Severed Heads who slip to 4th. Pts separating 2nd from 4th - 2.2pts. Really, its that close.
The Wolves and Edge become the 8th and 9th teams to cross the 300pt threshold, both doing so last night. The Edge also move into first place on the Omnivore standings, becoming the latest point in the season, that I can recall, that the Edge have been leading for any of the three major awards.
Remember, final Prospect Drop Lists are due today at 12 noon Mountain time.