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Fantasy Hockey Mailbag: March Madness!

There is madness from the NHL Trade Deadline and then there is sheer madness from the week of injuries. It feels like it has been long and maybe that is true. No one can escape the litany of injuries. Just when you think it stops, another one seriously pops up. This happened several times as I was writing the mailbag up in the last few days. Then I would have to scrap it and start all over again. It is much like the writer who has his deadline piece already to go and then the game gets tied and goes to overtime. The backspace and delete keys get a workout like few have ever seen.

Sadly that was again the case Friday afternoon when word of this spread onto the internet. That would be Nathan MacKinnon news that his season is over after breaking his foot. He will be out 6-8 weeks. As if fantasy hockey fans did not have a high enough misery index as it was. This has been one rough stretch and it does not look like it will get any better. 

Now the questions.....

Fantasy Hockey Mailbag

With the sudden rash of injuries, what is a fantasy hockey manager to do these days?

If you look up and down enough lineups, you can see that the latest rash of injuries seemed to begin with the knee injury of Tyler Seguin. From there, it was a series of maladies over and over and over again. Before you knew it, it seemed like the injury report was multiplying. From Kyle Okposo all the way to MacKinnon, it just has been a tough time of it. There are some fantasy teams that had no red on their pages a couple weeks ago only to have a full complement of players on the injured reserve list with no room to spare. 

Basically most trade deadlines are done in your fantasy hockey leagues. However, if you should be lucky, then definitely make some offers. Remember you are not in a position of strength but hey, a value or two may still to be had. This is when your skills of spotting talent come in handy. Also keep in mind, a few players like Tyler Seguin, Kyle Okposo, and Henrik Lundqvist should be back in the next week or two weeks. 

If you can hang in there, that is great. If you cannot, be shrewd in your trips to the good old waiver wire. It might net you the next Andrew Hammond. You never know. 

Why do you not do winners and losers of the trade deadline?

This is true. I don't believe in it. Simply this goes back to years ago where making judgments over time was more beneficial than snap assessments. Sometimes we have to in this business but right now, I prefer to look at it more in the sense of which teams made improvement while other teams lost an opportunity. 

There are lots of reasons why some teams did not make a lot of moves. The market this year was a very convoluted one with seemingly changing prices all the time. Think of it as an ever changing breathing entity. Sometimes it just takes a life of its own and sometimes it just runs with it. That is how the trade deadline goes. Teams like Anaheim definitely improved themselves while a team like New Jersey lost an opportunity partially because they did not act fast enough or properly showcase their players. Honestly, when your assets are not good enough, that is a different kind of lost opportunity. 

In later posts, we will delve into some of the best and worst (closer to playoff time). After all, that is where these teams want to be and why they made the moves in the first place. 

Last question.....who do you see as the one team falling out of their playoff spot?

It has been this one for awhile now, for me anyway. That team is the Winnipeg Jets. They seem to suffer injuries at the worst time (see Dustin Byfuglien and Bryan Little). Their goaltending is showing cracks again. The team defense always seems to have gaps when it should not and Paul Maurice has this knack of making the wrong decision up there when the right one is needed. It is hard to explain but that team just finds a way to end up not in the top eight when all is said and done. 


That is it for this week.....see you next week with more...yes...more questions.