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 Hockey Pool Do's and Don't's Part I

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The 4th Line Banger Posted - 09/20/2010 : 22:31:16
After possible the least entertaining off-season in recent past I think I am part of the majority of the hockey world that just wants to see skates on the ice again. Enough about who is signing contracts that will end up being cancelled and what aging star is not playing this season. Let's get to hockey.

Before the puck drops on opening night, we must all get into our pools. Regardless of what kind of pool you will be in there is a strategy that will prove successful to you. I am going to break down some simple methods that have served me very well in the past as well as some common mistakes that people make and don't even realize it.

Here are my first Do's and Doníts

Do Trust that History Repeats

After a player has 3 full NHL seasons under their belts, you have a solid idea of what that player will produce through the prime of their career. Sure there are exceptions to this rule, however itís not a fluke that Ilya Kovalchuk has been roughly 10% up or down from 85 points for the past 6 seasons. There is a good chance he will be about the same for the next 6 years. That is why I would warn against picking certain players too early based on last season alone. A guy like Ryan Kesler or Tomas Plekanec should be picked based on where their points should be not based on last season. I am not saying don't take those guys, but fall in love with them too early and you will get bitten by passing over a guy who has proven to do it more often and most consistently.

Donít Fall too in Love with the 3rd line mate:

If you can get your hands on 1st line tandems that have historically played together then itís all systems go. But I warn you all to not get too involved in that 3rd line mate. Last season there are few teams that have more than 2 players in the top 50 in NHL scoring. Linemates will often change. In fact, there are more and more coaches each year that will roll one if their wings through each line. Mike Knuble is a perfect example of this last seson. Not saying that Knuble was a bad pick last year. However, I know in most pools he went at least 2 round early than he should have based on the sniff that he would play with Ovechkin. Itís a better strategy to steal another player from a tandem or take that team's top 2nd line player than go for a 3rd line mate almost all the time.

Stay tuned over the next few weeks to read more of my tricks that will get you in the money most of the time.

Have an opinion on The Fourth Line Banger's article? Let us know. Just hit reply below and post your thoughts. Anything goes...but keep it clean.
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Guest0362 Posted - 09/23/2010 : 06:59:04
#1 - I look for players from teams that score the most in the league
#2 - Player is consistent in points per game
#3 - injury status over career (games played / year, off season surgery)
#4 - Power play time - 1st or 2nd unit, 2nd line player who plays point on 1st PP unit) eg Samuelsson from Vancouver
#5 - I rank my players in the entire league and compare that to what magazine's rank them for points and this will give me an idea as to how the players will likely be drafted
#6 - Know who is in your pool. Some guys refuse to take certain teams or players, or they take certain players every year
#7 - I watch a lot of Junior hockey and follow them closely eg. Kadri - will be in dog house more than not vs. Hall - very hockey smart, team player
#8 - If you are in pools where goals are more points than assists, look at number of shots and shooting percentage
#9 - Minutes played - a player that averages 20 minutes a game probably is a first line player vs. a player that gets 10 - 14 minutes
#10 - Faceoff wins and losses (Bergeron of Boston going to be out there for important faceoffs , same for Richards Phi) They also get to be on the ice at end of game when other team's net is empty - cheesy points (Sedin twins) boy they ticked me off last year
#11 - preseason - do not over-emphasize what happens in exhibition but do not totally disregard. eg Boston - the past (Recchi), the present (Bergeron), and the future (Seguin) line. Could stay together
#12 - I totally agree with looking at the last 3 - 4 years of a player as they usually stay within 10 -15 % of the numbers
#13 - Stay away from older players that use to be high picks. Let someone else take them unless you can sneak them in later rounds
#14 - Checkmark a player that did not play a lot of games the previous year due to injury but are healthy now. Many poolsters overlook these players because they are not prepared
#15 - I am thinking for the future, you are going to see older guys being used less and less as they are more expensive. They are going to have a harder time making teams or be the first to be expendable to make room for more cap-proof young players
#16 - Go in Hockey pools where the majority of your members are Toronto fans. Easy money. LOL

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