Sunday, June 28, 2009

Draft Day Dealing

The 2009 NHL Entry Draft started out with a bang as the Philadelphia Flyers attempted to steal the show by trading for hulking defenceman Chris Pronger. The deal saw Philadelphia acquire Chris Pronger and forward Ryan Dingle from the Anaheim Ducks for defenceman Luca Sbisa, winger Joffrey Lupul ,two first round picks and a conditional third round pick in 2010 or 2011.

Fantasy Outlook: Look for Pronger to continue being a thorn in the side of the top players in the league. In moving to Philadelphia, Pronger has once again become the top defenceman on his team. He will bring leadership and grit to an improving team and allow for more stability in the backend. His numbers should remain similar to what he had in Anaheim and may rise slightly with his increased responsibilities. With one year remaining on Pronger’s contract, look for the Flyers to try and sign him long term.

Pronger still remains a top dman in the league and will help a fantasy owner regardless of the style of pool you are in. He will contribute both points and penalty minutes on a consistent basis and is not an injury risk. Look to draft him in early mid rounds.

Joffrey Lupul has the unlucky fortune of being traded for Chris Pronger for the second time in his career. Lupul heads back to Anaheim where he will be given the opportunity to play on the top two lines for a young and improving team. Playing in 79 games last season, with 25 goals and 25 assists, Lupul’s numbers should rise next season.

Lupul is a great option for a depth player on your fantasy roster at this point. He should welcome the change going back to sunny California and his numbers should reflect that. Look for Lupul to be available in keeper leagues and should be chosen in mid rounds of our draft. He may have the ability to creep into keeper territory depending on the season he has.

Luca Sbisa, a 2008 first round pick, will be joining a young and talented Anaheim blueline. Sibsa had 7 points in 39 games last season with the Flyers and added 36 PIMS. Given Anaheim’s depth on the blueline, look for Sbisa to start the year in the AHL or as a sixth dman. Fantasy owners should watch as Sbisa has the ability to put up points and PIMS and may be worth taking a flyer on in deeper leagues.


1 comment:

  1. I love this trade for both teams. While the Flyers now have a cap issue to fix, they pick up an imposing, nasty, minute-munching top Dman to line up against Sid, Geno, AO and the rest of the Eastern stars. Pronger and Philly is a marriage meant to be and he should fit in perfectly. Philly will try to lock him down for 3 more years.

    Anaheim has some emerging young Dman in Whitney and Wizniewski and are bringing back Neidermayer. This made Pronger expendable and they got a king's ransom. Sbisa was one of the sleeper picks of last year's 1st round and impressed many with his poise while patrolling the Flyer's blueline (before his mid-season demotion to the CHL). They also picked up a serviceable top-6 forward in Lupol who has already had success as a Duck. Add on two more 1st round picks and the Ducks continue to build for this year while keeping themselves well-positioned for the future.

    Great move by both teams.

    Fantasy-wise, I agree with Mark. Pronger should see his value increase a bit. As should Lupol if ANA can get a decent 2nd line centre via trade or FA. Sbisa is worth keeping an eye on in keeper formats.