FUNHL News and Notes (plus FUNBA and other stuff)

- I listen occasionally to PuckDaddy's podcast, and a recent episode made me laugh out loud. Marek and Wyshynski were talking about the Winnpeg Jets and Marek pointed out the absolute greatest scoring summary in NHL history;;

'Wheeler, Little, Clitsome'

*snicker*, just typing it makes me giggle like a 6 year old talking about farts.

- Ten+ years ago the Severed Heads had a triad of Penguins (Jagr, Lemieux, Kovalev) that elevated them to the Predator Cup. This years team has a similar near-fistful (Malkin, Neal, Letang, Jokinen) and now that Letang and Neal are healthy the 'Heads have stopped their freefall in the standings and begun the slow climb back to the top.

- In my last N+N I took a crack at the Barbarians set of pivots, a shot that Mike took exception to. So, yeah. I got it wrong. When assessing the roster I missed on Tyler Seguin - total whiff. Obviously a top tier guy like Seguin improves a below average set of guys into something much better. My bad.

- That said, everybody pointing at Nielsen's scoring stats can shut up. They are an unsustainable mirage and I'd be shocked if he crests 60 points on the season.

- Speaking of unsustainable, Alex Steen is on pace for 68 goals this year. Which, is just not going to happen. He might get to 40 though, and with a UFA contract is in line for a ridiculous pay day.

- So we are four games in to the FUNBA season and the Skywalkers are 1-3, and have not one, but two injured all-star point guards (Rose, Rondo). Sigh. At least we have Lebron-Love.

- One major difference this year in the FUNBA is that everyone plays every week. Holy crap that is making a huge difference to my attention span for basketball.

- The Reto Berra 'round-the-world' save is an absolute jaw dropper. Just sick. For a guy who was reviled as being a 'throw-in' in the J-Bo deal, he's proving that he may well have a future. He's big (6'4"), athletic, and aside from some rust and growing pains, appears to be a legit NHL starter caliber guy.

- Even with decent goaltending, the Flames are now having too many injuries to be competitive. Losing Giordano was a serious blow, but having Wideman and Monahan go down after blocking shots is pretty much the coup de grace for the Flames season.

- Another pleasant surprise for the Flames, Kris Russell. Not big, not a burner, but solid and productive with a crisp pass and a nice shot. He's a keeper.

- If I were a GM I would invest in at least one player (Jusi Jokinen, I'm looking at you) who is a shoot-out 'specialist'. Finding a guy who is money in the shoot-out is about the most efficient method possible for creating points in the standings. A guy like Jokinen might make the difference between missing the playoffs and making them - and given Jokinen could have been had off the waiver wire last year, the investment to get those extra points is actually quite small.

- Feaster traded a 3rd rnd pick to get Corban Knight, and a 4th rnd pick to get Joe Colborne. These are flat out ridiculous deals in Feaster's favour. Knight and Colborne are big, young pivots on entry level deals and both have very legitimate shots at long NHL careers. The picks represent a collective 15% chance of producing a single NHL player. To recap, two useful centerman with size, youth and high ceilings for the 15% chance of an NHL player. Massive. Win.

- Malkin is entering 'beast mode' with 19 points in his last 12 games and the league lead in assists.

- Watch out for the Lowlanders in the FUNBA, they've been a roll lately, and show no signs of slowing down. Also beware of Darrel's Goodfellas, they finished 2nd last year and are looking to make another run at the top.

- The Oilers won three in a row recently, but that may have more to do with a soft spot in the schedule than with an actual improvement in how they are playing. Once Chicago showed up in Edmonton the blowouts returned.

- Tyrion Lannister is my favourite character on TV right now, with a solid second place to Johnny Lee Miller's recovering heroin addict Sherlock Holmes on 'Elementary'. Game of Thrones blows me away. First because it is just so very good tv, but also because it represents the living embodiment of all those hundreds of hours of D+D I played through my teens and early twenties.

- Watch for the Leafs to go into a major tail-spin despite their very good record. The advance stats (especially Corsi and PDO) indicate they have been getting outplayed in almost every game (often by a wide margin), and living off unsustainable shooting %s, hot goaltending, and horse shoe shaped suppositories. With the recent spanking by Columbus (6-0) and a followup SO loss to the Penguins where they blew a 4 goal lead and didn't record a shot in the 3rd period or overtime, the advanced stat chickens are coming home to roost.

- My son and I invented a new chess variation, 'Hilton Chess'. Oliver starts with; a King, a Rook, a Bishop, and a Knight, while Dad gets a King and three pawns. Oliver has to checkmate Dad before he advances a pawn to Oliver's home row. I love this because it gives Oliver a chance to experience a very good chance of killing Dad, while stressing the differences in how Rooks, Bishops and Knights move on the board. I think this game could catch on. Watch for it at your local game stores.

- It doesn't look to me like there is any way possible for Jason Spezza to make the Canadian Olympic team. Too many pivots ahead of him, and Spezza doesn't bring anything extra to the table outside of his playmaking.

- So Rogers just dropped $5.2B on NHL hockey rights and then turned around and made a deal with CBC to keep Hockey Night in Canada on CBC while all the revenue from those games goes to Rogers. Total. Victory.

- Does Bob MacKenzie jump to Sportsnet now? Please? TSN will be dead to me without wall to wall hockey coverage, and Bobby-Mac is by far the best analyst in the business, so while everybody moans and wails about what will happen to Don Cherry, I'm actually more concerned about a MacKenzie deficit.

- I like Brent Seabrook at ton, but I wouldn't put him on the Olympic roster ahead of PK Subban.

- If I were the Capitals, I'd be very, very, interested in finding out what the cost of acquiring Ryan Miller would be.

- I'd take Claude Giroux ahead of Eric Staal for the Olympic team.

- I checked out the Grey Cup for a bit while it was on. It was never on doubt, and with Peyton Manning vs. Tom Brady on the other channel it wasn't a close choice as to what to watch



Week 9 Line-ups (last week for ww bids)

To the favourite for Coach of the Year - Roy of the Avs at the Quarter point of the Year

Please post Week 9 line-ups here...

Last week for ww bids.

WD1 to be on Sunday, Dec 8th at noon  mst

Good luck and Good night!

Week 8 - Final Stats


FUNHL News and Notes

Hey everyone,

Ok, I know, I didn't do a draft review, and I haven't posted a N+N in forever. My bad.

I believe somebody captured Bladerunner's mgt at the precise moment they heard about Stamkos breaking his leg;

- The Wolves are dressing three prospects (Jones, Silvferberg, and J.Schultz), and have an FP in the QMJHL. So how come they aren't in last place? Answer; Tukka Rask.

- Flames play the Oilers tonight, with Calgary 5 points ahead of their northern rivals with 2 games in hand. Sure it is early as we are only at the quarterpole of the season, but damn am I looking forward to the big ass bottle of Scotch that will be heading my way at the end of the year. By my reckoning the Oilers are missing; a #2 C with size and face-off ability, 3 top 6 D-men, and a legit starting goaltender. Sure Ilya Bryzgalov might be the missing goalie, but even if he is balls-out awesome there are just way too many holes on this roster. Also, Bryzgalov got shelled by the Abbotsford Heat in his AHL debut, so expecting his Vezina calibre #s from a few years back would be unlikely.

Watching the Oilers completely meltdown in the middle of their rebuild is all kinds of awesome. Kevin Lowe's off-season speech about how 'he knows a little something about winning' is even more fun than watching Rob Ford explain in a live interview how he wouldn't drunkenly proffer oral sex to a staff member because he eats enough pussy at home. Good times. Go Flames!

- One of the stats from last night that stood out for me; Nail Yakupov selected 1st overall a year ago has 4 points and is -10,146 (and has his agent publicly requesting he be traded), Thomas Hertl selected late in the 1st rnd by SJ has 18 points in 20 games and is a +4. Magnificent Bastard my ass. ;-)

- Bob's got his Shadowmen near the top of the league right now, but isn't riding just a few hot guys to do it. Toews and Kopitar have both been OK, but not amazingballs, so the credit has to go to the depth he has on the team. That said, losing J-Quick for a month might make those shadows a little less terrifying moving forward.

- Speaking of goaltenders lost to injury, the Severed Heads lost both goaltenders within 20 minutes of each other in the same evening when Rinne and Ward were carted off the ice. Add to it that the 'Heads lost theiir top 2 picks (Letang and Neal) to injury prior to the season even starting, and that Brent Burns has gone from unstoppable force to 'week to week' with 'dental issues', and I'lll say this about the Injury Gods - they have a sense of humour.

- If I'm the Highlanders my biggest concern is A) Crosby might get hurt, and B) that LW looks a little shakey. Can't do anything about A), but a trade for someone at Left better than Andrew Ladd would be my top priority.

- It's funny but Dan's Great Whites seem to collect D-men prospects the way Dan's Chumfeeders collect point guards. I'm not saying it's wrong, just funny.

- While I'm on the Great Whites, what the hell is going on with Claude Giroux? Two years ago the guy was in the conversation for 2nd-3rd best player in the world (after Malkin ;-), but now can't even reach a ppg and is falling out of Olympic consideration (Stamkos' injury helps him a ton though).

- I really thought that the Vanek-Moulson trade would elevate Tavares' scoring #s into the ultra-elite category while making Vanek a legit 50 goal threat. Turns out, not so much.

- I see that the Edge are in last place, and I seriously don't know why outside of some subpar goaltending. OV and Kane are both doing well, and Duchene gives them a legit 1st line C to go with what looks like an above average D (at least on paper). My only advice would be to trade for a real goalie and hang in there. And maybe get some legit TG's.

- Looking over the Barbarians roster, I'm reminded of Team Donut - no centers. B. Richards is...ok, I guess, and Lecavalier (when healthy) could be a below average #2, but is really best suited as a #3. Overall, I'd say their Achilles heel is pretty glaring.

- That said, there is definitely hope for the Barbarians team composition, as one has only to look at the PV to see a sucessful team that is even worse at C than the Barbarians. Datsyuk is a legit #1, but Plekanec is not a legit #2 and M.Richards is borderline terrible as a #3. However, Darrell's team is pretty boffo everywhere else, especially at LW. Seriously though, I believe he's doing it with smoke and mirrors.

- The Knights Templar are the other team with three prospects on the active roster; Landeskog, Hodgson and Wheeler. Of them, I have a strong fear that Hodgson is in real trouble to produce #s in Buffalo (cuz the Sabres are flat out terrible), and that Landeskog's stats have been bouyd by the very hot start the Av's have had - at some point, they will cool off. Still, some very nice pieces for the future.

- Last but not least, my vote for best defense corps in the FUNHL goes to Chris, his quintet of; Pietrangelo, Doughty, Phaneuf, Visnovsky and Dekeyser is I believe tops in the league. Lots of weakness at the forward spots, especially after the top line.

Week Seven - Friday Night Games


Week Seven Stats (at last)

Sorry for the tardiness this week, child-induced sleep deprevation and "work" obligations seem to have taken their toll but we should be all good now.

Bob, already ahead of you on the Beaucheman +/- call by Rob.  I also noticed that I had been playing Chris had played more than two TGs last week (now corrected - no change to Challenge Cup results).

Still, if anyone notices something looks amiss with their stats - please let me know.  Till then, how 'bout that FunBA pool :-)


Week Six Stats - Thursday Night Games

Do NOT trust these Omnivore Stats - have not rechecked the baseline in a few days and suspect things will change a bit when I do.


Week Six - Monday Night Games

Thanks again to Bob for posting all the line-ups.

I noticed, while doing the line-ups, that I missed a couple of points on Week 5 for Collin.  I've included them in the total now.  They did not impact the Challenge Cup match-up.


Week Six Line-Ups

The Fans of the FUNHL are intrigued by the close fight among all the teams as we pass the quarter-mark of the season0 in terms of games finished in the nhl...

Please post your Week 6  submissions...

Week Five - Final Stats (Not Distracted By Crying 3 Year-Old Edition)