Behind the numbers of Andy Greene

Devils D Andy Greene is a +9. Let's just say that playing in front of this man has its benefits.

Devils D Andy Greene scored two goals Wedensday night and he now has two goals and six assists in his last eight games.

Here at The Genius, we pride ourselves on pointing out the non-obvious.

Today we’re making an exception.

We are pleading for fantasy owners to grab Greene. He is radically under-owned in both ESPN (29.5 percent) and Yahoo! (18 percent) formats. When you consider that Greene is the No. 13-ranked blueliner in ESPN and No. 25 in Yahoo!, his lack of ownership is stunning.

Any way you slice it, Greene belongs on fantasy rosters as a No. 3 defenseman. So why is Greene’s ownership so low? A few reasons:

  • Statistically speaking, he is a jack of all trades, master of none. He does not crack the top 10 among blueliners in goals, assists, shots on goal, penalty minutes, or +/-. His five goals seem impressive, until you remember that he snagged two of them Wednesday night. His 12 assists and eight PPPs are solid but not remarkable. His 34 shots on goal and four PIMs are downright weak. Only his +9 really catches the eye, but even that, as we mentioned, does not crack the positional top 10.
  • Until this season, Greene, 27, was a fantasy nobody. He does not even have a photo on Wikipedia. His track record consists of three previous NHL seasons, all with Mr. Brodeur (above) and Los Diablos. His categorical highs all came in 2007-08, when he played 59 games: two goals, eight assists, 22 PIMs, five PPPs and 50 shots on goal.

Given this resume, why is Greene worth your fantasy investment? Just because of a hot streak and a friendly +/- atmosphere? The answer is yes. To see why, you need to go beyond fantasy numbers. Sort the stats of all D-men by minutes played at NHL.com, and you’ll find Greene ranks 25th, averaging an impressive 23:50.

Examine Greene game-by-game, and you’ll find that this number is actually a low reflection of how much ice time Greene is getting. In fact, Greene has logged at least 24:22 in 16 of his last 18 games.

The point is simple: Greene is not some No. 4 defensemen on a hot streak. He is a key cog in the red-hot (four straight wins, seven of eight wins) Devils’ wheels. There may very well be more two-goal games in his future. Grab him now so you can reap the fantasy benefits.

photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons

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