Oilers Fantasy Hockey Forecast - 12/14/2010
Value underdogs and a player on the rise highlight this week's Forecast
Then, the Vancouver Canucks came to town and silenced the arsenal. The Oilers were only able to record 12 shots on goal in a game that seemed to change the atmosphere in a hurry. Suddenly, the team’s focus shifted and began to put more attention on the offensive side of the game.
Games like those against the Canucks are quite revealing, however. The scoring system is built around a balanced set of criteria that can be utilized when the team’s offence goes silent.
This isn’t to suggest that the offence will continue to struggle – after all, we’ve only experienced one game of the sub-standard offensive output. But what this does mean is that you can capitalize in other areas to have success and climb the ladder to the top of the leaderboard.
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With that in mind, our highlighted players this week will be some of the men that stepped up in a game that didn’t feature any high-flying offensive action. Like last week, since it happens to be a game-night, the salary adjustments will be made immediately following tonight’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
THEO PECKHAM ($1M > $2M)
Theo Peckham doesn’t rely on an offensive game. He never has, and that’s the main reason why the fans, media and coaching staff have all fallen in love with the rugged blueliner. He’s a man who plays within his limits and excels in a number of different ways.
Particularly for Fantasy Hockey, Peckham has always provided a spark to any roster. He comes in with an incredibly manageable cap-hit, while providing all the underlying numbers that make him successful. Perhaps more importantly for you, the strong performances have made Peckham one of the most valuable players to choose from.
In a game against the Canucks where the offensive output was nearly non-existent, Peckham continued to play his game; two penalty minutes and four hits provided a bit of a lift, as Peckham closed the night on the positive side of the scoring spectrum.
The great thing about a player like Peckham is that he brings this consistent effort and production each night, win or lose. For these reasons, Peckham will be getting a raise this week.
LADISLAV SMID ($1M > $2M)
For the first time this season, Ladislav Smid is one of our highlighted players. In similar fashion to Peckham, offence isn’t the reason for his inclusion. While it would be a nice addition to see Smid chip in offensively every now and then, his numbers in other areas still make him an astute selection.
Defensively, Smid continues to be a rock on the blueline. Blocked shots, hits, a positive number on the plus-minus scale and more have helped to develop a Fantasy Hockey underdog. With an increase in special teams minutes, Smid has an even greater opportunity to step up and establish himself in this extremely competitive environment. Quietly, the 24-year old has been climbing the charts; a relatively unheard of phenomenon to arise with a player that doesn’t play as flashy a game as others.
While Smid’s Fantasy point totals still have him ranked near the bottom of the standings among his fellow defencemen, the value associated with his addition could potentially provide you with some greater flexibility to add players elsewhere.
As we’ve learned, this game is all about cap management. It could prove beneficial to include a player like Smid to further enhance the variety on your roster as you look to make a charge up the leaderboard.
That decision, however, becomes more difficult with the slight raise the young blueliner will be receiving this week.
MAGNUS PAAJARVI ($2M > $3M)
While Magnus Paajarvi doesn’t necessarily fall into the foot soldier category, the dynamic winger has played in a number of different roles this season. His offensive game appears to be heating up despite the oft-altered line combinations, and the results of late have reflected a player on the rise.
Although his five-game point streak was snapped Sunday night against the Vancouver Canucks, Paajarvi’s elevated confidence has helped him rediscover his pre-season promise. Bumps in the road happen, particularly for young rookies who are entering a new league, but the highly-skilled Swede is developing into something special.
After a quiet few weeks in which Paajarvi was unable to score in 19 games, he’s been coming on strong and providing some of the most consistent offensive numbers on the team over the past few games. With new line combinations set to debut again tonight, another challenge will be offered as he looks to further improve on an already rapidly developing offensive game.
As such, he will be credited with a raise this week as the team looks to get back on track through the offensive prowess of Magnus Paajarvi and others.
Author: Ryan Dittrick | edmontonoilers.com