Thursday, August 30, 2007

Home renovations

Oh, bear with me, and let me blither.

I've spent most of this month moving from out east back to Calgary, so I actually haven't worked worked in front of a computer for the last three weeks or so. But I got bored with unpacking, so I decided to gnaw away at something Dave and I have been planning for some time.

I'm testing out a new format for our soon-to-be-expanded blogroll...if you asked us to link to you and we've mysteriously disappeared you, try clicking on random stuff in the sidebar.

Feedback welcome.

Oh. Hockey? Well...I tried to get tickets for the unveiling of the new jersey on Tuesday, but they were gone before I got there. Also wishing that Brandon Sutter was the one we'd managed to draft, instead of his two other cousins.

Fantasy: Looks like it'll be Rotisserie, join today

So far 7 people have voted, 4 for Rotisserie and 3 for Points (but there's oddly only four people in the league right now).

So if you haven't already, join up. The deadline to join will be Monday night at 7pm EST. After that point we'll randomly determine the draft order and begin the drafting process.

To join:

The league ID is 6571.
The password to join is "berube", the best Flame of all time.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Fantasy: Vote for the league type

Yes, I'm indecisive. I decided to put this up to a poll. To view the poll, visit and view the top right of the screen. The poll question is: Which fantasy league system should we use: Points, Rotisserie, or Head-to-Head. Please vote which one you're prefer if you might join, or if you did join already.

What's the difference? Click on the links above. If you have more specific questions, try this page.

I've never done a Rotisserie league before, but that's what I'm leaning towards now. Your thoughts, ladies and gentlemen?

Fantasy Hockey Is Here

Due to feedback from the last post, this new league will be Points style (unless people really want Rotisserie). But what we need to do is decide on a bunch of settings. I'd love for everyone's feedback on the following:

Max Moves: No max (max roster moves in the season)
Max Trades: No max (max trades in the season)
Trade deadline: n/a
Post-Draft Players: Follow waiver rules
Roster Changes: Daily (take effect next day) [other option is Weekly]
Min. Goalie Games per Week: 3 (# of games your goalies must play each week)

Center/C: 2
Left Wing/LW: 2
Right Wing/RW: 2
Defense/D: 4
Utility: 1 (this can be any player)
Goalie: 2
Injured Reserve/IR: 1
Bench: 4

Goals: 6 points
Assists: 3 points
+/-: 2 points
Powerplay Goal: 2 points (in addition to goal's 6 points)
Powerplay Assist: 1 point (in addition to assist's 3 points)
Shorthanded Goal: 6 points (in addition to goal's 6 points)

Goalie win: 15 points
Shutout: 10 points (on top of 15 point goalie win)
Goals against: -2 points per goal

Please note: This is my first time setting up a points league, so I'm in no way offended by changes or any kind of suggestions. They're more difficult to set up than head to head. Feel free to make 'em.

The draft will be done manually. I'll email people, as discussed in the last one. Livedrafts are impractical for many of us.

To join! (and yes, settings can be changed anytime before the season starts) Go here:

The league ID is 6571.
The password to join is "berube", the best Flame of all time.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

07-08 Fantasy Hockey Blogger League?

Who all is interested in a blogger-and-blog-reader fantasy hockey league for the '07-08 season? Yahoo Fantasy Hockey will begin taking signups on August 22nd, and it's good to start these things early to get past the overheard and drafting process.

Over the past few years, I've participated in many different types of leagues, but the ones I've always found most fun are the Yahoo Head-to-Head leagues with people you actually kinda-sorta know, rather than randoms.

How do Yahoo Head-to-Head leagues work? Here are the rules:

In a Head-to-Head League, your team squares off in a weekly matchup against another manager's to see who can compile the best stats across a number of different categories.

A new weekly matchup begins every Monday and consists of a set number of games based on your league's statistical categories. Each stat category counts as one game, with the win going to the team that finishes the week with the highest total in that category (the cumulative total after each Sunday's games).

So, if in a given week, your team scores more goals than your opponent's, you would be credited with a victory. However, if your opponent's team ended the week with a better save percentage than your team, you would be charged with a loss. If the two teams end up tied in a given category, each receives credit for a tied game.

This weekly win-loss total is added to a cumulative season record where each win counts for two points, each tie counts for one, and each loss counts for none. The total of these points is used to determine standings and playoff seedings.

We would utilize a draft process to pick which players we all get. The drafting order is random and is a snaking draft (eg, if I draft 2nd last in the first round, I draft 2nd overall in the second round, then 2nd last in the 3rd, etc.). Yahoo can host a live draft where all players would be online simultaneously to do this, but that's seldom very practical (it's hard to coordinate so many people). So what I usually do, and what I'm comfortable doing, is hosting a manual draft. I'll maintain a webpage that shows the current drafting results, and when it's somebody's turn to draft, I'll email them the current draft picks. They then reply with their pick, the website is updated, and the next player notified. We set a maximum-reply-time of about 2 days, and if a draft pick isn't made within those 2 days, we use Yahoo's "best-player-not-yet-drafted" feature to automatically give you a reasonable one.

This process happens over several weeks (all before the season starts). The amount of players we draft, and what positions we draft for (eg, do we do 2 LW, 2 C, 2 RW or do we do 4W 2C or do we do 6F? etc) is something we can discuss before the draft starts. When the season starts, you can choose for each day which players will play in which position. That sounds like an awful lot of work, but in reality it's not: you only have a few more players than you do positions, so only a few swap out here and there. For example, I usually draft 3 goalies but the teams typically have 2 goalie slots. Most of the time, only 1 or 2 play per night, so which I decide to play is easy. But sometimes, like on many Saturdays, all 3 goalies play and I need to make a judgment call (eg, I'd play Kiprusoff vs Edmonton, Giguere vs Columbus, but bench Raycroft vs Buffalo). The settings you make the day before carry over into the next day's default lineup, so only minor tweaks are needed. Plus, you can do this for weeks in advance...I typically take a few minutes sunday night and set my lineup for the entire week.

The main cool thing I enjoy about the Yahoo Head-to-Head is it's got a real-time tracker that shows how you are doing as games are playing. So it shows your scores from all your players as they are occuring (like 5 mins delayed from the real game), and your current matchup with your opponent.

Of course, this is a completely free league and there's no prizemoney involved. Just fun and pride. Newbies welcome.

I probably did a thoroughly crap job explaining this. So if anyone's got any questions, comments, or suggestions, reply via comment. Once Yahoo opens up registration I'll sign create our private league and will post the joining details here.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

The World's Highest-Paid Opportunistic Forward Who Doesn't Play Defense

Our friends in the frigid tundra known as Edmonton now have them selves a shiny new toy: Dustin Penner. At the cost of $4.3M a year for five years. And a first round draft pick this year. And a second round draft pick this year. And a third round draft pick this year.

There really is no point in discussing the stupidity of such a deal. Here's the Coles Notes Version:

  • This guy is unproven. He played with super-talented linemates on a stacked team. He's undrafted with one decent year (what is it, about 0.5 points per game?).
  • How the hell do you become a minus player on the Ducks last season? That takes talent. I haven't exactly studied Penner, admittedly, but I'm not convinced he's a very solid defensive player at all. And, as I've pointed out earlier, the Oilers are severely lacking on solid defensemen in general with nary a plus-rated d-man in the entire group.
  • Edmonton is essentially in a re-building mode. I don't think there's anyone expecting Edmonton to make a run for the cup next year, yet they've given up an enormous amount of draft picks
So who will he play with? From what I've been hearing, it's Hemsky. This is starting to look a seriously defensively-deficient team, and one hell of a porous top line. I'm really giddy right now, I'm terribly excited about the prospect of playing such a top line eight times next year. In their defense, a dangler like Hemsky may just work well with a "goal scorer" like Penner (note: 29 goals isn't really that much, in terms of being a top line scoring threat). But I'm still not convinced, at all, that this will materialize into anything substantial. I think the massive defensive liabilities of that top line will certainly keep their +/- deep in the red, even if they can pot a few goals.

And really, folks, I don't care if Hemsky gets 60 assists and Penner gets 60 goals if they are responsible for 120 goals against.