If you have followed Top of the Rock, you would know the team recently relocated to a new fantasy league, the Frozen Factory. The last time this franchise had a new home (2017), it was a disaster season that resulted in a last-place finish. With week one in the books, it appears that the team is headed down a very similar path.
The Rock’s first big test in Frozen Factory was Dirty Sanchez, who mopped the floor with the newbies, securing a 137 point victory, 345.50-208.50. It appears that management didn’t fully understand the rules and scoring in the opener since they failed to meet their relatively low scoring projections by nine points. Sanchez, meanwhile, exceeded theirs by 21.05 points.
It was a tough opening act for a team that finished with a silver medal in the previous season’s final. Some could argue the team was outplayed by their opponents, who had an extra five games on their side. However, the Rock failed to win because a handful of star players either could not rise to the occasion, or their teams just didn’t have enough games scheduled during the opening matchup. There could be a hundred excuses for this subpar performance; however, there really is no explanation on why the team lost by over 100 points.
The matchup was pretty close in the beginning, with Sanchez holding a three-point lead after day one. The score was even closer after Tuesday (0.50) before the wheels fell off for Top of the Rock, who witnessed a half-point deficit balloon to 54 points. The boys chipped away on Friday before blowing any chance at a comeback falling behind by 130.50 points. All the team’s players finished their week by Saturday night, allowing Sanchez to add a few extra points on Sunday, finishing with 345.50 points.
Top of Rock never led during the matchup. The closet they got was at the beginning, and by the time the weekend arrived, Sanchez had all but wrapped up their first victory of the season. Thanks to poor performances across the board, the numbers really showed up in the team statistics.
In case anyone forgot, Frozen Factory only has six teams, so the best team comes in at number one, and the worse team ranks sixth. After one week, Top of the Rock find themselves closer to the bottom than they do the top. When we look at all 13 categories, there are only three categories where the team ranks in the top half of the league, with one smack dab in the middle. The remaining eight categories all rank between four and six, with two dead last.
The most noticeable statistic is the plus/minus rating, which is 11 points behind the league leader. Most of the players on the roster are known as playmakers, so like in previous seasons, the Rock will most likely struggle to score goals. The goalies didn’t put forth their best efforts, but the three of them are winning franchises, so it will only be a matter of time before those numbers improve.
Unfortunately for team management and the players, Top of the Rock found themselves in the most lopsided matchup of the opening week. Sanchez ended up as the highest-scoring team in the league and the only one who cracked 300 points in their matchup. The two other victorious teams broke 200 points while the Rock was the only loser to score over 200.
Top of the Rock opened the season with a loss which resulted in finding themselves in 4th place. Sanchez sits in the first spot while the managerless team finds themselves at the bottom of the standings.
We find out who had the best and worst opening week in the season’s first edition of heroes and zeroes. Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander was the best thanks to 22.50 points, which he collected through two goals, two assists, and two powerplay points. He registered 15 shots on goal, two hits, one blocked shot, and a plus-one rating.
Robin Lehner (Las Vegas) had the best week between the pipes, collecting a win and a loss, giving up seven goals, and making 55 saves in the process. On the flip side, Mikael Backlund had a rough start finishing the week with minus-three points. He had two shots on goals but was a minus-two which hurt his overall numbers. Top of the Rock did not make any roster adjustments during the first week. However, they have a transaction to report from draft night. After selecting the team, management instantly placed Nicklas Backstrom (Washington) on the long-term injury list, opening up a roster spot. In the empty space, the team signed Nashville Predators defenseman Mattias Ekholm to help on the backend.
Weekly Move Total: 1/4
Season Move Total: 1/50