Kukla's Korner

The Goods on Fantasy Hockey

Fantasy Mailbag

As fantasy leagues begin to form, the questions about who to retain in keeper leagues roll in. Here is a question that I received recently about which two of Ryan Callahan, Tuukka Rask, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins should be kept in a league with some unique settings.

Remember that if you have any questions about your fantasy team you can post them below in the comments, Tweet, or email me.

Hi Ian,

Here is my fantasy question.  I pick #7 overall in a two-player keeper league.  The keeper is designated two rounds ahead of where they were drafted the previous year.  So Claude Giroux, who was a 13th rounder two years ago, is a 9th rounder this year.  With that being said, my two keepers will be either Callahan (hits and blocked shots are counted) (6th) or Rask (9th), and for certain Nugent-Hopkins (15th).

The top seven will probably be as follows:

1 - Steven Stamkos
2 - Evgeni Malkin
3 - Alex Ovechkin
4 - Sidney Crosby
5 - Daniel Sedin
6 - The owner told me he would probably take Jonathan Toews over Corey Perry

So with the seventh pick, do I go with a top goalie in Henrik Lundqvist or Jonathan Quick, or a forward like Perry? Knowing that I will have a top center in RNH, I am leaning towards keeping Rask. What is more important: a top-notch scorer or a goalie?

Historically, all of the good goalies go in the top five rounds.  They are the hottest commodity, so are there any sleeper goalies that I could get later?  I think if Perry falls I need to take him; otherwise, I will go goalie.




Hi Jens,

I agree with you: keeping RNH is the right move. So given your league settings and the increased premium on goalies, I believe that you should keep Rask over Callahan. Rask is currently rated #21 by Yahoo, so he’d be a steal as a 9th-round pick assuming that Tim Thomas remains in self-imposed exile. Callahan is rated #99, and players who contribute hits and blocked shots are much easier to find on the waiver wire than goalies who start regularly.

Perry, Lundqvist, and Quick are all top 10 ranked players in the Yahoo game, so your first-round selection isn’t an obvious one. I would lean toward Perry if you already have a goalie in Rask, as goalie values tend to fluctuate more than player (scorer) values from year to year. Ryan Miller (#56), Marc-Andre Fleury (#57), Miikka Kiprusoff (#126), and Antti Niemi (#161) are all proven goalies that appear undervalued in the Yahoo ranking system. You should be able draft one of these goalies with a pick well beyond the first round. One of these goalies should serve as a solid #2 (or even 1A) option for your team.

Good luck!


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About The Goods on Fantasy Hockey

My name is Ian Gooding, and this is The Goods on Fantasy Hockey. Given my ability to understand numbers, write sentences, and follow hockey, it’s not a surprise to those who know me that I became a fantasy hockey writer. I started writing about fantasy hockey in 2006 for fantasyhockey.com and became the site’s content editor in 2007. Looking to expand my audience, I joined Kukla’s Korner in the summer of 2011 to create the site’s first fantasy hockey blog.

A few times each week, I’ll provide an article called “Pick Six” where I will write about six players that should either be in your fantasy team’s starting lineup or bench for the upcoming game. As well, I’ll provide the fantasy takes on important hockey developments. You can also email me your questions or comments to gooding74@shaw.ca, or follow me on Twitter.

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