The question does sound self serving at the surface but this will be brief so everyone can ring in on the debate here. So how does the Zdeno Chara hit really effect your fantasy team? We will answer that in three quick steps but first as you know, here is the video of the hit as seen HERE.
It is not my place or anyone’s place to say to the NHL, you must change this or do that. However, I can sure suggest as such. Concussions are clearly diagnosed more often than they have ever been. Even ailments like Vertigo are at least a little easier to detect. Sure they can still very easily end careers but at least there are some baseline progress in degrees that can offer some hope.
What happened the other night was a very unfortunate hit with dire consequences that was made worse by unwise comments by Zdeno Chara.
Certainly Max Pacioretty will miss the rest of the season with a severe concussion and a C4 fracture of his vertebrae. Now this is potentially career threatening but Erik Cole did come back from a similar injury and Pacioretty is still a very young 22 years old.
Naturally there has been a suspension to Pavel Kubina already. He elbowed Dave Bolland in the head last night and will sit out the next three games. Tonight, Mike Komisarek nailed Daniel Carcillo from behind and got a 5, 10, and goodbye. Likely, he will get a hearing it would seem.
This all goes back to Mr. Chara; or does it? Let’s see how this decision impacts your fantasy team going forward.
Step 1: No fine or suspension means…
Well it means the obvious and that is Zdeno Chara can keep playing. He also did get the extra penalty minutes which surely helped (15). It does also mean that Max Pacioretty is done for the year and teams who had him and his goal every other game production for the last 26 will have to find another short term fix. David Desharnais would be a nice choice from Montreal if you absolutely need to fill a spot. He has been averaging about 3 points in every four over the last dozen or so games.
This also means the Bruins still have their Power Play bomber on the blueline. Chara does soften up goalies some with that 105+ mph slapper. That has a huge impact for Boston as it helps set up so much with Boston’s first line that does score in bunches. So does Chara at times. With him still in the mix and not out for any time, it also helps Tomas Kaberle and hopefully gets him going (1 point in last 8 games).
Step 2: Expect even more physical play…
As evidenced by tonight, even physicality in hockey runs hot and cold. When you see one questionable hit, several others are usually coming. Right on cue tonight, Komisarek was thrown out for hitting Dan Carcillo for behind and the Toronto-Philly game has been characterized as feisty to say the least.
Even Zdeno Chara drilled Steve Montador tonight in the Boston-Buffalo game but not nearly as bad. Games will be officiated more stringently. More penalties does mean more power play chances with affects +/- a bit but power play goals and assists will go up at least a tick. Check to see if you have any power play specialists or maybe try to pick up one or two if possible.
Step 3: Take note of the GM Meetings next week…
Measures may not be taken but recommendations may be considered. Rhetoric will be turned up several notches which means that passion on both side of this argument will rub off on the ice. One would be naive to think that it will not. Fantasy playoffs are going on right in the midst of this and the subsequent fallout.
There is a belief that the GM’s are split about any real meaningful change and that will have an effect. This will be a time where things will be heated.
So what will it really take to get meaningful change and better yet, what if the instigator rule was taken out of the game now? How would that impact the world of fantasy hockey? One last question for thought. Would taking out the instigator bring back the “goon” or would it not? Comment away and thanks for reading.