Prospect Ramblings: An Ode to my Fantasy Hockey Godfathers

Brayden Olafson




My introduction to the world of fantasy hockey came in the Fall after I had begun my first “real-world” job in 2013. It came in the form of a Weekend Winners pool branded Shotty’s Picks, so named after the headmaster of the weekend focused pool. I think this type of an introduction is the same for many of us – as much as a workplace is just that – a place of work, over my relatively short career I’ve found the watercooler talk and the comradery that is concentric of fantasy sports, is a staple of a healthy work-life balance, but I digress. My involvement in Shotty’s Picks lasted as long as my tenure at that job – one season. In the meantime, I had also begun to curate my own year-to-year fantasy hockey league with a group of friends that I had grown up with. We dubbed it the Long Lake Fantasy Hockey League, a namesake that was derived/stolen from our regional senior hockey league. It began as a rotisserie-style league and has since undergone several format revisions with the core group remaining intact.


After leaving my aforementioned job, I was fortunate enough to land myself in an environment where fantasy hockey was considered by some, a religion, or even a political affiliation. I quickly found myself deeply involved in a similar Weekend Winners pool as well as jointly managing a fantasy team in my first ever keeper style league. The commissioner of that league, the DHL, or The Don as I’ll call him (that’s actually his real name, but I’ll touch on that later) introduced me to Dobber Hockey in the Fall of 2014. 


While I gradually became more dependent and involved in the Dobber world, my fantasy hockey relationship with Don, and his right-hand-man, Grant is what has truly helped me to maintain what I see as the spirit of fantasy hockey – the comradery.


Eventually, I became the sole owner of the franchise in that league and began to really enjoy the format. In fact, I enjoyed it so much that three years after joining, I openly plagiarized their constitution while forming my own keeper league (the YHFHL) with a similar group of owners to the Long Lake Fantasy Hockey League. We were lucky enough to bring both Don and Grant on as what we called “incubating owners” – essentially fantasy and formatting consultants who helped us to get the league off its feet. To my earlier point, this is where the Don term becomes relevant. It seems like an appropriate moniker for the 31-year fantasy commissioner who we often refer to as the Godfather, and has spearheaded a deep (much deeper than what I’ve alluded to) web of fantasy. Low and behold, they’ve stayed aboard and we couldn’t be happier.


What it really boils down to, is that since being introduced to Dobber, my vision of fantasy hockey has changed drastically, and at the root of it all, I while there is plenty of thanks to go around to the Dobber crew, I owe my passion to Don and Grant. 


For the core of today’s ramblings I wanted to (and some of my fellow GM’s asked me to) review the results of our recently completed entry draft for the YHFHL (which if you’re curious is the YellowheadFHL, again a regional reference). For quick reference, the criteria of our draft are as follows: 

  • Players MUST be drafted into the league before