Vendetta Roundtable

Vendetta NHL Roundtable: 2021-22 Season Questions

Writers from the Vendetta Sports Media NHL team answered a handful of questions that I laid out for everyone. I hate opening paragraphs. They are a waste of time. Let’s get right to the goods. Here is your Vendetta Roundtable for the 2021-22 NHL season!

Stanley Cup Picks

Trey DaubertColorado over Tampa

Just when you think the Lightning are ready to three-peat… not so fast. Colorado has to get one, right? This team is loaded. Just when people are starting to bail on them, I have Colorado winning the Cup and setting up a nice little run here. Maybe three titles in six years? It’s time to pass the torch. If there is one concern, and Gavin touched on this in his last post, I have no idea how you don’t have at least small concerns about Darcy Kuemper.

Gavin Daly

I have a funny feeling this will be The Vegas Golden Knights year. My pick for their opponents is the Boston Bruins who could easily snatch it. However much to my dismay, I think the numbers are finally coming in for Vegas.

Ryan SchwagerLightning over Oilers

It might be shocking to see Edmonton here. I think the West is more open this year with Fleury and Grubauer gone. The Oilers could go on a deep run because of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl alone, but Tampa Bay is just too good and should handle anyone they play.

Breakout Player (could win fantasy league)

Trey DaubertJack Hughes

I made sure I was leaving the draft with Jack Hughes this year. I’m a little upset I didn’t get Quinn Hughes to pair the brothers but he’s obviously more established. Now is the time that Jack takes that step forward. It’s his third year in the league, and the entry-level deal is over after this year. If Hughes wants superstar money, it’s time to play like one.

The former first overall pick in the 2019 NHL Draft hasn’t been bad per se. Hughes increased his point total by 10 in a shortened season. His +/- (if it means anything) took massive steps forward from -26 as a rookie to -3 playing on a bad Devils team.

The talent is there. The speed is there. Now the help might be there. I’m not sure the Dougie Hamilton thing will age long term but to have a guy like that quarterbacking the powerplay? Hughes’ point total should skyrocket.

Andrew McGuinnessOwen Tippett (FLA)

Gavin Daly

I don’t think he’ll catch anyone by surprise but if you want points out of someone not named Conor McDavid I would put your money on Mikko Rantanen

Chris BagdonasJack Hughes

Ryan Schwager – F Jesse Puljujarvi (EDM)
I mean, c’mon, he’s playing with McDavid. He had 15 goals and 10 assists last year but has been seen to have the potential to score 30. You can bump that up to the 35-40 range because he plays with the best player in the world.

Alex Chick IIIJack Hughes

Last year was a year to forget for 2019 #1 overall pick Jack Hughes. However, we can just see those as growing pains. The New Jersey Devils tried to upgrade their defense this off-season with players like Dougie Hamilton. That’ll help getting the puck out of their zone. With Nico Hischier now completely healthy, Hughes should be in for a breakout fantasy year racking up points as a 1-2 punch with Nico.

Surprise Playoff Team That Didn’t Make It Last Year

Trey DaubertCalgary Flames

I almost listed the San Jose Sharks and wrote a bunch of paragraphs to troll until someone noticed. Jokes aside, why not Calgary? The Flames feel like the sleepiest of sleeper teams. The Flames went through a bit of turmoil last year and fired their coach midseason. What if it was just a bad year in a weird season?

The Flames have some things going for them. The Pacific division is garbage. Somebody weird will probably make the playoffs out of that division. Just a matter of who.

The Flames have a reliable netminder in the form of Jacob Markström. That might be half the battle in the Pacific. Johnny Gaudreau is in a contract year and might revert to his old ways instead of being so pass first like a year ago. Matthew Tkachuk and Elias Lindholm are studs.

I wouldn’t bet the house on it. I’m not even confident in this pick. Why the hell not? Flames are hot?

Andrew McGuinness Vancouver

Gavin DalyNew York Rangers.

The talent is there they just need to put it together and with new head coach Gerard Gallant I think they’ll finally get over the hump.

Chris Bagdonas – Kings

Ryan SchwagerChicago Blackhawks, New Jersey Devils
Chicago brought in some very talented players and are getting their captain, Jonathan Toews back.

New Jersey, in my eyes, won the offseason. They brought in young, big-bodied defenders, scoring depth, and a backup goaltender.

Alex Chick IIISeattle Kraken

Is this allowed? I’m not sure but why fucking not? The Vegas Knights were able to reach the final in their inaugural year, surely the Kraken can maybe make the playoffs. The Pacific Division is weak. The Kings, Sharks, Ducks were all at the bottom of the West division. The Canucks were at the bottom of their division. Now they’re all in the Pacific division. That’s already 4 out of the 8 teams in the Pacific division that the Kraken are already probably better than. RELEASE THE KRAKEN.

Worst – Best Offseason Acquisition

Trey Daubert

Worst: Evgenii Dadonov

I’m not sure what Vegas was watching last year but Evgenii Dadonov blows. This was a culmination of things. I don’t have a problem with moving on from Marc-Andre Fleury to upgrade the forward depth. Vegas needs more offense to truly take home that cup. It was the way they used those resources. By the end of the year, his nickname will be grandpop, not dad.

Best: Nolan Patrick

Now this one I loved. Cody Glass was hot garbage. Vegas really shot themselves in the foot giving up Nick Suzuki over Glass. They may have rebounded. Patrick was the number two pick in the 2017 NHL Draft. The on ice performance has been ugly but we know there were other circumstances at play here. Is there a bigger X-Factor in the league? Vegas is a first line center away from being downright filthy and there’s a chance the Knights found their man.

Andrew McGuinnessCody Ceci (EDM) Worst. Ryan Ellis (PHI) Best.

Gavin Daly

Worst offseason acquisition – Seth Jones (Chicago Blackhawks). When they figure out the black hole he is defensively they’ll want Nikita Zadorov back.

Best offseason acquisition – Nolan Patrick (Vegas Golden Knights). I’ve got a feeling I’m going to hate him come next summer which will mean he’ll finally have his breakout year.

Chris Bagdonas – Duncan Keith worst. Pavel Buchnevich best.

Ryan SchwagerG Marc-Andre Fleury

He’s the reigning Vezina Trophy winner, is one of the greatest goalies of all-time, and has one year left on his deal. I love this move.

Alex Chick IIIDuncan Keith Worst. Alex Nedeljkovic Best.

Why the fuck would you get Duncan Keith at 38 for 5.5 million per year for 2 more years. What are the Oilers doing? (Also in the Pacific Division so Kraken in the playoffs is in play, I don’t care.) The Oilers got worse for sure.

Why the Hurricanes decided to trade their promising goalie to the Red Wings, don’t ask me, all I know is that it should be one of the best acquisitions this off-season. The Hurricanes didn’t want to overpay for the goalie and decided to trade him to the Red Wings, where they paid Nedeljkovic 3 million per year for 2 years. Hardly a risk with Nedeljkovic leading the league last year with the highest SV% of .932. He also has the lowest Goals scores against him with 1.90. What we’re the Canes thinking, Detroit got a young goalie for a low risk, high reward deal. Great move.

Worst: D Seth Jones

They got him in a trade then extended him through ’29-’30 for $9.5m AAV. It’s just way too much money for too many years. He’s a good offensive zone player, but, my God, he is clueless in his own zone more than 70% of the time. They’ll be regretting this contract when Toews’ and Patrick Kane’s deal is up in two years.

Biggest Fantasy Bust

Trey Daubert

I did a bunch of posts on this topic. One post for forwards, defensemen, and goalies. Read it. Thanks.

Andrew McGuinnessAnthony Mantha (WAS)

Gavin DalySteven Stamkos (Tampa Bay Lightning)

I don’t think he stays fit enough to be an impact on any fantasy team hence the pick.

Chris BagdonasJohnny Gaudreau

Ryan SchwagerG Philipp Grubauer

Seattle is not going to be very good this season. He’s good, but the Kraken don’t have anyone on the roster that’s going to put up high offensive numbers. They also have a solid defensive core, so I’m thinking he won’t win a lot of games, nor will he face a ton of shots.

Alex Chick IIIMarc-Andre Fleury

Other than Marc-Andre Fleury being 36 coming off a meltdown against the Montreal Canadiens. Fleury is now on the Chicago Blackhawks where things are not…ideal. The Chicago Blackhawks are still a horrid defensive team still after a busy offseason. You’re expecting Fleury to have a decent fantasy season when Chicago can’t even get it out of their own zone? A 36-year-old Fleury? Hahahahahahaha.

Biggest In-Season Storyline

Trey DaubertJack Eichel

Free Jack Eichel. Tell everyone and their mother to free Eichel. This is one of the best players in hockey and he’s toiling away in Siberia. This whole thing has turned into a joke. Oh, he’s no longer the captain? The Sabres showed him!

I want to see a trade and watch Eichel thrive with a contender.

Andrew McGuinnessToronto’s now-or-never season

Gavin Daly

The new Cross Checking Rule and will it make it to the playoffs. If it dies the Avalanche may find themselves on a constant power play which would be nice.

Chris BagdonasTampa Threepeat

Ryan SchwagerAlexander Ovechkin’s chase of Wayne Gretzky’s goal record

Ovi is 36 and has 730 goals in 1,197 career games. The Great One had 894 in 1,497. He needs 165. He’s been healthy his entire career but has been hurt by a few leaguewide shortened seasons (lockout, pandemic). He needs to have an Ovi-like season this year – something around 50 goals. If he can somehow maintain his 45 goal per season average, he’ll do it by age 40.

Alex Chick IIICanes in danger of missing playoffs.

This is a bit of a hot take, but the loss of Dougie Hamilton and Alex Nedeljkovic will be a bigger loss than first expected. Sure, the Canes forward lines are great, will it be enough to overcome a changing defense?

Is Hockey Guy Trey An Accepted Member Of The Vendetta NHL team?

Trey Daubert

The disrespect is out of control. There’s nothing else that needs to be said. Just know the disrespect sparked more of an eye of the tiger to dominate than I already had.

Andrew McGuinness – Yes. *Editor note. McGuinness later changed his mind but it only feels right to revert to his first answer.

Gavin Daly

I’m gonna say no just to keep his ego in check. It’s gonna take more than a fluke fantasy league win to convince me.

Chris Bagdonas – How could Hockey Guy Trey not be part of the NHL team?

Ryan Schwager – Yes

Alex Chick III

Shit, he’s more deserving than me being in the NHL chat according to Emma (which is fair.) However, as far as I know, I turned in my response before she did, but what do I know.

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