Austin Wallace’s Ramblings – May 27th

Austin Wallace

2014-05-28

Wed, May 28th

The Fantasy Prospects Report is released, pick it up here! There are things in that report that aren’t anywhere else on the internet. Don’t be the one in your pool without it.

 

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While it isn’t my first time rambling on about some topic or another, this is the first time I’ve done The Ramblings. I’ve been recently brought on to be the Associate Editor for Dobber Prospects, and I couldn’t be more excited! I have a lot of ideas for the site and Dobber Sports in general, and I can’t wait to get things rolling. I’d also like to thank Rich Dillon for doing an awesome job in this role before this annoying little thing that some people call “real life” got in the way.


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I’m a Canucks fan, and while I will attempt to not let my biases get in the way, that doesn’t mean I can’t introduce you to this incredibly in-depth, analytical piece on the Canucks professional prospects over at Canucks Army. Josh does more with AHL statistics than I previously thought was possible.


I can also share this piece, and it’s followup, which has been read more times than any in that blog’s history. While it shouldn’t be taken too seriously, there are two major points to take away from the series:

1: The Canucks have been terrible (unlucky) at drafting for a long time.

2: Jim Benning’s teams have been even more incredible (lucky) for a long time.



While the results are far from certain, the Canuck’s drafting may have turned a corner. Three recent later round picks with potential:


Joseph Labate (Round 4. 2011) is a 6’4 power-forward that took the college route, and it will probably pay off for him. He is learning to use his size effectively, and while he isn’t dominating the NCAA yet, I expect him to take a massive leap forward next year.


Frank Corrado (Round 5, 2011), one of the biggest surprises of his draft, has the defense and skating to play top-four in the NHL and will play the majority of the year with the Canucks next year.


Ben Hutton (Round 5, 2012) exploded this year with 29 points in 35 games, leading all NCAA defencemen with 15 goals. He is 6’3 and very solid defensively. He should be looked at by anyone that can afford to sit on a prospect for a couple of years.



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I personally don’t think readers here appreciate Brendan Ross as much as they should. You could count on your fingers the number of people in the online community that know more about undrafted and junior prospects than Brendan, and you would still have enough fingers left over to grip a stick. The fact that he translates that into fantasy relevance is just a massive bonus. As such, I will mainly focus on drafted and professional prospects, leaving Brendan to focus on what he knows and loves best.


I have written ~50 profiles so far for the Prospects Guide, and I can honestly say that it will be awesome. I’m not saying that as a writer, I’m saying that as someone who referred to the Guide all throughout last summer and into the fall.


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It is a common cliché to say that youth is ever more important in the NHL, and while that may be the case it is difficult to find numbers that back it up. The average age has actually risen by a couple of years since the 1980’s, and has only fallen by half a year since the salary-cap era began.


One anecdote in favour of youth: Of the four NHL teams still standing, the two teams getting contributions from their rookies are winning their respective series. Ta