The NHL announced Tuesday that it would not restart its regular season, which was on pause due to the public health crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic. As a result, the ESPN Fantasy Hockey season is complete. Below is an outline how ESPN Fantasy Hockey leagues will be scored.
All player and matchup stats will revert to the last completed matchup period. As a result, the last day with stats that count toward ESPN Fantasy Hockey leagues is March 8, 2020. Stats from the incomplete matchup period between March 9 and March 11 will be removed and will not count toward a league's standings or have any impact on matchup outcomes.
Tiebreakers will be used to advance teams through the remainder of the season and playoffs. In most cases, this will result in the highest remaining seed advancing and winning the league championship.
Here are some answers to some frequently asked questions about the end of the fantasy hockey season:
What happens if my league's playoffs have not yet started or my league doesn't use playoffs?
In head-to-head leagues, the team in first place as of the end of the matchup period that ended March 8 will be crowned the champion.
What happens if I am in a rotisserie or season points league?
If you play in a rotisserie or season points league-leagues without head-to-head matchups, the standings will be finalized based on NHL stats accumulated through the end of play on March 8.
What happens if my league's playoffs were in progress?
If you were in the midst of the playoffs, your league will revert to the last completed matchup period, ending March 8, and the highest remaining seed in the playoffs will be advanced through the bracket and eventually crowned the champion (unless otherwise stipulated by your league's tiebreak rules).
What happens if my league was already completed by March 8?
Nothing. Your league will be unaffected by these changes.
What happens to stats from March 9 to March 11?
Because that matchup period was incomplete, those stats will not count toward your league's outcome.
What can be done if the outcome of these changes is not how my league members want to handle the abrupt end to the season?
If you play in a League Manager league, your league manager (LM) has a few tools at their disposal to ensure the desired outcome for your league. The LM can edit the final standings once the game has completed (June 21) to rearrange the team standings in whatever order your league members determine. To edit the Final Standings, go the Standings page (once the season has completed) and an "Edit" option will be available for the LM to use to make desired adjustments.
The league manager can also edit the playoff bracket in order to reflect the way in which your league members want the playoffs to play out. To edit the Playoff Brackets, go into LM Tools > Schedule and Standings Tools > Edit Playoff Brackets. Each bracket will then have a dropdown menu with the available teams. NOTE: You must ensure that a team does not appear twice in a bracket round or you will be unable to save until this is remedied.
Please note that the Fantasy Hockey season doesn't finalize until June 21. At that time, the LM can edit the final standings as the league members see fit. To edit the Final Standings, go the Standings page (once the season has completed) and an "Edit" option will be available for the LM to use to make desired adjustments.
What if my league uses two-week playoff matchups?
If you are in a league that utilizes two-week playoff matchups and your league was in the first week of the matchup when NHL play was paused, your league's standings will revert to the last-completed matchup that ended March 8.
If you are in a league that was in the second week of a two-week matchup, your matchup outcome will be determined by stats accumulated through the first week of the matchup, ending on March 8.
When will these changes take place?
Stats for games played between March 9 and March 11 will be removed on Friday, May 29, and standings will reflect the removal of those stats on Saturday, May 30. This gives fantasy hockey players time to visit their league and catalog the outcomes inclusive of the March 9-11 games, in case your league's preference is to alter the standings based on those stats (see "What can be done ...?" above).
The remaining matchups will play out over the next few weeks, with the last matchup period concluding on June 21. Fantasy players don't need to take any action between now and June 21; teams will be advanced through the matchups based on your league's tiebreaker rules, which in most cases will see the top seed advance.
My Rotisserie league has a 60 Games Played Minimum for Goalies. What happens with the shortened season?
In standard, rotisserie leagues there is a "games played minimum" for goalies of 60 games. ESPN is lowering the minimum games played to 51 games--proportional to the length of the shortened NHL season. This change will only be made to standard Roto leagues, and only for this season.
League Manager leagues will not be touched. League Managers can edit their league settings as desired.