36 Days, 36 Lineups – #4

Posted May 24, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,
Scenario 4
Ovechkin Backstrom Burakovsky
Johansson Kuznetsov Williams
Laich Fehr Wilson
Chimera Beagle Galiev
Latta
Alzner Niskanen
Orpik Carlson
Schmidt Orlov
Schilling
Holtby
Peters
Ovechkin       9,538,461
Backstrom       6,700,000
Johansson       2,750,000
Burakovsky           925,000
Kuznetsov       2,000,000
Laich       4,500,000
Beagle       1,750,000
Galiev           650,000
Wilson           894,166
Latta           575,000
Chimera       2,000,000
J. Williams       4,000,000
Niskanen       5,750,000
Alzner       2,800,000
Orpik       5,500,000
Carlson       3,966,666
Schmidt           925,000
Orlov       2,000,000
Holtby       5,750,000
Peters           950,000
Fehr       2,250,000
Schilling           725,000
Total     66,899,293
Salary Cap     69,000,000
Cap Space       2,100,707

36 Days, 36 Lineups – #3

Posted May 23, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,
Scenario 3
Ovechkin Backstrom Johansson
Burakovsky Kuznetsov Ward
Laich Fehr Wilson
Chimera Beagle Galiev
Latta
Alzner Niskanen
Orpik Carlson
Schmidt Orlov
Schilling
Holtby
Grubauer
Ovechkin       9,538,461
Backstrom       6,700,000
Johansson       2,750,000
Burakovsky           925,000
Kuznetsov       2,000,000
Ward       3,750,000
Laich       4,500,000
Beagle       1,750,000
Fehr       2,250,000
Galiev           650,000
Wilson           894,166
Latta           575,000
Chimera       2,000,000
Niskanen       5,750,000
Alzner       2,800,000
Orpik       5,500,000
Carlson       3,966,666
Schmidt           925,000
Orlov       2,000,000
Holtby       5,750,000
Grubauer           750,000
Schilling           725,000
Total     66,449,293
Salary Cap     69,000,000
Cap Space       2,550,707

36 Days, 36 Lines – #2

Posted May 22, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,
Ovechkin Backstrom Sharp
Burakovsky Kuznetsov Ward
Laich Beagle Wilson
Chimera Latta Galiev
Brown
Alzner Niskanen
Orpik Carlson
Schmidt Orlov
Schilling
Holtby
Peters
Total     68,299,293
Salary Cap     69,000,000
Cap Space           700,707

36 Days, 36 Lineups – #1

Posted May 21, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,
Scenario 1
Ovechkin Backstrom Brouwer
Burakovsky Kuznetsov Johansson
Laich Fehr Wilson
Chimera Beagle Latta
Galiev
Alzner Niskanen
Orpik Carlson
Schmidt Orlov
Schilling
Holtby
Peters
Total     66,565,959
Salary Cap     69,000,000
Cap Space       2,434,041

36 Days, 36 Lineups – The Player Pool

Posted May 21, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,

Here is the player pool used for the 36 lineup scenarios:

Ovechkin           9,538,461
Backstrom         6,700,000
Johansson        2,750,000
Burakovsky          925,000
Kuznetsov         2,000,000
Ward                3,750,000
Laich                4,500,000
Beagle              1,750,000
Fehr                 2,250,000
Galiev                  650,000
Wilson                  894,166
Latta                     575,000
Chimera            2,000,000
Brouwer            3,666,666
L. O’Brien             621,666
Brown                   750,000
J. Williams          4,000,000
P. Sharp             5,900,000
Bergenheim       3,500,000
B. Richards        3,000,000
D. Roy                2,000,000
J. Eberle             6,000,000
A. Galchenyuk    2,000,000
D. Stafford          5,500,000
Niskanen            5,750,000
Alzner                 2,800,000
Orpik                   5,500,000
Carlson               3,966,666
Schmidt                 925,000
Orlov                  2,000,000
Green                6,000,000
Carrick                  636,666
Schilling                 725,000
Holtby                 5,750,000
Peters                    950,000
Grubauer               750,000

And again, remember, I’m making estimates here for unsigned players. The numbers could vary slightly but I tried to figure out some comparables for the players who needed salaries.

36 Days, 36 Lineups – The Overview

Posted May 21, 2015 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Hockey

Tags: , , , , ,

Today, I’m kicking off 36 lineups in 36 days, a look at random potential lineups the Capitals could have in place to start the 2015-16 season. Of course any re-signings during the next 36 days could throw all of this hard work out of whack, but here’s hoping that we get these in before the start of free agency without any trouble.

Now, just know that some – even many – of these lineups aren’t ones I’m advocating for. They just happen to be among myriad of possibilities. Among the 36, there are 15 that only use players the Caps had on their roster or in their farm system from this past season. The remaining 21 include some players that were in different organizations in the 2014-15 season.

I have tried to estimate salaries for RFAs and UFAs included in these lists and will roll out a master list of names and salaries in a separate post here as well. I looked at comparables to try to get a general sense of where salaries might be for players who don’t currently have a contract. I used generalfanager.com for salary data.

I also used a salary cap of $69 million to build these rosters. Each one fits and various amounts of wiggle room. Even if the cap is say, $70 million, it might not be a bad idea for the Caps to have that extra $1 million in wiggle room for during the season for injury recalls and/or trades. Banking some cap space could be a big help come trade deadline time if the team needs to fill a hole for whatever reason.

I am optimistic about the Caps next season after they took great strides forward in 2014-15. The new coach and system seem to be solid. The players appeared to work well in it. What the Caps lacked for the most part was secondary scoring, particularly at key times. It is something they need to address this offseason, which is why I’d expect it’s more likely than not that they’ll add at least one or two players from outside the organization during free agency. I would like to add that I think some of their younger players could make great leaps in the coming season and provide some of the secondary scoring that was lacking so it doesn’t have to be completely fixed via external options.

There are also moves that could be made at the margins of this roster for little to no difference in salary cap implications. Such as, I expect that Peters and Grubauer’s salaries will be close enough that if one fits, so does the other and it could be a toss-up between who is backing up Braden Holtby next year.

With that, enjoy the scenarios laid out in the coming days. Oh, and just a reminder, I am not endorsing any or all of these options. They are here as a starting point to kick off a discussion about what would be best for the Caps for the upcoming season. Go Caps!

Lineup Options vs. Belgium

Posted June 27, 2014 by justanothersportsfan
Categories: Soccer

The U.S. survived the group stage just barely and now it’s time to get to the knockout phase. Win or go home. At this point, all teams will be playing all out because there is no room for error. There is no game going on hundreds of miles away that can affect your place in the standings.

 

The Americans have had one very good performance and two mediocre to poor performances. Michael Bradley has been a shell of what was expected of him. Jermaine Jones has been the best player on the team. Kyle Beckerman has been incredibly consistent and a huge help of support to the back line. Omar Gonzalez put in a wonderful performance against Germany and deserves to start in the next match. Klinsmann took a gamble inserting him into the lineup and it paid off big time. Beasley has had a few moments of weakness but otherwise been stout on defense and on his few forays up field he has been just fine. Fabian Johnson is incredibly dangerous when he gets forward. That needs to happen more often. Maybe he starts on the wing and you insert a full back behind him to give him more freedom to attack? That was my recommendation ahead of the Germany match and is one of the scenarios for the Belgium match.

 

Overall, what needs to happen for the U.S. to win its next match is the following:

1. Michael Bradley has to be better … much, much better. Like I said ahead of the Germany match, Bradley might be better suited to play deeper and collect the ball going forward and starting the attack from deeper instead of having to receive the ball higher up the field and turn and attack. You saw this a little bit with Jermaine Jones taking a more attacking role and Bradley playing underneath but the U.S. didn’t get forward enough to know if this is a full time move. It needs to be. The U.S. has to do something to get Bradley going because they can’t win many/any more games without him being at the top of his game. Move him back with Beckerman and work his way from deeper in the field.

2. The U.S. needs more possession. That is obvious. What they need to do is play aggressive and attack. Attack the ball while on defense and use speed along the flanks to get going quickly. Once Belgium has the ball, the U.S. needs to close down space quickly and harass Belgium when they’ve got the ball. Aggressive defense and force turnovers and lead to counterattacks, which the U.S. is going to need to win.

3. The defense needs to remain stout. Also obvious, but the backline needs to hold structure and clear the line. Belgium has some strong weapons to attack but hasn’t scored much yet in this tournament. They have the firepower to make the U.S. defense look bad (just go back to last year’s 4-2 loss to Belgium for evidence). Besler and Gonzalez need to put in the performance they did against Germany.

 

Here are the potential lineups:

A few notes on all of these options. The first is that the U.S. needs to provide more support for Clint Dempsey up high. They need someone with some additional offense or creativity up high, particularly with Bradley being unable to do much to link up with Dempsey. When Dempsey collects the ball he has had little help going forward and that needs to change. That means bringing in Chris Wondolowski and letting Dempsey play underneath him or putting in Aron Johansson up front along side Dempsey. Allowing Dempsey to play underneath another forward, allows him to collect the ball a bit deeper and run at defenders, which is often where he does his best work and also allows him to rely less of holding the ball up while others join the attack. He can dribble forward while others catch up and join the attack with him or he can outlet to Wondolowski going forward. It gives him additional options when he does get the ball instead of waiting around for reinforcements. The third option is to leave Dempsey as a lone forward and putting in Mix Diskerud on the left wing. Unlike Brad Davis or Alejandro Bedoya, Diskerud has more creativity and is a bit more of an attacking midfielder. He could be a guy that could link up with Dempsey and create some pace and offense going forward.

In the midfield, one option includes moving Fabian Johnson into the midfield, moving a fullback behind him. That would relieve Johnson of some of his defensive responsibilities and allow him to be more flexible in joining the attack. It’s a way to add speed and offense a bit further up the field while still providing a strong defense. In this scenario, I’ve listed Geoff Cameron as the right back but it could easily be Timmy Chandler as well. Either can and have played quite a bit at right fullback. Cameron is usually in central defense for the U.S. national team but not for his club. If he isn’t comfortable on the national team in that spot, then Chandler is a strong option as well. Either one would be fine and provide what is necessary for the U.S. in allowing Johnson to get up the field more.

Once again, I am advocating for Jermaine Jones to play more in the middle of the field than in a defensive midfield position. He has been much stronger than Bradley getting forward and much more dangerous. Let him continue to do that and hopefully get Bradley going playing from a deeper role.

Graham Zusi sticks in the right midfield if Fabian Johnson remains at right fullback. Zusi has been fine. Not great. Not terrible. He’s had a couple of moments of danger and works hard. He is also useful on set pieces, something the U.S. will need more of if they want a chance to win. Again, more of an attacking mentality will help get this done.

Wildcard: If somehow Jozy Altidore is healthy enough to play on Tuesday, this changes everything. Even if he can only for hard for 45 minutes, you start him. He is not the type to bring on late in the game as a sub. You use him for whatever you can get at the beginning of the game. If that is the case – look at the lineup below with Wondolowski and replace Wondolowski with Altidore and that is a legit option. Or swap out Johansson for Altidore and then flip flop Altidore and Dempsey.

option1 option2 option3

 


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