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Playing against yourself a tough call

Patrick Sharp has been great in the Windy City this season, scoring 18 goals and 30 points in 33 games.

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Patrick Sharp has been great in the Windy City this season, scoring 18 goals and 30 points in 33 games.

Hey Dobber, I have a theoretical question: when one of your goalies is playing a given night, and one of your star forwards is playing against them, should you bench one in order to maximize the night's output? For example, when it  is Ryan Miller vs. Daniel Briere, is it a matter of which players, or is it just a fantasy no-no?
Wyatt, Oakville, Ont.

Great question. There is no hard and fast rule for this situation and different poolies have different theories.

Myself, I like to play both. The only time I would consider benching someone in this situation is if it is coming down to the final couple of weeks of the season and I am firmly entrenched in a certain category.

For example, if I am in third in a couple of goaltending categories and there is no way I can move up or down based on one game, then I will bench the goalie. If I am 10 goals up on the next team and 10 goals behind another team, then I would bench the skater.

Throughout the season, though, I do not consider such a move and have already had several instances where I had a top forward play one of my goaltenders and I kept them both active.

I have Zherdev in a keeper league and have been offered Marleau - should I make that deal?
Rob, Edmonton, Alta.

You should be tripping over things in your rush to get to the computer/phone to accept that offer. Marleau is a proven 80-point player in his prime, while Zherdev has given you 30 games.

Dobber, I'm in a 12-team deep keeper league. I have been offered Higgins, Gionta, and Kronwall for Ranger, Horcoff and a third lesser player. We set our roster once for each week and I currently play Datsyuk, Lecavalier, and Savard as my centers, Huselius, Carcillo, and Naslund as my LW, Jagr, Bouchard, and Cleary as my RW. My starting defensemen are Gonchar, Ranger, Liles, Aucoin, Komisarek, and Kubina. I have yet to start Horcoff due to my top three centers. Should I hold out for a better deal? Thanks,
Rhys, Cincinnati, Ohio

I would. You need to upgrade your RW position, especially with Jaromir Jagr playing so poorly for fantasy owners, as well as your LW, with Daniel Carcillo now on the shelf for 6-8 weeks.

I think you can do better than Brian Gionta and Chris Higgins here – especially when your trade partner is asking you to part with Paul Ranger in exchange for an injury-prone Niklas Kronwall. Keep shopping, but don’t take too long. You can do better than this deal, but not too much.

I am thinking of picking up Patrick Sharp in my keeper league. Where do you see his fantasy value?
Kevin, Winnipeg, Man.

The Chicago forward is having a breakout season and is still young at 25. In the summer, I would have pegged his upside to be in the mid-50s, however I have since re-evaluated.

I cautiously state he could be a solid 65-point man and I haven’t shut the door on the idea of 70 just yet. His American League numbers don’t indicate ‘big scorer,’ but he did do well at the college level.

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

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