Forgot Log-in or  Password? |  Help  Not a member, Register Now!
      
Fantasy Football Today
Fantasy Football Today Blog
Gameday Inactives
2014 Draft Prep Guide
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Get Your Draft Board
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Scores
Fantasy Games
Playoff Challenge
Commissioner
Prize Leagues
Free
Office Pool Manager
Game Pick'em
Player Challenge
Fantasy Baseball Today
Fantasy Baseball Today Blog
Downloadable Draft Kit
Mock Drafts
Player News
Stats
Players
Depth Charts
Roster Trends
Columns
Injury Report
Rankings
Projections
Schedules
Probable Pitchers
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injuries
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Message Boards
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
Downloadable Draft Kit
Player News
Stats
Players
Columns
Injury Report
Projections
Rankings
Schedules
Mock Drafts
Scores
Standings
Fantasy Games
Commissioner
Free
Prize Leagues
No Fantasy Teams Found
 
 
 

Neutral Zone Wrap: Gifts that keep on giving

by | Rotowire.com
  •  

The holidays are all about giving -- and investing substantial resources to make others happy. The gifts you've purchased this season will only improve your social standing for months to come. Unless, of course, you figured any one of a pair of socks, a sweater or that limited edition Phillipe Bozon bobblehead would make the perfect gift.

Like the presents we receive, a Fantasy trade can often be well-intended but sometimes ends up looking like last year's fruitcake. The thing was probably conceived quickly and without much thought, the ingredients remain questionable, and no one wants to go near it. So why is this type of transaction so frequent in leagues? Does one really believe they can sneak talent through and not consider the consequences? Or is it assumed the opening offer will always be the worst?

The first rule of negotiations is to deal with the other owners like you'd want them to treat you. And it doesn't matter if there's that one yahoo who always runs his/her mouth throughout the season. Most likely, everyone is playing because they hold some basic Fantasy knowledge. So don't insult others with lowball deals; it only reduces the overall level. And don't think including more players to the trade will increase the likelihood of completion. You can't sell a lemon even if you hide it behind a bunch of grapes.

Enough about gift- or food-related analogies. You want the Fantasy goods. So here are a few teams striving for the prize and others resembling bad apples:

It used to be said the secret to Nashville's success was balanced scoring. Now the Predators have nothing to hide and they're still competing well above payroll. If you believed freshman Craig Smith would slow down (seven points in nine games), then you would've lost a few bets. Although you could've recouped a bit of money on Sergei Kostitsyn (three in 13, minus-4). Nothing wrong with Martin Erat of late (nine in nine). Jordin Tootoo (10 in 12 to go along with 47 PIM and 64 hits on the season) isn't as one-dimensional as you'd think. For as much talent as Patric Hornqvist possesses, you'd think he could treat his Fantasy owners better (two in 18). Don't jump on Roman Josi just yet (netted his first NHL goal on the power-play last week), but the Swiss defender is worth a look in keeper leagues.

Unlike Nashville, everybody knew Calgary couldn't compete due to streaky shooters. The same holds true these days, but the situation could be worse. I mean, the Flames could be wallowing near the bottom of their division and fighting with their provincial rivals. Oh, right, they are. No one could have predicted Olli Jokinen as the Flames' leading scorer (28, including an amazing 14 points in his last 11 games). If you aren't already a fan of Curtis Glencross (seven in seven), then get ready to join the club. The ride was sweet while it lasted, right, Brendan Morrison (nothing in five after seven in three thanks a spot beside Jarome Iginla)? Thanks for the memories, Lee Stempniak (zero in six). Someone needs to jumpstart Mikael Backlund (three in 19) or else it's back to the AHL for him. And without Mark Giordano (torn leg tendons, return unknown), Derek Smith (five in six, including two PPAs) has fit in on D and contributed.

Fact: Columbus doesn't suck as much as the first report would've led you to believe. OK, so they won't be raising the Cup in June. But they're actually half-decent if given the chance. Like Jokinen on the Flames, Vaclav Prospal (26, with seven in December) is truly making the most out of his Blue Jacket revival. Try not to fall into the Derick Brassard trap, even if he's recovered a bit (two in the Jackets’ last outing). And Derek Dorsett may have added a few goals to his resume (adding seven to his career total of 19), but don't be fooled. Besides the cool spy name, Nikita Nikitin (all 12 of his points have come since arriving from St. Louis) is also a stealth scorer. And somehow, Steve Mason (3.52 goals-against average, .880 save percentage, dismal 4-14-1 record) has earned a couple starts while Curtis Sanford (2.42 goals-against average, .914 save percentage in 15) waits for the next chance to strike.

If Montreal can string a few wins together, then it doesn't matter what language the head coach speaks. Of course, when you've lost four in a row and have to go without three key regulars, none of that makes a difference. After some early trepidation (one in seven to start), Erik Cole (seven in seven) has no issues finding the scoresheet. Same goes for David Desharnais (five in five). As a result of others' struggles, first-year center Louis Leblanc (two in four) has been asked to assume more responsibility. So much for P.K. Subban (14, with only four PPPs) stepping up as the top defenseman. Don't expect newcomer Tomas Kaberle to assume that role, even if the opening returns (five in six) are encouraging.

With all the injuries in Colorado, you could say the Avs are being held together by glue and hope. But that hasn't stopped the club from winning four of their last five. Or having Jean-Sebastien Giguere (1.87 goals-against average, .931 save percentage in 13, winner of three straight) wresting the #1 mantle from Semyon Varlamov (3.14 goals-against average, .896 save percentage). Ryan O'Reilly (leading the team with 23) is enjoying a career year. Daniel Winnik (four in seven) has been promoted to the top unit thanks to his hard work. The numbers may not be spectacular for Gabriel Landeskog (15, 22 PIM, 93 hits), but the rookie is sticking and - more importantly - learning on the job. Kyle Quincey has served as top blueliner (17, but only one in eight), although he was surprisingly scratched Wednesday. Thanks to a couple missing defenders, Stefan Elliott (three in five) is once again getting the opportunity to do his thing.

Get player news notifications, manage your team and check scores
- all updated in real time. Download the CBS Fantasy App.

  •  
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
 
 
Player News
Raffi Torres
Sharks' Torres Undergoes Second ACL Repair
Raffi Torres, LW, SJ
2/27/2015
News: Raffi Torres (knee) underwent a successful procedure on the torn ACL in his right knee Wednesday, David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News reports. GM Doug Wilson said the Sharks expect to have Torres fully healthy for the start of training camp in September.
Analysis: It's the second ACL repair job in less than two years for Raffi Torres, who first had his knee operated on following a Sept. 20, 2013 exhibition game. After rehabbing the injury, he ended up suiting up for 12 games in the second half of last season, but was shut down after he began to feel pain due to an infection. The Sharks initially planned to have Torres undergo another surgery to remove the ACL prior to this season, but elected to wait until the infection had cleared up. Now that he's formally been ruled out for the remainder of the season, Torres will attempt to win a roster spot in 2015-16, when he will be on the final year of his three-year, $6 million deal with the Sharks.

Ryan Murphy
Hurricanes' Murphy Suffers Slight Setback
Ryan Murphy, D, CAR
2/27/2015
News: Ryan Murphy (leg) recently suffered a slight setback in his injury rehab, Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News & Observer reports.
Analysis: As a result, Ryan Murphy is not ready to rejoin practice, with no timetable for his potential return outlined at this stage.

Mark Giordano
Flames' Giordano Iffy For Friday
Mark Giordano, D, CGY
2/27/2015
News: The Flames didn't update the status of Mark Giordano (undisclosed injury) Thursday, Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet 960 reports.
Analysis: Per the report, Mark Giordano is still being evaluated and the Flames will likely recall a blueliner in advance of Friday's game against the Islanders. Giordano's availability could come down to a game-time call from coach Bob Hartley.

Eric Brewer
Brewer Returns To Lineup Wednesday For Ducks
Eric Brewer, D, ANA
2/27/2015
News: Eric Brewer played 19:09 against Ottawa on Wednesday night in Anahem.
Analysis: Eric Brewer was a healthy scratch Monday against the Wings, but was substituted for fellow blue-liner Ben Lovejoy (healthy) in Wednesday's game. Brewer has been a healthy scratch a number of times this season, and won't be able to gain any semblance of fantasy value until he can consistently get into the lineup.

Antti Niemi
Sharks' Niemi Projected To Start Thursday
Antti Niemi, G, SJ
2/27/2015
News: Antti Niemi was the first goalie off the ice at the Sharks' morning skate and is expected to start Thursday against the Red Wings, David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News reports.
Analysis: Antti Niemi has held the opposition to exactly two goals three of his last four times out, but he still seems to be stuck among the middle-tier of goalies. His 24-15-7 record for the season is nice, but a 2.60 GAA and .913 save percentage don't provide much assistance in the ratio categories. He's still a viable option in deeper formats and even as a second goalie in shallower leagues, though he's no longer the automatic play that he was as recently as a couple of years ago.

Karri Ramo
Flames Turn To Ramo On Friday
Karri Ramo, G, CGY
2/27/2015
News: Karri Ramo is slated to start Friday's game against the Islanders, Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet 960 reports.
Analysis: The start will be the third straight for Karri Ramo, who has been sharp in his last two turns, allowing just one goal in each of those contests, most recently in a 3-1 triumph over New Jersey on Wednesday.

Kyle Quincey
Red Wings' Quincey Skates, But Won't Play Thursday
Kyle Quincey, D, DET
2/27/2015
News: Kyle Quincey (ankle) participated in the Red Wings' morning skate, but won't play Thursday against the Sharks, MLive.com's Ansar Khan reports.
Analysis: Kyle Quincey will sit out for a fourth straight game, but does at least look to be on his way toward a return. He received clearance to practice Wednesday, and with another positive day Friday, he might receive the go-ahead to play Saturday in Nashville.

Henrik Zetterberg
Red Wings' Zetterberg Not Expected Until Next Week
Henrik Zetterberg, LW, DET
2/27/2015
News: Henrik Zetterberg (upper body) isn't expected to return to the Red Wings lineup until next Wednesday's game against the Rangers.
Analysis: Henrik Zetterberg was able to skate a little bit on his own prior to Thursday's morning session, but it appears the team is preparing to be without him for the next two weeks. Though he hasn't been formally diagnosed with a concussion, Zetterberg said a couple days ago that he's exhibited symptoms similar to the head injury. The team believes that with a few more days of light activity, he'll be feeling fully healthy and ready to play. Continue to stash him on your bench until the Red Wings confirm he'll return to duty.

Jimmy Howard
Wings' Howard To Start Thursday
Jimmy Howard, G, DET
2/27/2015
News: Jimmy Howard will be between the pipes for Thursday's game against the Sharks, MLive.com's Ansar Khan reports.
Analysis: Backup Jonas Gustavsson received the start in goal for the Red Wings' previous game against the Kings, so it's not surprising that coach Mike Babcock will go back to Jimmy Howard for Thursday's match. Over 13 career outings against the Sharks, Howard has had limited success, going 3-6-4 with a 2.79 GAA and .910 save percentage.

Andrew Hammond
Sens Lean On Hammond For Back-To-Back
Andrew Hammond, G, OTT
2/27/2015
News: Andrew Hammond will make the start in goal Thursday against the Kings.
Analysis: Andrew Hammond has been spectacular since succeeding the injured Robin Lehner (concussion) as the Sens' lead goaltender. He's won all three of his outings against possible playoff teams in the Canadiens, Panthers, and Ducks, allowing a total of three goals against the first two and shutting out the latter. He could be a bit fatigued from blanking the Ducks in Anaheim a night earlier, but with only the untested Chris Driedger behind him on the depth chart, the Senators will lean heavily on Hammond until Lehner or Craig Anderson (hand) is ready to return. Hammond's recent play has made him worth a speculative pickup in deeper formats, though those in daily leagues may not want to rely on him Thursday. The surging Kings have won eight games in a row behind the red-hot Jonathan Quick, who has yielded five combined goals over his last five turns.

 
 
 
Top Videos
Rankings