With the NHL season entering its post-all-star-break stretch drive, hopefully you find yourself in first place in your pool. Or at least in the money. Or at least within striking distance of the money.
If you're not so lucky, maybe you're thinking it's time to make a bold move or two. If you're willing to take a calculated risk, I've got a couple of suggestions for buy-low, sell-high trade proposals for fantasy owners with nothing to lose.
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. Deal #1: Need wins? Trade Craig Anderson for Carey PriceAnderson
ranks fourth in the NHL with 25 wins (a valued fantasy commodity) for the surprising Senators, while Price
is tied for 16th with only 17 victories for the floundering Habs. But Price has the superior save percentage (.915 to .909) and goals-against average (.240 to .293), and I think he could win more games than Anderson over the second half. Why? Because Montreal has been extremely unlucky, ranking last in the league in winning percentage in one-goal games (.292) and posting the worst shootout record at 1-7. Last season with Price as their No. 1 goalie, the Habs ranked fifth in one-goal-game winning percentage (.594) and went 3-3 in shootouts. That suggests their luck will even out, leading to more wins for Price in the second half.
Ottawa is 5-2 in shootouts and .500 in one-goal games, which is sustainable. But given that Ottawa and Montreal have almost identical goal differentials (a good indicator of future performance) it seems reasonable to think that the win totals of each team's workhorse starting goalie will gravitate closer to each other as the season goes on. Now's your chance to get on the right side of that move.Deal #2: Need goals? Trade Phil Kessel for Rick Nash
Shooting percentage is a notoriously fluid stat, which matches up with what we often see as fans. Goal-scorers go on hot streaks, they go on cold streaks, and there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. That's why, when trying to predict how many goals a player will score in the future, sample size is key. Take Nash
, who's on pace for "only" 28 goals this season on 8.7 per cent shooting in 50 games. Now, is that 50-game sample the "real" Nash? Or is he more like the guy who's averaged 35 goals per 82 games on 12.7 per cent shooting over 642 career contests?
As for Kessel
, through 50 games he's on pace for a career-high 43 goals on 14.7 per cent shooting. For his 424-game career, he's averaged 30 goals per 82 games on 10.9 per cent shooting.
The lesson here is that shooting percentages have a way of evening out, of gravitating toward the mean (in this case a player's career mark) over the long haul. If that happens, there's a good chance Nash's goal production improves in the second half, while Kessel's declines. In that case, if you make this deal, you get the best part of each guy's season and skip the worst.
Of course, there's also a good chance the opposite happens - Kessel gets even hotter and Nash even colder. But when you're behind in the fantasy standings at this stage of the season, you've got to take chances. And trying to boost your team's goal total by trading Kessel for Nash gives you a calculated option for doing just that.
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