Fantasy Hockey Update, Russia, and other news

First, a fantasy hockey update that should serve as a lesson to all.

Just a quick reminder of my situation: I take part in two pools, Pool A, which I am winning, and Pool B which I was losing. Well, things have turned around for me in Pool B. Ondrej Pavelec recovered and MA Fleury no longer loses, and I have quickly caught up. It all goes back to what I was saying about goaltending, without a couple good goalies in a pool you are destined to lose.

Which brings me to the interesting situation of Pool A. Long story short, I got very very cocky. I was in first place with at least a 100 point lead on second and over 300 point lead from last place. I admit it, I was getting kind of bored. Every morning I would check the results I would be pulling further and further ahead. That’s when I noticed that the 2nd place team had dropped one of their defenceman to pick up Brent Johnson, but Ondrej Pavelec was still available!

And here is where my mistake happened. Instead of doing the smart thing and picking up Pavelec for myself (he was doing wonders for me in Pool B), I emailed the second place team owner and SUGGESTED he drop Brent Johnson and pick up Pavelec. Yes, you read correctly, I emailed my competitor and offered him free advice because I am so damn cocky and untouchable.

Well, no good deed goes unpunished. That unbelievable Atlanta streak has brought Mr. Second Place to within 25 points of me – the lead is now mine to lose. The kicker in this whole fiasco is that the guy never even thanked me. And this isn’t some stranger, this is a guy I worked with for a couple of years! I hope he reads this,  opens a new tab in whatever browser he uses, logs onto his email and composes me a thoughtful letter of thanks.

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In other news according to a Puck Daddy post, Evgeni Nabokov has decided not to finish out his season (or the three remaining seasons) with the KHL. He signed a four year deal with SKA St. Petersburg over the summer, and is said to be returning to the States due to family reasons. If you read Russian, or like me, trust Google Translate, the full Russian press release can be found here.

Nabakov’s wife and children are American born, and it seems that the family reasons are that his family isn’t all the fond of Mother Russia. Nabokov’s agent is denying this, but let’s take a moment to really compare the two locations:

San Jose, California: Average December temperatures of 14 Celsius and sunny

St-Petersburg, Russia: Average December temperatures of -14 Celsius and dreary

Now, I have never been to Russia, but I did live in abroad (South Korea) for many years and it wasn’t always easy. Keep in mind I was a young 20-something with not a care in the world, and even I often missed family and friends. I can’t imagine how difficult it would be to move away from my family and friends with two young children.

All that to say, seeing a Russian like Nabokov have to come back to presumably play in the NHL is not what the KHL needs if they hope to compete for European talent. I am curious to see where this goes and what team will pick up Nabokov. I see Tampa Bay being an extremely good fit for all parties involved.

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