The Â‘Finnish Flash' had been written off by more than one poolie prior to this season. Anaheim's Teemu Selanne was even dropped in one of the keeper leagues that I am in. At the time, I didn't question the decision in the least. After all, a 35-year-old who would barely pick up 55 points (and even then, only if he had a strong comeback year) is not going to do your team a whole lot of good.
Well, the lucky owner who scooped Selanne right back up again two picks later is sure looking brilliant. An 85- to 90-point season will do that.
Strong comeback year? How about a MONSTER comeback year? I predicted low 50s this season for Selanne. Had I doubled that prediction, I would have been a lot closer. Selanne is one player who I have been wrong about all season, as I predicted a big slowdown in one of my January columns. Currently on a seven-game run in which he has garnered 14 points, that slowdown is sure taking its time to arrive.
So what does the future hold? Do you really trust what I say about Teemu Selanne anymore? Okay, I will give it a shot. The word out of Anaheim is that Selanne is considering retirement, but if he does not retire he will not be wearing any other NHL jersey other than the Ducks. My money is on him remaining in the league for at least another year, probably two, with his production declining 10-15 points each seasonÂ…
Chicago's Radim Vrbata has 24 points in his last 30 games. This would give him 66 points over a full NHL schedule, and that is around where I see him at for next season. He may be under a few radars at the summer draft, particularly if it is for a one-year hockey pool with a group of Â‘casual' fans. Just something to file away until SeptemberÂ…
Injuries, from a fantasy pool perspective: Carolina's Josef Vasicek will be back in the lineup on Monday after missing most of the season with left knee surgeryÂ…Calgary's Mike Leclerc has a broken wrist and will miss the first two rounds of the playoffs. This assures a spot in the lineup for Jamie Lundmark, who is averaging a point per game in a Calgary uniform so far, but had some trouble getting ice time. This will be the third straight season - and four of the last five - that Leclerc could not remain healthy for 60 games. I would not want him on my fantasy squad until that changes.
Farm Report: Islanders 2005 seventh round draft pick (210 overall) Luch Aquino has been tearing up the Ontario League this season. A smallish center, Aquino is a late bloomer, which would explain why he wasn't drafted until he was 20. He did not put up the numbers in a nine-game stint with Bridgeport of the American League earlier this year, and he did not overly impress in the ECHL either. However, once back in the OHL, Aquino put up 72 points in just 32 games for Brampton. That's one more point than last season when he played 33 more games! He has 10 points in four games in the playoffs so far. It will be interesting to see if he can adapt to the AHL next season.
Darryl Dobbs' Fantasy Hockey Pool Look is an in-depth presentation of player trends, injuries and much more as it pertains to rotisserie pool leagues. Get the edge in your league - check out the latest scoop every Wednesday and Friday afternoon. Also, get the top 250 roto-player rankings on the first of every month in THN's Fantasy section.
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