G37 2016-17: KINGS AT OILERS

It seems like a mighty long time since Connor McDavid thrilled the home crowd, but the good lord willing and the creek don’t rise, that will happen again tonight. If a rest was what was needed, and it did look like it, we should see some smoke on the water tonight.

HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in October 2015: 4-8-0, goal differential -7
  • Oilers in October 2016: 7-2-0, goal differential +10
  • Oilers in November 2015: 4-7-2, goal differential -6
  • Oilers in November 2016: 5-8-2 goal differential -3
  • Oilers in December 2015: 7-6-1, goal differential -9
  • Oilers in December 2016: 6-2-4, goal differential +1
  • Oilers after 36, 2015: 15-18-3, goal differential -18
  • Oilers after 36, 2016: 18-12-6, goal differential +8

Edmonton roared through (work with me here) the first 36 games posting an 18-18 record with six Bettman points, and landed on 42 points (improvement of nine points from last season). Edmonton is +26 in goal differential year over year and (as we have discussed) the numbers are heading in a good direction pretty much across the board. G37 a year ago was a 5-3 loss to Calgary.

CONCERN

We talked about balance being an issue at the beginning of the year and it remains a major one. The best way to express it?

  • Connor McCavid with Cam Talbot: 3.38GF-1.81GA/60 (65.1 percent GF percentage 5×5)
  • Cam Talbot without Connor McDavid: 1.86GF-2.27GA/60 (44.9 percent GF percentage 5×5)
  • Source

I think that is the big item for the Oilers. You will read about Cam Talbot being less than splendid, and there may come a day when Edmonton has to upgrade at the position. The power play and penalty kill have been challenges from time to time this season and injury is an issue in some areas, too.

That without number on the 5×5 is the big one, the Moby Dick. The Corsi for 5×5 without McDavid (49.2) is respectable, need that scoring number to move closer to 50 percent of all scoring results without 97. That is the nut.

KRIS RUSSELL

  • Jim Matheson: And Kris Russell, who will never win over the analytics crowd but will get offered a new contract after Jan. 1, no matter what the naysayers gripe. Source

I don’t see Russell as being an especially divisive player for the analytics crowd, beyond the fact he is playing on the wrong side and too far up the depth chart. The lefty-righty study said it costs six Corsi points (and a get out of jail free card) to play on the wrong side, but let’s say it is only three. Russell is currently 45.4 Corsi for 5×5, so three points moves him to 48.4, and you can put that player on third pair LH side and make it work.

The problem? Darnell Nurse is 53.2 Corsi for 5×5 in that role, and he is younger and can carry the puck more productively. I think you can fairly tax Nurse based on inexperience, but even then Nurse won’t cost as much as Kris Russell next season. I think the Russell signing, should it come, would signal a trade—possibly a LHD for a righty blue.

October 5, 2013: The Oklahoma City Barons play the Charlotte Checkers in an American Hockey League game at the Cox Convention Center in Oklahoma City. Photo by Rob Ferguson, all rights reserved.

OSCAR KLEFBOM AND MATT BENNING

  • Todd McLellan: “I think sometimes Klef gets unfairly put up with the elite, but he’s only played 140 games, but he probably was elite on our team, but he needs more time and experience. On many other teams everyone would be happy with him coming in and where he is at. I don’t see much difference in Benning and Klefbom, except Benning gets to come in at a much better time for the organization and expectations on him are lower.” Source

This is a fascinating quote, somewhat similar to the Nuge avail McLellan had one year ago. Oscar has struggled this season, but is also the defender (I believe) with the farthest outer marker. The injury, added to lack of experience, probably give Klefbom lower trade value than he will have at any time since arriving in Edmonton. Peter Chiarelli’s two biggest trade assets at this time—as I see them—are Oscar Klefbom and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Both men have low value currently, and the play here is to keep your powder dry.

CALEB JONES

Our man for Team USA went 0-1-1 in 20:09, leading all skaters in the contest. I spoke to Steve Kournianos of The Draft Analyst on the Lowdown yesterday, he commented on Jones speed and passing ability. I think Jones stays in the minors exactly as long as it takes to learn the coverage game at the higher level, and to cut back on the sorties a little. His skating is already there. Hannah Stuart has some interesting thoughts on the team here. I think Caleb Jones fits in with here high risk, high reward commentary on the entire USA blue.

OILERS FORWARDS (SCORING)

  • This is each Oiler forward, their ranking among NHL forwards, along with some notes.
  • McDavid has an 11-point gap between himself and Leon Draisaitl. Those worried about the gap between 97 and Leon would be shocked at the final stats from 1980-81, where Gretzky bested Jari Kurri by 89 points. Lordy. The following year, the gap was more than 100.
  • A more rational comparison of McDavid-Nuge is probably Weight-Zdeno Ciger in 1996.
  • Pleased for Leon Draisaitl, who is having a fine year, with power-play numbers pushing those boxcars. He is also improving his 5×5 scoring as well.
  • Milan Lucic has good boxcars, they are coming mostly on the power play. All good, but he needs to post better 5×5 numbers (2.00 last season). Whatever the hitch in the 5×5 giddyup, important to get the big train moving.
  • Jordan Eberle scored 28 points per 37 games in his career entering 2016-17, so he is behind his career levels by five points. A concern, but one hot streak will take care of it.
  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is off by 10 points compared to career, and that is a concern. Dave Keon talked about cheating for defense too much after his career was over, felt he had become so immersed in playing the checking role that he stopped pushing as hard as he could on the other side. Todd McLellan may have a similar player here.
  • Jesse Puljujarvi’s point total after his first 24 games doesn’t look impressive, but Taylor Hall went 24gp, 6-6-12 at the beginning of his career, on about 17 minutes a night. JP has just eight points, but is playing 11:39 per evening.
  • If all things were equal across the NHL, Edmonton would have three forwards in the top 90 scorers (they have four) and nine inside the top 270 forwards (they have nine). I know there is plenty of heat on Milan Lucic and Jordan Eberle, and with merit (5×5 needs to be better). The scoring past the top 4F above is abysmal, and has to turn around.

OILERS DEFENSE (DFF AND SCORING)

  • This is sorted by minutes against elites, I think that is the best way to rank No. 1 through No. 6 on defense. There are still issues (injuries, etc) but little doubt in my mind this fits with reality.
  • Andrej Sekera is inside the NHL’s top 30 scoring defenders and plays the most minutes against elites. What’s more, his success rate (DFF) is better than the other three big minutes blue.
  • Adam Larsson ranks No. 2 in minutes against elites, and has the best DFF Rel among the big minutes blue. I like Rel for defensemen, always have (as you will see in a bit) and even though these numbers are still small sample sizes, I think we can say with some authority that Larsson is the best available RH defensive option on the team.
  • Oscar Klefbom has struggled against the tough opposition, but his numbers are not so out of line as to suggest he be replaced on the top 4D. I do wonder if Brandon Davidson slides up the depth chart at some point, though.
  • Matt Benning and Darnell Nurse play less against the elites, but when they do both youngsters have been effective. Full Stop. Edmonton’s defense is getting better, brick by brick.
  • Thanks to G Money and Woodguy for sharing DFF and DFF Rel with us again today.

DAVID STAPLES

I do not know who Ryan McWawa is, but his article yesterday struck a nerve (or a chord) because several of you DM’d and emailed it to me. I rarely comment on this, for several reasons, the most important of which should be obvious if you use your head for more than a hat rack. Also, analytics is not my field of expertise—plus, the venom over these things becomes toxic and honestly I am too old to fight online battles with ghosts and broken links.

I believe you are smart enough to figure this out for yourself, and if you cannot, there is nothing I can do for you. I will re-publish what I wrote in 2010 (!!!) about an earlier version of David’s work. It still stands as how I feel about it today.

  • The mistakes David refers to are “errors” which he measures on each goal. I think we’re going to have to decide which of the measures we’re going to use from here on out. Kind of a modern “VHS versus Beta” discussion. I believe counting only the events that surround goals misses most of the game and in fact punishes those who play against the best opposition too severely. I’ve always used relCorsi run through toughness of opposition, as it’s easily explained, understood and reflective of reality.
  • I think David Staples is a fine person and a great writer. My interaction with him has always been positive and I wish him no ill will. I don’t think “errors” moves the conversation forward in a rational way. What am I missing?
  • Source

It is not for me to tell you what to think, nor is it for me to tell David Staples what to publish. If you believe his work has merit, then you should state that, you should defend it. If you do not, then I invite you to join the church home of your own—be it Corsi, WoodMoney or any number of interesting metrics out in the ether.

If people are willing to share their ideas, and publish their findings for all to see, then we should be able to meet them halfway, hear them out, and make our decisions. If they do not, intellectual honesty compels you to shun the metric until such time as all required information reaches the offices of public domain.

There should be no rage here, only conclusions made by each of us based on the math, the logic and the reason. Every moment spent mocking, chiding, belittling or cajoling takes away from the important question at play here.

My point about VHS and Beta remains: Which one will you choose? After that, we can resume our flight, put our trays down, recline our seats and move on to the next topic of conversation. If you turn this into a war, you have lost in that instant. This is not a difficult equation, and if you make it personal then you are deliberately muddying the waters and stoking the fires of your own downfall.

This right here is what we call a big fly. I want to write that line out in full, as an adult learner it helps me to retain the information. Ahem. Uncontrolled zone exits leads to a controlled entry only 5.5 percent of the time. 55.5 percent of the time it comes right back in to the Oiler zone.

If you put $55.50 on the counter every 90 seconds and received no goods or service but were left with $5.50, how often would you do it before you started to use the brain God gave you? Of course, this is different, because there are times in a game when an uncontrolled exit or an icing are the best option available. That said, Wheat’s number is shocking, an absolutely miserable piece of math heading for the batter’s head at 102 miles an hour. You don’t fix that, not a helluva lot else that matters.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A fun show today as we careen toward New Year’s Eve. 10 this morning, TSN 1260 and scheduled to appear:

  • Darcy McLeod, Because Oilers. Who should play with 97, why isn’t Benning playing, and the best way to measure power-play success.
  • Guy Flaming, The Pipeline Show. Changes to the Pipeline show, Oil Kings a team with a story, WJ reaction.
  • Frank Seravalli, TSN. The Metro Division stomps the guts out of the rest of the NHL, while the Pac-7 is rowing a boat with only one oar.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Talk soon!

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269 Responses to "G37 2016-17: KINGS AT OILERS"

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  1. JJS says:

    It would be interesting for someone much smarter than I (or is it ‘me’) to evaluate other teams by this metric.

    They may be able to break down whether controlled exits are due to a successful system or the talent on the ice – or both.

    From watching the Oil, they do appear to struggle with transitions at points in each and every game.

    I made a point a number of weeks ago suggesting we don’t have any skilled speed on the boards. All of our horses are down the middle. Much easier for the opposition to shut the middle of the ice down therefore we will continue to struggle getting through the neutral zone with possession.

    You can often see our centremen losing steam as the game wears on due to all the heavy lifting required to get the puck from the top of our circles to the opposition blue line.

  2. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Great stuff, wheat! My next question for you if you are around is, naturally, “What percentage of Oiler zone exits is controlled vs. uncontrolled?”

    Thanks in advance.

  3. Chachi says:

    I don’t see the zone exit stuff that is being done as particularly noteworthy or helpful. If you substituted the phrase “throwing the puck away” for “uncontrolled zone exit” it would be a common sense conclusion to expect that the other team would have a better than 50 percent chance of getting the puck back given they would normally have a man power advantage given the normal positioning of players on the ice. Is it not just common sense that “throwing the puck away” is not the ideal way of getting the puck out of your end?

  4. J-Bo says:

    Chachi,

    This is a good point. I might be more interested in controlled offensive zone entries vs uncontrolled. It would be interesting to see how often the place and chase allows for effective possession (a shot or some cycle time) vs a controlled entry to the zone.

  5. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Chachi,

    You would think so, yet the preponderance of coaches who still rely on D-men who habitually go “off the glass and out” suggests otherwise.

    This info would suggest the D-men who have the highest percentage of controlled zone exits to be among the most valuable players to a team. The D-men who are seen as always making the “safe play” of off the boards and out would be among the least valuable.

    Yet NHL lineup deployment suggests otherwise in most cases.

  6. Woodguy says:

    Chachi:
    I don’t see the zone exit stuff that is being done as particularly noteworthy or helpful. If you substituted the phrase “throwing the puck away” for “uncontrolled zone exit” it would be a common sense conclusion to expect that the other team would have a better than 50 percent chance of getting the puck back given they would normally have a man power advantage given the normal positioning of players on the ice. Is it not just common sense that “throwing the puck away” is not the ideal way of getting the puck out of your end?

    Its not common sense to many hockey writers.

    They laud a player for “getting the puck out” and ignore (or don’t know/care) that it comes right back into the Oilers zone.

    Showing and proving this stuff is more steps to informing all hockey writers.

    I interact with a variety of the local MSM and many of them are very interested in this stuff, but aren’t comfortable enough to write/comment using it.

    The more we can publish “common sense stats”, the better.

  7. jm363561 says:

    Always enjoy the write ups of the players. Have you ever considered including the coach’s (currently head scratching and / or disappointing) performance in these summaries – this would be much more judgmental in the absence of a cloud full of stats? Just a thought.

    After the 7-1-0 (14 points) start we have gone at exactly a point a game rate for the last 28 games. A point a game rate for the last 46 games would give us 88. Even if all our key players stay healthy gonna be close. Nuge, Ebs, Pouliot, TMac need to kick in, the PK coach needs a general kicking, and Caggiula needs to be heading South.

  8. Chachi says:

    Woodguy: Its not common sense to many hockey writers.

    They laud a player for “getting the puck out” and ignore (or don’t know/care) that it comes right back into the Oilers zone.

    Showing and proving this stuff is more steps to informing all hockey writers.

    I interact with a variety of the local MSM and many of them are very interested in this stuff, but aren’t comfortable enough to write/comment using it.

    The more we can publish “common sense stats”, the better.

    Fair enough. The worst thing about Kris Russell is the time and energy that a lot of smart people have put into proving that he is a 3rd pairing defenceman so that they can “educate” the MSM.

  9. Psyche says:

    “This right here is what we call a big fly. I want to write that line out in full, as an adult learner it helps me to retain the information. Ahem. Uncontrolled zone exits leads to a controlled entry only 5.5 percent of the time. 55.5 percent of the time it comes right back in to the Oiler zone.
    If you put $55.50 on the counter every 90 seconds and received no goods or service but were left with $5.50, how often would you do it before you started to use the brain God gave you? Of course, this is different, because there are times in a game when an uncontrolled exit or an icing are the best option available. That said, Wheat’s number is shocking, an absolutely miserable piece of math heading for the batter’s head at 102 miles an hour. You don’t fix that, not a helluva lot else that matters.”

    This is huge, in my opinion. I have to assume that the Oilers’ braintrust (coaches and management) know and understand the implications of zone exits. Either they are trying to correct it and running into a brick wall with some players. Or they don’t value it too highly on their list of priorities. I’m very curious where they are at with information like this.

  10. Woodguy says:

    Edmonton roared through (work with me here) the first 36 games posting an 18-18 record with six Bettman points, and landed on 42 points (improvement of nine points from last season).

    If we go with the W-L-T record that was much better than Bettman’s current version we see:

    14-12-10 (then they got 4 Bettman points for winning the OT exhibition or SO exhibition, they lost the exhibitions 6 times)

  11. Woodguy says:

    Chachi: Fair enough. The worst thing about Kris Russell is the time and energy that a lot of smart people have put into proving that he is a 3rd pairing defenceman so that they can “educate” the MSM.

    When the MSM stops writing that he’s “the best Oiler Dman” (I have read 4 different writers say that) then maybe we’ll stop.

    LT has it right. Staples has it very close too.

    He’s a 4/5 (I have him as a 5/6) playing his off side.

    The rumblings is that he will be paid like a 2/3 and many locals MSM are urging that in print/pixels so if you belive otherwise I don’t see a problem with making it know.

    My issue with the whole thing is the venom. (from both sides)

    You can disagree and still drink a beer together.

  12. russ99 says:

    Psyche,

    As I recall puck possession is considered puck possession in all three zones.

    Hockey isn’t played in a vacuum, there are many factors that determine who possesses the puck at any given moment.

    To assume that players can affect the play so much to ensure success just because of a good exit is foolhardy. For example, we make a good exit then get pinned at the blueline and lose it. No puck mover on earth can achieve perfection between D-zone exit and O-zone entry. Even Connor loses the puck sometimes.

    The other thing is that the idea of mistake-free play in the defensive zone is an oxymoron. The puck goes in many times a game, even for the best teams. It’s limiting mistakes and coverage that gives a goalie a better chance to stop the puck, and even then, sometimes it just goes in regardless of what the goalie does..

    Some adherents of advanced stats deal with absolutes, when in a chaotic game with 12 players and a puck affecting the play, this is the exception, not the rule.

    So yes, zone exits help, puck movers help, but also defensive-oriented players help. When it comes down to it, other than rare players like Connor, getting the puck out of the d-zone, into the O-zone and getting good chances on net are a team effort.

  13. Woodguy says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    Chachi,

    You would think so, yet the preponderance of coaches who still rely on D-men who habitually go “off the glass and out” suggests otherwise.

    This info would suggest the D-men who have the highest percentage of controlled zone exits to be among the most valuable players to a team. The D-men who are seen as always making the “safe play” of off the boards and out would be among the least valuable.

    Yet NHL lineup deployment suggests otherwise in most cases.

    Risk adverse NHL coaches gall me.

    They get the least out of their line up.

  14. commonfan14 says:

    As a kid who spent a lot of time looking through the Beta section of National Music’s movie rental shelves as it shrank in the mid-’80s, I can attest that the VHS vs. Beta war was intensely fought.

    However, one thing to remember about that war is that new technology eventually came along and rendered it a completely irrelevant historical footnote.

  15. commonfan14 says:

    Woodguy: Risk adverse NHL coaches gall me.

    One of my favourites is when there’s a d-zone face-off with under 10 seconds to go down 1 and coaches put their pulled goalie back in to guard against losing the draw – as if a lost face-off there doesn’t end the game anyway…

  16. Oil2Oilers says:

    “This right here is what we call a big fly. I want to write that line out in full, as an adult learner it helps me to retain the information. Ahem. Uncontrolled zone exits leads to a controlled entry only 5.5 percent of the time. 55.5 percent of the time it comes right back in to the Oiler zone.

    If you put $55.50 on the counter every 90 seconds and received no goods or service but were left with $5.50, how often would you do it before you started to use the brain God gave you? Of course, this is different, because there are times in a game when an uncontrolled exit or an icing are the best option available. That said, Wheat’s number is shocking, an absolutely miserable piece of math heading for the batter’s head at 102 miles an hour. You don’t fix that, not a helluva lot else that matters.”

    Wheat with the Elton and LT with the Bernie. Making music out of math.

  17. SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo! says:

    So how does WheatNoil’s work line up with the discussion the other day on Pittsburgh’s system of “get the puck out as quickly as possible?”

    Does this mean Oiler forwards are much worse at recovering the puck compared to the Pens? Do the Pens control their dump outs better ala a place and chase model? Do the conference and division rivals play a role in making either the Oilers or Pens less/more effective?

    My intuition says Point 1 above is the likely culprit but in last years SCF my eye test said point two also had merit.

    Curious what others think

  18. New Improved Darkness says:

    First street chess observer: Man, his intuition in developing a combination attack at that speed is amazing.

    Second street chess observer: Yeah, but he hangs a major piece every third game. Just watch.

    ———

    Chess players talk about “accuracy”.

    Accuracy covers a wide spectrum. Some blunders are large enough to drive car-audio sub-woofers. Lidstrom probably played a game or two where his largest error caused Zippy to leave the room, but no-one else noticed.

    You get signal all up and down the range.

    Boil it all down to one number? Well, you went for looking for trouble—didn’t you?—and now you’ve found it.

    ———

    Barker: Pick a number, any number.

    Barker’s mark: Just one?

    Barker: If it’s a good one, one should be enough.

    Barker’s mark: We paid already, didn’t we?

    Barker’s mark’s buddy: Yup.

    Barker’s mark: Fuck. We’re so screwed.

    ———

    I was reading about the American education system evaluates teachers, especially in reading instruction. Standardized exam beginning of school year, standardized exam end of school year, teacher assigned the aggregate improvement.

    Seems reasonable?

    Imagine thirty tubes of toothpaste.

    Scenario #1: all tubes carefully squeezed out by an equal amount. (“Careful” means an empty end that could be used to pick locks, as you know if you’re married to one.)

    Scenario #2: half the tubes well squeezed, the other half hardly squeezed, but all squeezed from the bottom.

    Scenario #3: tubes squeezed any old way; crumpled, folded, and mutilated; but—on average—every tube contains the right amount for the current grade level.

    Now these tests only measure the total amount of paste. They don’t give a shit whether the tubes arrive in orderly squeezing condition.

    In some districts, a certain percentage of teachers must be fired at the end of the year over this. Sometimes teachers go from best to worst in a single year.

    Goodbye, former champion, you’re only as good as your last intake.

    Or perhaps this single number system is a bit screwy. Could it be?

    ———

    And here’s where you end up.

    Teach Like a Champion: Getting everyone’s attention in class

    I just look at those images of pencil porn—thirty little pencils all pointing the same direction, scribbling the same answers to the same questions—and I just think we’re trying to solve the wrong problem here.

    I was pretty hardened to the mind-body duality of the educational system by high school. One time my grade eleven math teacher assigned some really dull busy work, and I decided to sit there and write out formal proofs for some modular arithmetic “tricks” I had long known (but never formally verified).

    End of class, teacher pulls a surprise: everybody hand in your workbook.

    Next day I get a private “WFT?” lecture. Teacher was not impressed. Guess I ruined the flow of his marking block.

    Oh, the horror. Math student hands in proofs instead of mindless arithmetic. Admittedly, these were the most trivial proofs you’ve ever seen in your life, but it was a fun half hour. The real question I was trying to answer for myself is what do we gain—if anything—by using base 2×5 (decimal) rather than base 2×2×2×2 (hexadecimal)? Does casting out nines turn into casting out fifteens?

    ———

    Around that time I wrote some code in BASIC on the TRS-80 Level I (with 4 kB of RAM) to perform base conversions, and while I hammering on edge cases, I discovered that base -2 can be used to represent all integers—both the positive and negative kinds—without needing a minus sign.

    In C, 0b is prefix for binary.

    0b11 = 3

    Let’s use 0-b for negative binary.

    0-b0111 = 4 + -2 + 1 = 3
    0-b0110 = 4 + -2 = 2
    0-b0001 = 1
    0-b0000 = 0
    0-b0011 = -2 + 1 = -1
    0-b0010 = -2
    0-b1101 = -8 + 4 + 1 = 3

    The carry rule is odd, but it turns out base -2 is a basis for all the integers.

    And then the light comes on in my head about what basis sets are and why they matter, and all of linear algebra is halfway onto my grok sheet.

    Any of this shows up on my exam at the end of the year? Not directly.

    Guess I was wasting my teacher’s time after all.

    But let’s give it a number. How about—fingers on temples—we give my fuck around an 8.5.

  19. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Oil2Oilers:
    “This right here is what we call a big fly. I want to write that line out in full, as an adult learner it helps me to retain the information. Ahem. Uncontrolled zone exits leads to a controlled entry only 5.5 percent of the time. 55.5 percent of the time it comes right back in to the Oiler zone.


    If you put $55.50 on the counter every 90 seconds and received no goods or service but were left with $5.50, how often would you do it before you started to use the brain God gave you? Of course, this is different, because there are times in a game when an uncontrolled exit or an icing are the best option available. That said, Wheat’s number is shocking, an absolutely miserable piece of math heading for the batter’s head at 102 miles an hour. You don’t fix that, not a helluva lot else that matters.”

    Wheat with the Elton and LT with the Bernie. Making music out of math.

    Music Is math, & math is music.

    I wonder if we are conflating apples and oranges here to a degree. Dump outs lead to 5.5% controlled entries for, & 55.5% entries against. But that doesn’t tell us how many *controlled* entries against. Maybe Wheat can clarify.

    Back when I did my zone exits project during the most recent lockout season, my shorthand for carry out / pass out / dump out was football terminology: run / pass / punt. Typically one involves a change of possession & the others don’t, with exceptions: fumbles and interceptions generally being much worse for the team previously in possession than punts.

  20. Glass says:

    Question: If Klefbomb were to be the primary piece for a RHD coming back, who could you see Chiarelli going after? Who would you personally go after if you HAD to make that trade?

  21. Hilmar says:

    Seems to me that, depending on the situation, firing the puck around the glass can be the right or the wrong play, just like shooting from the point can(opponent charging you chin pads first means terrible time to shoot).

    Firing the puck when you have better options is a problem, but so is finding yourself never having other options. A difference from last year, and earlier, as I’ve seen it is more of the former than the latter. To me that means progress and I assume we’ll see less of both as the team gels more and finds better line combinations.

  22. Woogie63 says:

    I like the option to sign Russell right now.

    1) 2017 UFA are not a good crop,

    2) Russell has no leverage, he wants to stay in Alberta, is about the same player that every NHL team passed on this summer.

    3) Only he and Sekera have played over 500 NHL games from our group.

    4) You need 10 dmen to get through an NHL season.

    5) I See Lovejoy money and term in Russell’s future

  23. Confused says:

    Glass,

    Trouba

  24. John Chambers says:

    I wonder what % of Erik Karlsson’s zone exits are controlled, and how it stacks up against other top defensemen.

    My guess is that Karlsson is head and shoulders above the rest of the leagues blue at that skill.

  25. John Chambers says:

    Glass:
    Question: If Klefbomb were to be the primary piece for a RHD coming back, who could you see Chiarelli going after? Who would you personally go after if you HAD to make that trade?

    Maybe Tyson Barrie.

    I can see the Avs blowing it up in February.

  26. jimmers2 says:

    Hi all,

    I’m back home in Edmonton for the holidays. I moved away years ago, in fact to NYC just a few months before Messier did… A lot has changed in the Alberta distillery world since then. I was thinking about taking home a bottle of a fine local whiskey or gin and thought that this was the surely the place to find the best advice as to which ones were suitable.

    And F_ the Kings! CMD to Draisaitl with the winning goal, while Lucic or Maroon picks Dustin Brown. I’m not picky which one.

    Thanks!

  27. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Kris Russell, last 10 games: 0-1-1, -6

    Without the PDO gords on his side he’s seemed Pretty Damned Ordinary.

  28. Chachi says:

    Woodguy: Risk adverse NHL coaches gall me.

    They get the least out of their line up.

    Risk averse NHL coaches think if they pile up the Bettman points they will stay employed longer.

  29. frjohnk says:

    Glass:
    Question: If Klefbomb were to be the primary piece for a RHD coming back, who could you see Chiarelli going after?

    Demers

    Then this site burns down

  30. jimmers2 says:

    Chachi: Risk averse NHL coaches think if they pile up the Bettman points they will stay employed longer.

    This is, no doubt, true

  31. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Glass:
    Question: If Klefbomb were to be the primary piece for a RHD coming back, who could you see Chiarelli going after? Who would you personally go after if you HAD to make that trade?

    A few of us had this discussion late last night at the end of the prior thread.

    You want to stay the course with Klefbom…at least to the 400 game mark and he is not even halfway there.

    Hamonic or Demers would see this place burn down.
    Barrie makes some sense in terms of changing the dynamic but that is a downgrade in my opinion.
    A signed Shattenkirk would work but he has no interest in signing here.

    So there is not much out there other than the Dumba/Trouba dead horse.

  32. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Chachi: Risk averse NHL coaches think if they pile up the Bettman points they will stay employed longer.

    Yes, the issue is more that coaches still seem to not understand that off the glass and out when not under dire pressure is a bad play, like bunting in baseball. There is a time and place for it, but no out and a runner on first is not it.

    It took a long time for baseball managers to understand that wasting outs was worse for run probabilities than advancing the runner one base. Now there are times when it makes sense to bunt, no doubt. But not regularly.

  33. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Chachi: Risk averse NHL coaches think if they pile up the Bettman points they will stay employed longer.

    Agree with this 100.0%. The Bettman Point has put an actual premium on Risk Aversion. All the smart coaches know it. Which is to say, pretty much all the coaches.

    Worst.
    Rule.
    Change.
    Ever.

  34. slopitch says:

    If they sign Russell to a deal 2 years max Im fine with it. Not happy but whatever. Offering Russell a contract and offering him a contract that he’d sign are different as well. Russell doesnt have leverage so if its team friendly its not the end of the world. See how I said the same thing 3 times there?

    Lets focus on fleecing the Avs now though shall we… Id love to see something involving Nuge + parts for Duchene+Barrie+Iggy. Avs are gonna bleed money this year. Saving 2 million of his salary has to have some value. Iggy has negative value to them no? Honestly, this team is good despite a few holes. We have 2 years before the McDavid extension. Pitter patter!

    Big game tonight. If anyone has 4 tickets to the game for sale could you please email slopitch @ gmail. Thanks!

  35. Oil2Oilers says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Music Is math, & math is music.

    I wonder if we are conflating apples and oranges here to a degree.Dump outs lead to 5.5% controlled entries for, & 55.5% entries against. But that doesn’t tell us how many *controlled* entries against. Maybe Wheat can clarify.

    Back when I did my zone exits project during the most recent lockout season, my shorthand for carry out / pass out / dump out was football terminology: run / pass / punt. Typically one involves a change of possession & the others don’t, with exceptions: fumbles and interceptions generally being much worse for the team previously in possession than punts.

    I like the football analogy, as a turnover being worse than a punt needs to be accounted for, but who are the Elton and Bernie of the Football world?

  36. stush18 says:

    Thankfully Russell is #2 in the NHL last year at controlled zone exits. Otherwise our numbers might be even poorer.

  37. judgedrude says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    Great stuff, wheat! My next question for you if you are around is, naturally, “What percentage of Oiler zone exits is controlled vs. uncontrolled?”

    Thanks in advance.

    That’s behind the paywall 😉

    I would also add, what percentage of re-entries is uncontrolled. If an uncontrolled zone exit resulted in an easily recoverable shoot-in (Goalie stops it, D picks it up), that would be OK with me as a coach.

  38. Jethro Tull says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    Hamonic is unfair, if you are inferring he was ever available. I have my doubts he ever truly was.

    Now, if you’d have said Petry……..

  39. Glass says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I agree with that. Klefbomb is probably the closest to becoming a #1 Dman, potential wise. Getting rid of him would be putting all your eggs in the Nurse basket, and we still don’t know enough about him to project him.

    Could explain why Chiarelli grabbed Reinhart in the scenario that he had to get rid of a LHD to acquire a RHD, but I don’t know if he was looking that far ahead.

    Personally I’d like to see this team be sellers at the deadline, with the exception of buying a RW like Iginla or whatever you prefer. Sell Pouliot, Hendricks, Russell, and Gustavsson.

    1. Lander can take Hendricks spot, and has proven he has the ability to.
    2. Pouliot has been benched, and will stick out like a sore thumb next year, because he isn’t good enough to win a top 6 role from Lucic/Maroon, and he is too expensive to just stick in your bottom six. I foresee Caggulia as the staple ‘middle 6 guy’ as of next season.
    3. Russell is kind of a tricky one. You could run either Davidson or Benning on the 2nd pairing, but if you run Davidson it’s much more likely he gets claimed. Oesterle was great last season, and can step in at the deadline imo.
    4. Gustavsson will not get resigned, so I believe it’s important to get something for him and let one of Ellis/Brossoit get NHL time.

    I think you still make the playoffs with the adjusted line up above, and I think you should load up on picks to take advantage of teams during the expansion madness/aftermath this coming off season.

  40. Confused says:

    I think a more interesting questions is, with $65,751,310 penned for 19 players next year, what on earth do the isles have as trade-able components for the off-season.

    They need to get better, but what can they move?

    Similarly, if they don’t make the play-offs, what does Winnipeg do with Trouba this summer?

    With CHI inking Pannarin, who must leave — Pokka? would Vegas? would we?

    FLA goes 7 + 3 and loses Petro to Vegas……does Chai have a RHD deal with Vegas

  41. godot10 says:

    (A) If tracking stats don’t show up in possession stats (or vice versa), one of them is “lying”. Possession stats really don’t lie. Tracking stats may. Godot’s “Dow Theory” of advanced stats. Individual stats and “group” stats must confirm each other to be valid.

    (A1) Russell’s possession stats have never confirmed his tracking stats, a classic non-confirmation of his tracking stats.

    (A2) I’m fine with signing Russell to one-year deals.

    (B) Pittsburgh disrupted hockey last year. Controlled exits and uncontrolled exits are not longer a sufficient categorization. Pittsburgh added a new category. Place-and-chase exits, which are “intelligent” uncontrolled exits, where Pittsburgh D place the puck to open space where they have a better than 50% chance of winning the race to or battle for the placed “dump” out.

  42. godot10 says:

    I think the notion of trading Klefbom is as silly as the notion of trading Nurse was a few months ago.

    Klefbom is just over 100 games into his NHL career, and is learning, arguably, an entirely new position this year, the “offensive D” of a pairing. For his entire career until now, he was the “defensive D” of a pairing.

  43. spoiler says:

    LT,

    Did you trade Pouliot?

    Not seeing him up there in the Forwards summary.

  44. godot10 says:

    Glass:
    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    Could explain why Chiarelli grabbed Reinhart in the scenario that he had to get rid of a LHD to acquire a RHD, but I don’t know if he was looking that far ahead.

    When Chiarelli grabbled Reinhart he not only had no right shot D, but he had no proven reliable left shot D either.

    Chiarelli had on the left side Ference, Nikitin, a first year player in Klefbom, an experienced AHL defender in Davidson, and a graduating CHL’er in Nurse.

  45. VOR says:

    Judged rude,

    I am thinking back to a class I took in University. It was a grad course in economics focussed on benefit/cost analysis. A brilliant teacher, wish I could remember his name. First graduate level course I ever took. On nice days we’d all skip out and go have class on the lake in Hawrelak Park.

    The one exercise I remember is the professor asked us to create a benefit cost analysis for various game states in a sport of our choosing.

    That is much tougher than you would think but might apply to uncontrolled zone exits. What is the benefit/cost of not taking the opportunity to dump the puck out versus the benefit/cost of surrendering a zone re-entry of any kind, of uncontrolled re-entry, of controlled re-entry. Then you could advance that analysis to see if getting to the puck quicker and dumping it sooner changed the prior analysis. Then you could start looking for in play anomalies like JC Tremblay or Kris Letang two guys who could/can turn dumping it off the glass into a lethal headman pass (not every uncontrolled exit is uncontrolled by the dman but recovery presumably matters). Like everything about hockey it isn’t simple.

    Possibly coaches prefer dump it out defencemen because dumping the puck out improves your odds of winning or getting a Bettman point. Possibly it is easier to coach a dump out system than a controlled zone exit system. While the latter produces far more positive outcomes than the former, but since dump out is better than eating the puck and easier to teach than controlled exit that is what you get on average. Behavioural Economics would predict there is a reward in dumping it out and the person most likely to benefit from that reward is the coach. Though if dmen are less likely to get hurt on a dump out than a headman then maybe the dump out is an example of collective wisdom.

  46. Glass says:

    godot10,

    Ah your right. I figured at that time we had Sekera, and Klefbomb was already playing 1st line minutes prior to that… but I may have had my timeline wrong lol

  47. JDï™ says:

    godot10,

    I’m reasonably comfortable going forward with Oscar and Justin and Nikita and Andrew and Mark Fayne.

    CM the GM (wearsglasses), March, 2015

  48. Atc-Nate says:

    Eberle. No points in 6 games, 1 goal in the last 16. Let that marinate.

  49. stephen sheps says:

    jimmers2:
    Hi all,

    I’m back home in Edmonton for the holidays.I moved away years ago, in fact to NYC just a few months before Messier did…A lot has changed in the Alberta distillery world since then.I was thinking about taking home a bottle of a fine local whiskey or gin and thought that this was the surely the place to find the best advice as to which ones were suitable.

    And F_ the Kings!CMD to Draisaitl with the winning goal, while Lucic or Maroon picks Dustin Brown. I’m not picky which one.

    Thanks!

    Fun fact, WhistlePig 10 year rye, which has been getting all kinds of high praise from whiskey people in the US, is actually the same juice as Alberta Premium. It’s their 6 year old rye (aged in virgin oak) that makes up about 50% of Alberta Premium Dark Horse blend, which is then shipped to Vermont, aged another 4 years at their ‘distillery’ and then marketed as an American product.

  50. Chachi says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Yes, the issue is more that coaches still seem to not understand that off the glass and out when not under dire pressure is a bad play, like bunting in baseball. There is a time and place for it, but no out and a runner on first is not it.

    It took a long time for baseball managers to understand that wasting outs was worse for run probabilities than advancing the runner one base. Now there are times when it makes sense to bunt, no doubt. But not regularly.

    I am not sure that if Todd McLellan told Eric Gryba today that from now on when he is under dire pressure that he is no longer allowed to go off the glass and out that the results would be any good. Part of the problem is the Bettman point and how it encourages conservative coach’s systems and part of the problem is personnel.

  51. VOR says:

    Godot10,

    http://www.stats.com/sportvu-basketball-media/

    This is just a teaser.

    I would urge the entire possession metrics community to familiarize themselves with tracking and how it is used in basketball. I personally like Hudl but encourage all of you to try one of the single camera tracking systems on a local high school or college basketball game. Now tell me tracking systems lie or don’t produce useful stats.

    Realize hockey is about 5 years behind basketball in adoption of tracking systems. Then go and look at the NBA’s tracking data. It really is more informative if you have played a bit with tracking technology. In any case, that is what is coming to the NHL. Except it will probably be much more sophisticated.

    Some version of single camera tracking software will be in common use in bantam hockey within a decade if not before. Multi-camera systems will be common in junior hockey and college hockey.

    Trash talking the data collection system of the future puts you in the exact same place as the neo-Luddites that oppose possession metrics. It also misses the very real opportunities that are coming for creating new generations of metrics.

  52. Chachi says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Agree with this 100.0%. The Bettman Point has put an actual premium on Risk Aversion. All the smart coaches know it. Which is to say, pretty much all the coaches.

    Worst.
    Rule.
    Change.
    Ever.

    Yup

  53. oscarmike says:

    Lucic-Mcdavid-Eberle
    Nuge-Drai-Puljujarvi
    Maroon-Letestu-Kassian
    Hendricks-Lander-Sleepy

    What the heck are the Oilers doing with Puljujarvi?
    Are they nursing him?
    Oilers play him less than 3 min a period.
    Every other player in the Oilers systems besides Puljujarvi has been given more PP and ice time.
    Puljujarvi is rated to be an elite RW that needs to play and learn with high end players.
    Nuge is to weak to play center. Nuge and Drai are both puck carriers.

  54. Chachi says:

    So with Sekera out with the flu and Russell likely to be paired up with Benning we should get a good look at what Kris Russell is capable of playing the left hand side against one of those big California teams the roster was remade to be more competitive against. I predict a riot.

  55. ashley says:

    This brings me back to this point:

    To have a controlled exit, you have to have forwards supporting the puck in the Dzone. Especially now where good teams are coached to immediately pressure the puck in the ozone after a turnover. Before, it was more of a freebie to get out of the zone.

    Naturally, the center should not precede the puck out of the zone. The Oilers do this most of the time, but not always. At least one of the wingers needs to stay back too. It’s short passes…6-12 footers that are easy and allow an exit with control. One winger can push up the ice to stretch the opponents defensive unit and open lanes.

    On the Hall-Eberle lines of years past, both those men were so far up the ice by the time the defender with puck raised his head, the defender had no choice but to try a 100 foot pass at the redline or further which were almost always turnovers. With three opponent forwards pressuring, the center and other defender may not be available for a dzone pass without a turnover. There are literally no options other than the “uncontrolled exit”. Currently, Kassian, Eberle, Pouliot and sometimes McDavid are guilty of this. Way too far up the ice ahead of the puck.

    The defender often gets blamed in this situation (Steve off-the-boards-and-out Staios), but it is the wingers and sometimes the centers bad positioning on the breakout that creates this situation.

    I saw a few threads ago some criticism of Larsson for dumping the puck out. If he has no options, he has no choice. The alternative is trying to beat someone 1v1 with no one behind him (a ghastly decision) or passing in the dzone where there is no lane and risking a dzone turnover. Before we criticize the D, we have to ask what the forwards are doing.

  56. rocket says:

    Question about trading Klefbom. Situation this season is that all team face the expansion draft thus making a trade tricky. For the Oilers – if they go 4 and 4 – they protect Sekera, Larsson, Klefbom, Davidson, Nuge, Eberle, Lucic, Draisaitl. Exposes Maroon. If they go 3 and 7. They protect Sekera, Larsson and one of Klefbom/Davidson which exposes one of Klefbom/Davidson. If they make a trade and bring in another defenseman then they expose one current defenseman. Its a dilemma…

  57. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Chachi: I am not sure that if Todd McLellan told Eric Gryba today that from now on when he is under dire pressure that he is no longer allowed to go off the glass and out that the results would be any good. Part of the problem is the Bettman point and how it encourages conservative coach’s systems and part of the problem is personnel.

    While I wholeheartedly agree with your criticism of Bettman points and playing for ties, as I have often conversed with Bruce on this, that is not the entirety of the reason why players throw the puck off the glass and out.

    Also, with your Gryba example you are making it seem like I am suggesting an absolute such as “never go off the glass and out..” I have said no such thing, only that whenever possible the puck should be carried or passed out. This was more a reference to the Andrew Ference special and I did not call out any specific current Oilers.

    The point still stands, I think, that if it is possible, then a controlled exit is preferable.

    I agree it is part coaching, which might be influenced by the Bettman point to a large degree, but part personnel.

  58. SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo! says:

    Ok so I have to ask, where on Gords green Earth did the idea of trading Klefbom come from?

    Seriously how the hell did he go from “future 1st pair stud” to “trade the bum!”

    It’s almost as dumb as the new narrative that Nuge is too weak to play centre. Chrikky this blog damn near shit a brick when Hrudey called him a 3C last year, now he’s not even good enough for that.

    I dread the day that Captain Connor doesn’t register a point in 4 straight or something.

    Thank goodness 2016 is almost over I’m getting a wee bit tired of trading every player the second they hit a rough patch

  59. Georges says:

    ashley:
    This brings me back to this point:

    To have a controlled exit, you have to have forwards supporting the puck in the Dzone.Especially now where good teams are coached to immediately pressure the puck in the ozone after a turnover.Before, it was more of a freebie to get out of the zone.

    Naturally, the center should not precede the puck out of the zone.The Oilers do this most of the time, but not always.At least one of the wingers needs to stay back too.It’s short passes…6-12 footers that are easy and allow an exit with control.One winger can push up the ice to stretch the opponents defensive unit and open lanes.

    On the Hall-Eberle lines of years past, both those men were so far up the ice by the time the defender with puck raised his head, the defender had no choice but to try a 100 foot pass at the redline or further which were almost always turnovers.With three opponent forwards pressuring, the center and other defender may not be available for a dzone pass without a turnover.There are literally no options other than the “uncontrolled exit”.Currently, Kassian, Eberle, Pouliot and sometimes McDavid are guilty of this.Way too far up the ice ahead of the puck.

    The defender often gets blamed in this situation (Steve off-the-boards-and-out Staios), but it is the wingers and sometimes the centers bad positioning on the breakout that creates this situation.

    I saw a few threads ago some criticism of Larsson for dumping the puck out.If he has no options, he has no choice.The alternative is trying to beat someone 1v1 with no one behind him (a ghastly decision) or passing in the dzone where there is no lane and risking a dzone turnover.Before we criticize the D, we have to ask what the forwards are doing.

    Wonderful post. Very observant, especially the last line.

    There must be some game theory here, no? You should mix up controlled and uncontrolled exits to keep opponents guessing? Also to change the mix based on the attacking style of the opponent?

  60. sliderule says:

    I have some questions on the controlled and uncontrolled exits debate.

    First what happens on the 39 percent of time it doesn’t either come right back into oiler zone .Are those 39 percent uncontrolled entries or just mucking about in neutral zone

    On the 55 per cent that come right back into oilers zone what percentage are controlled.

    Who determined the criteria for what is a controlled or uncontrolled exit or entry.

    How are the folks who are calculating all these controlled and uncontrolled exits and entries vetted for skill in determining same.

  61. godot10 says:

    VOR:
    Godot10,

    http://www.stats.com/sportvu-basketball-media/

    This is just a teaser.

    I would urge the entire possession metrics community to familiarize themselves with tracking and how it is used in basketball. I personally like Hudl but encourage all of you to try one of the single camera tracking systems on a local high school or college basketball game. Now tell me tracking systems lie or don’t produce useful stats.

    Realize hockey is about 5 years behind basketball in adoption of tracking systems. Then go and look at the NBA’s tracking data. It really is more informative if you have played a bit with tracking technology. In any case, that is what is coming to the NHL. Except it will probably be much more sophisticated.

    Some version of single camera tracking software will be in common use in bantam hockey within a decade if not before. Multi-camera systems will be common in junior hockey and college hockey.

    Trash talking the data collection system of the future puts you in the exact same place as the neo-Luddites that oppose possession metrics. It also misses the very real opportunities that are coming for creating new generations of metrics.

    I wasn’t trashing tracking stats. Correct analysis and collection of tracking stats and analysis and collection of possession stats should not lead to contradictory results.

    Tracking analyses will lack credibility when there are contradictory conclusions until they open up their black boxes to public scrutiny, which is a requirement of scientific inquiry.

  62. Woodguy says:

    Chachi: Risk averse NHL coaches think if they pile up the Bettman points they will stay employed longer.

    They’re probably right.

    The Bettman point is galling.

  63. Woodguy says:

    New Improved Darkness,

    I give your post a 8.75, but its got a high QoC and low QoT (unless your Lemon tree helped), so its more like 9.25.

  64. judgedrude says:

    VOR,

    Sounds like the best advice is to ignore the blonde.

    For me, I’m always skeptical of how stats are framed as they are situational and there to support a hypothesis not to necessarily support the truth. Given the above, the 10:1 ratio of next zone entry shows that controlled exits is better…and i think that there is no doubt in that. However, if the puck is simply dumped back in to go on a line change, then the absolute effectiveness may not be 10:1, but something less. It’s always nice to have a little more info.

    tl;dr – I believe that controlled zone exits are best…but beware of simplistic wild claims of those carrying calculators.

  65. Woodguy says:

    frjohnk: Demers

    Then this site burns down

    Demers, when the walls fell.

  66. A'bunadh says:

    Larsson and Klefbom have played almost 500min together. They are on the ice with the same forwards at the same time a lot yet Klefbom doesn’t off the glass and out nearly as much as Larsson. Do the forwards do something differently as soon as Larsson gets the puck or something?

    ashley:
    This brings me back to this point:

    To have a controlled exit, you have to have forwards supporting the puck in the Dzone.Especially now where good teams are coached to immediately pressure the puck in the ozone after a turnover.Before, it was more of a freebie to get out of the zone.

    Naturally, the center should not precede the puck out of the zone.The Oilers do this most of the time, but not always.At least one of the wingers needs to stay back too.It’s short passes…6-12 footers that are easy and allow an exit with control.One winger can push up the ice to stretch the opponents defensive unit and open lanes.

    On the Hall-Eberle lines of years past, both those men were so far up the ice by the time the defender with puck raised his head, the defender had no choice but to try a 100 foot pass at the redline or further which were almost always turnovers.With three opponent forwards pressuring, the center and other defender may not be available for a dzone pass without a turnover.There are literally no options other than the “uncontrolled exit”.Currently, Kassian, Eberle, Pouliot and sometimes McDavid are guilty of this.Way too far up the ice ahead of the puck.

    The defender often gets blamed in this situation (Steve off-the-boards-and-out Staios), but it is the wingers and sometimes the centers bad positioning on the breakout that creates this situation.

    I saw a few threads ago some criticism of Larsson for dumping the puck out.If he has no options, he has no choice.The alternative is trying to beat someone 1v1 with no one behind him (a ghastly decision) or passing in the dzone where there is no lane and risking a dzone turnover.Before we criticize the D, we have to ask what the forwards are doing.

  67. SwedishPoster says:

    Räsänen gets a real chance to show his offensive upside, which imo is a pretty big question mark at this point, in tonights tilt against Sweden. He’ll center a line between Vesalainen and Tolvanen.

  68. Georges says:

    godot10:
    (A) If tracking stats don’t show up in possession stats (or vice versa), one of them is “lying”.Possession stats really don’t lie.Tracking stats may.Godot’s “Dow Theory” of advanced stats.Individual stats and “group” stats must confirm each other to be valid.

    (A1) Russell’s possession stats have never confirmed his tracking stats, a classic non-confirmation of his tracking stats.

    (A2) I’m fine with signing Russell to one-year deals.

    (B) Pittsburgh disrupted hockey last year.Controlled exits and uncontrolled exits are not longer a sufficient categorization.Pittsburgh added a new category.Place-and-chase exits, which are “intelligent” uncontrolled exits, where Pittsburgh D place the puck to open space where they have a better than 50% chance of winning the race to or battle for the placed “dump” out.

    (A) Possession and percentage (PDO) stats are fully captured in the NHL data for each game. Taken together, they explain practically all the variance we see in team results. Tracking stats are useful if they provide a new source of data that shows a high correlation to possession and percentage stats, i.e., help us understand what’s driving those numbers.

    The analytics crowd focuses on possession stats and they call out Russell on that basis. His teams have more events in their zone than in the other zone when he’s on the ice. No tracking stat will contradict that. I think Russell has been statistically worse than the rest of his team on SF% for the past 3 seasons leading up to this one. That’s difficult to do. Worse than the rest of his team means taking into account the fact that Hartley in Calgary couldn’t spell Corsi if you spotted him the c, the o…

    Chiarelli has gone on record saying that Russell improves his team’s on-ice shooting percentage and he has cited the tracking stats he’s using as providing support (reasons) for this result.

    This is a problem. It’s true that Russell improves his team’s on-ice shooting percentage and he has a track record for doing that throughout his career. But we don’t have enough data to say he’s probably better than the rest of his team on that metric, whereas we do have enough data to say he is worse than the rest of his team when it comes to the shot battle.

    The tracking stats should show up in the NHL stats. I hope Chiarelli’s numbers people have let him know the story with Russell before he puts a number and term in front of the player and his agent.

    (B) I always go back to the basic numbers (shots for and against, shooting percentage, and save percentage) when evaluating teams because of the arithmetic involved in figuring out who wins and loses. By that arithmetic, Pittsburgh looked a lot like recent Stanley Cup winners: ranked near or at the top on SF% and sv%. Their SF% edge wasn’t so great that they could afford to be mediocre on PDO. The last teams that managed that were the Red WIngs and the first Hawks. So, at a high level, I don’t see the disruption. But you’re talking about style of play, tracking stats, am I right?

  69. Chachi says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: While I wholeheartedly agree with your criticism of Bettman points and playing for ties, as I have often conversed with Bruce on this, that is not the entirety of the reason why players throw the puck off the glass and out.

    Also, with your Gryba example you are making it seem like I am suggesting an absolute such as “never go off the glass and out..” I have said no such thing, only that whenever possible the puck should be carried or passed out. This was more a reference to the Andrew Ference special and I did not call out any specific current Oilers.

    The point still stands, I think, that if it is possible, then a controlled exit is preferable.

    I agree it is part coaching, which might be influenced by the Bettman point to a large degree, but part personnel.

    I agree that the controlled exit is preferable.

    I guess the point I was trying to make is that I am not sure you want a guy like Gryba trying to make plays or carry the puck out at all. His ceiling as a puck mover is probably as a guy who passes to his defence partner or fires it off the glass and out. If I was his coach would never trust him to have the hockey sense to know when to attempt to make a play and when to dump it out.

  70. blainer says:

    A Few of my wishes for 2017.

    – Send JP to the AHL and play him at 1st line center and first PP in the Ovie spot.

    – Play Davidson in the top pairing once he gets a few more games in. Have a feeling this might happen as he really looks like he is getting his stride back.

    – Play Nuge on the right side with CMD for a few games to see how it goes.

    – Call JP back up for the playoffs.

    Lucic CMD Nuge

    Pou Drai Ebs

    Maroon JP Slepy/ Kassian

    Now it’s asking a lot for JP to learn how to play center that quick but one can dream. He may be ready for the wing though after a stint in the minors.

    JP learning the center position would be gold for this team IMO. A 6’4 RT shot center who is responsible at both ends of the ice and could post some good numbers.. who could possibly want that..

  71. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Chachi,

    Yup, sure. No issues with your assessment of Gryba. Not everyone can be a competent puckmover nor should they be put in that role, but as a team tactic, McLellan should present that type of data and have players at least conscious of that percentage. That way they reduce the unnecessary Ference special around the boards to no one in particular.

  72. godot10 says:

    Georges: (

    (B) I always go back to the basic numbers (shots for and against, shooting percentage, and save percentage) when evaluating teams because of the arithmetic involved in figuring out who wins and loses. By that arithmetic, Pittsburgh looked a lot like recent Stanley Cup winners: ranked near or at the top on SF% and sv%. Their SF% edge wasn’t so great that they could afford to be mediocre on PDO. The last teams that managed that were the Red WIngs and the first Hawks. So, at a high level, I don’t see the disruption. But you’re talking about style of play, tracking stats, am I right?

    Yep…1) controlled exits, 2) uncontrolled exits, and 3) the intelligent place and chase out of your own zone.

    I think Pittsburgh’s philosophy is to get the puck out of their own zone as fast as possible (because of the defensemen they have), which means if a controlled exit is not available via a pass, they use an “intelligent” uncontrolled exit…instead of just off the boards and out, place the puck to open ice and chase. For them, placing the puck in open space is nearly as good as a completed pass because of their fast forwards.

    Pittsburgh also uses incredible back pressure to try to force the opposition to dump the puck (rather than carry or pass it in with control). They skate harder towards their own zone, then towards the opposition zone. Play fast. Neutralize size and systems.

    The thing Kessel hates most in hockey is playing the wall in the defensive zone to chip the puck past the defensemen. He really doesn’t have to do that in Pittsburgh.

    Eberle would love it, but he might not be fast enough for Pittsburgh.

  73. VOR says:

    Godot,

    My apologies. I don’t disagree with what I see as your position, correct me if I get it wrong, that we should view tracking data for hockey with great suspicion as long as they continue to keep their technology hidden inside that black box. I actually couldn’t agree more.

    This is exactly how things started in basketbal as well, everything was hidden inside a black box. Eventually the league started collecting the data and making it available to all teams and each year they make more of that data set available to fans. It is a work n progress but they are making strides.

    Where I continue to disagree with you is in your assumption that you can use data from possession metrics to falsify data from tracking metrics. It comes across as you saying possession metrics can’t be wrong. I can’t believe you mean that. The minute you concede that possession metrics can lead to erroneous conclusions, as you must, then they cannot be used to comment on the validity of tracking stats whether or not they come from a black box.

  74. sliderule says:

    godot10: Yep…1) controlled exits, 2) uncontrolled exits, and 3) the intelligent place and chase out of your own zone.

    I think Pittsburgh’s philosophy is to get the puck out of their own zone as fast as possible (because of the defensemen they have), which means if a controlled exit is not available via a pass, they use an “intelligent” uncontrolled exit…instead of just off the boards and out, place the puck to open ice and chase.For them, placing the puck in open space is nearly as good as a completed pass because of their fast forwards.

    Pittsburgh alsouses incredible back pressure to try to force the opposition to dump the puck (rather than carry or pass it in with control).They skate harder towards their own zone, then towards the opposition zone.Play fast.Neutralize size and systems.

    The thing Kessel hates most in hockey is playing the wall in the defensive zone to chip the puck past the defensemen.He really doesn’t have to do that in Pittsburgh.

    Eberle would love it, but he might not be fast enough for Pittsburgh.

    Nailed it.

    Pens do this more than most because of their team composition but a number of teams including the oilers use the dump to open ice.

    The Canucks used to have a play were they threw it hard along the wall to a forward stationed near the opposition blue line who would tip it while the weak side forward broke hard to beat the defender to the puck.A number of teams still do this a bunch but the Canucks had it down to perfection.

    Would that be considered an uncontrolled exit and entry.I

    I guess it would depend on your criteria

  75. Lowetide says:

    Rasanen scores for Finland.

  76. kinger_OIL says:

    – I am loving the dialogue today. I’m going to share over the next few days my experience with cracking the game of backgammon. I used to be a world class backgammon player (not as impressive as it sounds) and was involved in developing a software programme called snowie.

    – I’ve bit my tongue long enough about advanced stats and it’s role in understanding hockey theory.

    – some of you guys will really like it. And if any of you have played backgammon using the cube you will appreciate my story thoughts and conclusions about the role of analytics when applied to a ramdom game like backgammon (even more so with hockey)

    – as a first bit:the outcome of a hockey game like a single backgammon game is very very random. It’s actually interesting how much luck is involved in either outcome. This is something most in hockey analytics hasn’t recognized. Optimal strategies in backgammon depend greatly on the relative equity each player has accumulated. Most hockey stats are static: ie hey assume that one should be evaluating each measure the same regardless of the situation.

    – cheating for offence for instance when down means a player and his team are going to play and should play differently.

    – anyway it’s a long conversation and I will share over many days.

    – it will help a lot I think.

  77. Woodguy says:

    VOR,

    Possibly coaches prefer dump it out defencemen because dumping the puck out improves your odds of winning or getting a Bettman point. Possibly it is easier to coach a dump out system than a controlled zone exit system. While the latter produces far more positive outcomes than the former, but since dump out is better than eating the puck and easier to teach than controlled exit that is what you get on average. Behavioural Economics would predict there is a reward in dumping it out and the person most likely to benefit from that reward is the coach. Though if dmen are less likely to get hurt on a dump out than a headman then maybe the dump out is an example of collective wisdom.

    I think the incentive continuum looks something like this:

    Coach – puck out zone > puck in zone
    Player – Happy Coach > Unhappy Coach

    Nothing pisses off a coach more than losing possession in the dzone once possession is establish.

    Even failing to win a board battle near the blue line to get the puck out turns the coach’s words blue as the line.

    How much a player trusts themselves + available pass/skate options = decision of what to do.

    Benning trusts himself to make the right play with his stick or legs (youth is beautiful) and he will make more exits with possession because his internal calculation gives him the green light more often and he has the skill to pull it off.

    Another part of his game that is crucial is that often when he gets the puck, he strides to open ice to give himself the extra time to make a good decision. Beautiful player.

    Klef and Sekera are similar in this respect.

    The played with slower feet like Gryba and Larsson tend to pass the puck back to their partner (when there is time) or make their “off the glass or pass” decision much faster due to less options created by skating and will default to dump more often.

    Gryba has better pass out- dump out ratio by my eye than Larsson, but I may be wrong.

    Russell is a strange one because he does have the first step to get some air to make a better decision, but doesn’t use it that way often.

    I wonder how much of that is being on his backhand? I didn’t watch him much in CGY so I’m not sure how well he works on his left side outside of 4 awful games with Larsson where no one left the zone with the puck.

    Tonight should be interesting in that respect as he’ll be LD w/ Benning.

    Given that all the Dmen play it somewhat differently I don’t think the coach is coaching ” off-the-glass-and-out” necessarily, but some Dmen default to the path of least pissed off coach quicker than others due to skill set

  78. Georges says:

    godot10,

    I think Pittsburgh’s philosophy is to get the puck out of their own zone as fast as possible (because of the defensemen they have), which means if a controlled exit is not available via a pass, they use an “intelligent” uncontrolled exit…instead of just off the boards and out, place the puck to open ice and chase. For them, placing the puck in open space is nearly as good as a completed pass because of their fast forwards.

    Pittsburgh also uses incredible back pressure to try to force the opposition to dump the puck (rather than carry or pass it in with control). They skate harder towards their own zone, then towards the opposition zone. Play fast. Neutralize size and systems.

    One of the metrics I’ve started to use for evaluating a team’s defensive play in front of its goalie is xGA60. After Sullivan took over last year, the Pens brought that 5v5 number down to 2.08. That’s quite good. It basically means the team is not allowing the opposition to get shots from the high danger area while trying to play as much of the game in the other team’s zone as possible. (I think the Penguins’ xGA60 has climbed back up this year.) I like your explanation of how forward play impacts that number. Filing that away along with Ashley’s post earlier.

  79. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    . It’s actually interesting how much luck is involved in either outcome. This is something most in hockey analytics hasn’t recognized. <

    That's funny because I think the biggest divide between saw-em-good and fancystats is that the former think that every single results (shot/goal/win etc) *must* have a reason and not only that, but a motivation behind the reason.

    Fancystats, on the otherhand, embraces the natural variance in the chaotic system of hockey and focuses on process (winning the shot share) rather than the results.

  80. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Woodguy,

    Very good follow-up points. We tend to judge Russell harshly when he has been on his backhand side. Will be good to see what he has playing his forehand.

    If Larsson has been that bad in terms of moving the puck that is disappointing. I still think he is a good player with very good upside. It takes a while to settle with a new team and expectations are very high for him because of price paid It is not his fault Chia overpaid. Just like it is not Reinhart’s fault, either. That is squarely on Bob Green and Chia.

    Larsson and Klefbom have time on their side. In two years I still see them as an average top pairing in the NHL. Not elite but good enough.

    Sekera can hold down one fort til then. Would be good to add a RH puck moving vet.

    I think Nurse could still pass everyone if he can stay healthy But he has high boom bust risk.

  81. SwedishPoster says:

    Räsänen with the lone goal against Sweden. Picked up a loose puck on the PP and finished nicely. Letestu type of goal. Räsänen lacks some playmaking but he can finish plays and is killer on the dot.
    Sweden has been absolute garbage so far, a lot of solo runs.
    The swedish management has made some questionable calls when picking the D group. This year is no different. Gabriel Carlsson and David Bernhardt are very unimpressive and imo Filip Berglund is better than both not to mention Tim Liljegren, mono or not. Both RHD as well, they’ve brought all lefties on D.

  82. leadfarmer says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    . It’s actually interesting how much luck is involved in either outcome. This is something most in hockey analytics hasn’t recognized. <

    That’s funny because I think the biggest divide between saw-em-good and fancystats is that the former think that every single results (shot/goal/win etc) *must* have a reason and not only that, but a motivation behind the reason.

    Fancystats, on the otherhand, embraces the natural variance in the chaotic system of hockey and focuses on process (winning the shot share) rather than the results.

    Most good saw em good people understand the normal variance so your post is kind of crap. There is currently this ridiculous notion that people are saw em good people or are fancy stats people and there is a battle between the two when in reality people can’t watch every game from every team so they rely on some fancy stats and no fancy stat is good enough right now that it doesn’t have to pass the eye test otherwise it leads to me losing hours arguing with people that Shea Weber was not in fact a overrated scrub.

  83. kinger_OIL says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    . It’s actually interesting how much luck is involved in either outcome. This is something most in hockey analytics hasn’t recognized. <

    That’s funny because I think the biggest divide between saw-em-good and fancystats is that the former think that every single results (shot/goal/win etc) *must* have a reason and not only that, but a motivation behind the reason.

    Fancystats, on the otherhand, embraces the natural variance in the chaotic system of hockey and focuses on process (winning the shot share) rather than the results.

    – The coolest thing about when we collaborated online to develop snowie, was that in any given position (i.e. the position of each opponents pieces), and any given roll, we determine the optimal move, but also moves that created the most chaos (variance), etc

    – This ties in with the discussion many are having about carrying the puck vs. throwing it over the boards.

    – You will not be able to crack hockey theory by running the same algos we did in the late 90s to determine BG outcomes (because the combination of dice limit outcomes, but in hockey it is too complicated, and not mathematically possible to take each moment and assigne equity), but there are simularities.

    – My buddie Oliver did a lot of this with our group in BG and its neat. Hockey and stats today is where BG was 20 years ago with the use of analytics to understand strategy.

    – The concept of equity is huge in Backgammon, as is game theory. Maybe one day hockey analytics will get some of this, as they apply perfectly, just on a more complicated and constant chaos basis: I get a kick sometimes out of the tools used in Hockey analytics to make sweeping proclamations: they will learn , and the tools will get better….

    – It was fun to be doing the BG stuff almost 20 years ago, and be witness to it in hockey

  84. Georges says:

    VOR:

    Where I continue to disagree with you is in your assumption that you can use data from possession metrics to falsify data from tracking metrics. It comes across as you saying possession metrics can’t be wrong. I can’t believe you mean that. The minute you concede that possession metrics can lead to erroneous conclusions, as you must, then they cannot be used to comment on the validity of tracking stats whether or not they come from a black box.

    I’m going to assume that a tracking metric is generated (for now) by individuals or private companies and not made available to the public on the NHL site.

    Presently, we use the data made available by the NHL to calculate shot metrics and percentage metrics (PDO). At the team level, shots for and against and shooting percentage and save percentage account for over 90% of the variance in season points %. All of those variables are basically uncorrelated. I think of them as four independent sliders on a control panel. Different teams work with different personnel and systems to try and adjust the sliders to gain an advantage. With mixed results, because the control panel is wonky. It doesn’t always work, partly because of the gods, partly because you’re playing against a team that has its own control panel.

    The main thing is whatever a team tries to do over the season, if I know the end of season values for those four variables (shots for, shots against, shooting percentage, save percentage), I can pretty accurately say how the team did because of the underlying arithmetic of goal differential.

    Tracking metrics can help me understand how the results for those variables were achieved. (I think that’s what Chiarelli’s proprietary data is telling him about Russell’s ability to improve on-ice shooting percentage.) But they have to correlate in some way to SF% and/or PDO, don’t they? Because of the very strong relationship those variables have to points %? Even when we’re talking about individual players as opposed to teams because results for players add up to results for teams?

    I’m not of the camp that says possession is the only thing and PDO is random by the way. If a tracking stat helps explain how a player or team gets a sustained edge on a PDO stat, great. Just be careful you have enough data so you really know what you think you know, especially when you’re thinking of offering big dollars and term to a journeyman mid to late career defenseman.

    If you were making the point that tracking metrics are getting at PDO, then, yes, I agree, you can’t invalidate tracking metrics by a possession metrics argument. It’s up to you how much weight you give to each side. Although, to be fair, I think you should err on the side of the possession metric because it’s based on more data.

  85. VOR says:

    Woodguy,

    No disrespect but I think your saw them good versus fancy stats dichotomy should be changed to fancy stats people versus everyone else. The fancy stats community refuses to acknowledge one of the central facts about hockey. That is hockey is non-transitive which is another way of saying the outcome of any single game is nearly random. No statistic can be created that can predict the outcome of a random event. Or predict the role of a single player in that event.

    I think many people in the fancy stats community, not to suggest you are one of them, believe someday they will discover a magical philosopher’s stone that will allow them to predict the outcome of future individual games and the role a particular player will have in that future individual game. I have taken to calling this the Bill James fallacy.

    For those of you following along at home, baseball is extremely transitive. If team A beats team B and team B beats team C, then there is a good chance team A will beat team C. Not so in hockey.

    Don’t get me wrong you can describe what happened in the past and numbers do a far better job of capturing that than the human eye. Those numbers just don’t foretell the individual and specific future worth crap. But we insist on using them as if they did. I include myself in that, I just had a raging argument over Griffin Reinhart and we were both using fancy stats to debate his value to the Golden Knights of Vegas. It is frigging hard to avoid doing.

  86. Woodguy says:

    leadfarmer,

    Most good saw em good people understand the normal variance so your post is kind of crap.

    Having read the Edmonton Sun, Journal, TSN and Sportsnet daily for many year I’m going to have to disagree with your contention that that variance is understood at all.

  87. Centre of attention says:

    Rasanen scores for Finland.

    This was a home run pick, I don’t care if you say its too early to say but I think it was a slam dunk.

  88. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    – The concept of equity is huge in Backgammon, as is game theory. Maybe one day hockey analytics will get some of this, as they apply perfectly, just on a more complicated and constant chaos basis: I get a kick sometimes out of the tools used in Hockey analytics to make sweeping proclamations: they will learn , and the tools will get better

    I made a significant portion of my income via poker (live and online) from 2002-2006

    Despite taking stats classes in university, that is where I embraced Expected Value.

    There is nothing like watching your bankroll tank when time after time you get your money in with 80% of the pot equity and lose 75% of the time in the short term. (the killer is the short term can last months)

    Do it long enough for the variance to even out and life is good, but in the short term you question everything you know.

  89. Centre of attention says:

    SwedishPoster,

    Didn’t see your comment before posting, sorry for the double score update!

  90. Woodguy says:

    VOR,

    No disrespect but I think your saw them good versus fancy stats dichotomy should be changed to fancy stats people versus everyone else. The fancy stats community refuses to acknowledge one of the central facts about hockey. That is hockey is non-transitive which is another way of saying the outcome of any single game is nearly random. No statistic can be created that can predict the outcome of a random event. Or predict the role of a single player in that event.
    I think many people in the fancy stats community, not to suggest you are one of them, believe someday they will discover a magical philosopher’s stone that will allow them to predict the outcome of future individual games and the role a particular player will have in that future individual game. I have taken to calling this the Bill James fallacy.

    As someone who’s been involved with this stuff for a long time, this is totally wrong.

    The general thought is:

    “We can predict who the better teams are over time, but individual games are subject to so much variance that predicting them is a mug’s game”

    All the big money made on hockey betting is on the long term stuff like Over/Under point totals and finding good odds on futures like “Conference Champion”

    I’m not sure how you developed your opinion on this, but it’s opposite of my own experience.

  91. SwedishPoster says:

    Centre of attention:
    SwedishPoster,

    Didn’t see your comment before posting, sorry for the double score update!

    No worries. Sweden has since then equalized, Lias Andersson, he can really shoot the puck, with the goal. Sweden still not playing well but slowly taking charge in the game.

  92. SwedishPoster says:

    And 2-1. Beautiful goal, Alex Nylander, shades of the old soviet teams.

  93. Georges says:

    Woodguy:
    VOR,

    Possibly coaches prefer dump it out defencemen because dumping the puck out improves your odds of winning or getting a Bettman point. Possibly it is easier to coach a dump out system than a controlled zone exit system. While the latter produces far more positive outcomes than the former, but since dump out is better than eating the puck and easier to teach than controlled exit that is what you get on average. Behavioural Economics would predict there is a reward in dumping it out and the person most likely to benefit from that reward is the coach. Though if dmen are less likely to get hurt on a dump out than a headman then maybe the dump out is an example of collective wisdom.

    I think the incentive continuum looks something like this:

    Coach – puck out zone > puck in zone
    Player – Happy Coach > Unhappy Coach

    Nothing pisses off a coach more than losing possession in the dzone once possession is establish.

    Even failing to win a board battle near the blue line to get the puck out turns the coach’s words blue as the line.

    How much a player trusts themselves + available pass/skate options = decision of what to do.

    Benning trusts himself to make the right play with his stick or legs (youth is beautiful) and he will make more exits with possession because his internal calculation gives him the green light more often and he has the skill to pull it off.

    Another part of his game that is crucial is that often when he gets the puck, he strides to open ice to give himself the extra time to make a good decision.Beautiful player.

    Klef and Sekera are similar in this respect.

    The played with slower feet like Gryba and Larsson tend to pass the puck back to their partner (when there is time) or make their “out or pass) decision much faster due to less options created by skating and will default to dump more often.

    Gryba has better pass out- dump out ratio by my eye than Larsson, but I may be wrong.

    Russell is a strange one because he does have the first step to get some air to make a better decision, but doesn’t use it that way often.

    I wonder how much of that is being on his backhand?I didn’t watch him much in CGY so I’m not sure how well he works on his left side outside of 4 awful games with Larsson where no one left the zone with the puck.

    Tonight should be interesting in that respect as he’ll be LD w/ Benning.

    Given that all the Dmen play it somewhat differently I don’t think the coach is coaching ” off-the-glass-and-out” necessarily, but some Dmen default to the path of least pissed off coach quicker than others due to skill set

    So if you’re attacking, what’s the right thing to do with Benning (comfortable with the puck) and Larsson (uncomfortable with the puck)? Attack them both the same way or hang back on Larsson and pressure Benning even more?

    I’m going to go with a saw em bad example I remember from the Toronto home game. Komarov stole a Benning pass down low and fed Kadri for the goal. One data point, I know. I like the Leafs offense; their xGF60 is just behind the Pens. Both those teams are offensive outliers.

    I’m thinking that if a defenseman handles the puck a lot in the defensive zone, he’s a guy to key on. If instead he gets rid of the puck quick, I back off because I’m more focused on recovering the puck once he gives it up.

  94. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Woodguy:

    The general thought is:

    “We can predict who the better teams are over time, but individual games are subject to so much variance that predicting them is a mug’s game”

    All the big money made on hockey betting is on the long term stuff like Over/Under point totals and finding good odds on futures like “Conference Champion”

    I’m not sure how you developed your opinion on this, but it’s opposite of my own experience.

    Agree with you.
    Prior to the Bettman point the worst teams in the NHL had a much lower points percentage than the worst winning percentages of baseball teams in the modern era.

    If the Cubs played the Twins (worst team this year) in a 3-game series, the most probable outcome is 2 wins for the Cubs, 1 for the Twins, but of course a 3-game sweep, a 1-2 record, or rarely an 0-3 record is possible.

    Baseball is a 162 game grind. “Replacement level” teams would still win somewhere between 40 and 50 games. In any one game the worst team could beat the best. It just happens, regardless of whether team A beats B and team B beats C and then A and C face off.

    In the same manner in the NHL, if you had Pittsburgh playing Colorado, in any one game the Avs could win, but over the course of a Best of 7 series, it would be very unlikely that Colorado would win 4 games.

    Fancystats just help us to understand which teams are most likely to win over the long run.

    They aren’t infallible by any means, but they do make us better prognosticators over the long run.

  95. nafnikufesin says:

    For all the talk of stats and metrics, everyone seems to be leaving out the most important number and biggest indicator of their impact on the ice: NHL 17 player ratings.

  96. Centre of attention says:

    SwedishPoster: No worries. Sweden has since then equalized, Lias Andersson, he can really shoot the puck, with the goal. Sweden still not playing well but slowly taking charge in the game.

    What do you think of Eriksson Ek?

    Interesting to follow both him and Matthew Barzal, as the Oilers were apparently going to take Ek.

  97. treevojo says:

    With Barkov being out indefinitely in Florida and a good chance they will plummet in the standings what would it take to get Jagr on Mcdavid or Drai’s wing at the deadline for the playoffs?

    Personally I would love to see that mullet in the oil drop

  98. VOR says:

    Woodguy,

    I didn’t single you out. In fact, I very specifically excluded you. But given the several hundred times a week that one of the supporters of fancy stats uses them to argue about/ predict things they can’t possibly predict or be used to determine I would say you may be the only sane holdout.

  99. SwedishPoster says:

    Centre of attention: What do you think of Eriksson Ek?

    Interesting to follow both him and Matthew Barzal, as the Oilers were apparently going to take Ek.

    I like Eriksson -Ek, he’ll be a good NHLer, top sixer imo. Good twoway player.
    But the offensive star or this team is Alex Nylander and it’s not close. I’ve always been convinced William would end up the better player, not so certain anymore. He’s halfassing it tonight and still dominates, such wide array of qualities.

    I like 2017 draftee Miro Heiskanen for Finland. Great skater.

  100. jimmers2 says:

    stephen sheps: Fun fact, WhistlePig 10 year rye, which has been getting all kinds of high praise from whiskey people in the US, is actually the same juice as Alberta Premium. It’s their 6 year old rye (aged in virgin oak) that makes up about 50% of Alberta Premium Dark Horse blend, which is then shipped to Vermont, aged another 4 years at their ‘distillery’ and then marketed as an American product.

    Many thanks for the tip!

  101. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    jimmers2: Many thanks for the tip!

    Indeed, I had no idea. Although Whistle Pig is available here and Alberta Premium is not.

  102. SwedishPoster says:

    Kylington, who I personally would have picked with one of the picks we traded for Reinhart, shows off his insane set of skills tonight. He tries to do way too much with the puck at times, but that could be said by pretty much every elite player Sweden has ever produced when they were teenagers. Kylington will become a star. Mark my words

  103. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    SwedishPoster:
    Kylington, who I personally would have picked with one of the picks we traded for Reinhart, shows off his insane set of skills tonight. He tries to do way too much with the puck at times, but that could be said by pretty much every elite player Sweden has ever produced when they were teenagers. Kylington will become a star. Mark my words

    Have not seen him in about half a year. He was a smooth puckmover in Penticton in 2015 but was small and weak physically and looked like he was a longterm project. Agree his upside is high. A lot of people here liked him but he slid all the way to Calgary (of course).

  104. ashley says:

    A’bunadh:
    Larsson and Klefbom have played almost 500min together.They are on the ice with the same forwards at the same time a lot yet Klefbom doesn’t off the glass and out nearly as much as Larsson.Do the forwards do something differently as soon as Larsson gets the puck or something?

    Do you have a citation or any data to support your statement, or is it a personal observation? Woodguy saying with confidence that Larsson dumps it more than Klefbom doesn’t count ;).

  105. Georges says:

    On the predictability of pro sports. Oddsmakers have to give accurate forecasts of who’s going to win. If their forecasts aren’t accurate in the long run, they go out of business. For every game, they’ll give win/loss lines or money lines, who they think is the favorite.

    covers.com gives you stats on how well the favorites picked by the oddsmakers have done so far in the season. I had to pull some other data for the MLB from this page:

    https://www.teamrankings.com/mlb/odds/

    Not sure if it’s accurate on the MLB odds or the results, but here’s what I’ve got on the oddsmakers ability to pick favorites in the different leagues:

    League, percentage of wins by favorite

    NBA 67.6%
    NFL 62.7%
    NHL 60.2%
    MLB 57.7%

    Basketball is a superstar league and teams have big talent differences.

    The other leagues are about the same. Not so predictable. Not quite a coin flip. Hockey isn’t special.

  106. Woodguy says:

    VOR:
    Woodguy,

    I didn’t single you out. In fact, I very specifically excluded you. But given the several hundred times a week that one of the supporters of fancy stats uses them to argue about/ predict things they can’t possibly predict or be used to determine I would say you may be the only sane holdout.

    I didn’t think you singled me out.

    My response to you doesn’t indicate that either:

    As someone who’s been involved with this stuff for a long time, this is totally wrong.
    The general thought is:
    “We can predict who the better teams are over time, but individual games are subject to so much variance that predicting them is a mug’s game”
    All the big money made on hockey betting is on the long term stuff like Over/Under point totals and finding good odds on futures like “Conference Champion”
    I’m not sure how you developed your opinion on this, but it’s opposite of my own experience.

    I related my experience and juxtaposed it with your own.

    I understand if you are exposed to many fancy stats aficionados who over state their certainty like its their job.

    I am exposed to them too.

    Most of their analysis leaves me wanting.

    That said, when in conversations with people who understand this stuff and may actually use it for a living, that certainty (about most things) isn’t present.

    The only thing that is certain is that the team’s that get the majority of the shots are, over time, the better teams and that those teams tend to win more, and win more Stanley Cups, than the others.

  107. VOR says:

    Georges,

    What I was trying to explain to Godot was that we remain uncertain how to rate any single “possession metric data point” never mind the conclusions drawn from it for accuracy and relevance so the fact that a tracking stat measuring something similar leads to a different conclusion in no way invalidates the tracking stat supported conclusion. They may both be right and we may all be blind men examining an elephant, they may both be wrong for the same or different reasons, or one or the other may be true and its compatriot completely false but we have no way of knowing which is which. The actual relationship if any between the stats never mind the conclusions is made utterly indecipherable because of the entire black box thing.

  108. Lowetide says:

    Georges:
    On the predictability of pro sports. Oddsmakers have to give accurate forecasts of who’s going to win. If their forecasts aren’t accurate in the long run, they go out of business. For every game, they’ll give win/loss lines or money lines, who they think is the favorite.

    covers.com gives you stats on how well the favorites picked by the oddsmakers have done so far in the season. I had to pull some other data for the MLB from this page:

    https://www.teamrankings.com/mlb/odds/

    Not sure if it’s accurate on the MLB odds or the results, but here’s what I’ve got on the oddsmakers ability to pick favorites in the different leagues:

    League, percentage of wins by favorite

    NBA 67.6%
    NFL 62.7%
    NHL 60.2%
    MLB 57.7%

    Basketball is a superstar league and teams have big talent differences.

    The other leagues are about the same. Not so predictable. Not quite a coin flip. Hockey isn’t special.

    Yes. Baseball is a little easier to predict if you have a drastic matchup on the mound, and of course inside information (baseball players often play with injuries that can impact their hitting ability for weeks, like hand injuries, and if you can track that early then the odds of winning a bet go up), but there is an insane amount of luck involved. I read years ago that the winning team in baseball often scores more in ONE INNING than the other team does all game. Baseball is a lot about math, but it also matters if the pitcher slept last night.

  109. Woodguy says:

    Georges: So if you’re attacking, what’s the right thing to do with Benning (comfortable with the puck) and Larsson (uncomfortable with the puck)? Attack them both the same way or hang back on Larsson and pressure Benning even more?

    I’m going to go with a saw em bad example I remember from the Toronto home game. Komarov stole a Benning pass down low and fed Kadri for the goal. One data point, I know. I like the Leafs offense; their xGF60 is just behind the Pens. Both those teams are offensive outliers.

    I’m thinking that if a defenseman handles the puck a lot in the defensive zone, he’s a guy to key on. If instead he gets rid of the puck quick, I back off because I’m more focused on recovering the puck once he gives it up.

    The best (most successful) systems seem to pressure the puck everywhere.

  110. Woodguy says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Agree with you.
    Prior to the Bettman point the worst teams in the NHL had a much lower points percentage than the worst winning percentages of baseball teams in the modern era.

    If the Cubs played the Twins (worst team this year) in a 3-game series, the most probable outcome is 2 wins for the Cubs, 1 for the Twins, but of course a 3-game sweep, a 1-2 record, or rarely an 0-3 record is possible.

    Baseball is a 162 game grind. “Replacement level” teams would still win somewhere between 40 and 50 games. In any one game the worst team could beat the best. It just happens, regardless of whether team A beats B and team B beats C and then A and C face off.

    In the same manner in the NHL,if you had Pittsburgh playing Colorado, in any one game the Avs could win, but over the course of a Best of 7 series, it would be very unlikely that Colorado would win 4 games.

    Fancystats just help us to understand which teams are most likely to win over the long run.

    They aren’t infallible by any means, but they do make us better prognosticators over the long run.

    Well put.

    The fun thing about betting on playoffs is that goalies can steal series.

    The Caps out shot MTL something like 65-35 one year in a series and Halak stole it.

    Then Halak stole the next series too.

    Goalies.

    The best and worst ones bend PDO like there is no spoon.

  111. Woodguy says:

    stephen sheps: Fun fact, WhistlePig 10 year rye, which has been getting all kinds of high praise from whiskey people in the US, is actually the same juice as Alberta Premium. It’s their 6 year old rye (aged in virgin oak) that makes up about 50% of Alberta Premium Dark Horse blend, which is then shipped to Vermont, aged another 4 years at their ‘distillery’ and then marketed as an American product.

    Thanks Stephen.

    I’ll have to try it.

    I’ve never developed a taste for Rye Whisky.

    Maybe its because I drank Canadian Club to excess when I was 13 (grew up in the Hood)

    I do like Schenley’s OFC though.

    Friend of mine who ran the only lumber yard in Banff introduced me to it.

    That was a fine Whisky.

  112. Centre of attention says:

    Fun fact: Jordan Eberle (8-15-23) has more points than

    Kyle Okposo
    Rick Nash
    James Neal
    Patrick Hornqvist
    Filip Foresberg

    I’ll just leave this nugget here.

  113. Woodguy says:

    Georges,

    Oddsmakers have to give accurate forecasts of who’s going to win.

    That is not true.

    The Art of being a bookie is setting the line so that there is equal action on both sides so all the vig is profit.

    Bookies don’t try to figure out who will win.

    They try to figure out how people will bet.

  114. VOR says:

    Woodguy,

    So now you are saying their are different tiers of fancy stats people? The afficianados and the professionals?

    And your admitting professionals in the field are uncertain about their field?

    And that the only thing you are certain off is that shots matter?

    I am just process checking. No personal offence is intended or sarcasm. That is just how I am reading your statements.

  115. Gordies Elbow says:

    Woodguy: The best (most successful) systems seem to pressure the puck everywhere.

    I disagree – the “swarm” is an overpressure system, and can be neutralized by the mid-ice trap. If players overpursue (as you saw with Dallas Eakins’ time in Edmonton,) it results in a scoring chance going the other way.

    The most successful systems take advantage of the “Bettman” point, which is why they’re the most common.

  116. Lowetide says:

    McDavid is fast.

  117. BeerMe says:

    Great anthem, wish they’d do more instrumentals

  118. Lowetide says:

    Awful giveaway by Davidson, Talbot saved him there.

  119. Woodguy says:

    VOR,

    Woodguy,
    So now you are saying their are different tiers of fancy stats people? The afficianados and the professionals?

    Not really.

    We are exposed publicly to the aficionados (myself included)

    Its my experience that the aficionados (especially the younger ones) tend be more certain about things they have no right being certain to.

    I have found my limited engagements with people who do this for a living that they do not exude this same certainty.

    This is not to classify them into two groups based on their ability though.

    I am positive there are professional who are not good at teasing the right information from the data and I am equally positive that some aficionados do.

    And your admitting professionals in the field are uncertain about their field?

    I don’t know any professionals in any field who are good at what they do who first don’t state what they don’t know.

    Unless they are selling, then you never mention what you don’t know, but they are never selling to me.

    And that the only thing you are certain off is that shots matter?

    I said:

    The only thing that is certain is that the team’s that get the majority of the shots are, over time, the better teams and that those teams tend to win more, and win more Stanley Cups, than the others.

    What “matters” seems to be more about opinion on how to get the majority of the shots over time, and that’s not what I said.

    I am just process checking. No personal offence is intended or sarcasm. That is just how I am reading your statements.

    None taken.

    I appreciate you asking questions for clarity because we assume what people mean from words that don’t necessarily mean the same thing to both people in the conversations.

    Communication matters.

  120. Woodguy says:

    Gordies Elbow: I disagree – the “swarm” is an overpressure system, and can be neutralized by the mid-ice trap. If players overpursue (as you saw with Dallas Eakins’ time in Edmonton,) it results in a scoring chance going the other way.

    The most successful systems take advantage of the “Bettman” point, which is why they’re the most common.

    You’re combining your opinion on the system/philosophy with the ability to perform it properly.

    Those are two different things.

  121. Oil2Oilers says:

    BeerMe:
    Great anthem, wish they’d do more instrumentals

    Agreed

  122. D says:

    Does Jordan Eberle have a tick or something? He can’t keep his stick still and keeps putting his linemates offside.

  123. Ice Sage says:

    LA don’t look As Formidable As Years Past. Maybe a PP will help

  124. Professor Q says:

    I will not cry about Raddysh.

    I will not cry about Raddysh.

    I will not cry about Raddysh.

  125. Professor Q says:

    Nor about Barzal…

  126. BeerMe says:

    Horrible call haha

  127. Lowetide says:

    Power play running good this evening.

  128. Oil2Oilers says:

    Nuge will score if he continues to be paired with Draisaitl. I also like Nuge paired with McDavid in Overtime

  129. Georges says:

    Woodguy:
    Georges,

    Oddsmakers have to give accurate forecasts of who’s going to win.

    That is not true.

    The Art of being a bookie is setting the line so that there is equal action on both sides so all the vig is profit.

    Bookies don’t try to figure out who will win.

    They try to figure out how people will bet.

    Thinking that splitting the action is somehow quite different from setting accurate lines is the first step to losing a lot of money to betting sites.

  130. Professor Q says:

    What an odd call.

  131. Lowetide says:

    Corsi for 5×5 19-14 after one period, shots on goal at 9-8 Edmonton. Really liked that power play, and Talbot was Edmonton’s best player that period in my opinion.

  132. Professor Q says:

    Both Canada and Latvia were lucky that the period ended when it did. Probably would have erupted into a brouhaha donnybrook, resulting in half of the players ejected from the tournament.

  133. SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo! says:

    First foray to Rogers Place tonight. The building itself is incredible but I’ll say with certainty fans haven’t figured out what to do with all that space yet, its quiet in here. Very very quiet.

    Very simple first period on both sides. Once the Oilers get their feet moving they’ll move very well, eye test says the Lings have feet of cement so far.

    People give Crosby and McDavid shit for whining but Carter is worse mark it! Haha

    Highlight so far was the Molson Canadian Hockey House. $5 even 16oz draft pints! Jeebus that’s cheaper than anywhere on Jasper!

    Go Oilers!

  134. Gordies Elbow says:

    Woodguy: You’re combining your opinion on the system/philosophy with the ability to perform it properly.

    Those are two different things.

    No, I’m stating that most NHL teams don’t play an overpressure system – because of the Bettman point.

    If there was a “best” system, all teams would play it.

    Edit: Added because of the Bettman point – teams play a backpressure game due to it being more successful in the standiings.

  135. Centre of attention says:

    Maroon is a fantastic player

  136. VOR says:

    Georges and Woodguy,

    I thought you both might like this article about the worst Super Bowl in Las Vegas sports book history.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/las-vegas-bookies-lost-their-super-bowl-2015-2

  137. Lowetide says:

    The power play looking good tonight, Maroon from Eberle and Benning. I was hoping Benning would have some success on the 5×4 tonight.

  138. Georges says:

    That was a CBJ PP goal.

  139. Lowetide says:

    Puljujarvi with a nice shift there.

  140. Professor Q says:

    Taylor Raddysh now has the potential to break a Canadian record. Could get 5 goals, after just now scoring his 4th.

  141. Centre of attention says:

    Somebody needs to fuck Nolan up. That was a blatant knee-on-knee attempt or low-bridge hit attempt by Nolan.

  142. Oil2Oilers says:

    Is this the same officiating crew that did last nights game in Vancouver? They seem bias against LA , for a welcome change. We will know for sure if they give that rat bastard Dustin Brown a diving penalty.

  143. square_wheels says:

    That hit in Doughty is why I love Maroon. Kassian nice hit on last shift.

    Push back against LA. Beautiful.

  144. square_wheels says:

    Es and Looch are to blame for that icing. Zero breakout support.

  145. Centre of attention says:

    Larsson needs to start making plays on break outs or defering to Klefbom.

    His constant icing / chipping it off the glass is my only real issue with his play.

    5 on 5 he defends well off the opponents rush, can bust the cycle just fine. Box out forwards in front pretty well.

    But once he gets the puck, at times it appears like its a grenade and he just tosses it as far away as possible, hopefully not an icing.

  146. square_wheels says:

    Centre of attention,

    It’s an issue. Saw 2 brutal examples in last half of first. Davidson quietly doing his job of managing Gryba and 3 LA forwards.

  147. Centre of attention says:

    It is a war on the boards tonight. No country for old men type stuff.

    So far the Oilers are holding their own.

    A pleasant development, lets hope they stay out of the box.

  148. Lowetide says:

    I am liking Larsson defensively tonight.

  149. Professor Q says:

    Ouch. Attempted hip check ended up hitting extended knee instead.

  150. Professor Q says:

    I always get jumpy during McDavid’s chances. Any of them. Sad and maddening that there hasn’t been much cashing lately.

  151. square_wheels says:

    That little edge twist by Nuge in the neutral zone – more please.

    Terrific transporter, needs to regain his confidence.

  152. square_wheels says:

    No Country is so damn good, creeping up on Unforgiven for my favourite movie. Just read Blood Meridian over the holidays. Damn is McCarthey an unparraled writer IMHO.

  153. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Would really like Pulju with McDavid. Don’t really know where Ebs fits if he’s not scoring with RNH either, needs to go back to that shorter stick from last year.

  154. Lowetide says:

    Oilers are edging nearer a 5×5 goal here, it would really help big time. The other question is how much do the Kings have left in the third period.

  155. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide:
    I am liking Larsson defensively tonight.

    Yes, indeed. Like I said in my post I have only 1 issue, he at times can’t break out the puck effectively.

    As for actual defense, he’s one of the best away from the puck on the team. Angles guys off, sneaky dirty with his cross checks and elbows and hacks and whacks.

    He maybe will settle in and improve in his second year, similar to Sekera.

  156. Lowetide says:

    Dustin Brown, man.

  157. Lowetide says:

    Talbot shaky there with the puck handling. Man, I miss Roloson in moments like that.

  158. Oil2Oilers says:

    Brown still above the law.

  159. Professor Q says:

    I’m behind, so I haven’t seen whatever Brown did yet. Hopefully not on McDavid or Puljujärvi…

  160. Professor Q says:

    How. The. Hell. Was that not called? Brown was jumping on Maroon like a chimpanzee on a pogo stick.

  161. Centre of attention says:

    Davidson is due for a goal, imo.

    He’s diving into the zone for effective chances at a surprising rate.

  162. Lowetide says:

    1-0, 22-18 Oilers edge in shots, and 42-30 Edmonton in Corsi for 5×5 after two.

  163. square_wheels says:

    How did Brendan Gallagher go 30 games without scoring ??

    I guess every player can slump. Makes the Nuge production concern pretty minor by comparison.

    Could he be pried out of Montreal ??

  164. gogliano says:

    Kings should be tired in the 3rd after playing in Vancouver last night.

    Could really use a clean two points against a playoff rival.

  165. frjohnk says:

    Caggiula has looked quicker.

    Probably was not 100% coming back from that injury.

  166. Pescador says:

    square_wheels:
    How did Brendan Gallagher go 30 games without scoring ??

    I guess every player can slump. Makes the Nuge production concern pretty minor by comparison.

    Could he be pried out of Montreal ??

    Probably,
    for Nuge

  167. John Chambers says:

    Here’s a list of players from the LA Kings recent roster that they’ve lost and have nothing to show for it:
    Justin Williams
    Martin Jones
    Slava Voynov
    Thomas Hickey
    Milan Lucic
    Andrej Sekara
    And two first round picks in ’15 and ’16

    Goes to show what a core of Kopitar-Carter-Doughty-Quick can deliver even without those supporting players, but you’d think if they had a mulligan they’d gladly swap out Brown and Gaborik’s salaries for a couple of those names.

  168. hags9k says:

    Davey is dangerous again. We should protect him from Vegas.

  169. Woodguy says:

    Georges: Thinking that splitting the action is somehow quite different from setting accurate lines is the first step to losing a lot of money to betting sites.

    No.

    A good example used to be DAL NFL games when DAL was a below average team.

    The lines on those games were never reflective of a predictive spread because soooo much public money would come in on DAL regardless.

    Any time a bookie needs a team to be profitable on the game the line wasn’t set correctly.

  170. OilClog says:

    how do they deny us Louie?!?

    “quick little feet”

    Remenda could learn a thing or go back to California, douche.

  171. Lowetide says:

    Very nice job by Russell stripping the puck in the neutral zone. Real nice.

  172. Centre of attention says:

    Klefbom fails to clear that one.

  173. Lowetide says:

    Oscar and Letestu not getting that puck out and it costs a goal. Damn Samn anyway.

  174. John Chambers says:

    Puljujarvi has looked like the best player on his line several shifts.

  175. square_wheels says:

    Pescador,

    Hmmmmm. Curious. Got to think on that. Love Gallagher, but not sure trading Nuge is the right move.

    Eberle would be my choice.

  176. Ryan says:

    I had an eerie feeling right after Klefbomb whiffed on the puck that it would lead to a goal against.

  177. digger50 says:

    Great job layin on the blame, thanks Remenda

  178. voxwah says:

    Playing “Steal My Sunshine” after the visiting team scores is miles beyond tacky. Jeez. Whos running this new barn?

  179. John Chambers says:

    hags9k:
    Davey is dangerous again.We should protect him from Vegas.

    The way I see it they’re protecting:
    Sek, Klefbom, Larsson, Davidson, Nuge, Draisaitl, Lucic, and either Maroon or Eberle.

    We could conceivably see Eberle traded in order to protect Davy and Maroon.

  180. Centre of attention says:

    That will be challenged.

  181. Lowetide says:

    Gryba scored.

  182. Oil2Oilers says:

    No one thought Gryba would get the next goal, no one.

  183. Lowetide says:

    John Chambers:
    Puljujarvi has looked like the best player on his line several shifts.

    Agreed. He is a fun player to watch, hope he cashes.

  184. pocession charge says:

    Good for Gryba. He made a nice defensive zone play before the goal (stick check at blue line).

  185. Professor Q says:

    voxwah:
    Playing “Steal My Sunshine” after the visiting team scores is miles beyond tacky. Jeez. Whos running this new barn?

    I think that that’s much better than Canada’s “We Dem Boys” goal song.

  186. pocession charge says:

    Oil2Oilers:
    No one thought Gryba would get the next goal, no one.

    Nobody except Ryan.

  187. frjohnk says:

    Eric Gryba 1st goal in 24 games
    Brendan Gallagher 1st goal in 31 games.

    All these goal scorers breaking out of slumps.

    Ha.

    Gryba was pumped to score that goal.

    It’s a big one.

  188. square_wheels says:

    Somehow we’ve got to have anyone but the bottom 6 forwards out vs Doughty.

    Good lord he has gears late into a game for someone who eats tones of minutes.

  189. Centre of attention says:

    pocession charge,

    Oil2Oilers,

    Who here thought Eberle was going to have a 2 point night?

    Full credit to Ebs, who hasn’t gotten completely owned on the boards against a tough Kings team.

    Coming into this game he had like 5 points in 20+ games played against the kings and was a -14.

  190. JDï™ says:

    voxwah: Whos running this new barn?

    You might try taking that up with the Vice Chair and Alternate Governor of Oilers Entertainment Group.

  191. Lowetide says:

    Dustin Brown is such a puke..

  192. square_wheels says:

    If I’m building an all NHL player eligible Expansion team, behind Crosby and McDavid I would take Doughty. Does anyone control the ice better when the pucks on their stick ? Can defend as well.

    Next contract should make him the highest paid D in the league.

  193. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide:
    Dustin Brown is such a puke..

    If he hurt Benning there I would be completely fine with Kassian taking a suspension.

  194. JDï™ says:

    This team should be called the LA Wieners – mostly lip and arseholes.

  195. Georges says:

    Woodguy: No.

    A good example used to be DAL NFL games when DAL was a below average team.

    The lines on those games were never reflective of a predictive spread because soooo much public money would come in on DAL regardless.

    Any time a bookie needs a team to be profitable on the game the line wasn’t set correctly.

    Ah, anecdotes. This is looking back at the results, right? No one noticed the mispricing while it was available?

  196. Centre of attention says:

    That shift where Russel got the puck the skated it out is what I like about his game.

  197. VOR says:

    Georges and Woodguy,

    I want to start off by saying I don’t gamble. But if you really want to know how odds are set it works like this:

    Complicated ever changing algorithms predict the event. An odds line is developed. The public never sees that line. Saints preserve us, we never give a sucker an even break.

    The first decision is how much we can distort the line and still get the mooks to give us their money. The average is 3.5 to 4%. If I know people like to vote on the Patriots I can give them lousier odds and still get their money.

    Next betting begins. Now my job is to make sure my book is even and I am not as we say, naked. That means adjusting the lines constantly to make sure the mook betting is equal on both sides of the bet and we kill it on the vigorish. This is known as arbing to vig. But if the volume rises on both sides of the book, I may start stripping. If I know something the mooks don’t I may start carrying some exposure, my book may go asymmetrical. Big risk, big gain. I am goosing the pig.

    But I am also watching the other houses. We no longer shoot our competition and bury them in the desert, so we need to out compete them on our odds and oh yes, on our vig. You, you poor sucker are lucky if the vig is only 10% and only on a losing bet. But for the whales, particularly serial whales I am negotiating downward as the volume of the bet goes up. When it gets really bad I will say the better is fat and cheap. Which is a way of saying I need to be sure the line is frigging right and Tom Brady didn’t just break his arm in practice. I might actually give back money, pay the whale to make the bet or unsettle the odds.

    Just so you know, every reader who bets here, on big enough bets there are both preferred odds and neg vig. If you bet more than $400,000 a year you will start seeing the vig narrow and the odds moving to the original algorithm value. Though if the action is heavy, particularly if I am sitting on the ground (the action is heavy on the same side of the bet you want me to book) you won’t find me at all friendly. I may even treat you like all the other mooks and try to comp you into submission.

    Meanwhile, I am taking side bets, note please: this is illegal in Las Vegas, both for the book and the bettor. These are those oddball bets like what color is the Gatorade or my all time favourite, which member of the Super Bowl winning team is going to be the first to go to jail. Try figuring the odds for that one.

    And that ladies and gentlemen is a gross simplification of a multi-billion dollar business that exists solely because we all think we are special, we can beat the house. And every day millions of people win bets and nearly every one of them gets screwed somehow. Which is why I don’t gamble. Even when you win you lose.

  198. pocession charge says:

    Centre of attention:
    pocession charge,

    Oil2Oilers,

    Who here thought Eberle was going to have a 2 point night?

    Full credit to Ebs, who hasn’t gotten completely owned on the boards against a tough Kings team.

    Coming into this game he had like 5 points in 20+ games played against the kings and was a -14.

    Personally, I think Eberle’s intensity level has been quite high for the past few games. His overall game is trending up.

  199. John Chambers says:

    They should just keep Puljujarvi up and give him a regular shift.

    Based on tonight I can see him having an impactful second half.

  200. pocession charge says:

    Centre of attention:
    That shift where Russel got the puck the skated it out is what I like about his game.

    He’s a real NHL defenseman. And a veteran, too. Can’t have enough of these (reasonably priced, of course).

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