Big Lead Sports Bar


Koz: Trade Crosby Now

It’s time for a playoff run. It’s time to do the unthinkable. Trade Sidney Crosby. Look, I’d take a Jason Blake spear for the guy, but the team won’t survive without him. It’s time to make a move while other GM’s are willing to bite. I’m serious.

Do I have your attention? I’m not talking to Ray Shero. I’m talking to you, fantasy hockey manager. The fact of the matter is King Crosby is out until Easter, which if you are in a head-to-head league, might mean the rest of the regular fantasy season. Now is the time to move (or make a move for) everyone’s favorite Nova Scotian. Let’s review a couple scenarios for head-to-head leagues.

Unless you are at the top of your league, six or eight weeks are a lifetime. You can’t risk missing the playoffs. You ought to be able to get a two for one, or even three for one deal.

If you’re in the need for some goaltending, you might package him with a mediocre goalie and make a play for one of the studs. This could really flip the makeup and strategy of your team, but good goalies are hard to come by (just look at your league’s waiver wire). With more and more teams going to goalie by committee, the top goalies are overvalued. Remember, no one ever wins a fantasy hockey league with crappy goaltending.

If you’re in a league with my mom or someone else who is obsessed with Sid, they might overpay for him. By all means, take advantage of that.

Of course, with all this, the inverse is true. If you don’t have Sid and you’ve been dying to get him on your team, now is the chance. You might pry him away from an anxious owner, especially if he’s got a couple injured players on the roster already. If you’re confident in your playoff spot, Crosby figures to come out on fire when he returns to the ice in mid-March, just in time to lead you to a championship. There is also the hope that he’s a quick healer and comes back earlier than expected. If you have goalie depth but you’re a little weak in the scoring department, you might take a chance to balance your team

If you’re in a keeper league… well you should have stopped reading several paragraphs ago.

Alright, back to real life.

I-Told-You-So of the Week: Not a bad all-star game, eh? I don’t care how it’s played; any game that is decided in the last minute is one worth watching. The Penguins’ representatives played well with two assists from Malkin and a couple slick plays by Gonchar to keep offensive chances alive for the East.

NHL Improvement Idea of the Week: The two new additions to the skills competition worked well. The obstacle course had a good team aspect and the breakaway challenge (unofficially sponsored by And1) was exciting, even though no one scored on any of the fancy tries. It will be much better next year I’m sure. If you look back at some of the early NBA dunk contests, they were pretty tame. Over the years, the bar was raised and we’ve seen some crazy stuff. I expect the same creativity for the breakaways. I like that they have a goalie in the net, because an empty net just wouldn’t be that interesting, but they have to force them to stay in the crease to allow for the creative moves. The last thing we need is Dominik Hasek to charge out of the crease and knock out Ovechkin in the middle of his 360 spin.

Waiting to pounce at any moment…

Street Hockey Memories: Speaking of the Dominator, does anyone remember when he pulled that move in the Stanley Cup Finals against the Penguins? This was way back when he was doing mop up duty for Ed Belfour and we had no idea he was going to be a hall of famer. Anyway, we thought he was a joke. When my brother and I played goalie in street hockey, we would charge at oncoming scorers and scream “DOMINIK HASEK!!!” and dive with reckless abandon at our friends’ knees. We thought it was hilarious.

Hockey YouTube of the Week: This one comes courtesy of my Canadian friend. It’s Sidney Crosby in happier, younger times. His composure in this interview is almost frightening.

Your Accu-Weather Forecast: After escaping New Jersey with a 4-2 win, the Pens have two games against SouthLeast Division opponents before visiting the Devils again on Monday (televised on Versus for all my fellow out-of-town Pens fans). The team has survived with a patchwork crew so far. It’s conceivable that the Pens could secure nine of 12 possible points in the first two weeks without #87, with most of those games played on the road. That’s certainly better than most thought possible. After Monday the next four games are at the Mellon before Valentine’s Day. January has been quite a ride of highs (Conklin, Winter Classic, Crazy Evgeni’s Hat Bonanza) and lows (nearly the entire team auditioning to appear as extras on Grey’s Anatomy, Recchi’s Revenge, the “Season Debut” Line, Brooks Orpik playing left wing). Hopefully February brings the Pens better health and continued success.


The Duke from Dukes Court said...

Seeing that old picture of Hasek brought back memories of former Blackhawk goalie and 1992 US Olympic standout Ray LeBlanc.

LeBlanc was crazy good in the 1992 Olympics going 5-2-1 with two shutouts. Sadly he only played 1 game in net in the NHL allowing 1 goal in a 5-1 win.

Koz said...

You are my hero. I was just trying to think of his name a week or two ago and I couldn't for the life of me. That's awesome.

The Duke from Dukes Court said...

The crazy thing is that one of the old NHL games for Sega and SNES, (I think NHL 93) actually had him on the Blackhawks roster along with Hasek and Belfour. I loved putting him in net after seeing him play so well in the Olympics.