Monday, June 27, 2011

Brouwer WOWY

Direct link. I used full season data, unadjusted for scorer bias, regardless of score and location. Only 5v5 events were counted. Empty net events were excluded.

Laich vs Semin

The Caps' second line wingers this past season were fairly exceptional. Brooks Laich played tough minutes, beat them, and as a result received Selke attention. Meanwhile, Alexander Semin too played tough minutes, and almost came out with the best relative Corsi rating among Caps forwards, trailing Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom. While they didn't score as much as in years past, Laich and Semin drove the play in the right direction.

With Brooks Laich looking like he'll be an unrestricted free agent in a few days, and Semin a UFA a year from now, it's critical to know how much credit each deserves for their success at puck possession, considering how often they played together. Did they each share the burden of their heavy lifting? Did Laich benefit from extended periods of dominance from Semin? Did Semin benefit from Laich's attention to defense?

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Thoughts on the Draft

I'll start with Philadelphia's moves the day before the draft.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Awards Review

There are some that I want to quibble about.

Hart: Corey Perry

Of the finalists, I liked Perry, too. But I would've cast Tim Thomas in first and put Pekka Rinne and Jonathan Toews in there somewhere, too.

Selke: Ryan Kesler

Total joke. I know Kesler is elite defensively (as shown by Vigneault putting him against top lines during the playoffs, even in Malhotra's absence), but he wasn't asked to play much defense this season. Datsyuk was a total stud but missed time, and Toews was more deserving as well, playing borderline top-line competition. I had Callahan as my pick.

Vezina: Tim Thomas


Lindsay: Daniel Sedin

Weak class this year, so I won't argue much here. I think Daniel Sedin is better than Henrik Sedin, and although I think Corey Perry is a better player, the difference isn't all that big (the guys in the class of players above the Sedins and Perry all had various issues, like Crosby with injury, Backstrom and Ovechkin with an ineffective power play, etc).

Calder: Jeff Skinner

I would've picked Grabner, Skinner, Couture, but all three were good choices. John Carlson would've been a better choice, though. Oh, well.

GM of the Year: Mike Gillis (VAN)

I guess this is okay--he did construct a great roster. Peter Chiarelli (BOS) probably would be my pick, though, for his aggressive dealings throughout the season, especially at the deadline, which obviously proved successful (hindsight is a beautiful thing).

Norris: Nicklas Lidstrom

I had Lidstrom second behind Chara, but Lidstrom is one of my favorite non-Caps, so I'm not mad about this at all. Chara's now won an undeserved Norris (2009) and lost a deserved one (2011).

Adams: Dan Bylsma

Good pick. Being short two of your vaunted three centers almost the entire year (I think the Winter Classic was the only game for which all three were healthy) and putting up the best underlying numbers and getting close to winning the conference is quite the accomplishment.

All-Rookie Team: G Corey Crawford, D John Carlson, D PK Subban, C Jeff Skinner, C Logan Couture, LW Michael Grabner

Solid picks here. In goal, Sergei Bobrovsky and Michal Neuvirth would have been fine choices as well, and on defense, Cam Fowler and Kevin Shattenkirk, too. But I think they got this one right.

First All-Star Team: LW Daniel Sedin, C Henrik Sedin, RW Corey Perry, D Nicklas Lidstrom, D Shea Weber, G Tim Thomas

Second All-Star Team: LW Alex Ovechkin, C Steven Stamkos, RW Martin St. Louis, D Zdeno Chara, D Lubomir Visnovsky, G Pekka Rinne

I would've swapped Weber with Chara; otherwise, these look fine. Jarome Iginla (43-43-86 in 82), Teemu Selanne (31-49-80 in 73), Henrik Zetterberg (24-56-80 in 80), Jonathan Toews (32-44-76 in 80), Claude Giroux (25-51-76 in 82), and Ryan Getzlaf (19-57-76 in 67) all had strong seasons as well (all but the Sedins and Ovechkin played power-against-power in some form, most against top lines). In fact, Toews' rate stats are very close to the Sedins' at 5v5.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

"R" is for "Restricted

Not only do I feel that Michal Neuvirth's 2 year extension is a bargain, but it's a double-bargain as well. Semyon Varlamov has little leverage to ask for more than Neuvirth's $1.15 million cap hit. So not only did McPhee keep Neuvirth's price down, he has probably kept Varlamov's down as well.

For similar reasons, McPhee needs to lock up Karl Alzner before July 1.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Where is the Cause and Effect?

I was poking around with numbers at to see whether skilled players may affect shooting percentage.

I pulled information from all four seasons' worth of data, and using the filters of minimum 40 games played (for durability), forward (since I'm looking at offense), and at least 12 minutes of 5on5 time on ice per game (top-nine forward, roughly), I got this interesting graph:

The regression line indicates that for every extra minute of TOI/60 these players get, their on-ice shooting percentage increases by half a percent. I'm not sure how I'd go about doing a significance test or confidence intervals here, given different amounts of time on ice for the players, but 814 isn't exactly a tiny sample, I don't think.

To put that in perspective, Alex Ovechkin was on ice for 66 goals for at 5 on 5, the Caps shooting 9.09%. With the Caps shooting an extra half percent, he'd have been on-ice for 70 goals. Account for the extra minute of time on ice and that goes up to 74 goals. Those 8 goals are worth about 1.5 wins, which is not insignificant, though not a giant difference, either.

So what is cause, and what is effect? Are the coaches giving the guys with high on-ice shooting percentage more ice time, or are the coaches simply giving their best players lots of ice time, during which they shoot a high percentage?

Unfortunately, I'm having to manually align the rows for year-over-year correlations, so I'll have those at a later date.


User "Gould Old Days" at Japers' Rink did a post on a concept called GAETAN. I built on his idea a little here.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Taylor Stefishen NHLE


Here's a direct link. Age is of July 1. There are per-game equivalencies for each of the Tier II junior (the BCHL, here), the CHL (WHL here), NCAA, AHL, and NHL, on the right. I think the equivalencies aside from those of NCAA are overestimations, though, considering he's likely a bit older than most of the comparables. The full-season goal and point totals are per-82.

Best case scenario, I think he turns into a 10-20-30 NHL forward. Given that he needs defensive zone work per HF, I think he'll make the NHL as a soft minutes 4th liner for a few years, but will toil in the minors for much of his career.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Caps Sign Sjogren

The Capitals signed Mattias Sjogren, it seems.

Here's a profile from Elite prospects. His stat line looks okay, and NHLE says we can expect around .78 of his points-per-game rate to translate to the NHL. That leaves his last three SEL years as follows:

6-7-13 in 43 --> 9-10-19 in 82
11-11-22 in 54--> 13-13-26 in 82
7-17-24 in 51--> 9-21-30 in 82

His 1-8-9 in 13 and 0-1-1 in 3 in the playoffs the last two years hint that he could be a "playoff performer" at a minimum. Guess you can't have too many of those. But he doesn't seem like anything more than a depth scorer. I hope I'm wrong.