Hey Jason, Anson – Getting Lonely?

In one of my keeper leagues, I have the pleasure of owning Jason Allison, of no fixed address. Those poolies that also own him know one thing: it’s a waste of time trying to trade him. The same goes for owners of Anson Carter, Mike Leclerc, Oleg Kvasha, J.P. Dumont, Valeri Bure, Radek Dvorak, Peter Bondra, Yanic Perreault, and Brian Leetch. These guys were not the dregs of the unrestricted free agent lot (heck, Dumont wasn’t even a free agent three weeks ago!), but they are the best of what’s left.

Things have slowed to the point where the remaining UFA’s are getting plucked off the market every two weeks, as opposed to July where the frequency was more akin to one every two hours. Why are these ‘neglected nine’ not getting signed up? That’s exactly what hockey pool owners are thinking, and it’s why they immediately tune you out before you can say all three syllables of Allison’s name. The delay gives the impression that teams are ‘settling’ when they finally do sign one of these guys. Right now, I couldn’t get a bucket of pucks for Allison. A draft pick. Maybe. As long as it is not a high one.

The best thing to do is to wait until they land on a team. The latest rumor has Allison going to Carolina. They are down a body, albeit a winger, but the rumor has 31-year-old pivot joining the ‘Canes. Carter or Dumont would be a better fit, or even Kvasha, Bure, or Dvorak.

The Bure in Vancouver rumors have died off a little, but the Dumont to Montreal or Detroit rumors are reaching new heights. Rumor has it that Dumont will drop his price significantly if it will mean donning the rouge, blanc, et bleu. Any one of these guys will have to land in the perfect situation to immediately regain the fantasy value that they had as recently as a month ago. Otherwise, you are looking at waiting until the season begins and they can show their wares.

Allison was nearly a point-per-game player last season, but people point to his minus-18 rating. He was actually just minus-9 after October, so I’ll excuse him for having a weak month after two years of virtually no exercise. Carter is coming off a big year, but his monetary demands are high. Had he shopped himself around for two million, he would have found a team within two days. Bure missed all of last season, which scares off potential suitors. Bondra, Leetch, and Perreault have all considered retirement, but are all reportedly not going to do that just yet. Leetch is looking for the right situation, whereas Perreault is just looking for…anything.

Meanwhile…

Nik Zherdev owners, don’t worry. The supposed ‘deadline’ of a week from now will come and go, and Zherdev will not be signed. September will come and go and he will not be signed. October 3rd, the articles will run rampant preaching doom and gloom, and predicting Zherdev will remain in Russia. The evening of October 5th, he’ll be signed, and will be playing for the Blue Jackets by their first game against Chicago October 7th. I’ve seen this drama a million times., and so have you…

Rick DiPietro owners, don’t worry. He’ll be signed too. GM Garth Snow will never make a first impression of not signing his protégé from last year…

Regarding my article last week on Malkin. Um…forget it…

The following players of minor fantasy importance have signed in Europe over the last few days: Rem Murray, Petr Schastlivy, Dick Tarnstrom, Radoslav Suchy, Martin Cibak, Maxim Kondratiev (signing in Russia still unconfirmed as I write this), and Tomas Surovy.

For more fantasy pool tips, visit www.dobberhockey.com.

Also, pick up the new Dobber’s Pool Guide Supplement – rule your pool!


21 Responses to Hey Jason, Anson – Getting Lonely?

  1. habskovalev27 says:

    Talking about Dumont, when a player is getting his salary down to play with a team, you know he while give everything he got…I hope the habs will sign him

  2. mafew says:

    Keeper leagues are so much harder now, thanks to the cap.

    I can hear the sobbing of Legace owners from here

  3. ThomasHawks says:

    Get rid of Abiesher and sign Dumont.

  4. habs4eva says:

    Dumont wont come to Mtl so he s gonna go somewere else n carter is too expensive for nothin just cuz he played wit the sedin bros

  5. paul_dc10 says:

    i heard that carter might sign a 3 year deal with vancouver with him making 2 mil the first year and three mil the next two years, probs not gonna happen though

  6. BLUE_AND_WHITE says:

    Anson Carter, Mike Leclerc, Oleg Kvasha, J.P. Dumont, Valeri Bure, Radek Dvorak, Peter Bondra, Yanic Perreault, and Brian Leetch, CAN all get about 3 million, but none will earn more than 3 million. How about Daze and Sykora?

    I heard Bondra is strongly considering retiring.

  7. gg_idiot says:

    Sykora signed in Edmonton 2 weeks ago…

  8. Dark_Prince says:

    I hate to see that. Soo much talent and so little cap room available in the league. A player cant think what he is worth anymore now. Its whether or not he wants to take a pay cut to even play next season. Hopefully the cap rises up alot more next season hopefully around 50 million. If not maybe the NHL should consider expanding teams again. I know more teams would thin the talent out more but, its giving more very good players and un proven rookies jobs. I dunno its probably just me hoping that Winnipeg gets another team.

  9. gg_idiot says:

    Maybe owners should stop signing people to ridiculous contracts.

  10. PensinWpg says:

    Please no more expansion, there are still many teams struggling to establish a fan base and to bring in more revenues. Expansion at this point would mean further diluting the quality of the game. The existing issues with the cap are working themselves out, it takes time, several years in fact to level itself. All of these good players will surely find a place somewhere in the NHL this season. No reason to get nervous and destroy what the cap is intended and will do in a few short years.

    Raising the cap to 50mill would certainly create a gap between large and small market teams which was a main reason for the cap to prevent in the 1st place. And personally I don’t think the league will see that amount of revenue for it to be raised much more than it already is. And at the 50mill mark Winnipeg probably would be the last place the NHL will look to expand or relocate an existing team.

    And I will be the 1st person wanting a team back in Winnipeg. When the all is ironed out and the time is right, it will happen.

  11. Aetherial says:

    I LOVE the cap.

    I think some ridiculous owners are going to learn some hard lessons over the next 4 years (Leafs 17M$ defense for example!) …

    Sooner or later, they will stop signing players to riduclous contracts when they realize that their stupid decisions cripple them against the cap for YEARS.

  12. ccrashh says:

    There are rules regarding how a cap can increase. The cap will only increase if revenues increase (and there are levels that need to be met). How likely do you think that is? League revenues have been fairly static for a number of years and the only reason there was an increase is because the 2005-06 cap was a negotiated value, not something based on revenue.

    I don’t see an increase for next year.

  13. Dobber says:

    I don’t think we’ll see a big rise in the cap for a few years. I would bet that three years from now the cap may be one million higher than it is now. This was their big jump, to compensate for their earlier caution.

    The league needs to market their players better, if they want more revenue (and thus a higher cap).

    I love the cap, too. But I recommend Mike Brophy’s “Overtime” column in the latest Hockey News. He makes a good point. As teams sign three or four players to ridiculously high contracts, the amount of players making $500K-800K grows. Down the road, their may be discension. When 16 guys make 10% of what three guys make on their team…that’s not exactly promoting team spirit.

  14. ericthered1961 says:

    Aha…:-)….smoke another one.

  15. papichulo71 says:

    I see the cap staying the same.

    The popularity of hockey in the States is not going through exponential growth.

  16. kamullia says:

    If by “CAN all get about 3 million” you mean per year, I have to disagree with Perreault. I can not see anyone giving him anywhere near that much. If they do, they will grossly overpay.

  17. kamullia says:

    There are good players who are out but cannot be fit into the cap, is basically what you are saying. Who is to blame for this? Is it a problem?

    First off, there are teams who have the room for the players under the cap, therefore it is not a cap issue per se. If all 30 teams were to that point, then it would be a cap issue.

    For those who do have a cap problem, they have to look at their lineup and contracts. Chances are extremely good that their management at some point overpaid for the services of some of their players, and that is the reason they are there.

    In the event there is a cap problem in one team that those unsigned players are looking to sign into, the blame is not just squarely on management, because players accepting the highest bidder do drive the price up. Therefore fellow players of those unsigned share part of the blame. There are very few players who agree to sign to lower or fair market value, and thus prices tend to rise. But this issue is being put in check by the new system, which is basically saying, you cannot overpay for players, keeping management and players in check. I say there is no problem; it is just the system self-adjusting itself.

    I might be in the minority, but I would not be totally surprised if the escrow goes into effect this year and the players have to pay back to teams. Those arbitration salaries were mostly ridiculously high.

    In the end, I see Carter and other worthy players finding a team, do not worry. The ones who do not, chances are past their prime long enough that teams have found youngsters who are capable or a reasonable facsimile. In those cases, it is time to retire.

  18. mike11 says:

    dump bonk to waashington for a low pick and sign JP

  19. NHLman says:

    What’s going on with Eric Daze, he was a UFA and I don’t think anyone signed him. I would take a chance on him.

  20. Gretzkin says:

    Hey Guys and Gal, what are my best bets for Hockey Pools this year?

    Not players, actual pools.

    I don’t have an “office” pool to get involved in, and my freinds only arrange playoff pools, but I always hit December and regret not getting involved in any, except HTR’s pool, of course.

    Man I got schooled in the regular season, but ended up tied for 4th in the playoffs. FUN!

    Any suggestions?

  21. ranger_fan says:

    And yet the hockeybuzz has reported that a deal with half of those players would get done “by this weekend” 8 of the last 9 weeks. I just went to the website and I see Eklund saying the Habs are frontrunners to Dumont, then Garth I think said that Gainey hasn’t even made an offer to him!?!?! Folks, I tried to plead with everyone to stop listening to Eklund from February of 05 to this day. It is a waste of time, and a false hope for all those involved in the rumours. I am sorry to those who have wasted their money on that b.s.

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