Friday, November 12, 2010

Differences between the NHL all-star fantasy draft and your fantasy draft

Um, kid, don't turn around, but there's a
terrible player staring at you right now.
The NHL showed its creative side this week with the announcement of a bold new format for the annual all-star game. Instead of featuring the East vs. West or North America vs. the World formats used in previous seasons, this year's game will see teams captained by two of the league's star players.

But the real selling point is the way the teams will be chosen. The two captains will be given a list of eligible players, and will take turns filling their rosters in a televised draft on the Friday of all-star weekend.

The league is trying to sell the idea to fans as a "fantasy draft". But is it? Most NHL fans have experienced a fantasy draft or two in their day. And they'll probably realize that, inspired as it may be, this all-star draft will differ from a typical fantasy draft in several important ways.

Your fantasy draft: The owner of the first pick is determined by drawing names out of a hat.
NHL all-star draft: The owner of the first pick is determined by drawing names out of a hat, all of which have been rigged to say "Sidney Crosby".

NHL all-star draft: The entire draft is broadcast to fans on national television in the US and Canada.
Your fantasy draft: The entire draft is broadcast to the guy with the cubicle next to the boardroom who keeps mumbling about having actual work to do.

Your fantasy draft: The league is managed by a commissioner who's usually some loud-mouthed, annoying, self-professed hockey expert who everyone barely tolerates but secretly despises.
NHL all-star draft: Gary Bettman has never claimed to be a hockey expert.

NHL all-star draft: Anyone who doesn't draft Chris Pronger risks making him angry, leading to the possibility of getting elbowed in the throat during a subsequent game.
Your fantasy draft: The odds of Chris Pronger actually taking the time to personally hunt you down and injure you are probably less than 80%.

Your fantasy draft: The proceedings inevitably grind to a halt because of some guy who has never actually participated in a draft before and doesn't know what he's supposed to do.
NHL all-star draft: To prevent that from happening, the league will avoid inviting any Maple Leaf scouts.

Your fantasy draft: You can find out how your team did by checking your league's web site.
NHL all-star draft: You can find out how your team did by checking the last four seconds of an ESPN SportsCenter broadcast.

Your fantasy draft: It can be a little bit frustrating when somebody drafts a good player one pick before you were planning to.
NHL all-star draft: It can be more than a little bit frustrating when somebody drafts your identical twin brother one pick before you were planning to.

Your fantasy draft: You're basically drafting players who can score as many points as possible, with virtually no regard to defensive abilities.
NHL all-star draft: Wait, sorry, what are "defensive abilities"?

Your fantasy draft: Before drafting a player, it's a good idea to make sure he's healthy by quickly checking the internet.
NHL all-star draft: Before drafting a player, it's a good idea to make sure he's healthy by checking him headfirst into the end boards and seeing whether he can still get up.

NHL all-star draft: A Bruins goaltender is selected early, when Tim Thomas hears his name called.
Your fantasy draft: A Bruins goaltender is selected early, when you draft Tuuka Rask in the third round because that's what the "experts" told you to do and then you watch him lose his starting job on the season's opening weekend and basically ruin your chances of ever winning anything and making you want to smash your computer monitor over your own head every time you check your league standings, not that this happened to me.

Your fantasy draft: Nobody drafts any New York Islanders.
NHL all-star draft: Same.


  1. Amazing. One of the funnier ones lately. Keep up the good work *thumbs up*

  2. Amazing - especially that last point, it hits home.

  3. It's hard to draft any New York Islanders when you don't know their names.

  4. that rask comment really hit close to home for me. excellent as always

  5. I LOLed at the Rask comment... and then cried a little, because it happened to me too.

  6. Right there with you on Rask. Picked him right after M-A Fleury. Banner year.

  7. It's okay. If it makes you feel any better, I drafted Rask, too.

  8. Add me to the list of those who drafted Rask this year as well. Luckily I also got Hiller to at least give me a chance in goaltending.

  9. I know a bunch of Isles' players names! You know you're fielding a bad team when half your lineup is Rangers castoffs.

    My favourite was the ESPN comment. It's funny because it's true.

  10. The Rask and Fleury stuff is hurting me. I have a few islanders though, Moulson has got some points!

  11. I think it's a bit over the top to suggest that EVERYONE secretly despises me - I mean c'mon, my WIFE participates in my annual drafts!

  12. I drafted Matt Moulson.

  13. Damn Tuuka Rask, the only really bad draft pick for me this year. The guy just can't get a win.

  14. Wait, did you pick Rask? :)

    Shaun, I think I overheard your wife thanking the Academy...

  15. I'm a Sabres fan, and during the playoffs last season my Bruins friend kept calling me and leaving voicemail messages saying, "You've been Rasked," in a sorry imitation of a Finnish accent (sounded more like Schwarzenegger).

    I'm sorry to say it DGB, but, you've been Rasked. Stings, doesn't it?

    I've now been Rasked twice. He's on my fantasy team too. I guess I had Stockholm Syndrome, because I drafted my tormentor.

  16. I'm really only lookng forward to seeing who the two poor souls are that are taken last.

    I'm hoping they make everyone line up and show a wide shot and as each player gets chosen one by one they get to go over to one side or the other and high five their friends and as the line up gets smaller and smaller the camera view gets tighter and tighter until it's just a closeup on the face of the last guy left.

  17. I wonder if one of the Captains will lose their connection and have to do a few autopicks

  18. Looks like we have more than enough men here to start a "Raask Drafters Annonymous" support group AKA "Honestly Tim Thomas? HONESTLY? You're like 38 years old. NOW you hit your stride?"

  19. I drafted Rask and Miller... *facepalm*

  20. Say *plan the parade one more time*...November 13, 2010 at 10:16 AM

    I drafted Rask - in the same draft 16 rounds later I drafted Thomas.

    One thing about all star balloting - Remember when players retired part of their list of accomplishments was how many times they played in the all-star game, and if they were a 'first team' all star?

    Since fan voting started, that needs to go. When a bunch of fans stuff a ballot box or us an auto voter then you totally invalidate the whole point point of the 'first team all-star' crap.

    Screw it, just get rid of the all-star game. Let's just have a 2 hour long shoot out because that is obviously what the fans want.

  21. I picked Rask in net, but my first goalie choice was Ryan Miller.

    Oh yeah, its been a fun start to the season.

  22. Rask? Traded Jimmy Howard for him in a keeper league.

  23. Well, the good news is Rask has as many wins this year as Andrew Raycroft does, so we don't have to hear about THAT trade anymore.

  24. Tuuk - ka Rask

    ( Tuu like too, k like c in cut, that's the first syllable, second syllable ka is cu in cut. This is around 90% accurate. )

    Let's hope spelling his name right translates into positive karma for you and he get's the starter's job back.

    Then again, Tim Thomas has a dog named Koira. ( The Finnish word for a dog. )

    I'm kinda confused who to root for.

  25. Love all the Rask comments. But since I'm not a fantasy owner, my favorite was the Pronger comment. "Probably less than 80%". LOL. Seriously--who would have the stones to bypass this guy????

  26. Allstar voting started today and I think every leaf fan should vote in Colton Orr and Matt Carkner.