Chris Betcher

Time is always ticking. Photo by Chris Betcher.

Exchange Rate

Operator: “911 … what is your emergency?”

Caller: “I need some assistance – I am at risk of not winning my fantasy hockey playoffs!”

Changing seasons. Changes in the fall are signified with leaves changing colors and staggering temperature changes. Changes in your fantasy hockey perspective are influenced by several sources. Do you go with your instincts based on past performance or attractive potential? There are too many sources for research via the tools available today such as podcasts, sites, television commentary, as well as the constant opinions like the home of your league pool. Which way do you turn for the best advice?

If you read one Exchange Rate this year, this one I deem the most important. After years of playing fantasy sports, the best advice I can give is to use the eye test. Everyone in this industry is just guessing, whether they admit it or not. They can base it on analytics focusing on past performance to try and steer you to the right choices, but the ultimate decision is yours. Watch some games, especially involving players you have interest in adding or dropping. The eye test will solidify your perception or give you a reason to have doubt. The final call is always yours.

Playing the waiver wire along with taking advantage of favorable schedules can boost your roster into the playoffs.

Here are some free agent options that may be available in your pool:
(Own % as of Friday Oct. 24th in Yahoo leagues)

Forward Team % Own Notes
Tom Wilson WAS 73 Scoring along with big hit totals
Cody Glass VEG 11 Look for an uptick in points, good young talent
Kaapo Kakko NYR 58 Be the owner when the scoring comes
Ryan Dzingel CAR 24 Quietly 6 pts in 7 games
Defense Team % Own Notes
Marcus Pettersson PIT 5 Gaining coach’s confidence
Hampus Lindholm ANA 10 Leads Ducks in assists, used on top pairing
Alex Goligoski ARI 13 Deeper league add
Goalies Team % Own Notes
McKenzie Blackwood NJ 28 Back from illness, goalies getting scarce to find
Robin Lehner CHI 57 Clearly outplaying Crawford, look for more starts

Schedule advantage Week 5 Oct. 28-Nov 3:

  • 4 games: CAL, VAN
  • 2 games, 7 teams: BOS, LAK, NYI, NYR, PIT, TOR, VEG
  • 1 game, 1 team: OTT

Looking further ahead to Week 6:

  • 4 games, 12 teams: ARI, BOS, CHI, DET, EDM, NYR, NJ, OTT, PHI, TOR, VAN, VEG
  • 2 games, 5 teams: ANA, BUF, DAL, TB, WAS

Dave Schneider can be contacted by email at