Fantasy Hockey Playoff ONE (6/15)
WRITTEN BY CHRIS WASSEL | 15 JUNE 2011
Can anyone believe this is the last time we will be doing this until October? Well sadly that is the reality. However it has been a fun and amazing ride. Boston and Vancouver come into a Game 7 on the “Ides Of June” that will feature a bit of everything. It would be the way this season would come to an end. Would one come to expect any different?
There has been all the talk and frankly that talk just gets old. No lip service can do any justice now. The hours are dwindling down to game time and quickly at that. The fantasy numbers have been bizarre in this series as Vancouver has scored little while Boston has shown quite an array of balance (and scoring a lot more). Yet the series is still even with a winner being decided finally. The reality for fantasy hockey fans is that the game in Vancouver means Roberto Luongo and Tim Thomasshould play well.
It would be worth it to talk about the other six games in great length but a Game 7 is just unique or so we think at times. 2009 showed us a tense gripping matchup between Detroit and Pittsburgh that heated up over the final 12 minutes. 2003 was a clinic by New Jersey against a game but overmatched Anaheim squad.
Vancouver has only scored eight times in this series while Boston has tallied 21 times after six games. Everyone has talked about how Roberto Luongo has only given up two goals in three home games but again this is Game 7. Tim Thomasonly gave up five goals in three games in Vancouver but this is a Game 7. Everyone knows what is at stake here as it adds a pressure unlike any other for these teams.
All that anyone asks is that this Game 7 has none of the shenanigans that has otherwise marred a fairly entertaining series. The study in contrasts has made this one of the most talked about Stanley Cup Finals in recent memory as far as hockey and fantasy hockey.
Injuries have played an obvious role in this series with Dan Hamhuis and Mason Raymond out for Game 7 while Nathan Horton is out for Boston. Yes Hamhuis is listed as questionable but at this time we would be very surprised if he even played. The same goes for Nathan Horton who is apparently trying to convince doctors that he can play. Really, Horton cannot play at all but he is trying hard.
At last it is time to officially display the schedule for the last time. This is all getting a little sad, well maybe not.
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Well there can be no retreat or surrender now. Check your egos at the door as we run the sims for a final time this year. NHL11 has been very good to us and for the most part has been pretty good with predicting what could happen. There is no way that it comes close to perfect even in the most ideal of circumstances but at least there is a barometer to see the potential so to speak.
Unlikely heros almost seem to always pop up in these Game 7’s. Just ask Mike Rupp sometime about 2003 when he had a goal and two assists. Most of these heroes have that moment and then it either fades or they just go back to being the player they were. Fantasy tendencies often point that out but for poolies looking to that final edge, this is it. It will come to an end soon enough. Most pools are sewn up but a few are not.
What will be learned from this Final is quite extensive. Roberto Luongo is still the goalie we kind of thought he was. He can be elite but he can almost be downright abysmal at times which has to confound many. it is scary that he is one win from a Stanley Cup. Tim Thomas is also an interesting case because now the question will be can you do it again next year? Consistency is so fleeting in the post-lockout NHL for the most part.
Fantasy owners need some level of consistency and these players do not always bring that level. Fantasy hockey really has that unique challenge going for it as mediocrity rules and breakouts and downfalls happen more than ever. Numbers are now just that, numbers.
It is now finally sim time. We ran seven sims in honor of Game 7 and they really did not deviate all that much as far as score. Maybe it was because the game was in Vancouver but normally a sim does not take that into account honestly.
Instead of boring everyone as to how all seven sims ran, we decided to just list our 5 x 5 key players as we always do with a little commentary as has been our trademark.
- Tim Thomas (BOS) — 2 GA on 35 shots
- Zdeno Chara (BOS) — 1 goal, 4 SOG
- David Krejci (BOS) — 1 assist
- Dennis Seidenberg (BOS) — 5 hits, 3 SOG
- Milan Lucic (BOS) — 1 assist, 4 SOG
- Roberto Luongo (VAN) — 1 GA on 27 shots
- Ryan Kesler (VAN) — 1 goal, 3 SOG
- Alex Burrows (VAN) — 2 assists, 3 SOG
- Alex Edler (VAN) — 1 assist, 4 SOG
- Henrik Sedin (VAN) — 1 assist, 2 SOG
Now surely there are always wildcards. Kevin Bieksa is a player that could surprise along with Max Lapierre. People are forgetting about Raffi Torres and Jannik Hansen as well. These are the types of players that Vancouver has that could provide the unexpected spark as they have for stretches of this series (particularly at home).
Boston has guys that serve much the same purpose as Mark Recchi, Brad Marchand, and Rich Peverley really have brought it when it comes to playing in Boston. One guy that will get forgotten a bit but never should is Patrice Bergeron. He played with an edge and perhaps too much of one in Game 6 as he took three minors in the second period. How he plays in Game 7 could go a long way in determining Boston’s fate. That will have a ripple effect on other players as well.
Game 7 really shapes up to be a culmination of what has been a bizarre series yet for some reason the last two game 7’s have been low scoring and I do not see why this one will be any different. Our prediction is simple and yet to the point. Will we be right? I have no clue.
Vancouver 2 Boston 1 (FINAL)
Posted on June 15, 2011, in NHL Playoffs and tagged Alain Vigneault, Boston Bruins, Brad Marchand, Daniel Paille, Daniel Sedin, Gregory Campbell, Henrik Sedin, Michael Ryder, Milan Lucic, NHL Playoffs, Roberto Luongo, Stanley Cup Finals, Tim Thomas, Tyler Seguin, Vancouver Canucks, Zdeno Chara. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.