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Just a little patience

Miikka Kiprusoff is off to a slow start this season with a .872 save percentage and 3.81 goals-against average. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

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Miikka Kiprusoff is off to a slow start this season with a .872 save percentage and 3.81 goals-against average. (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

Poolies are pondering how to fix some early mistakes, so without further ado - let’s get to some letters!

Steve Bernier or Jakub Voracek at RW? Both are available, looking to pick one up.
Jeff, Denver, Colo.


In both one-year and keeper leagues, I would prefer Voracek.

Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp, Nigel Dawes, Zdeno Chara. Will any of these, in your opinion, put up good numbers this season? If not, whom should I trade for?
Patrick, Kenilworth, N.J.


That depends on your definition of “good numbers” Patrick. Despite his slow start, I still feel Toews will get 65 points and despite his fast start I think Sharp will post the same. Dawes may be hard pressed to reach 45, while Chara will clear 50 and that’s a great number for a defenseman. See if you can pick up Kris Versteeg for Dawes, via the wire.

Hey Dobber, I am in a 12-team keeper league and all we count are goals and assists...two points for a goal, one for an assist. Who would start out of my forwards? You can only start six. Thanks. (V. Lecavalier, S. Gagne, O. Jokinen, Z. Parise, J. Pominville, P. Kane, P. Mueller, A. Hemsky, A. Kostitsyn, B. Dubinsky, P. O'Sullivan).
Brett, Regina, Sask.


If you can make weekly moves, then it would depend on the schedule. However, if I were picking for the entire year I would have Lecavalier, Jokinen, Hemsky, Kane and Pominville for sure. After that I would have trouble deciding between Mueller, Parise and O’Sullivan. Parise is the safe bet, but O’Sullivan could really pay off. If you have a risky personality go with the latter, if you have a safe one, go with the former.

Hi. Just wondering what your thoughts are on Kiprusoff. It seems that between last year and the start of this year, he is not at the form he once was. I am thinking of trying to shop him to some people with weaker goaltending (I also have Huet and Miller). Thoughts?
Patrick, Guelph, Ont.


It’s certainly a little scary and I’m glad I don’t have Kipper in any of my leagues. There are still a lot of believers out there, so I would see what you can get for him. I’m not saying he is done – in fact, I think the opposite. I’m just saying I would let someone else worry about it.

Hi, I have a very tough decision to make early... my league allows you to have six forwards: 2C, 2LW and 2RW. My roster includes Crosby, Horcoff and Marleau at center. Who would you pick as a second line center, Horcoff or Marleau? I think they are both going to have very solid years. Also, it kills me to say it, with a strong start by Horcoff and Marleau, do you think it would be a good idea to drop Crosby until he gets familiar with his new linemates and starts rolling? I mean, 2 assists in 4 games to start the season is hardly ideal... I'm looking forward to your advice. Thanks!
David, Sydney, Australia


What a difference a week makes! This letter was sent to me on the 15th and it is the perfect example of how quickly your fantasy hockey fortunes can change. Never bench one of your stud players and this is especially true for the likes of Sidney Crosby. As for the Horcoff or Marleau question, I would play whichever one plays more in the week ahead, assuming you can make weekly changes. If not, I prefer Horcoff.

Dobber, I'm in a keeper league and have three goalies, two of them being backups; one being Alex Auld of Ottawa and the other, Ty Conklin of Detroit. How many games do you project these two will play this year? Also, what is the latest news with Steve Sullivan of Nashville? Is there any hope he will play at all this year?
Wes, Beamsville, Ont.


I would guess both of those goalies will play 30 games, but I would prefer Conklin because Detroit will win more games in front of him than Ottawa will in front of Auld. As for Sullivan, he recently made it known that things are improving and he hopes to try skating again in November and if that works out he will keep pushing until he can play. Best-case scenario is late December. Worst-case scenario is that he will eventually be forced to call it a career.

Hey, I drafted Stamkos as the last of my five bench players. How long should I wait to see if he gets more ice time before I drop him?
Mike, Cranston, R.I.


I would give it at least another three weeks. After that, I would only let him go if a beautiful waiver wire opportunity presented itself. I’ve seen too many rookies have a great final 60 games to give up on Stamkos. Peter Mueller and Nicklas Backstrom come to mind from last year.

A trade has been offered to me, and I am a little stumped. I would receive Heatley and Michal Rozsival, and I would lose Kovalchuk and Mathieu Schneider. Who wins in that trade?
Steven, Calgary, Alta.


You do. I’d take Heatley over Kovalchuk and Rozsival over Schneider, so it’s a no-brainer to me.

In your "Fantasy Pool Look: Top Rookie Scorers" column, you completely left Kyle Turris off the list. Do you really think he won't even hit 40 points this year, or was that a mistake? Also, I'm in a keeper league with a salary cap and have one open spot on my LW. Right now it's occupied by Grabovski. Do you think I should hang onto him in the hopes that he can start to produce, or would I be better off calling up (we have 'farm' teams as well) one of: Filatov, Brunnstrom or Kulemin? I have all three on my farm team, but they could all see limited minutes this year, while Grabovski is guaranteed a top-six spot and managed to lead the Leafs in pre-season scoring.
Logan, Calgary, Alta.


Yes, Logan, Kyle Turris being left off that list was a mistake. I made a correction in the comments section underneath that article. I had him at 52 points and then decided to move him down to 51 points – I cut him…and forgot to paste.

As for your question, I would feel more comfortable with Fabian Brunnstrom active instead of Mikhail Grabovski.

 

Darryl Dobbs’ Fantasy Mailbag will every Wednesday throughout the season. To send the Dobber your question, click HERE.

For more great profiles, news and views from the world of hockey, Subscribe to The Hockey News magazine.

 

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