Building a Better Fantasy Hockey Team by Joe Kenny

Fantasy hockey teams are quickly becoming one of the most popular ways for die hard hockey fans to enjoy the game. Before you organize your first fantasy hockey team; however, there are some important tips to keep in mind to ensure you plan the best team with the best chances of winning.

First, make sure you understand as much as possible about the league in which you will be playing. Generally, teams are organized by drafting ten players and simply adding up their points. That doesn't mean; however, that all leagues work that way. There can definitely be differences. For example, you may find that some teams actually change their rosters on a weekly basis. Others work out their player slots using a rather complicated chart. Still yet, some leagues use all the stats including player salaries, penalty minutes, time on the ice, etc. Make sure you know exactly how your league works up front and never make assumptions.

When preparing to choose your players, always make sure you take that player's health into consideration. Sure, even a star player can be prone to problems on occasion, but it's always good to keep an eye out for players who have suffered several recent injuries. You may find yourself with more trouble than you bargained for.

Be aware of the often stated 27 rule in hockey. While there may be some rare exceptions to this rule, for the most part you can bet that if a player hasn't hit it by the time hFantasy Hockeye is 27, he just simply isn't going to do so. Generally, the best players in the game will have seriously found their stride well before they reach their 27th birthdays. Keep this in mind when choosing players.

Many times optimism can be one of your toughest dangers to overcome. While it's always good to have hope, make sure that you don't allow your optimism to get in the way of seeing reality. Even if a guy has just had a great year that doesn't necessarily mean that he's going to follow-up with another. Sometimes average may be the best you can do.

In the same token, always try to keep a handle on just how much risk you're willing to tolerate. While hockey isn't quit the same as the stock market both games have many similarities. In the game of hockey, it's important to know whether you're willing to step outside of the box and go with someone who is more high risk. If you realize that you're not, take a step back and consider someone who is more reliable and less high-risk. At this point it might be better to go with a veteran player who knows his role and is better capable of producing reliably than a wildcard you don't know much about.

Finally, keep in mind that the most important step you can take in improving your team is to take the time to do your homework. Understand as much as you can about your league and the players available for draft.

Joe Kenny is a fan of many sports but soccer is the main love of his life, he writes for the UK soccer forum site, FootballTalk.org. Join the football forum for free today and have your say! Visit today: http://footballtalk.org/