MIDNIGHT FLYER

We are camping! The post at 5pm today will have a family story from Penticton, maybe 1968. I have to wrap this blog up in the next 80 years or I am going to run out of stories! We know the roster, here are their NHLE’s (with two exceptions).

YOUNG STARS NHLE’S

penticton-nhle

  • *For Puljujarvi, I used Scott Cullen’s estimate. I don’t think Puljujarvi’s equivalencies are believable.
  • **For Descheneau, I used 2014-15, as he was hurt last year.

This is a very good list, Oilers always have fantastic talent going to the Okanagan—drafting high guarantees it. Among the players who (imo) have a good chance to play in the NHL someday? Puljujarvi, Benning, Jones, Bear, Calliuga, Benson and Niemelainen. Is this group the best ever? I will put the McDavid cluster of a year ago ahead, and the best ever might be 2010, with Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajarvi, Brandon Davidson, Martin Marincin and Jeff Petry. As with most teams that lose for a generation, the Oilers have very little left from a substantial prospect group just six years later.

It took some time, but it was always rumored to be Omsk and NN is back in the city. We are now mostly done with last year’s roster and their new cities:

STRAGGLERS

  • L Kale Kessy. Not qualified, destination unknown.
  • D Adam Pardy. UFA, destination unknown. Pardy has signed a PTO with the Florida Panthers.
  • D Eric Gryba. UFA, destination unknown.
  • D Nikita Nikitin. UFA. Omsk (KHL) where we hope he flourishes and has a healthy year.
  • C Marco Roy. Rookie camp with the Canucks, suspect he gets at least an AHL deal.

I still think Eric Gryba could be a part of the 2016-17 Oilers, but the train has left the station for Kessy (unless we see a TC invite). I think we are probably at a point where we can guess all three pro rosters and where these players land on opening night.

Peter Chiarelli’s teams in Boston did have smaller skill forwards, and there is an opening—especially at center (if Leon spends some time on the wing). Caggiula’s NHLE (82gp, 22-22-44) implies he can play with skill and get results, so this is something to watch for at main camp. He is small, but the Chiarelli Oilers have bigger wingers who can play on skill lines in complementary roles. It is also interesting that BM said 13 forwards, leaving room for an extra blue (or goalie). Maybe David Musil is in the plans.

PROJECTED 2016-17 OILERS   projected-opening-night-2016-17

I don’t think Caggiula makes the team, but I also wonder if Anton Lander arrives at training camp on the outside looking in. This roster also pulls Iiro Pakarinen out of the 23, and places Matt Benning there. Interesting comments from McKenzie, and it does (imo) increase the chances of some kind of movement during pre-season. If Drake Caggiula makes the team, less likely Jesse Puljujarvi also breaks camp with Edmonton.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Friday show and it is a fun one, 10 this morning on TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Steve Lansky, Big Mouth Sports. World Cup of Hockey, Changes at HNIC, Jays.
  • Rob Reeves, Castrol Raceway. Annihilation Night Replay goes tomorrow night. This is a smash ’em, crash ’em, burn ’em Saturday night at a great race track.
  • Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. The Blue Jays are going to win the pennant. Book it!
  • Frank Seravalli, TSN. World Cup, free agents out there and any trade chatter—specifically involving the Oilers—that may be out there.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter.

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89 Responses to "MIDNIGHT FLYER"

  1. stephen sheps says:

    Replying to posts from the last 2 threads… apologies for the early morning threadjack now.

    hunter1909: Back when I was in college Sociology/Psychology were the next big thing.

    What happened? Did they graduate tens of thousands, into a marketplace that can only handle thousands?

    I always liked writing and English came naturally and once took a screenwriting course – the very first day the prof says to the film production students who took up most of this course: “There are 20 Hollywood movies made each year with new directors. There are 25,000 graduates of film schools each year, all want to direct – then the prof likened the production student’s chances to crab egg hatchlings etc.

    Really good analogy here, Hunter and your professor was 100% on point. However it isn’t just limited to the Sociology/Psychology or film grads… There was a belief in the early – mid 00’s that since we are transitioning out of the ‘industrial’ and into the ‘post-industrial’ or ‘knowledge’ economy, that the feds and provinces heavily invested into post secondary education, especially graduate studies programs. A more highly educated population would lead to more creativity and innovation, so the theory goes. However post-secondary education isn’t necessarily structured for this new economy, because we don’t exactly know what it is going to look like yet, other than lots and lots of startups, lots and lots of advertising and a whole lot of precarity & job insecurity while we figure it out. So the schools are incentivized (read: given more dollars) to produce more graduate students in every department and program without an actual sustainable plan for what comes next.

    I think this relates to what LT was saying the other day w.r.t to millennial entitlement not actually being a thing – it’s way harder than it was before, mostly because what we think of as ‘work’ and how to actually find it has shifted remarkably, but our institutions (like higher education) and our policy makers haven’t yet caught up to the shift in order to help prepare younger people for the new normal.

    And now onto hockey –

    Yes to Yak with McDavid for so many reasons, both for the team and the player.
    For the player it gives him the best possible chance for success, especially if he’s playing with both McDavid and Lucic. Yak thrives when people who think the game at a high level are playing with him, helping to direct him to the right spots. McDavid thinks, moves and plays at a higher level than anyone, while Lucic is a possession monster who knows where he needs to be at all times and makes up for his limited speed with outstanding positioning. Yak has the instincts and raw talent but needs direction on ice a little bit more than maybe he should. Putting him with those two players gives him two strong voices to help him make adjustments on the fly and will then learn the ideal positions to put himself into, similar to when he had success with Roy. Lucic in particular is really vocal on the ice and on the bench. Yak needs that kind of support, and it isn’t a fatal flaw, it’s just who he is.

    For the team it’s obvious – spreading out the talent across three lines creates matchup problems for opposing coaches and also gives TMac way more flexibility with roster decisions, especially if Yak really gets going. Versteeg shouldn’t be a death knell for Yak on the Oilers; in fact I think it could be the best possible thing for him and the team, because it means that JP won’t need to be rushed, and he also provides cover should a LW get hurt at any point because he has played on both sides equally and with reasonable effectiveness. In the end, Versteeg gives Yak a new lease on life – it’s up to him to do something with that new lease, mind you, but playing him with McDavid is setting him up for success rather than setting him up to fail.

  2. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    I have a hard time believing Hendricks will be riding pine on opening night. I could see it later in the year, though given that we will have 3 or 4 injuries I doubt it.

    He’s a respected leader and probably the main PK guy with Letestu. He will have to prove he doesn’t belong rather than proving he does.

  3. Lowetide says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!:
    I have a hard time believing Hendricks will be riding pine on opening night.I could see it later in the year, though given that we will have 3 or 4 injuries I doubt it.

    He’s a respected leader and probably the main PK guy with Letestu.He will have to prove he doesn’t belong rather than proving he does.

    Oilers are a very slow team up front now, that is a reason Caggiula has a chance imo.

  4. stephen sheps says:

    Lowetide: Oilers are a very slow team up front now, that is a reason Caggiula has a chance imo.

    That’s probably true. The Oilers are a slower team now, particularly on the left side. That may open the door for Caggiula just a crack.

  5. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Lowetide: Oilers are a very slow team up front now, that is a reason Caggiula has a chance imo.

    For the record I think you might be right in terms of what should happen, but I don’t think the lineup presented is right in terms of what will happen.

    You’ve got a whole mess of young players on that team, and not only is Hendricks a guy that’s considered a leader, he’s a guy that’s worn the C of several USA teams in major international tournaments. He’s not a little bit respected, he’s majorly respected. To me that makes it unlikely he sits until he proves he’s too slow to keep up, and I think that might take a month or two.

    I personally have no issue with Caggiuala making the team as you’ve shown. In my book if he earns it he earns it.

  6. Aitch says:

    Since Benning doesn’t have to clear waivers, I can’t see him making the opening night roster unless he either a) tears it up at camp or b) someone gets hurt. But, every since I thought you were mad for suggesting that the Oilers go after Lucic (Why bother, we have Hall, right?) I won’t go so far as to say that’ you’re wrong. You clearly either have a connection or a sixth sense. 😉

    This year might be one of the hardest to predict the opening night roster. While there is always a surprise or two in camp, this year has so many question marks? Can Brossiot beat out Gustavsson? Can Versteeg win a job? Is Puljujarvi good enough? Should Nurse start in the A on the top or the NHL at the bottom? Where will Yakupov play, if at all? Is Caggiula as good as his NHLE suggests? Which version of Anton Lander will we see? Is Chia waiting for the expansion draft to finish building the blueline in an attempt to hold onto some good assets?

  7. defmn says:

    With the season getting going I just want to thank our host for sparking conversation and information during what have been very long off seasons.

    I rarely post but during the summers I drop by to read and wanted to express my appreciation of the time and effort put into this blog.

  8. sean w says:

    Lowetide,

    LT, are you suggesting the Oilers are now a “very slow team up front” because of the loss of Taylor Hall? I think it’s fair to say the Oilers are slower on *LW* wing this year, but not that they are a “very slow team up front” as a whole.

  9. Oddspell says:

    sean w,

    If we were the young, speedy Oilers before McDavid came along, and in the last 1.5 years we added and subtracted one blazing fast player, then we should still be the young, speedy Oilers now. We’re definitely slower than in May, and I don’t think we’re going to play the run and gun game under McLellan, but I’d argue we’re a faster team today than we were under Eakins.

  10. leadfarmer says:

    sean w:
    Lowetide,

    LT, are you suggesting the Oilers are now a “very slow team up front” because of the loss of Taylor Hall? I think it’s fair to say the Oilers are slower on *LW* wing this year, but not that they are a “very slow team up front” as a whole.

    Even with Hall they werent a fast team. Speed is the new size. It doesnt matter if your guy is small if he can get to the corners and get the puck out before the opposing “big forward” can get there. Quick skating and fast accurate passing is the name of the game now. Get the puck out of the zone and get it to the forward with speed .

    There is such a huge change from College to NHL that I wish the goals were to have Calligula have a AHL all star caliber year then to make the NHL team. Same as Puljujarvi.

  11. Younger Oil says:

    Which forwards do we think are going to PK if Hendricks isn’t in the opening night lineup?

    Nuge, Letestu, and who?

    Seems like a pretty weak PK lineup, looks much better with Hendricks in the team.

  12. DRFNsuperstar says:

    If it’s the fourth line left wing position open I would be amazed if The Drake was in that spot over Khaira. The Drake centering Puljujärvi and Slepyshev on a first line in the A makes too much sense to have him play crap minutes with Letestu.

  13. defmn says:

    leadfarmer: Speed is the new size.

    It is definitely the flavour of the season since Pittsburgh won the cup but I think I will wait to see to see how the very fast NA team does in the Toronto tourney before buying high on that idea.

    As a very smart coach once commented it doesn’t matter how fast you skate, you still can’t skate faster than you can pass the puck.

    In the end I believe you need a balance of speed, size/strength/grit, skill and experience so that you can win games a number of different ways.

    Relying on one attribute makes you too predictable to being shut down by good coaching.

  14. kinger_OIL says:

    leadfarmer,

    Lead says: “I wish the goals were to have Calligula have a AHL all star caliber year then to make the NHL team. Same as Puljujarvi”

    – Because Oilers! Even though there is no way that Pulju adds more value in his rookie year than Yak, if they were given the same situation and Calligula is perhaps at best a slight upgrade on Pak: they won’t move the dial this year for the Oil.

    – So why not let them become all-stars, then bring them up indeed. They are not the difference between playoffs or not (unless you are prepared for the rookie liabilites and mistakes that all teen-agers bring, who had less offence than yak.

    – The goal should be to play good hockey untill the deadline and see. Not “train-up” more rookies in the NHL, that we have no clue what they do.

  15. dustrock says:

    The Oilers were always talked about as a young speedy team, but other than Hall and Nuge, I never really understood that. Especially as the D was unbearaborrible at transition.

    LT – getting guys like Caligula and Versteeg is a little bit relieving because they’re both fairly “small” compared to the Lucic Voltron Coke Machine model they’ve been salivating over for years. Good to see that Chia can still assess talent over size, at times at least.

    Watching McLellan coach the Lost Boys at the World Cup is interesting – because people have complained here, there and everywhere about his “dump and chase” style with the Oilers last year.

    Here he has the youngest,least experienced team in the competition, and he is making people pay attention by using as much speed and forechecking as possible to give the team a chance.

    Whether this was a lesson from the Pens/Sharks SCF or just a pragmatic look at the strengths of the team, again it’s reassuring that he is able to change tactics depending on the squad.

    I wonder, with a better D corpse, and a healthy Klefbom corpus, if we’ll see more controlled entries and less “dump and chase”.

  16. bendelson says:

    leadfarmer: Speed is the new size.

    It’s a very nice bonus when a player checks both boxes.
    It’s a very tough road for a player that checks neither…

  17. G Money says:

    dustrock: unbearaborrible

    Just for clarity, do you mean

    unbearably horrible

    or

    unbearable, boring, and terrible?

    Either works, just curious.

  18. Bruce McCurdy says:

    There has always been a tendency to conflate “young” with “fast”. Oilers did have a couple of speedy youngsters who moved on in Cogliano & Paajarvi, but others of their young talented core like Eberle, Yakupov and especially Gagner were never in the first car of the speed train. (Gagner used to drive me absolutely nuts with his refusal/inability to skate in one direction. He would get the puck & immediately start slaloming his way down the ice while everybody else zoomed by on the downhill course.)

    Raw speedsters? Hall, RNH (to a lesser degree), now McDavid & Puljujarvi. It’s the latter who brings promise of speed on the flanks who might go the furthest towards replacing Hall.

    Speaking of whom, I heard a report on TSN SportsCentre about how Canada will rush Matt Duchene back into the lineup because he’s one of the few speedsters they have & that it’s actually a fairly slow team. Lots of good skaters, obviously, but now many Great ones? Of course to have speedy wingers you first of all need to have wingers. 😐

  19. npanciroli says:

    I doubt they keep Nurse off the NHL roster. Curious to see how Benning looks.

    Klefbom Larsson
    Sekera Fayne
    Davidson Benning/RHD
    Oesterle

    Is what I would run depending on how good Benning is. Really like my L-R pairs.

    Lucic McDavid Eberle
    Pouliot RNH Versteeg
    Maroon Draisaitl Yakupov
    Cagguila Letestu Kassian

    This might end up being the depth chart based purely on ability. With Cagguila/Hendricks, Yakupov/Versteeg, Letestu/Lander being the main competitions.

  20. frjohnk says:

    I don’t see this as a fast team.

    Pouliet is guy on the left side that has above average speed.

    None of EBERLE,Yak, Kassian, PAK,Versteeg are speedsters. Yak has incredible first couple of steps but lacks top end speed.

    McDavid is kinda fast 🙂
    RNH is fast.
    Draisaitl has good top end speed.
    Letestu is not fast.

    On D, Nurse might be one of the fastest skating Dmen in the league.
    Klieg boom can move too.
    The rest of the D are average or below.

    I think if Dragulia replaces Hendricks and JP replaces one the RWers later in the year, the team could enter the conversation of being fast. But not right now.

  21. Offside says:

    Half of these equivalencies are better than Yakupov’s point totals last year. Do I blame Eakins or Desjardins?

  22. JDï™ says:

    Offside: Do I blame Eakins or Desjardins?

    Yes.

    We would also accept Lauren Pronger, and whoever piled those old tires into the dumpster behind Rexall Place.

    In other snews, looks like the games will be streamed on the Oilers’ site, and that we’ll get to see Marco Roy don the blue & green for the Nucks.

    http://oilers.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=892691&navid=DL|EDM|home

  23. G Money says:

    stephen sheps: spreading out the talent across three lines creates matchup problems for opposing coaches and also gives TMac way more flexibility with roster decisions

    I saw in a tweet from Micah Blake McCurdy that he’s working on some sort of ‘line combo juggler predictor’ – that is, something that takes players individual successes and past line successes and predicts how effective a line will be.

    You can then juggle lines and it will predict how effective the team will be overall as a result.

    That will be very interesting for the line blenders among us.

  24. dustrock says:

    G Money: Just for clarity, do you mean

    unbearably horrible

    or

    unbearable, boring, and terrible?

    Either works, just curious.

    Ha ha only you would actually respond on that.

    I’ve used it both ways, but mostly the latter. Not only is it unbearable and terrible, but boring as well, which is unforgivable.

  25. Woogie63 says:

    Given the WCH it will be interesting to see who from our management team is im Penticton this year.

  26. G Money says:

    LT: *For Puljujarvi, I used Scott Cullen’s estimate. I don’t think Puljujarvi’s equivalencies are believable.

    Offside: Half of these equivalencies are better than Yakupov’s point totals last year.

    A reminder about the use, misuse, and abuse of NHLEs:

    1 – they are heavily dominated by survivor bias effects – that is to say, they don’t account for players who never make it at all, only the ones who did. If you included a zero for all the players who didn’t make it, you’d probably cut NHLE numbers down by 80% or so.

    2 – For those players who did make it, the NHLE represents the correlation between what those players did before they made it and after they made it. That makes it a valid numerical representation of the past.

    But you don’t get the critical associated information for that regression, including the scatter plot of the data, the significance of the regression, the standard errors, and ideally a plot of the residuals.

    When converting a large spread of numbers down to a single one that is supposedly representative, the use of that number must always be done with caution. Doubly so when you are missing all the related information. This is part of what “lies, damn lies, and statistics” is about.

    3 – If you want to use NHLE as a valid predictor (as most people do), you pretty much need the error bars around that predicted value. As noted above, that information hasn’t been supplied by the people generating the NHLE, therefore you should treat any predicted number with many thousands of grains of salt.

    4 – I have generated my own NHLE and I can tell you that the error bars are wide. So when you see a predicted number like 36, you should probably read a confidence interval out of it that looks like (26,46).

    And after you account for the survivor bias: (0,46).

    Yeah, that’s a wide range. The information content is low. It’s why I don’t use NHLE’s very often, and then mostly for fun, not for analytical work.

  27. JDï™ says:

    G Money,

    Speaking of the McBlender:

    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 19m19 minutes ago

    Team North America lines:

    Scheifele – McDavid – Matthews

    Gaudreau – Eichel – Larkin

    Miller – RNH – Drouin

    Trocheck – Couturier – Saad

  28. jonrmcleod says:

    Bob Stauffer @Bob_Stauffer
    In Penticton Drake Caggiula is centering Jesse Puljujarvi and Caleb Jones is paired with Matt Benning

  29. G Money says:

    dustrock,

    So you really meant to say unbeargivaborerribly!

  30. G Money says:

    JDï™,

    I hear that McDavid fellow is in real danger of becoming a bust.

    Also, RNH finally recognized as a third line C.

  31. stush18 says:

    defmn: It is definitely the flavour of the season since Pittsburgh won the cup but I think I will wait to see to see how the very fast NA team does in the Toronto tourney before buying high on that idea.

    As a very smart coach once commented it doesn’t matter how fast you skate, you still can’t skate faster than you can pass the puck.

    In the end I believe you need a balance of speed, size/strength/grit, skill and experience so that you can win games a number of different ways.

    Relying on one attribute makes you too predictable to being shut down by good coaching.

    Exactly. The game isn’t about speed, or size.

    It’s about puck support, and possession. If you use team speed to get to pucks first, or team size to protect and win battles, it doesn’t matter.

    It’s all about players willingness to engage for loose pucks.

    Also the oilers haven’t been a fast team since nillson and cogs and Hemsky were here. Team speed has been dead for a while

  32. HT Joe says:

    G Money:

    Also, RNH finally recognized as a third line C.

    At least we didn’t draft Couturier… 4th liner! 😮

  33. stephen sheps says:

    G Money: I saw in a tweet from Micah Blake McCurdy that he’s working on some sort of ‘line combo juggler predictor’ – that is, something that takes players individual successes and past line successes and predicts how effective a line will be.

    You can then juggle lines and it will predict how effective the team will be overall as a result.

    That will be very interesting for the line blenders among us.

    Oooh, I like that. I like that a lot.

  34. Richard S.S. says:

    Approximately one week remains until Training Camp open. PTO offers are out to D – Eric Gryba (although I wonder if there were better options available) and possibly C – Mike Richards (I also wonder if there were better options available). I’m not sure who accepts what. I’m not sure I’d like either one to accept.

    Sometime after the start of Training Camp and before the Season Start players will become available. Will they be of interest to Peter Chiarelli? Could he attain them?

    Leon Draisaitl competed in Olympic Qualifying and is competing in the World Cup. He just seems to be getting better and better. I fully expected Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to be traded next offseason, while Leon took his place. Right now I think that trade might occur much sooner.

    After re-reading about LTIR and the Cap, Peter Chiarelli has more possible space available than I thought. And I thought he might be done.

  35. RexLibris says:

    G Money:
    LT: *For Puljujarvi, I used Scott Cullen’s estimate. I don’t think Puljujarvi’s equivalencies are believable.

    A reminder about the use, misuse, and abuse of NHLEs:

    1 – they are heavily dominated by survivor bias effects – that is to say, they don’t account for players who never make it at all, only the ones who did. If you included a zero for all the players who didn’t make it, you’d probably cut NHLE numbers down by 80% or so.

    2 – For those players who did make it, the NHLE represents the correlation between what those players did before they made it and after they made it.That makes it a valid numerical representation of the past.

    But you don’t get the critical associated information for that regression, including the scatter plot of the data, the significance of the regression, the standard errors, and ideally a plot of the residuals.

    When converting a large spread of numbers down to a single one that is supposedly representative, the use of that number must always be done with caution. Doubly so when you are missing all the related information. This is part of what “lies, damn lies, and statistics” is about.

    3 – If you want to use NHLE as a valid predictor (as most people do), you pretty much need the error bars around that predicted value.As noted above, that information hasn’t been supplied by the people generating the NHLE, therefore you should treat any predicted number with many thousands of grains of salt.

    4 – I have generated my own NHLE and I can tell you that the error bars are wide.So when you see a predicted number like 36, you should probably read a confidence interval out of it that looks like (26,46).

    And after you account for the survivor bias: (0,46).

    Yeah, that’s a wide range.The information content is low.It’s why I don’t use NHLE’s very often, and then mostly for fun, not for analytical work.

    Have you revised your NHLE formulas at all or are you suggesting they be used very sparingly in this case?

    It sounds like my approach on NHLE’s doesn’t differ much from what you describe: useful as a way of rough plotting a player’s potential impact provided that all the other factors like TOI are more or less equal.

    I’ve always seen them as interesting but also very limited because they focus solely on boxcars and thus are imperfect descriptors of defensemen and support players.

  36. kinger_OIL says:

    – “Fast”, or “not fast” in today’s NHL is malarkey, except on the extremes: i.e. last year Ferrence was “really slow”, and McD was “really fast”. Virtually everyone on this Oil is “fast enough”

    – Sufficient “speed” is enough, and the Oil are sufficiently “fast” enough

    – Passing the puck is way faster than any skater. Properly hitting a skater to remove him from the puck is the antidote for speed given the size of the rinks and the size of the players

    – Fast doesn’t matter much when the league is a dump and chase or place and chase

    – The speed comment is just another subtle speed-bag punch at Hall’s departure: let it go. The Oil’s “speed” or lack thereof will have 0 discernable effect on their performance. You can’t quantify speed on a team level. Rookies are invariably “faster” than vets, in NHL all-star competitions.

    – I haven’t heard a coach say: “we need to get faster” in the NHL in forever.

    Passing > Puck Control > “Speed”

  37. judgedrude says:

    JDï™:
    G Money,

    Speaking of the McBlender:


    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 19m19 minutes ago

    Team North America lines:

    Scheifele – McDavid – Matthews

    Gaudreau – Eichel – Larkin

    Miller – RNH – Drouin

    Trocheck – Couturier – Saad

    RNH – Third line centre 🙁

  38. Pouzar says:

    Lowetide: Oilers are a very slow team up front now, that is a reason Caggiula has a chance imo.

    Bah “Speed Smid” <– Get it? Get it? 🙂

  39. judgedrude says:

    G Money:
    LT: *For Puljujarvi, I used Scott Cullen’s estimate. I don’t think Puljujarvi’s equivalencies are believable.

    A reminder about the use, misuse, and abuse of NHLEs:

    1 – they are heavily dominated by survivor bias effects – that is to say, they don’t account for players who never make it at all, only the ones who did. If you included a zero for all the players who didn’t make it, you’d probably cut NHLE numbers down by 80% or so.

    2 – For those players who did make it, the NHLE represents the correlation between what those players did before they made it and after they made it.That makes it a valid numerical representation of the past.

    But you don’t get the critical associated information for that regression, including the scatter plot of the data, the significance of the regression, the standard errors, and ideally a plot of the residuals.

    When converting a large spread of numbers down to a single one that is supposedly representative, the use of that number must always be done with caution. Doubly so when you are missing all the related information. This is part of what “lies, damn lies, and statistics” is about.

    3 – If you want to use NHLE as a valid predictor (as most people do), you pretty much need the error bars around that predicted value.As noted above, that information hasn’t been supplied by the people generating the NHLE, therefore you should treat any predicted number with many thousands of grains of salt.

    4 – I have generated my own NHLE and I can tell you that the error bars are wide.So when you see a predicted number like 36, you should probably read a confidence interval out of it that looks like (26,46).

    And after you account for the survivor bias: (0,46).

    Yeah, that’s a wide range.The information content is low.It’s why I don’t use NHLE’s very often, and then mostly for fun, not for analytical work.

    So what you’re saying is that NHLE needs 2 numbers to properly associate it.

    Caggiula NHLE: 44pts (17.6%)

    Read as: Caggiula should post 44pts / 82gp the year coming out of NCAA, but only 17.6% (fictitious) of NCAA players his age play 1 game in the NHL to contribute to that metric. The other 82.4% fall back to the AHL (or whatever).

  40. Showerhead says:

    G Money:
    LT: *For Puljujarvi, I used Scott Cullen’s estimate. I don’t think Puljujarvi’s equivalencies are believable.

    A reminder about the use, misuse, and abuse of NHLEs:

    1 – they are heavily dominated by survivor bias effects – that is to say, they don’t account for players who never make it at all, only the ones who did. If you included a zero for all the players who didn’t make it, you’d probably cut NHLE numbers down by 80% or so.

    2 – For those players who did make it, the NHLE represents the correlation between what those players did before they made it and after they made it.That makes it a valid numerical representation of the past.

    But you don’t get the critical associated information for that regression, including the scatter plot of the data, the significance of the regression, the standard errors, and ideally a plot of the residuals.

    When converting a large spread of numbers down to a single one that is supposedly representative, the use of that number must always be done with caution. Doubly so when you are missing all the related information. This is part of what “lies, damn lies, and statistics” is about.

    3 – If you want to use NHLE as a valid predictor (as most people do), you pretty much need the error bars around that predicted value.As noted above, that information hasn’t been supplied by the people generating the NHLE, therefore you should treat any predicted number with many thousands of grains of salt.

    4 – I have generated my own NHLE and I can tell you that the error bars are wide.So when you see a predicted number like 36, you should probably read a confidence interval out of it that looks like (26,46).

    And after you account for the survivor bias: (0,46).

    Yeah, that’s a wide range.The information content is low.It’s why I don’t use NHLE’s very often, and then mostly for fun, not for analytical work.

    I think Lowetide has done an excellent job of reminding us over the years that NHLE’s need to be thought about in an individual player context. We’ve talked about things like needing to investigate time on ice, special teams, etc.

    What you’ve done here is add a layer of science to that truth. I hope you’re wrong that most people use NHLE’s as be-all/end-all predictors but suspect that, to at least some degree, you’re right. It can feel daunting to dig into the context for every single player on a prospect list.

    You’re definitely right about needing to use grains of salt. Without having seen your work (but trusting it), the size of the error bars you’ve found is important to talk about and to add to the conversation.

  41. kinger_OIL says:

    judgedrude: So what you’re saying is that NHLE needs 2 numbers to properly associate it.

    Caggiula NHLE: 44pts (17.6%)

    Read as: Caggiula should post 44pts / 82gp the year coming out of NCAA, but only 17.6% (fictitious) of NCAA players his age play 1 game in the NHL to contribute to that metric.The other 82.4% fall back to the AHL (or whatever).

    – Interesting, if you take 44 points x 17.6%, you get 7 points, which is my RE for him in the NHL next year. I don’t see him as effective next year in anything other than 4rth line “energy role” who gets a few cups of coffee because he’s Chia’s guy

  42. Showerhead says:

    judgedrude: So what you’re saying is that NHLE needs 2 numbers to properly associate it.

    Caggiula NHLE: 44pts (17.6%)

    Read as: Caggiula should post 44pts / 82gp the year coming out of NCAA, but only 17.6% (fictitious) of NCAA players his age play 1 game in the NHL to contribute to that metric.The other 82.4% fall back to the AHL (or whatever).

    Oh this is interesting – the idea of including whatever the attrition rate is from each league (and each age from each league.) Cool add.

    Along the same lines of my post above, I’d caution against the words “Caggiula should post” – NHLE’s, as far as I can see, are not meant to predict. Each player that graduates a league will see their usage change – minutes will likely decline, PP time will likely decline, usage will change (and, importantly, all of these will change in different ways for each player in a way I don’t think anyone has sorted out quite yet.)

    Just my two cents. You might not have meant your words as literally as I took them.

  43. Showerhead says:

    kinger_OIL: – Interesting, if you take 44 points x 17.6%, you get 7 points, which is my RE for him in the NHL next year.I don’t see him as effective next year in anything other than 4rth line “energy role” who gets a few cups of coffee because he’s Chia’s guy

    1) He made that number (17.6%) up.
    2) If I understand his post, the fictitious 17.6% was supposed to be the percentage of NCAA players who survive / don’t get cut from their NHL teams the year after doing what Caggiula did – not a sort of point conversion factor.

    Not saying that your 7 points / 4th line energy guy stuff is right or not right. Just trying to clarify judgedrude’s post.

  44. Yeti says:

    kinger_OIL: – Passing the puck is way faster than any skater. Properly hitting a skater to remove him from the puck is the antidote for speed given the size of the rinks and the size of the players

    I think this is the money quote. That transition game – the tape to tape passes whose absence LT has been lamenting for the eight years – is pivotal. We need a D that can do it. Perhaps we finally have one.

  45. Lowetide says:

    Yeti: I think this is the money quote. That transition game – the tape to tape passes whose absence LT has been lamenting for the eight years – is pivotal. We need a D that can do it. Perhaps we finally have one.

    Larsson can make that pass, he is really good at it. Sekera has taken a beating but I believe in him, and Klefbom can do that and most everything else. Davidson is effective in this area in my opinion, and his junior numbers suggested he did have some offense to his game.

    Nurse is a player who can skate the puck well, and carry it well, but he lacks the creativity to get much done once inside the zone. I would suggest he carries it because that is his preference, and that passing it out should be encouraged—but it is too soon (imo) to say if he can (or not) make that pass successfully.

  46. Showerhead says:

    While the coffee is still doing its thing:

    Speed, passing, size, smarts – all of it. All of it is good. None of these things will ever be useless and none of these things will ever be enough on its own.

    I think there was a lot of romanticism in the post-2004-lockout about “The new NHL” and how speed and skill would reign supreme. It even did, for a little while, didn’t it? Penalties were being called to the letter, powerplays (and goal scoring) peaked – it was perhaps the single greatest season-to-season shift of hockey style / goal scoring in NHL history.

    But the game has (incrementally) reverted to something a little bit closer to 2004 than 2006. I don’t say this as a complaint – just a comment – because the real truth is that there may, without significant rule changes, never be such a huge season-to-season change in NHL style again.

    What is my point? That, for at least one season, it was (very probably) very valid to talk about a “new” NHL and consider that the relative importance of specific attributes was changing. I don’t think it’s as valid now as it was then to look at any one year’s results and see a new NHL in the NHL news.

    I would say that yes, the game is getting faster as the years go by – but that is across the board. Relative strength, smarts, passing, shooting, etc are still incredibly vital.

    More than one way to be a good player, that’s for sure.

  47. Bruce McCurdy says:

    JDï™:
    G Money,

    Speaking of the McBlender:


    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 19m19 minutes ago

    Team North America lines:

    Scheifele – McDavid – Matthews

    Gaudreau – Eichel – Larkin

    Miller – RNH – Drouin

    Trocheck – Couturier – Saad

    Gah! R-C-L

  48. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Gah! R-C-L

    This is God punishing you for not welcoming my C-L-R presentation. One day soon, we will get:

    McDavid—Larsson—Eberle—Lucic—Klefbom

    If only all of you had been open to new ideas.

  49. kinger_OIL says:

    Showerhead: 1) He made that number (17.6%) up.
    2) If I understand his post, the fictitious 17.6% was supposed to be the percentage of NCAA players who survive / don’t get cut from their NHL teams the year after doing what Caggiula did – not a sort of point conversion factor.

    Not saying that your 7 points / 4th line energy guy stuff is right or not right. Just trying to clarify judgedrude’s post.

    – I agree: really like the NHLE + Historical likelihood of equivalent player@age making the NHL.

    – Just coincidence that multiplying the 2 gets sub-10 points, which is my RE for Caggiula.

    – 44 as his NHLE is just some number. There isn’t an executive in hockey that projects him as equivalent Dylan Larkin, Mikael Granlund or Teddy Purcell “production” by way of example.

    – It’s a disservice IMO to use NHLE to represent Caggiula as a potential bona-fide effective scorer or solution next year in the NHL, because it is very very unlikely that he will do so.

  50. Ronald Chevalier says:

    on an unrelated note… Burns just bought a McDavid Team North America jersey and had it autographed.

  51. JDï™ says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Gah! R-C-L

    So that’s it. I really couldn’t understand what McLellan was doing, but stopped short of ranting on how stoopid he must be. I’m also splitting time between hockey blogs and amp schematics, and I really shouldn’t be.

    Lowetide,

    C – RD – RW – LW – LD

    That would be a great distraction technique.

  52. Caramel Batman says:

    kinger_OIL:
    – “Fast”, or “not fast” in today’s NHL is malarkey, except on the extremes:i.e. last year Ferrence was “really slow”, and McD was “really fast”. Virtually everyone on this Oil is “fast enough”

    – Sufficient “speed” is enough, and the Oil are sufficiently “fast” enough

    – Passing the puck is way faster than any skater.Properly hitting a skater to remove him from the puck is the antidote for speed given the size of the rinks and the size of the players

    – Fast doesn’t matter much when the league is a dump and chase or place and chase

    – The speed comment is just another subtle speed-bag punch at Hall’s departure: let it go.The Oil’s “speed” or lack thereof will have 0 discernable effect on their performance.You can’t quantify speed on a team level.Rookies are invariably “faster” than vets, in NHL all-star competitions.

    – I haven’t heard a coach say: “we need to get faster” in the NHL in forever.

    Passing > Puck Control > “Speed”

    This is nonsense, except in the sense of the truism that speed doesn’t trump all.

    If Linus Omark were faster he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot faster, he’d be a star player.

    If he was McDavid fast, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    Speed is the single most important variable for any player.

  53. Showerhead says:

    kinger_OIL,

    I try to be super rational all of the time but you just said Dylan Larkin and now I don’t care what points you’re making, I will be enraged if Caggiula is anything but as effective as DL was last year 🙂

  54. rickithebear says:

    Lowetide: Larsson can make that pass, he is really good at it. Sekera has taken a beating but I believe in him, and Klefbom can do that and most everything else. Davidson is effective in this area in my opinion, and his junior numbers suggested he did have some offense to his game.

    Nurse is a player who can skate the puck well, and carry it well, but he lacks the creativity to get much done once inside the zone. I would suggest he carries it because that is his preference, and that passing it out should be encouraged—but it is too soon (imo) to say if he can (or not) make that pass successfully.

    cause EVA/60 is the most important part of a Dman’s game.

    Wonder who kept saying ignore all else.!

    the 23 minutes of hockey:
    Larsson – HAll

    Subban – Weber:
    with price .889 HSCA save % 1.000 – .889 = .111

    Subban bottom 60 HSCA D
    12.8 HSC SH/60
    12.82 X .111 = 1.42 EVGA/60

    Weber #2 HSCA D.
    7.30 X = .81 EVGA/60
    that is .61 less EVGA

    PK subban generates the 10th best EVp/60 rate by dmen in the league
    1.10 EVp/60
    357 Players forwards/Dmen generate 1.10 EVP/60 +

    346 of them are forwards. that is almost all 12 forwards for each team.
    subban generates even offence at the same rate as a bottom 4th line forward.

    take the top 10 EVP/60 D last 3 years.
    look at how many Forwards can generate there rate
    Burns 1.51 #161 EVGA D
    ————— 199 forwards; #7 forward rate
    Hedman 1.36 #85 EVGA D
    Karlsson 1.35 #234 EVGA D
    ————— 256 forwards; #9 forward rate
    Klinberg 1.23 #161 EVGA D
    ————— 300 forwards; #10/11 forward rate
    Byfuglien 1.18 #233 EVGA D
    gostibere 1.17 #52 EVGA D
    Giordano 1.16 #181 EVGA D
    ————— 315 forwards; #11 forward rate
    Barrie 1.15 #170 EVGA D
    Parayko 1.14 #7 EVGA D
    Subban 1.10 #185 EVGA D
    ————— 346 forwards; #12 forward rate

    SO
    When you want offence or a goal scored.
    who do you give the puck too?
    and how fast?

    cup winners have
    1. HSCA d system coach
    2. top 10 HSCA save% goalie
    3. 3+ top 60 HSCA D.
    4. 2 #1 (top 90) or 3 (top 150) evg/EVP lines
    5. +ve Goal diff from PP/PK

    What NJ needs is offence.

    That is why they gave u the best HSCA; EVGA; PKGA d in the game the last 2 years for Hall.

  55. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Caramel Batman: This is nonsense, except in the sense of the truism that speed doesn’t trump all.

    If Linus Omark were faster he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot faster, he’d be a star player.

    If he was McDavid fast, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    Speed is the single most important variable for any player.

    If Linus Omark were bigger he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot bigger, he’d be a star player.

    If he was Chara big, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    I do actually agree with you though. Just thought I’d put that out there. Small and slow rarely works.

  56. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Showerhead: I think there was a lot of romanticism in the post-2004-lockout about “The new NHL” and how speed and skill would reign supreme. It even did, for a little while, didn’t it? Penalties were being called to the letter, powerplays (and goal scoring) peaked – it was perhaps the single greatest season-to-season shift of hockey style / goal scoring in NHL history.

    By a strict definition the 2005-06 featured a goal-scoring increase of infinity compared to the 2004-05 “season” that preceded it. By another, it was a 19% increase from 2.46 goals per game in 2003-04 to 2.93. Ever since the annual goal-scoring rate has steadily declined to last year’s 2.51 which matched 2001-02 levels. Last time NHL teams averaged 3 goals per game was 20 years ago in 1995-96.

    But the greatest increase ever occurred in 1929-30 when goal scoring surged from 1.39 goals per game to 2.85, an increase of 105%! The focus went from stifling defence to open attack with an outbreak of goal-sucking for good measure while they figured things out. Citing Wikipedia:

    To combat low scoring, the off-side rules were rewritten. Players were now allowed forward passing in the offensive zone, instead of only in the defensive and neutral zones. Players were now allowed to enter the offensive zone before the puck. The only off-side rule left was that passing was not allowed from one zone to another.[2] The changes led to abuse: players sat in front of the opposing net waiting for a pass. The rule was changed in mid-season and players were no longer allowed to enter the offensive zone before the puck.[3]

    By the next year with the modern offside rule (puck precedes players over the blueline) in effect all season, the goal-sucking was dealt with and goals stabilized around 2.3 per game, still a healthy 60+ % better than the First Dead Puck Era.

    At its peak/nadir in 1928-29, George Hainsworth set several records including 22 shutouts in just 44 games, and a 0.98 GAA. His Habs played six 0-0 ties (including overtime which I believe was one 20 minute period back then), and won 9 other games 1-0. Seven others ended in a 1-1 deadlock. In other words in half of their games the Habs scored 1 or 0 goals and still got a “result”. Then-commissioner Gary Bettman the First was well-pleased, but he died horribly that summer and an offensive game did indeed emerge over his dead body, just as he had predicted.

    OK I made up that last part but the rest is all true, I promise.

  57. Ducey says:

    So,

    Tyson Barrie drafted 3rd round 5’10” 190 lbs

    Draft year: 68 12 40 52 in reg season 22 4 14 18 playoffs 90 16 58 70 overall .777p/g
    Draft +1 63 19 53 72 reg 12 3 8 11 playoffs 75 22 61 83 overall .90 p/g

    Ethan Bear drafted 5th round 5’11” 197 lbs

    Draft: 69 13 25 38 reg 6 1 2 3 playoffs 75 14 28 42 overall .56p/g
    Draft +1 69 14 46 65 reg 18 8 14 22 playoffs 87 22 60 82 overall .942 p/g

    Barrie was much better in his draft year. However, Barrie and Bear were pretty much even (Bear is a touch ahead) in draft +1.

    If Bear can have another strong year, I think we can get very excited.

  58. rickithebear says:

    Ducey: If Bear can have another strong year, I think we can get very excited.

    Especilly if all his offensive production is EVA and PPG.

  59. Ducey says:

    Caramel Batman: This is nonsense, except in the sense of the truism that speed doesn’t trump all.

    If Linus Omark were faster he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot faster, he’d be a star player.

    If he was McDavid fast, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    Speed is the single most important variable for any player.

    Somebody better tell Jamie Benn.

    His scouting report from Redline was “We’re not sure if he’s really that slow, or he just refuses to move,” – Red Line Report 2007 Draft Guide.

  60. Ducey says:

    rickithebear: Especilly if all his offensive production is EVA and PPG.

    Good point.

  61. prairieschooner says:

    Grew up across the pond and have never been able to come to terms with the expression Home and Home
    The Oilers have a home and away game against The flames – correct
    The Oilers have a home and home game against the flames Oh so 2 home games ?- confusing

    Team speed maybe Lucic is a bit slower

    I kinda like lw c rw but this is LTs world we live in

    I also like day month year damn Yanks

  62. kinger_OIL says:

    Caramel Batman,

    Batman says: “Speed is the single most important variable for any player.”

    – What do mean by the most important variable? Speed is misunderstood in the context of hockey.

    – Sure Dylan Larkin as an example was the fastest skater around a lap. That’s got minimal correlation to being useful in hockey:
    – 1st 3 steps is important.
    – How fast you can stop and start.
    – how fast can you go on your edges.
    – How fast do you go from skating forward to backwards
    – How fast you can skate with the puck.
    – Can you take a pass at speed?
    – Can you make a pass at speed?
    – At what speed are you comfortable doing any of these things?
    – As you go faster, how less efficient are you on these things?
    – Do you fall down when you are hit when you are skating fast?
    – Can you shoot the puck effectively when you are skating fast.
    – Do you make good choices when you are skating fast?

    None of this “speed” criteria’s are measurable, yet are some of the components of speed that matter

    – Just like in football in the combine your “speed” when running the 40 is not predictive of your success as a RB, you just have to be “fast enough” to pass go

    – the Oil skate “fast enough” Their skaters are all within the range (save hendy). No boat anchors

  63. Showerhead says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    This was a fun post. I can’t add to it but it was a fun post.

  64. stephen sheps says:

    kinger_OIL, says

    -None of this “speed” criteria’s are measurable, yet are some of the components of speed that matter

    – Just like in football in the combine your “speed” when running the 40 is not predictive of your success as a RB, you just have to be “fast enough” to pass go

    – the Oil skate “fast enough” Their skaters are all within the range (save hendy).No boat anchors

    The RB analogy is quite good here I think. RBs need a degree of burst and power at the line and on the first cutback, but it’s more about the ability to make the front 7 miss on an initial burst and the ability to see through the pile of bodies enough to find a hole in the defence. Beast Mode would never be considered a speedy running back, but he was strong, had just enough quickness and could make people miss tackles, same with Matt Forte, LeVeon Bell and DeAngelo Williams. These are not small backs and they are not the fastest backs in the NFL but are amongst the most successful in recent history. (Williams is actually a miracle given his ‘advanced age’ relative to the position he plays. What a game he had last Sunday, lordy!)

    The really small, speedy and shifty backs (give or take a Shady McCoy) tend to not have the most sustainable, long term careers. They may be really fast, but you see these players primarily as 3rd down, pass catching backs rather than all situation every down backs and they tend to flame out quickly. CJ Spiller comes to mind, while Dion Lewis has never had a full season to demonstrably prove he’s more than just a ‘scat back’, despite being a brilliant fit in the Pats offence.

    What I am saying here kinger_OIL, is that I agree with you – speed alone is not the most important variable, but rather it is an important variable, especially when speed and vision are combined at a high level.

  65. G Money says:

    RexLibris: Have you revised your NHLE formulas at all or are you suggesting they be used very sparingly in this case?

    I haven’t revised them, but they’re a little different from the simple NHLE in that I give you the actual regression formula rather than trying to zero out the intercept and give a single conversion factor.

    I also include the scatter plot (with regression line and 95% confidence interval), and the output from the regression, so you can read the p values, critical values, standard error, etc. (I generally don’t include the plot of the residuals).

    That way you can read the material and judge for yourself how reliable it is.

    For my particular “elite players NHLE” version, the p value was 0.04, so it was significant. But the r^2 was only 0.36, so tons of wiggle room you have to allow for if you’re using it as a predictor.

    It’s useful as a rough guideline, or for fun, or to spark discussion in a blog, but I don’t believe it’s enough for more rigorous analytical work.

  66. Richard S.S. says:

    The Oilers have two opportunities to evaluate those players that could make a difference on the Team or just be useful, both a good value. There are the obvious Training Camp evaluations and the equally obvious Nine Days’ evaluations. The biggest difference this season is there are other very decent options other than rushing players much too fast.

    Jesse Puljujarvi RW ($3.425) is unlikely to start the Season with the Oilers due to his Bonuses, but he might be up starting his Nine for Game Two. Drake Caggiula C/LW ($1.35) might need more work at Center, but if he only has to be better than Anton Lander he could start the Season with the Team. Matthew Benning RD ($.925) could make the Oilers to start the Season, but he’s sure to be first call-up.

    It’s not whether or not a Prospect deserves to be up or is good enough to be up. All that should matter is who they are better than, like actual Players.

  67. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Gah! R-C-L

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I didn’t even notice that. I like LT’s idea … let’s just randomize the order, see who is on the ball and who isn’t.

    judgedrude, Showerhead, Kinger_Oil:

    Ideally we’d see something like a confidence interval and a likelihood, so instead of 36, we’d see (26,46), 17%. That would certainly give a big leg up in terms of better understanding some key factors in projecting a prospect.

    The idea of weighting the points by likelihood (36 x 17%) is something you have to be careful with. The 36 is actually the centre of a confidence interval for the individual, while the 17% applies to the entire group of NCAA (or whatever) prospects rather than to that individual, so it’s dicey to mix them.

    What you can do (and if you’ve ever had to do sales forecasts, you know you do this kind of thing with sales pipelines all the time) is use the weightings for a group of prospects.

    So while it may be dicey to say 36 x 17% = 6 pts, what you could do is look at the 3 (or whatever) possible candidates to make the Oilers next year, and weight the NHLEs

    Prospect A: 36 pts NHLE x 17% NCAA probabilty = 6 pts
    Prospect B: 27 pts NHLE x 24% OHL probability = 6.5 pts
    Prospect C: 44 pts NHLE x 13% BCHL probability = 5.7 pts

    And then add it up and as best estimate for next year out of our three prospects, we expect to get something like 18 or so pts from them in total.

  68. G Money says:

    Showerhead: I hope you’re wrong that most people use NHLE’s as be-all/end-all predictors but suspect that, to at least some degree, you’re right.

    The main reason I posted what I did is that sometimes I see people referring to NHLEs and their words imply that they see the NHLE as some sort of fait accompli or even reasonable expectation for that player.

    In reality, an NHLE is neither.

    What it really tells you is the middle of a wide interval representing how the population of players with similar numbers in the same league did in the past.

    But it must be remembered that it is a population measure, and caution must be used in applying it to an individual.

    One should never confuse a population with an individual!

    It’s very much not intended as a criticism of anybody or anything (in fact, I can predict with 100% certainty that I will at some point in the future make exactly this mistake, and I hope someone will notice and point it out to me while keeping the laughter and finger-pointing to an appropriate level!)

  69. Caramel Batman says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: If Linus Omark were bigger he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot bigger, he’d be a star player.

    If he was Chara big, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    I do actually agree with you though.Just thought I’d put that out there. Small and slow rarely works.

    I don’t think any of this is true. Size was never an issue for Omark. A larger, stronger, Omark is still the same player.

    He’d still be a strong player down low, and he still would be a step slow from getting to where he needed to get.

    No single quality is ever going to be dispositive, but the way the pendulum has swung around here to old hockey folktales is disheartening.

  70. skidplate says:

    Lowetide: This is God punishing you for not welcoming my C-L-R presentation. One day soon, we will get:

    McDavid—Larsson—Eberle—Lucic—Klefbom

    If only all of you had been open to new ideas.

    You Forgot Talbot LT 😜

  71. stephen sheps says:

    Caramel Batman:

    No single quality is ever going to be dispositive, but the way the pendulum has swung around here to old hockey folktales is disheartening.

    Batman my old friend, I am not entirely sure what you mean here. Which old folktales are you referencing? Lowetide community mythologies or tired hockey tropes like ‘saw him good’ and ‘moar bigger’? (Though to a certain extent are also Lowetidian tropes as well…)

    Even when I don’t agree with your arguments I often understand where your critiques are coming from, even the more vitriolic critiques, but you’ve lost me on this one.

  72. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: By a strict definition the 2005-06 featured a goal-scoring increase of infinity compared to the 2004-05 “season” that preceded it. By another, it was a 19% increase from 2.46 goals per game in 2003-04 to 2.93. Ever since the annual goal-scoring rate has steadily declined to last year’s 2.51 which matched 2001-02 levels. Last time NHL teams averaged 3 goals per game was 20 years ago in 1995-96.

    But the greatest increase ever occurred in 1929-30 when goal scoring surged from 1.39 goals per game to 2.85, an increase of 105%! The focus went from stifling defence to open attack with an outbreak of goal-sucking for good measure while they figured things out. Citing Wikipedia:

    By the next year with the modern offside rule (puck precedes players over the blueline) in effect all season, the goal-sucking was dealt with and goals stabilized around 2.3 per game, still a healthy 60+ % better than the First Dead Puck Era.

    At its peak/nadir in 1928-29, George Hainsworth set several records including 22 shutouts in just 44 games, and a 0.98 GAA. His Habs played six 0-0 ties (including overtime which I believe was one 20 minute period back then), and won 9 other games 1-0. Seven others ended in a 1-1 deadlock. In other words in half of their games the Habs scored 1 or 0 goals and still got a “result”. Then-commissioner Gary Bettman the First was well-pleased, but he died horribly that summer and an offensive game did indeed emerge over his dead body, just as he had predicted.

    OK I made up that last part but the rest is all true, I promise.

    I assume you referred to your hand written notes for the details about those seasons.

  73. Woodguy says:

    Caramel Batman: This is nonsense, except in the sense of the truism that speed doesn’t trump all.

    If Linus Omark were faster he’d be in the NHL.

    If he were a lot faster, he’d be a star player.

    If he was McDavid fast, he’d be one of the best players in the NHL.

    Speed is the single most important variable for any player.

    Therefore Cogliano is an elite forward and Nurse is an elite Dman.

  74. Woodguy says:

    Top two player last year via 5v5 pts/60

    Jagr – probably slowest player in the NHL
    McDavid – probably the fastest player in the NHL

    There are a few ways to hockey.

  75. Woodguy says:

    LAK is a possession monster and play the game slow.

    PIT (post-coach firing) is a possession monster and one of the fastest teams in the league.

    SJS is a possession monster and they have fast lines (Couture) and slow lines (Thornton)

    There is more than one way to hockey.

  76. commonfan14 says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    All I could hear while reading was, “time to get rid of the offside rule.”

    Putting aside whether I should be hearing things while I read, it remains a great idea.

  77. leadfarmer says:

    Woodguy:
    LAK is a possession monster and play the game slow.

    PIT (post-coach firing) is a possession monster and one of the fastest teams in the league.

    SJS is a possession monster and they have fast lines (Couture) and slow lines (Thornton)

    There is more than one way to hockey.

    LA lumbering possession monster is having trouble in the west especially in the playoffs against faster teams. SJ is actually very fast team that ran out of steam against the Pens. What some players such as Thornton lack in speed velocity they make up with ridiculously fast and effective passing. Yes there is different ways to hockey but they are increasingly about moving faster and moving the puck faster.

  78. Ducey says:

    Woodguy: Therefore Cogliano is an elite forward and Nurse is an elite Dman.

    Steve Kelly got a raw deal, and Wayne Gretzky is over rated.

  79. Caramel Batman says:

    stephen sheps: Batman my old friend, I am not entirely sure what you mean here. Which old folktales are you referencing? Lowetide community mythologies or tired hockey tropes like ‘saw him good’ and ‘moar bigger’?(Though to a certain extent are also Lowetidian tropes as well…)

    Even when I don’t agree with your arguments I often understand where your critiques are coming from, even the more vitriolic critiques, but you’ve lost me on this one.

    You haven’t noticed a change towards the establishment around here? I’m not being subtle. MOAR BIGGER, the attacks on Hall, and now speed isn’t that important.

    What I meant by dispositive was an allowance for the counterexample. Getzlaf and Thornton play the game slow and are great players. I still want guys that can skate.

    The subtext is that Lucic is a boat anchor of a contract.

  80. Lowetide says:

    Caramel Batman: You haven’t noticed a change towards the establishment around here?I’m not being subtle.MOAR BIGGER, the attacks on Hall, and now speed isn’t that important.

    What I meant by dispositive was an allowance for the counterexample.Getzlaf and Thornton play the game slow and are great players.I still want guys that can skate.

    The subtext is that Lucic is a boat anchor of a contract.

    Attacks on Hall? Please provide a link.

  81. Caramel Batman says:

    Lowetide: Attacks on Hall? Please provide a link.

    Not from you. The denizens. Always the denizens.

    In the inarticulate rush to defend all things Chiarelli there have been endless attacks on Hall, which reflects the establishment bias against him, the most underappreciated superstar of my lifetime.

  82. Lowetide says:

    Caramel Batman: Not from you.The denizens.Always the denizens.

    In the inarticulate rush to defend all things Chiarelli there have been endless attacks on Hall, which reflects the establishment bias against him, the most underappreciated superstar of my lifetime.

    Yeah, I can’t really imagine an Oiler argument against Hall as a player. There isn’t one.

  83. HT Joe says:

    Lowetide: Yeah, I can’t really imagine an Oiler argument against Hall as a player. There isn’t one.

    Yes! Hall is a great player.

  84. stephen sheps says:

    Caramel Batman: You haven’t noticed a change towards the establishment around here?I’m not being subtle.MOAR BIGGER, the attacks on Hall, and now speed isn’t that important.

    What I meant by dispositive was an allowance for the counterexample.Getzlaf and Thornton play the game slow and are great players.I still want guys that can skate.

    The subtext is that Lucic is a boat anchor of a contract.

    Yeah, ok fair enough. I’ll buy that, at least up to a point.

    That said I see it less as a change in the weather around here and more in the direction of just adding new folks to the discourse. There seems to be about 18 different conversations going on at once, and while sometimes some posters shout a little more about certain positions (like eviscerating or defending Hall, depending on the day, or eviscerating P.C. depending on the day), I really don’t see it in quite the extreme way that you (or the character you play here at least, which I know enough to not be the ‘real’ you) is suggesting it might be.

    As to Lucic, his contract will likely be an anchor at the mid point of the 7 years, but for the next 3 or 4 seasons he’s going to be a great player. As LT keeps reminding us, Lucic is really good at hockey.

    Is he Hall good? No. Is he a different kind of good that may actually be of substantive value to this team in the here and now? I believe the answer to be yes at this time.

    Context, texture, subtleties – these are important elements to any analysis, as you well know my fellow academic friend.

    (As an aside, I also want players who can skate. They don’t have to be the fastest, but they have to know when to be in the right spots and what it will take to get there. Lucic has proven that he can do just that and I think he may surprise a lot of people who drop by here. No more Cam Barker/Nikita Nikitin types though. They don’t help at all).

  85. stevezie says:

    Lowetide,

    “Not a winner. If he was we would have won by now.”

    Unless you meant a good argument. In this case, no.

    I remain genuinely curious as to why hockey folk don’t love him more. He does a lot of things old-timers like, and it’s not like he is a Rodman personality-wise.

    Whose dog did he back over?

  86. stevezie says:

    Lucic is a good player with a disturbing contract. I think most would agree to this, the debate is how much weight you give to the two parts.

    I wonder if Chia is as desperate about McD’s elc window as i hope he is, and the plan is to move Lucic after four years? If your safety net is the hockey establishment’s willingness to trade for an aging, overpaid, but still productive Lucic- well, I’ve seen worse bets. They used to say, “If Gretzky can get traded…”, but the new name is David Clarkson.

    I have no reason to believe this is Chia’s thinking. In Boston he showed a lot of loyalty and faith in his vets. Pure dreaming on my part.

    At least he sees the urgency in the elc window.

  87. Lowetide says:

    stevezie:
    Lowetide,

    “Not a winner. If he was we would have won by now.”

    Unless you meant a good argument. In this case, no.

    I remain genuinely curious as to why hockey folk don’t love him more. He does a lot of things old-timers like, and it’s not like he is a Rodman personality-wise.

    Whose dog did he back over?

    Hall is a supremely talented player but hasnt won in the NHL. Suspect a lot of it stems from that and then the storyline builds from there.

  88. Professor Q says:

    Lowetide,

    But he’s played on Team Canada before with great results. You’d think that’d be remembered, but it isn’t.

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