Anti-Fantasy League: Week 14

For any anti-fantasy owners who picked John Tavares, I have some bad news: the kid has been lighting things up lately. He’s currently on an 8-game point streak, with 15 points in that span. He now has 42 points in 42 games, which means some mice should be along shortly to dissect his brain for the great question of life, the universe, and everything.

The lowest scoring player in his group is his teammate, Michael Grabner, who has just 20 points in the same span. That 22-point game is the third biggest in the anti-fantasy pool, tied with the gap between Eric Staal and Claude Giroux.

The second biggest gap is between Nino Niederreiter, who has just 1 point this season, and Cody Hodgson, whose 6 points in his last 7 games have carried him to the lead in his category with 26 points. If you’re a Canucks fan and you picked Hodgson, you deserve the damage he’s doing to you in the standings.

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Big Numbers: On penalties, powerplays, and pitiful second periods

Herein you will find a compendium of interesting stats. Take from them what you will. Or, if you’re feeling particularly sluggish this Monday morning, take from them what I have taken from them. Whatever.

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Who are the Canucks losing to?

There are two completely contradictory narratives regarding how the Canucks play against teams in the NHL basement: One is that the Canucks play down to their level and frequently lose to lesser opponents. The other is that their record is artificially good because they feast on weaker teams in the Northwest Division.

Both can’t be true. There were some voices in the hockey world last season that suggested the Canucks didn’t deserve their Presidents’ Trophy win because of their weak division. After all, no other team from the Northwest Division made the playoffs and the two worst teams in the Western Conference were the Colorado Avalanche and Edmonton Oilers.

But if the Canucks play down to the level of terrible teams and tend to lose those games, then their record would be worse, not better, by virtue of playing in the Northwest Division.

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I Watched This Game: Canucks vs Anaheim Ducks, January 15, 2012

Once in a great while, the Canucks play a game so indigestible, and so utterly heinous that the only thing the Vancouver hockey fan can do is block it from memory like some great horror. Were Sunday’s game not so fresh in my mind, I’d be at a loss to provide any examples of such a game at all.

Unfortunately, I can’t simply flush Sunday’s loss to the Ducks from my brain; I have to solidify and stabilize it, like any toxic waste. With that, I advise you to please put on your hazmat suits, because I watched this game.

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