In The Cage: Bobrovsky & Dubnyk
Every Monday during the season, Justin Goldman, goalie specialist and founder of The Goalie Guild, will provide you with an in-depth analysis of fantasy goaltenders in NHL.com's weekly segment: "In the Cage." From updated goalie rankings to guys you should keep a close eye on and much more, Goldman will be your fantasy goalie expert all season long.
To get an edge on the competition, poolies must realize that a goaltender's stats are merely the end result of a unique situation. The position is 90 percent mental, so confidence, rhythm, focus, and opportunity are key ingredients in making what we call a "sleeper" or a "hidden gem" fantasy talent.
For two so-called backups, Devan Dubnyk and Sergei Bobrovsky, a few impressive performances before the All-Star break have led us to believe they're currently surrounded by very promising situations. Furthermore, both goalies could see their fantasy value rise due to the struggles of their counterparts.
Dubnyk is the first one on our list, as we feel his odds to steal the starting gig in Edmonton are rising. The aging Nikolai Khabibulin was winless in January, going 0-5-1 with a 3.31 goals-against average, while Dubnyk has increased his workload in each month this season (from four games in October to eight in January). Both goalies were trending in opposite directions last week, and with his confidence on the rise, now might be the time when Dubnyk finally proves that "the future" is ready to take over the crease today.
The first-round draft pick is only owned in 18 percent of Yahoo! Fantasy leagues, and has stopped 115 of 123 shots in his last five games, which equals a very valuable .935 save percentage.