The Benefits of a Lockout
Posted 20 September 2012 - 04:00 PM
In any article, anywhere, anytime anyone in anyway states that a full year lockout is a good thing for ____ (insert NHL player or team), it is a relative term. Anyhow (there goes my last "any"), there are definitely players, teams and leagues that are hurt less than others. In fantasy, this is what we should be concerned about. It doesn't matter if your players all hit career lows in power-play points if that was due to a massive reduction in penalties called throughout the NHL, as you will likely not be at a disadvantage in relation to the other teams. The same is true here.
Will the Edmonton Oilers be hurt by a year lockout?
No. A precious year of their ELC induced magic window will have been sacrificed. Any possible chemistry between the last three first overall picks will almost certainly be set back by a year. If the past is any guide, they would probably have a better chance at landing Nathan Mackinnon or Seth Jones if the season was played out rather than by a lottery.( http://www.cbc.ca/sp...raft050713.html )
Will the Oilers be hurt by said lockout in relation to other teams?
No. They do not lose a year of a championship window. Players such as Yakupov and Shultz will have time to play and possibly dominate in a pro league before being thrust into the spotlight. They have relatively few veterans who will deteriorate with age. And despite reports that Ryan Whitney is healthy, any rest is good rest for him.
With those differences out of the way, let us look at some players in leagues that will benefit from a lockout.
A quick note: You can read more about this topic in other parts of this Roto guide as well as multiple superb pieces from Jeff Angus at his blog Angus Certified on the way that specific teams will be affected. If you are in a knowledgeable, competitive league, the chances that you are the only one of your leaguemates reading this is slim. Thus, I will try to give you an advantage by showing you the tools with which you can find your own gems.
Leagues with players who will benefit (relatively) from a lockout:
Unanimous #1 (voting conducted by Austin Wallace and I):
Partial lockout benefit (assuming that the lockout ends in early December, just enough time to appease HBO and the owner's pockets [which are obviously starved of cash]): 10/10
Full lockout benefit: 7/10
That's right. The NHL will be the league that most benefits from a lockout. Notable members should include Brodeur, Kelser, Quick and many others. The No Hockey League is for National Hockey League players to take some time off and rest due to age or injury. The chances that Kesler would come back too soon from another labrum surgery are about the same that DiPietro will (not) play a few games in this league in the next couple months, and not necessarily of his own volition.
Take a look around for established fantasy producers who have been rehabbing an injury this summer or for those that will likely not play elsewhere due to age. If you project a significant, partial year, lockout, then rankings that do not will underrate these players. I have been looking into this a bit and I believe that there is a causal relationship between training time (versus rehab or playing time) in the offseason and fantasy production. Not only will Kesler and company be basically forced to properly rehab their injury, they will have time to return to top form.
However, if you project a full year lockout, then older players fall down a notch as father time will take his toll, whether Jagr is tearing up European leagues or sitting on his couch, watching junior hockey.
Partial lockout benefit: 9/10
Full lockout benefit: 7/10
The AHL stands to be the (real) league in which its players will most benefit from a partial year lockout. Players who may not be entirely fantasy relevant in one year leagues without a lockout, may get a boost in value from playing in the AHL. Players in that league will face a game that is most similar to the NHL's than any other league and should, theoretically, be best suited to jump
If Derek Stepan dominates the AHL, he could have the necessary confidence to jump right onto the top line of the Rangers or at least 1b and bypass any fantasy predictions that a guide might make.
If your league allows transactions during the lockout, closely follow players that excel against AHL+ competition and don't be afraid to take a chance on someone lighting it up against NHL players, even if the general opinion is dim on that player.
In keeper leagues, there are a multitude of prospects for whom the best level of competition and opportunity for them developmentally lies between the AHL and what is available to them in the NHL.
Eddie Lack is possibly the best goalie in the world to not have appeared in an NHL game. He has also excelled against NHL competition ( http://nhlnumbers.co...-vs-nhl-players ). However, he won't play in the NHL until one of the two franchise goaltenders ahead of him moves on and he proves that he can be relied on in pressure situations against exceptional completion. When you can't go to the talent, the next best thing is having the talent come to him. By playing against more (and higher quality) NHL shooters, Lack should be able to hone his skills and confidence enough that he is guaranteed the backup role for the Canucks, after a certain trade has finally been made.
Any player/prospect in the AHL whose spot on the depth chart is not negatively affected has a chance during the lockout to wow us and their teams and to fast track their development.
Partial lockout benefit: 6/10
Full lockout benefit: +/- 8/10
Of the three leagues presented here, the KHL is the most mysterious en...gine (just because it is seemingly a common middle name of some Russians, i.e. Kovalev and Semin, doesn't mean that it is a suitable adjective for the KHL) of potential growth for NHL players. It is likely that many Russian players will play in the KHL, given that Russian players are more welcome than other NHL imports (http://ca.sports.yah...45356--nhl.html). It is also likely that the vast majority of them will come back to play in the NHL. However, there is always a risk that an NHL player, Russian or not, is poached to that league, at least for the rest of the season. It is considered to be second to only the NHL in terms of skill level. However, from all accounts, the KHL has a significantly different playing style than the NHL. In the case of a partial season lockout, it may take players, who are now used to the KHL, longer to reacclimatize to the NHL rink and style.
If there is a full season lockout, that is another story. In that case, an NHL player could enjoy success, the playoffs and good competition while still having time to train for the next NHL season. However, NHLers who sign in the KHL for a full year could potentially be lured back for more of the stardom that they experienced. If there is any hint of the NHL lockout going for more than one season, there could be a veritable flood of talent from all nations to the KHL. Thus the +/- sign in front of the KHL's full year lockout rating. Although a player may develop more in the KHL than the AHL, it does not mean that success (or their new language) will translate to the NHL
Hockey Management Intern for UBC Thunderbirds.
Associate Editor for Dobber Sports Network.
Designing a UBC Hockey Management Degree.
Posted 20 September 2012 - 04:06 PM
It's garbage watching billionaires fight with millionaires while the average folk suffer.
Posted 20 September 2012 - 04:51 PM
Posted 20 September 2012 - 05:13 PM
Posted 20 September 2012 - 05:22 PM
-Division of NHLPA and Owners
-Players, Owners, Agents etc. lose out on moeny. Causing anger/unrest
-Winter gets reeeeeeaaaallllllllllll boring
-Biggest excuse to not do things like work/exercise is now voided.
-NBA all over the sports channels. This is simply unacceptable.
-Our stars get one year older
-Risk of solid NHL talent leaving for other leagues
-League rep goes down the toilet.....again
-The people who work the arenas have to find new jobs and risk losing their standard of living because overly rich babies, both players and owners alike, can't get their **** together.
-My fantasy league goes stale. This is the biggest tragedy of them all if you didn't realize.
Edited by Magikal, 20 September 2012 - 05:23 PM.
Credit to Lahey.
Posted 20 September 2012 - 05:26 PM
Posted 20 September 2012 - 06:00 PM
Credit to -Vintage Canuck-
Posted 20 September 2012 - 06:21 PM
Credit to -Vintage Canuck- for the awesome sig!
"Gino, Gino, Gino, Gino!"
Rest In Peace, Rypien, Demitra, and Bourdon
Posted 20 September 2012 - 07:38 PM
Edit: Also quick question, if the NHL resume in say December, do they still start the season with a training camp and pre-season?
Edited by Tystick, 20 September 2012 - 07:39 PM.