SLAMMED

It is wildly unfair to compare free-agent summers in the Craig MacTavish era and Peter Chiarelli’s additions. The biggest difference is Connor McDavid and (as is the case in all things) No. 97 changes the weather in a big way. When MacT was general manager, he had a video about ‘The Alberta Advantage’ and some nice young blue chip players and prospects. None of that can compare to Connor McDavid.

MACT’S FREE AGENTS

  • July 5, 2013—Andrew Ference
  • July 5, 2013—Boyd Gordon
  • July 5, 2013—Jesse Joensuu
  • July 5, 2013—Jason LaBarbera
  • July 5, 2013—Ryan Hamilton
  • July 6, 2013—Richard Bachman
  • July 8, 2013—Denis Grebeshkov
  • July 1, 2014—Benoit Pouliot
  • July 1, 2014—Mark Fayne
  • July 1, 2014—Keith Aulie

It’s easy to look back and dump on him for these signings (the Ference contract just got finished) but when you’re trying to shore up an NHL defense, veterans who can help have high value. At the time of his signing, Ference was part of a solid defensive group, the Oilers needed him to play inside the top 4D. That’s a bet we see NHL teams make every summer. When Ference signed, I said this about him:

  • D Andrew Ference, 4 years times 3.25M. An overpay where he’ll play, Ference is ideally suited as a veteran pairing for Schultz the younger. He was 4th among Bruins in EV TOI (17:06) and fourth in PK TOI (2:13) and will probably play similar minutes with the Oilers. I think we should probably prepare for Ladislav Smid or Nick Schultz heading out of town (Ottawa or Philly is my guess) before training camp. The current LH depth chart is Smid, Ference, N Schultz, Anton Belov, Oscar Klefbom–suspect we’ll see a flip before fall. Source

He played 21:04 that first season, about 90 seconds a game more than he had in Boston. I think he was a reasonable bet, Boyd Gordon too, and for me the best bet was Benoit Pouliot (despite his being bought out this summer). I also believe Mark Fayne was a good signing. It didn’t work out but grabbing an NHL defenseman who can defend is something I’m always going to encourage.

CHIARELLI’S FREE AGENTS

  • July 1, 2015—Andrej Sekera
  • July 1, 2015—Mark Letestu
  • July 1, 2016—Milan Lucic
  • July 1, 2016—Mark Fraser
  • July 1, 2016—Jonas Gustavsson
  • July 3, 2016—Taylor Beck
  • October 7, 2016—Kris Russell
  • July 7, 2017—Jussi Jokinen
  • July 10, 2017—LD Yohann Auvitu

How many of these players can be credited to the drafting of Connor McDavid? Does ‘all of them’ cover it? I think so, although Peter Chiarelli will get credit or blame depending on how things roll out. It is fair to say that Sekera and Lucic would not have been available to MacT and I think a player like Jussi Jokinen is also in that category (he said as much).

All of which is to say the following: With greater opportunity comes greater risk. I count Peter Chiarelli’s best free agent addition as being Andrej Sekera so far, but Matt Benning (not listed here) could end up being the best addition. As we move into this season, very important that the expensive signings (Sekera, Lucic, Russell) deliver in a big way. The verbal next summer, if RNH has to be moved while these expensive veterans have under-performed contracts, will be about free agents that haven’t worked out while also costing valuable assets.

I think this summer the Draisaitl/McDavid contracts were framed as being the culprits when it came to Jordan Eberle’s exit. I don’t think framing the issue in a similar manner next summer is going to work. These free-agent signings, in the days after the rapture, are going to tell their own story. The pressure is on. Now. My bet is that Milan Lucic recovers 5×5 and posts a strong season. I think he was probably challenged by the struggles of last season and will want to show fans he has more to bring. I bet he recovers 5×5 scoring in 2017-18. You?

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107 Responses to "SLAMMED"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    Speaking of “slammed” – Brownlee took a pretty decent shot at The Athletic in his new posting on ON.

  2. Lowetide says:

    I think Robin’s article is measured. Can’t see a thing to disagree with to be honest.

  3. OriginalPouzar says:

    Wow, McTavish’s signings look bad in hindsight. I remember being able to justify each and every one of the signings – Fayne was a good signing at the time – he was playing big and heavy minutes in Jersey. I’m still not sure what happened there – I thought he had some nice stretches – in particular paired with Sekera.

    The Pouliot signing started off well but it seems we know why it was his first contract with term.

    At this point in time, the PC signings play a material role on this team, however, he paid full value for most of those players.

    Sure, maybe we don’t “get” Lucic without Chiarelli’s connection to the player, however, the contract is on the high end of value at the time of the deal.

    Similar with Sekera – he’s a material part of this team but we paid to get him.

    The Russell re-sign is simply a bad contract – yes, he was “needed” this season (or a replacement) and we are much better with him (this year) but PC lost on AAV, term and trade protection – he went 0/3 at a time when he knew that he was going to be in a cap crunch and value contracts were going to be important.

    I believe he panicked with the Sekera injury and Russell being a UFA and got locked in on the player.

    Full credit to Benning, Caggulia, Joe G., Shane Starret, etc.

    The Jokinen signing (and to a lesser extent Auvitu) seem like great bets and potential value deals, however, at this point, it remains to be seen if they will turn out that way.

  4. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    I think Robin’s article is measured. Can’t see a thing to disagree with to be honest.

    I can’t say I disagree with that, I’m just not sure he needed to post it.

    All its going to do is cause a bitch-fest.

  5. Bank Shot says:

    MacT’s biggest mistake was giving so much term to Pouliot and Fayne.

    These guys weren’t proven top four/top six options.

    There was no reason to give them both top dollar and top term.

    Nobody else ever gave Pouliot anything over one season and MacT gave him 5? Once again he’s on a one year in Buffalo.

    That was a bad case of thinking you know something that everyone else doesn’t.

  6. OriginalPouzar says:

    With respect to Lucic – apparently he is a bit lighter this off-season – he didn’t really have “fat to lose” but is leaner in some way.

    I’m sure he’s still strong as an Ox and maybe he’ll be faster, more explosive.

    He’s a very proud guy and his GM, who he has known for years, expressed that he expects more out of Milan and his coach has said so in less express words.

    I too expect Milan to have a much strong first half of the season 5 on 5. Its almost certain that Drai will be his center to start subject to a surprise or an injury – lets hope that duo can get off to a strong start and run with the confidence.

  7. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bank Shot:
    MacT’s biggest mistake was giving so much term to Pouliot and Fayne.

    These guys weren’t proven top four/top six options.

    There was no reason to give them both top dollar and top term.

    Nobody else ever gave Pouliot anything over one season and MacT gave him 5? Once again he’s on a one year in Buffalo.

    That was a bad case of thinking you know something that everyone else doesn’t.

    In MacT’s defence, I don’t think any material player was signing with the organization unless there was some sort of overpay, either AAV or term and, in some cases, likely both.

  8. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Speaking of “slammed” – Brownlee took a pretty decent shot at The Athletic in his new posting on ON.

    Holy sour grapes Batman. He’s a dinosaur passed by the side of the road bitter that time has moved on. Publishing a whole article bashing a startup which involves two of his partners. But who will travel with the team? Yeah good luck with that. How many media outlets that arent broadcasting the game can afford to travel with the team. This is the new world. Investigative journalism has been dead for almost a decade.

  9. geowal says:

    Minor note I wouldn’t place any significance on McDavid effect for the tweeter signings: Beck, Auvitu, Gustavsson, etc. These guys are just looking for an opportunity. Guys at a stage of career or win-now (who believe in what we’re doing) and guys hoping to get their numbers zoomed are the real difference from the past.

  10. geowal says:

    I think Brownlee’s point is fair having just went through it. But all it really means is you won’t have “Oiler insiders” through the Athletic. Which is fine. It simply means it won’t be the only source of info, esp for the stuff he refers. It would benefit nobody for the Athletic to scoop up so many writers as to get a near monopoly in the content. I think they have signed up enough to be enticing to subscribs (I’m thinking about it). Someone/some org/newspaper can still maintain the “connected” guys as their own competitive advantage, keeping their lights on too.

  11. PunjabiOil says:

    Ottawa offered Pouliot 4 years, and the Oilers had to add another year to get him.

    Fayne seemed like a sensible signing – it just doesn’t work out every time.

    Having that said, it was a different time where the Oilers needed to move north quickly and had acres of cap space.

    Part of the problem is the Oilers actively eroded the values of these players.

    Benoit delivered 2 excellent seasons. Last year he took a dive south, but remains a good bounce back candidate. I don’t believe the was any reason to buy him out this year.

    Eric Gryba played 93 games the last 2 seasons, and has a significant negative penalty differential. I’d rather have Fayne in that bottom pairing role.

  12. Lowetide says:

    PunjabiOil:
    Ottawa offered Pouliot 4 years, and the Oilers had to add another year to get him.

    Fayne seemed like a sensible signing – it just doesn’t work out.

    Having that said, it was a different time where the Oilers needed to move north quickly and had acres of cap space.

    Part of the problem is the Oilers actively eroded the values of these players.

    Benoit delivered 2 excellent seasons.Last year he took a dive south, but remains a good bounce back candidate.I don’t believe the was any reason to buy him out this year.

    Eric Gryba played 93 games the last 2 seasons, and has a significant negative penalty differential.I’d rather have Fayne in that bottom pairing role.

    I agree with all of this.

  13. PunjabiOil says:

    A further point on Pouliot:

    Rishaug commented the Oilers had been trying to move Pouliot for 2 years.

    Pouliot never got the McDavid push this past season. A role in which he was excellent in previously, and had the speed to play with McDavid.

    The problem with Craig McTavish was that he was stubborn (Schultz, Petry, Dubnyk, Todd Nelson, etc). In many ways, stubbornness is worse than incompetency.

    I’m not all that convinced Peter Chiarelli is all that different (Hall, Lucic Russell’s advanced stats, Fayne demotion, Pouliot, Grbya 2 years, etc.).

    Self-fulling prophecies can do long term damage.

    I’m not convinced Peter Chiarelli had distanced himself from this Billy Bean adage:

    “The day you say you have to do something, you’re screwed. Because you are going to make a bad deal. You can always recover from the player you didn’t sign. You may never recover from the player you signed at the wrong price.”

  14. PunjabiOil says:

    I read the Brownlee article. I don’t think necessarily he’s wrong (in theory).

    Insider access can enhance user experience, but there are many problems in Edmonton:

    1. Controlling the message/narrative – do the opinions of Edmonton journalists reflect their own or are they molded by the executives on Kingsway?

    2. Value added insights/analysis. Gone are/ the days where people read print journalism for game summaries or quotes. Mainstream media members have to find other ways to make themselves indispensable – that could include commentary/opinion/documentary pieces.

    An example would be the six piece story by David Staples (“How Pronger broke our Hearts”)

    How many pieces like these do we see?

    Rarely.

    What we see are game summaries, with quotes (which can be found through multiple mediums), and often overlooked are critical updates the public want to know (i.e. injury details/updates). There is little many of these writers do in terms of differentiating themselves from the team’s internal ”state-media” channels (Oilers TV, Oilers twitter, edmontonoilers.com), which in many cases do a better job than the mainstream media in the sense their updates are instant.

    The mainstream media, in my view, has done little to enhance the users’ experience. It’s why, inspite of people willing to pay for good content, paywalls for the likes of Edmonton Journal and Edmonton Sun have failed.

    You can sense the disdain to the analytics community from from the Robert Tychkowski’s and Derek Van Diest’s – but these are the type of journalists that have to adjust their journalism to what the user needs. It does not necessarily have to be analytic based, but some level of differentiation is vital.

    As Billy Beane once famously remarked, “adapt or die”

  15. theDjdj says:

    Whenever comparing GMs from Christmas Past with Chiarelli it’s so important to remember that McDavid covers all bets. Much easier to gamble when you’re already wealthy. This is most noticeable in the draft.

  16. Jethro Tull says:

    PunjabiOil,

    Anybody else detect a trace amount of sour grapes throughout the article?

    Also a bit more of ‘they didn’t earn their stripes’. Robin is entitled to his opinion, and i respect him for his strength of conviction throughout the years; he rarely backs down from what he believes. However, another poster put it best: When was the last time any of the old beat writers broke anything meaningful? Their ‘insider’ info seemed to start winding down with Eakins. Remember all the ‘the calls are coming from inside the house’ memes? And Chia has been famously tight lipped since taking the reins.

    I read Robin’s article as someone making good points against, but knows the battle has already been lost.

    Times, they are a changin’.

  17. Wild Bill Hunter says:

    Pouliot and Fayne were Corsi darlings plain and simple. The Corsi boys loved them and they turned out less than worthy of the terms of those fairly hefty contracts. Thankfully very few of the fancy stats lovers put much stock in Corsi anymore. The problem with the better fancy stats is that they tend to be very subjective (quality of scoring chances etc.) which really amount to nothing more than old fashioned “saw him good” anecdotal scouting. Hockey is not baseball where one on one battles allow for more meaningful statistical breakdown.

  18. PunjabiOil says:

    Anybody else detect a trace amount of sour grapes throughout the article?

    Also a bit more of ‘they didn’t earn their stripes’. Robin is entitled to his opinion, and i respect him for his strength of conviction throughout the years; he rarely backs down from what he believes. However, another poster put it best: When was the last time any of the old beat writers broke anything meaningful? Their ‘insider’ info seemed to start winding down with Eakins. Remember all the ‘the calls are coming from inside the house’ memes? And Chia has been famously tight lipped since taking the reins.
    I read Robin’s article as someone making good points against, but knows the battle has already been lost.

    Times, they are a changin’.

    There’s a clear generational divide. But I understand Brownlee’s personal concerns. He just happened to be a victim of modernization and is understandably trying to justify his old role. Can also understand his frustration as everyone fawns over the Athletic, which is run by people the MSM has historically had a hard time accepting.

    A poster on ON (JimmyV1965) summarizes it up nicely:

    I think the insider argument is a little blah. In Edmonton, most insiders have merely become mouthpieces for the organization. They very rarely deliver anything interesting or new. I found it very frustrating during in the bad old days when virtually every insider refused to call out anyone on the team. The only guy who would consistently take the team to task was Stauffer and the Oilers solved that problem by hiring him and making him the ultimate insider.

  19. sliderule says:

    To my eyes I would have released Pouliot for taking bad penalties in offensive zone and inconsistent play..
    He would disappear for long stretches for no apparent reason
    He was berated several times by the coach for these penalties that a few times were instrumental in costing them games yet wouldn’t correct his behaviour.
    Fayne just wasn’t good enough or aggressive enough to be in the top six.
    Neither player was released or not played to piss off the Corsi crowd .
    They were dropped because attitude and aggression are at least as important as shot metrics.

  20. PunjabiOil says:

    To my eyes I would have released Pouliot for taking bad penalties in offensive zone and inconsistent play..
    He would disappear for long stretches for no apparent reason
    He was berated several times by the coach for these penalties that a few times were instrumental in costing them games yet wouldn’t correct his behaviour.
    Fayne just wasn’t good enough or aggressive enough to be in the top six.
    Neither player was released or not played to piss off the Corsi crowd .
    They were dropped because attitude and aggression are at least as important as shot metrics
    .

    1. Pouliot generated more penalties than he drew. Consistently and annually.
    2. He produced very strong EV/60 rates.

    15-16 (at per lowetide): His 2.05 5×5 points-per-60 ranks him No. 37 among NHL forwards with 400 or more minutes in the discipline.

    14-15: 5×5 points per 60: 2.04 (2nd among regular forwards)

    He wasn’t particular great on the PP, but EV, up until this past year, he was excellent.

    On the PK, also had strong suppression rates

    It doesn’t mean his 4M cap hit was optimal for the Oilers for the next two seasons. Then again, neither is dead cap space for a useful player.

    I would have waited a year, and then traded him (50% retained if necessary) or bought him out next year and avoid dead cap space for 4 seasons.

    Narratives are often not true.

  21. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    5v5 pts/gm

    2014/15
    Lucic 0.37
    Pouliot 0.42

    2015/16
    Lucic 0.41
    Pouliot 0.44

    2016/17
    Lucic 0.29
    Pouliot 0.21

    One’s a failed UFA signing at $4/yr who needed to be bought out.

    The other costs $6/yr is signed for 6 more years.

  22. dustrock says:

    The Atlantic was smart enough to grab the one indispensable media figure in Edmonton: Allan Mitchell.

    If Young Willis was the lead writer for the Journal not sure we’d see an Edmonton edition of the Atlantic, but guys like him, following in the footsteps of Lowetide in terms of content generation but also keeping a calm, polite attitude.

    Willis would comment adroitly on literally any trade in the NHL within 30 minutes of it being announced.

    Meanwhile the MSM in Edmonton will just copy the breaking article as if they’re breaking news.

    Which is pretty funny on Twitter.

  23. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    5v5 pts/gm

    2014/15
    Lucic 0.37
    Pouliot 0.42

    2015/16
    Lucic 0.41
    Pouliot 0.44

    2016/17
    Lucic 0.29
    Pouliot 0.21

    One’s a failed UFA signing at $4/yr who needed to be bought out.

    The other costs $6/yr is signed for 6 more years.

    LOL

    What about their boxcars over that same time period? How about looking at just games played over that time period? What were Pouliot’s numbers without McDavid in 15/16? Good grief.

  24. dustrock says:

    Rob Tychowski and Derek Van Diest on the Atlantic?

    Give me a break, Brownlee.

    Let’s get Tencer to head the Edmonton division while we’re at it.

  25. godot10 says:

    PunjabiOil:

    Benoit delivered 2 excellent seasons.Last year he took a dive south, but remains a good bounce back candidate.I don’t believe the was any reason to buy him out this year.

    I think Chiarelli figured he couldn’t take the risk that Pouliot would not be able to be bought out next summer because of injury. The buyout makes no sense otherwise.

    The Oilers are really squeezed next summer. So to guarantee $6.67 million in cap space next summer, he chose to get Fayne off the cap this year and buyout Pouliot.

    Pouliot is an NHL player, but this coach really dislikes some aspects of Pouliot’s game. And this coaches good opinion, once lost, is lost forever.

  26. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: LOL

    What about their boxcars over that same time period? How about looking at just games played over that time period? What were Pouliot’s numbers without McDavid in 15/16? Good grief.

    uh, Pou played a bit with 97 in 15/16 not much else.

    This is 3 years.

    so should we remove Lucic’s numbers from Kopitar? Carter? Kreijci?

    Boost Pou for playing mostly with RNH?

    Really thin complaints Chaichi

  27. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: uh, Pou played a bit with 97 in 15/16 not much else.

    This is 3 years.

    so should we remove Lucic’s numbers from Kopitar?Carter? Kreijci?

    Boost Pou for playing mostly with RNH?

    Really thin complaints Chaichi

    I agree with about 99% of what you post. Comparing Pou to Lucic looking only at 5v5 pts/gm is laughably thin evidence. These are the kinds of arguments that make people like Brownlee and the old dinosaur MSM distrust the people who write about analytics. It is a preposterous argument to make.

  28. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: LOL

    What about their boxcars over that same time period? How about looking at just games played over that time period? What were Pouliot’s numbers without McDavid in 15/16? Good grief.

    Lucic played more w/ 97 in 16/17 than Pou did in 2 years.

    LOL indeed

  29. OmJo says:

    PunjabiOil:
    A further point on Pouliot:

    Rishaug commented the Oilers had been trying to move Pouliot for 2 years.

    Pouliot never got the McDavid push this past season. A role in which he was excellent in previously, and had the speed to play with McDavid.

    The problem with Craig McTavish was that he was stubborn (Schultz, Petry, Dubnyk, Todd Nelson, etc).In many ways, stubbornness is worse than incompetency.

    I’m not all that convinced Peter Chiarelli is all that different (Hall, Lucic Russell’s advanced stats, Fayne demotion, Pouliot, Grbya 2 years, etc.).

    Self-fulling prophecies can do long term damage.

    I’m not convinced Peter Chiarelli had distanced himself from this Billy Bean adage:

    “The day you say you have to do something, you’re screwed. Because you are going to make a bad deal. You can always recover from the player you didn’t sign. You may never recover from the player you signed at the wrong price.”

    Todd McLellan too, comes off to me at least, as quite stubborn when it comes to the lineup sometimes. For example, not trying the Pou-McD-Yak line for no reason, just simply “because we didn’t.” Or refusing to try the Pou-Nuge-Ebs line last season when the three were struggling on seperate lines. Not taking advantage of last change occasionally, particularly in the Sharks series, was frustrating to watch at times, too.

    I don’t want to make this a rant but yeah, the new management and coaching staff seem to have a sort of “swagger” about them.

  30. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: I agree with about 99% of what you post. Comparing Pou to Lucic looking only at 5v5 pts/gm is laughably thin evidence. These are the kinds of arguments that make people like Brownlee and the old dinosaur MSM distrust the people who write about analytics. It is a preposterous argument to make.

    5v5 contribution per game is preposterous?

    Why?

  31. OmJo says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    5v5 pts/gm

    2014/15
    Lucic 0.37
    Pouliot 0.42

    2015/16
    Lucic 0.41
    Pouliot 0.44

    2016/17
    Lucic 0.29
    Pouliot 0.21

    One’s a failed UFA signing at $4/yr who needed to be bought out.

    The other costs $6/yr is signed for 6 more years.

    Honestly, aside from the poor penalties he would take, what wasn’t there to like about Pouliot? He was an all around ‘good’ LW on this team. He’s a ‘good’ player. Overpaid? Probably. If he was a bit healthier he’d likely have been a consistent 50pt LW on this team over the last few years.

  32. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: 5v5 contribution per game is preposterous?

    Why?

    It is preposterous because when you are comparing a player who managed to play an average of about 60 games a season with one who has missed 2 games in the last 3 years 5v5 pts per game means very little unless the player missing 22 games a year is outpacing the one who shows up by a significant margin. If Lucic starts missing a bunch of games like Pouliot he’ll be a compliance buy-out after the next strike/lockout.

  33. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: It is preposterous because when you are comparing a player who managed to play an average of about 60 games a season with one who has missed 2 games in the last 3 years 5v5 pts per game means very little unless the player missing 22 games a year is outpacing the one who shows up by a significant margin. If Lucic starts missing a bunch of games like Pouliot he’ll be a compliance buy-out after the next strike/lockout.

    So if Pouliot stays healthy he’s worth 6MM and isn’t bought out?

  34. jtblack says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    The 5×5 numbers are clear. But they are not All of the numbers. Pou was not welcome with this regime. If Lucic keeps posting low 5×5; he will be a contract nightmare.

  35. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: So if Pouliot stays healthy he’s worth 6MM and isn’t bought out?

    Yup. And if he didn’t absolutely crap the bed last season. That’s the point you were trying to make, no? Unfortunately for him you have to actually play in games to make that 5v5 pts/gm mean something.

  36. jm363561 says:

    Woodguy v2.0: 5v5 contribution per game is preposterous?

    Why?

    =======

    I am not saying it is “preposterous” but I find the focus on points only gives a one way picture. Including plus / minus or GF% gives a more complete “two way” picture (I know you much prefer GF%, for good reason, but I do not know how to locate it). For example, the much admired Tarasenko (75 points) is -1.

  37. frjohnk says:

    Pouliot was good for the first two years of his term, even with injuries

    Last year Pouliot played 80 games ( including playoffs) and scored 14 points. At $4M per year, thats buyout territory.

    -he ( just like Maroon, Lucic, Kassian) took stupid penalties ( but unlike Maroon, Lucic and Kassian) the coaching staff did not like him

    -management probably felt that even though buying him out would cost $1.3M a year for the next 4 years, they could get a better fit in the organization by gambling on guys who could possibly bounce back/bargain bin players ( Jokinen this year)

    -only spot he played well in last year was the penalty kill. Oilers dont look so good there this year, probably one of the reasons why Kelly was invited.

    – we dont know all the reasons, but I have a hunch that the biggest reason after the dismal 14 point season was that Chia and McClellan did not see Pouliot as a guy they wanted on the team moving forward.

  38. Chachi says:

    godot10:

    Pouliot is an NHL player, but this coach really dislikes some aspects of Pouliot’s game.And this coaches good opinion, once lost, is lost forever.

    McLellan ruined Pouliot so much he tied a career high in points in a season under McLellan in 25 less games than it took him to get to 36 points for the Rangers. There is definitely a good player there, but he just hasn’t been lucky enough to stay healthy and he was horrawful last year.

  39. Johnny says:

    jm363561: =======

    I am not saying it is “preposterous” but I find the focus on points only gives a one way picture. Including plus / minus or GF% gives a more complete “two way” picture (I know you much prefer GF%, for good reason, but I do not know how to locate it). For example, the much admired Tarasenko (75 points) is -1.

    Never mind the fact one is a glue-guy leader who sticks up for teammates and intimidates the other team while the other is arrogant, pompous, takes selfish penalties and didn’t have the trust of a single general manager to earn anything past a one year deal.

    But we can’t measure those things so let’s ignore them.

  40. Rondo says:

    The knock on Pouliot is his compete level. Every team that trades for him thinks they can motivate him,

  41. Georges says:

    PunjabiOil:

    1.Pouliot generated more penalties than he drew.Consistently and annually.
    2.He produced very strong EV/60 rates.

    Narratives are often not true.

    1. Not true.

    Pouliot’s minor penalties

    Season, Taken, Drawn

    14-15, 13, 12
    15-16, 15, 14
    16-17, 17, 14

    (You can actually find this kind of thing on nhl.com.)

    2. It depends.

    14-15 (mostly first line w/ RNH and Ebs), pretty good, but not “very strong.”
    15-16 (the CMD effect), yes.
    16-17 (banished), of course not.

    He’s a career 0.44 points/game player sitting at 551 games played. He’s a lower tier scorer that TMac had the luxury of playing deeper in the lineup (like Desharnais). If Pouliot scored on that 2-on-1 in Anaheim…

    Great… I have a not true narrative going through my head right now. Sigh.

  42. frjohnk says:

    Georges: You can actually find this kind of thing on nhl.com

    For shits and giggles I went there.

    Oscar Klefbom
    3 minor penalties in 82 games.

    “On average” he spent 4 seconds per game in the penalty box.

    And this was while playing well over 22 minutes a game with a bunch of that time against the elites.

    Thats impressive, but not impressive enough to get some Lady Bying love I guess.

    Looks like Klefbom went to the Nik Lidstrom school for Swedish Dmen.

  43. VOR says:

    I have a bone to pick with Robin Brownlee. I am going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume he probably meant to argue for balance. That isn’t to say I agree with him. I think he is wrong on a very key point.

    His core point as I see it is that many of the other writers (non-Edmonton writers) for The Athletic are veterans with both contacts and the ability to turn those contacts into interesting and informative content. By not having at least one veteran insider on their Edmonton crew the Athletic is in a very real way slanting their Edmonton content towards I wouldn’t say analytics so much as opinion, analysis and perspective rather than the more classically journalistic content you are likely to find in much of the other content on The Athletic.

    Brownlee thinks this is a bad thing. I don’t agree.

    Let me put it this way, the veteran MSM journalists The Athletic has recruited will be focused on telling you who, what, where, when, why and how. It is burnt into their soul by now. Generations of editors have ripped them a new one every time they challenged the importance of the news formula.

    The Edmonton team of The Athletic on the other hand live to tell you what they think and why they think it. They each have a fascinating perspective. And it is that perspective that The Athletic is selling to subscribers.

    As I see it, each approach has equal validity and can coexist and enrich each other.

    Brownlee on the other hand, and I don’t think he is alone in this, believes these two approaches are mutually exclusive.

    They aren’t and I can prove it.

    My proof consists of a former court and crime reporter named Zach Lowe. He combines incredible inside access, a tremendous knowledge of basketball, and the analytic chops to host The MIT SLOAN basketball sessions. The result is unquestionably some of the best sports writing – well multi-media reporting in America. Lowe use videos as embedded analytical tools and has a thriving podcast empire.

    He is also proof that long form investigative sports journalism is alive and well. Check out http://grantland.com/the-triangle/the-good-the-bad-and-the-tobias/ It is like Zach Lowe is Tyler Dellow, Bob McKenzie, and Rob Vollman rolled into one brilliant package. Well if any of them had ever been boots on the ground beat reporters.

    There is also a sobering lesson for all the writers in The Athletic stable in the career of Zach Lowe. For years he was one of the brightest lights in the Grantland firmament. Grantland, for those of you who never had the privilege to read it (it is all available in archives), was a child of ESPN and featured the best long form sports writing on the Internet. It was free and had all this great writing, yet at its peak it never had more than 6 million readers and finally ESPN pulled the plug on the site.

    To hear ESPN tell it there isn’t enough of a market for superb quality long form sports writing to keep 50 writers working full time.

    I am really hoping The Athletic proves them wrong. Just like I am rooting for The Ringer. That’s the free site the former staff of Grantland have launched. I am just somewhat skeptical. ESPN may well be right that the market for great long form sports writing is actually quite small.

  44. Georges says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    5v5 pts/gm

    2014/15
    Lucic 0.37
    Pouliot 0.42

    2015/16
    Lucic 0.41
    Pouliot 0.44

    2016/17
    Lucic 0.29
    Pouliot 0.21

    One’s a failed UFA signing at $4/yr who needed to be bought out.

    The other costs $6/yr is signed for 6 more years.

    This is cray cray.

    From 14-15 to 16-17:

    Pouliot

    GP 180
    Pts 84
    Pts/GP 0.47

    Lucic

    GP 244
    Pts 149
    Pts/GP 0.61

    Career

    Pouliot

    Seasons 13
    GP 551
    Pts 244
    Pts/GP 0.44

    Lucic

    Seasons 10
    GP 729
    Pts 447
    Pts/GP 0.61

    You’re right. Really hard to tell the two of them apart.

    (Also, your 2015-16 number for Lucic is wrong according to David Johnson’s data and NST.)

  45. Chachi says:

    frjohnk: For shits and giggles I went there.

    Oscar Klefbom
    3 minor penalties in 82 games.

    “On average” he spent 4 seconds per game in the penalty box.

    And this was while playing well over 22 minutes a game with a bunch of that time against the elites.

    Thats impressive, but not impressive enough to get some Lady Bying love I guess.

    Looks like Klefbom went to the Nik Lidstrom school for Swedish Dmen.

    And Johnny “Greg Louganis, I’d rather be in Philadelphia” Gaudreau won it.

  46. Side says:

    Did Caramel Batman get access to Woodguy’s account?

    What a bizarre series of posts by WG.

  47. stush18 says:

    frjohnk: For shits and giggles I went there.

    Oscar Klefbom
    3 minor penalties in 82 games.

    “On average” he spent 4 seconds per game in the penalty box.

    And this was while playing well over 22 minutes a game with a bunch of that time against the elites.

    Thats impressive, but not impressive enough to get some Lady Bying love I guess.

    Looks like Klefbom went to the Nik Lidstrom school for Swedish Dmen.

    I’m pretty sure bobby mac had klefbom number I one on his ballot.

    God I wish they made these things public

  48. stush18 says:

    Anyone can spin a number any way.

    I’ve said it before, but we really discount the human element in hockey waaaaay too often.

    We don’t have access, and we don’t want to speculate, but we get hints from guys on the team when they speak.

    When Larsson says he really respects Russell, that he learnt a ton from him this year, it gives us a piece of information.

    When mcdavid says too many guys were playing lazy when pouliot takes a couple bad penalties, it speaks volumes.

    These things matter. It’s no different from any of our own work lives

  49. Georges says:

    jm363561: =======

    I am not saying it is “preposterous” but I find the focus on points only gives a one way picture. Including plus / minus or GF% gives a more complete “two way” picture (I know you much prefer GF%, for good reason, but I do not know how to locate it). For example, the much admired Tarasenko (75 points) is -1.

    Pouliot’s a good player (or was). His teams consistently won with him on the ice.

    Here are Pouliot’s 5v5 stats from 2009-10 to 2016-17:

    Metric, Pouliot On, Pouliot Off

    SF%, 51.4, 49.7**
    sv%, 92.5, 92.1
    sh%, 8.5, 7.5
    GF%, 54.3, 48.3**

    ** The difference between SF% and GF% with Pouliot on the ice vs. off the ice is statistically significant using a difference of proportions test.

    Pouliot is like Dustin Penner. Horrible rep. But good things happen when he’s on the ice.

    In Edmonton last season, he was 3rd on the LW depth chart (sometimes 4th). Lucic didn’t take his spot. Maroon did. And because TMac had Drai playing with CMD, there weren’t enough centers to go around. When PC got DD to fill the 3C hole, the former Habs line showed a little bit of spark, a little bit of chaos. TMac chose to not stick with them.

    Again, if Pouliot just managed to pot that chance in game 5 against ANA, I think maybe all would have been forgiven. But maybe not.

  50. Georges says:

    stush18:
    Anyone can spin a number any way.

    I’ve said it before, but we really discount the human element in hockey waaaaay too often.

    We don’t have access, and we don’t want to speculate, but we get hints from guys on the team when they speak.

    When Larsson says he really respects Russell, that he learnt a ton from him this year, it gives us a piece of information.

    When mcdavid says too many guys were playing lazy when pouliot takes a couple bad penalties, it speaks volumes.

    These things matter. It’s no different from any of our own work lives

    Hey stush. Thank you for the comment from yesterday. Much appreciated.

    Where did Larsson say that about Russell?

  51. GMB3 says:

    Rondo:
    The knock onPouliotis his compete level.Every team that trades for him thinks they can motivate him,

    It has been since junior as well. I remember reading an article years ago about Poo and his junior coach said that he lacked the desire to compete. I saw value in the player, but he drove me insane

  52. Georges says:

    VOR,

    Zach Lowe is a lot of fun. He’s not necessarily a numbers guy. But he’s always thinking the game and helping his readers understand and think about what players and teams are doing and trying to do on the court. Does hockey have a Zach Lowe? I’m guessing you think no, because you rolled up 3 hockey personalities as a comparison. I don’t know if any of those guys use video to break down plays either. Why is that?

  53. VOR says:

    Georges,

    Actually Tyler Dellow uses a lot of the same techniques that Zach Lowe does in the Tobias Harris piece I link to in my post.

    But you can see in that piece how much Lowe is using his high degree of access to enrich the article. He can actually access Harris himself and ask what he thinks, and the coach what they think, etc. Plus he is also putting his analysis of Harris in a much bigger context based on numerous conversations with NBA GMs.

    Is there anybody in hockey who can do that right now? The simple answer is not as far as I can tell. Bleacher Report has some NHL players doing similar work. But you can tell they aren’t professional reporters and they certainly don’t have the statistical talents that Lowe deploys from time to time. Plus Lowe generates an enormous amount of material – volume wise in hockey there is nobody but our host who can create so much content.

  54. Munny says:

    Wouldn’t the MSM still be providing the perspective of team access and daily practice reports? Do we really need another source? The folks at The Athletic obviously have a plan and the entrepreneurial wherewithal to take a shot at that plan and good for them. Brownlee is seriously off-the-mark despite his measured tone. I don’t think he’s overcome what made him the low-hanging fruit at the time of his departure from the MSM.

  55. Seismic Source says:

    I wonder if Brownlee has a balance photo he’s saving for the Athletic.

  56. OriginalPouzar says:

    frjohnk: For shits and giggles I went there.

    Oscar Klefbom
    3 minor penalties in 82 games.

    “On average” he spent 4 seconds per game in the penalty box.

    And this was while playing well over 22 minutes a game with a bunch of that time against the elites.

    Thats impressive, but not impressive enough to get some Lady Bying love I guess.

    Looks like Klefbom went to the Nik Lidstrom school for Swedish Dmen.

    I believe Klef did receive some Lady Bing votes but they simply do not give that award to dmen – like once in the last 50 years.

  57. Johnny says:

    Side:
    Did Caramel Batman get access to Woodguy’s account?

    What a bizarre series of posts by WG.

    WG has decided that Chiarelli is incompetent and the teams success is only because of McDavid.

    He will do whatever it takes to prove this narrative.

  58. LeonorMcdraivid says:

    Hello from Germany,
    I’ve watched both games of the young stars tournament and I’m glad to see, that the young guns have the chance to transfer the confidence of the NHL group or the organization.
    For me, the way out of the shit is not only the gift named Connor McD, rather the acquisitions of players, who have the natural given authority like the Looch or bring the physical element like Adam L.
    my opnion is,for example that player like Taylor Hall, so wonderful his skillset is, didnt ever have the chance, to be the player he is, because he was pushed into the role, to be the overall player.
    Now, the team is more balanced and gives the talented group the terminal room for development.
    The bodily development is indivdual and actually it is allowed to be indivdual.
    Good times are coming…

    I hope, you can comprehend, what i mean..

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    Looking forward to the lineup annoucment for the game against the canucks rookies this afternoon.

    Hope Boeser and Juolevi and play – I want to beat their best.

  60. Lowetide says:

    LeonorMcdraivid:
    Hello from Germany,
    I’ve watched both games of the young stars tournament and I’m glad to see, that the young guns have the chance to transfer the confidence of the NHL group or the organization.
    For me, the way out of the shit is not only the gift named Connor McD, rather the acquisitions of players, who have the natural given authority like the Looch or bring the physical element like Adam L.
    my opnion is,for examplethat player like Taylor Hall, so wonderful his skillset is, didnt ever have the chance, to be the player he is, because he was pushed into the role, to be the overall player.
    Now, the team is more balanced and gives the talented group the terminal room for development.
    The bodily development is indivdual and actually it is allowed to be indivdual.
    Good times are coming…

    I hope, you can comprehend, what i mean..

    Very good points, especially about being pushed into roles.

  61. Lowetide says:

    Seismic Source:
    I wonder if Brownlee has a balance photo he’s saving for the Athletic.

    You made me snort coffee.

  62. GCW_69 says:

    OriginalPouzar: In MacT’s defence, I don’t think any material player was signing with the organization unless there was some sort of overpay, either AAV or term and, in some cases, likely both.

    I think that’s a bullshit defence.

    Pouliot’s contemporaries that summer were Perrault and Raymond. One went to Calgary and one went to Winnipeg, so not prime teams or prime locations, and both got $3M x 3 years.

    You can’t tell me the Oiler tax over Winnipeg and Calgary at that time was $11M on a $9M base. That’s impossible.

    MacT was a shitty GM in well over his head. Period.

    The only signing I give him a pass on is Fayne. And I think the lesson that signing taught us is you don’t give money and term to the passenger on a pairing.

    Unfortunately, MacT is still around, the team apparently didn’t learn the lesson and now we have Russell on a classic MacT style contract.

    Don’t get me wrong, Chia signed it and should be held accountable when it blows up, but I would have liked someone who knew what he was doing with Chia going, “um, this smells a lot like Fayne all over again. Maybe we should look at alternatives.”

  63. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    My whole point was that line between “failed FA signing that needed to bought out” and a $6MM FA signing with 6 years left is much thinner than most acknowledge.

  64. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Johnny: WG has decided that Chiarelli is incompetent and the teams success is only because of McDavid.

    He will do whatever it takes to prove this narrative.

    I love when people spin their narrative on my narrative.

    I’m on record as loving almost every move Peter has made that didn’t involve trading first round draft picks or a contract above $3.9MM

    I think he’s fucked up a few big items and they might bite the team in the ass.

    Also,

    I didn’t “decide” that McDavid was the reason the Oilers scored way more goals last year.

    I proved it with facts and stuff: http://becauseoilers.blogspot.ca/2017/07/oilers-went-from-25th-to-8th-in-nhl-in.html

  65. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Georges: This is cray cray.

    From 14-15 to 16-17:

    Pouliot

    GP 180
    Pts 84
    Pts/GP 0.47

    Lucic

    GP 244
    Pts 149
    Pts/GP 0.61

    Career

    Pouliot

    Seasons 13
    GP 551
    Pts 244
    Pts/GP 0.44

    Lucic

    Seasons 10
    GP 729
    Pts 447
    Pts/GP 0.61

    You’re right. Really hard to tell the two of them apart.

    (Also, your 2015-16 number for Lucic is wrong according to David Johnson’s data and NST.)

    5v5 points George.

    Lucic was very meh on the PP until he played with McDavid/Drai last year.

  66. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    The hyprocrisy I’m trying to point out is when the same people saying Pouliot is a “failed UFA signging” who at the same time think Lucic is great.

    If all the difference between the two at 5v5 is games played then there’s a massive disconnect between that line of thinking and reality.

    5v5 pts/60
    14/15
    Lucic 1.66
    Pouliot 1.90

    15/16
    Lucic 2.06
    Pouliot 2.01

    16/17
    Lucic 1.22
    Pouliot 1.08

    If the whole disparity between the players is 5v4 opportunity and health……then Lucic is an awful signing.

    Powerplay pts/60

    14/15
    Lucic 3.24
    Pouliot 3.71

    15/16
    Lucic 2.84
    Pouliot 4.19

    16/17
    Lucic 6.85
    Pouliot 0.00

    I find it astounding that Pouliot’s 5v5 and 5v4 rates in his first two years of his EDM contract are better than Lucic’s over the same period and the perception of the players is so polar opposite.

    I guess reputation and staying healthy are pretty important.

    I agree that staying healthy is important, but man if I didn’t label who was who no one could pick out who’s results were who’s.

  67. sliderule says:

    I was just trying t say there are lots of reasons that players like Pouliot and Fayne get traded or dropped.These reasons do not have to involve analytics.
    If you have a bad attitude you had better be over contributing in other areas.A bad attitude can infect a whole team and coaches usually want to get rid of as quick as possible.
    If you are throwing snow in the corners and not aggressively clearing in front of net you have to be way better in some other area.Coaches want the rest of team to stick their nose in the tough areas and allowing someone to get away with soft play is infectious

  68. russ99 says:

    MacTavish’s second biggest failing was lack of support for the young players and running them together for mad minutes on a free for all scoring line in a vainglorious attempt to bring back the 80s.

    The rebuild didn’t have to be so painful, bringing in the right veterans support and splitting up the lines and managing young player minutes could have helped.

    Part of the issue was FAs not wanting to go to Edmonton, admittedly.

    His biggest failing was Eakins. Being swayed by a hotel room pitch, and throwing everything to the wolves because of it.

  69. frjohnk says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I find it astounding that Pouliot’s 5v5 and 5v4 rates in his first two years of his EDM contract are better than Lucic’s over the same period and the perception of the players is so polar opposite.

    Some people see the junk season Pouliot just had and then say ” yup another reason why advanced stats suck”. But these same people also forget that Pouliot had two pretty decent first seasons in Edmonton.

    But all they will remember is the 14 points in 80 games including playoffs and “bad penalties”. Sometimes guys have bad seasons.

    Lucic had a terrible season at 5 on 5. Went through about a 25 game goalless streak and in the last 67 games which included the playoffs he scored 5 goals at even strength. Sometimes guys have bad seasons.

    Lucics season was saved by a dominate PP of which he was a big part of. If Lucic had a “normal season” on the PP, there would be more fans not liking the signing. Lucic has had very good advanced stats up until last year. Wonder if this would be considered a “failed advanced stat signing”

    Lucic has a history of scoring well at even strength and verbal has it that he is in better shape.

    Lucic should have a bounce back year at 5 on 5 this year.

    I think Pouliot does the same as well.

  70. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    frjohnk: Some people see the junk season Pouliot just had and then say ” yup another reason why advanced stats suck”.But these same people also forget that Pouliot had two pretty decent first seasons in Edmonton.

    But all they will remember is the 14 points in 80 games including playoffs and “bad penalties”.Sometimes guys have bad seasons.

    Lucic had a terrible season at 5 on 5.Went through about a 25 game goalless streak and in the last 67 games which included the playoffs he scored 5 goals at even strength.Sometimes guys have bad seasons.

    Lucics season was saved by a dominate PP of which he was a big part of.Lucic has a history of scoring well at even strength and verbal has it that he is in better shape.

    Lucic should have a bounce back year at 5 on 5 this year.

    I think Pouliot does the same as well.

    I’d bet on both to be much better 5v5 this year too.

  71. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    sliderule:
    I was just trying t say there are lots of reasons that players like Pouliot and Fayne get traded or dropped.These reasons do nothave to involve analytics.
    If you have a bad attitude you had better be over contributing in other areas.A bad attitude can infect a whole team and coaches usually want to get rid of as quick as possible.
    If you are throwing snow in the corners and not aggressively clearing in front of net you have to be way better in some other area.Coaches wantthe rest of team to stick their nose in the tough areas and allowing someone to get away with soft play is infectious

    I think the disconnect between he and the coach was pretty big and the main reason he was bought out.

    I don’t he ever played soft though.

    Now that Pou and Eberle are gone I don’t think there are any players left on the roster that the coach has disdain for.

    Those two are pretty much the only two he had called out publicly during his time in EDM.

  72. season not played says:

    It is likely the cost savings in the Strome deal factored in to it but I would think it was Eberles play, specifically “the shift”, in a crucial moment in a playoff game which had him out the door. Plus I think Strome is going to surprise a lot of people.

    Also, if you can sit there and more or less say you would rather have Pouliot on your team than Lucic then you are too far gone. You are failing to recognize all that factors in to winning hockey games. It’s time for people to start questioning your credibility.

  73. frjohnk says:

    season not played: Also, if you can sit there and more or less say you would rather have Pouliot on your team than Lucic then you are too far gone

    Id rather have Lucic than Pouliot every day of the week.

    But when Lucics contract is done and we look back, the possibility exists that the Lucic contract might have been worse.

  74. jp says:

    season not played:

    Also, if you can sit there and more or less say you would rather have Pouliot on your team than Lucic then you are too far gone. You are failing to recognize all that factors in to winning hockey games. It’s time for people to start questioning your credibility.

    No one has said that though.

    I agree 100% with WGs posts today, but don’t believe Pouliot is actually the better player (or even equal). I don’t think WG does either.

    The point was that the actual gap in performance (not huge) is way out of step with people’s perceptions of the two players.

  75. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played,

    Also, if you can sit there and more or less say you would rather have Pouliot on your team than Lucic then you are too far gone. You are failing to recognize all that factors in to winning hockey games. It’s time for people to start questioning your credibility.

    Good thing I didn’t say that then eh?

    Always putting words in my mouth as per your standard.

    I write something and you take it to a place where I never went.

    I wrote this to describe what I was doing:

    “My whole point was that line between “failed FA signing that needed to bought out” and a $6MM FA signing with 6 years left is much thinner than most acknowledge.”

    “The hyprocrisy I’m trying to point out is when the same people saying Pouliot is a “failed UFA signging” who at the same time think Lucic is great.
    If all the difference between the two at 5v5 is games played then there’s a massive disconnect between that line of thinking and reality.”

  76. season not played says:

    No names were used and “if” and “more or less” were used specifically to prevent the incoming “words in my mouth” outcry.

    How you perceive my statement is probably a pretty good indicator of how you are thinking.

    Appreciate the confirmation.

  77. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    One last one.

    Goal Share without McDavid last year:

    Pouliot 50.0%
    Lucic 47.8%

  78. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played:
    No names were used and “if” and “more or less” were used specifically to prevent the incoming “words in my mouth” outcry.

    How you perceive my statement is probably a pretty good indicator of how you are thinking.

    Appreciate the confirmation.

    I was the only one who brought it up.

    Don’t try to hide behind “I didn’t name you”

    Be a grown up.

  79. season not played says:

    Do you really want to do this again?

  80. defmn says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I think the disconnect between he and the coach was pretty big and the main reason he was bought out.

    I don’t he ever played soft though.

    Now that Pou and Eberle are gone I don’t think there are any players left on the roster that the coach has disdain for.

    Those two are pretty much the only two he had called out publicly during his time in EDM.

    I agree with this. This is not a story that numbers confirm or dismiss. I don’t think we can do anymore than speculate on the exact reason or reasons but there was something about Pouliot that MacLellan decided was not conducive to moving the team forward and Chiarelli accepted or agreed with his analysis. Points were not the issue. It was something else.

    I would point out that Fayne is still around though. He was the original example and for some reason he was demoted rather than moved.

  81. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played:
    Do you really want to do this again?

    Not at all.

    I’m surprised you started in on me.

  82. season not played says:

    Merely pointing out that when you consider a players’ contribution to a winning hockey team there is really no comparison between the two.

    Have a good day.

  83. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played:
    Merely pointing out that when you consider a players’ contribution to a winning hockey team there is really no comparison between the two.

    Have a good day.

    Except that’s not what you did.

    You misrepresented what I wrote. (again)

    Good day.

  84. season not played says:

    You’re not the only person who can read between the lines.

  85. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played:
    You’re not the only person who can read between the lines.

    Except your assumptions are usually wrong about me, including here.

    I’d much rather have Lucic than Pou.

    I just don’t think there’s as much to give between the players as most though.

  86. season not played says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Except your assumptions are usually wrong about me, including here.

    Says you.

    Unless someone is a complete moron they will adjust their position, if possible, when their bullshit has been called out.

    It’s a tactic you use to say things without saying them. Gives you room to backpeddle.

    Unless, of course, I am giving you too much credit.

  87. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    The hyprocrisy I’m trying to point out is when the same people saying Pouliot is a “failed UFA signging” who at the same time think Lucic is great.

    Who is saying Lucic was great? Where are all these hypocrites? The GM who signed him graded him as a 6 for last season and Lucic himself said he had to improve 5v5.

  88. YKOil says:

    OriginalPouzar: I can’t say I disagree with that, I’m just not sure he needed to post it.

    All its going to do is cause a bitch-fest.

    Loved the article. I now know Black Dog Hates Skunks is writing again (maybe he never stopped but I did disconnect for a while) and between him and Lowetide… yeah, I’ll be subscribing.

    My day is officially made better by a Robin Brownlee article, never thought I would see that day 🙂

    P.s. I don’t actually have anything against RB, has a dismissive and arrogant tone more often than warranted imo but other than that standard beat writer and all my sports reading days have included one or two articles by such every damn day.

  89. YKOil says:

    jp: No one has said that though.
    I agree 100% with WGs posts today, but don’t believe Pouliot is actually the better player (or even equal). I don’t think WG does either.

    The point was that the actual gap in performance (not huge) is way out of step with people’s perceptions of the two players.

    Agreed with JP’s point re: the discussion and WG’s point re: the players.

  90. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Chachi: Who is saying Lucic was great? Where are all these hypocrites? The GM who signed him graded him as a 6 for last season and Lucic himself said he had to improve 5v5.

    Read the comment sections here, Oilers Nation, Cult of Hockey writers and comment sections, and twitter.

    Pretty much everywhere.

    Not a strawman.

  91. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    season not played:

    I wasn’t the only one in the thread to call you out on it.

  92. godot10 says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I think the disconnect between he and the coach was pretty big and the main reason he was bought out.

    I don’t he ever played soft though.

    Now that Pou and Eberle are gone I don’t think there are any players left on the roster that the coach has disdain for.

    Those two are pretty much the only two he had called out publicly during his time in EDM.

    He called out Nugent-Hopkins, albeit indirectly, twice. There was no misundertanding who he was talking about.

  93. Chachi says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Read the comment sections here, Oilers Nation, Cult of Hockey writers and comment sections, and twitter.

    Pretty much everywhere.

    Not a strawman.

    I read almost every post every day here and can’t recall a single poster that claimed Lucic was great 5v5. No idea what is going on at Oilers Nation or Cult of Hockey. You can find all sorts of stupid arguments on twitter about everything. Mostly its just an echo chamber for idiots.

  94. season not played says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I wasn’t the only one in the thread to call youout on it.

    What you were posting was so ridiculous and transparent one reasonably astute poster wondered if batman took over your account.

  95. Georges says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    The hyprocrisy I’m trying to point out is when the same people saying Pouliot is a “failed UFA signging” who at the same time think Lucic is great.

    If all the difference between the two at 5v5 is games played then there’s a massive disconnect between that line of thinking and reality.

    5v5 pts/60
    14/15
    Lucic 1.66
    Pouliot 1.90

    15/16
    Lucic 2.06
    Pouliot 2.01

    16/17
    Lucic 1.22
    Pouliot1.08

    If the whole disparity between the players is 5v4 opportunity and health……then Lucic is an awful signing.

    Powerplay pts/60

    14/15
    Lucic 3.24
    Pouliot3.71

    15/16
    Lucic 2.84
    Pouliot 4.19

    16/17
    Lucic6.85
    Pouliot0.00

    I find it astounding that Pouliot’s 5v5 and 5v4 rates in his first two years of his EDM contract are better than Lucic’s over the same period and the perception of the players is so polar opposite.

    I guess reputation and staying healthy are pretty important.

    I agree that staying healthy is important, but man if I didn’t label who was who no one could pick out who’s results were who’s.

    You’re having a difficult time with the importance of health part. First you say if it’s just 5v4 opportunity and health, then Lucic is an awful signing. Then you guess health is important. Finally you agree that health is important but then immediately go back to equating the players based on rates.

    Lucic had 42 more ES points in those 3 years while having a comparable ES rate to Pouliot. Points scored are more important than points potentially scored. By hand waving GP, you take away one of the big things Lucic has going for him in the league. He plays.

    You’re making choices here that put Lucic in a bad light. Not sure why but they’re just choices. I’d hesitate to make them because they favor smaller samples over larger samples. Over the past 10 seasons, only 33 forwards have scored more points at even strength than Lucic. That’s pretty good information. It tells me Lucic is a pretty good player at ES.

    (BTW, the correlation between ES scoring and PP scoring for established forwards is pretty high. Coaches basically play ES scorers on the PP. If you’re going to focus on just scoring to evaluate forward play, then you should use total points. Doing something else is favoring less data over more data.)

    Lucic is scoring at a lower rate in the past 3 seasons overall than his peak Boston years. That’s concerning but not unexpected given the player age curve. The big dropoff last season is just plain unusual given his track record. It would have to be weighed against the consistent ES production in the prior seasons before drawing any inferences. With one season of unusual results, I’d question the situation and usage before questioning the player. But, who knows, players hit walls and you don’t always see it coming. So let’s see what happens this season.

    I’m sure you’ll be cheering just as hard as I will for Lucic to post big numbers all around.

  96. Georges says:

    Chachi: I read almost every post every day here and can’t recall a single poster that claimed Lucic was great 5v5. No idea what is going on at Oilers Nation or Cult of Hockey. You can find all sorts of stupid arguments on twitter about everything. Mostly its just an echo chamber for idiots.

    Lucic is great 5v5.

    First!

  97. Chachi says:

    Georges: Lucic is great 5v5.

    First!

    Good grief! What’s next? Are people going to start defending Donald Trump on this blog? Oh yeah, crap!

  98. Georges says:

    Chachi: Good grief! What’s next? Are people going to start defending Donald Trump on this blog? Oh yeah, crap!

    You DO read every post… spooky.

    There’s a big difference between Lucic didn’t score at ES in 16-17 and Lucic doesn’t score at ES. Lucic is a great ES player. As I said earlier, if things didn’t work last season, I’d question situation and usage before questioning the player. The player has a way too strong a track record.

    (I think you agree with me on this but not entirely sure.)

  99. Chachi says:

    Georges,

    I agree completely.

  100. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Georges,

    You’re having a difficult time with the importance of health part. First you say if it’s just 5v4 opportunity and health, then Lucic is an awful signing. Then you guess health is important. Finally you agree that health is important but then immediately go back to equating the players based on rates.

    We should always use rates with context.

    I agree if a player has an injury history then that plays into it.


    Lucic had 42 more ES points in those 3 years while having a comparable ES rate to Pouliot. Points scored are more important than points potentially scored. By hand waving GP, you take away one of the big things Lucic has going for him in the league. He plays.

    I’m not hand waving it away.

    You can’t predict gp although I agree if its chronic (like Pou seems to be) vs someone like Lucic its a factor.

    If Lucic only plays 57 games this year and Pou plays 82 and they get similar rates, what then?


    You’re making choices here that put Lucic in a bad light. Not sure why but they’re just choices. I’d hesitate to make them because they favor smaller samples over larger samples. Over the past 10 seasons, only 33 forwards have scored more points at even strength than Lucic. That’s pretty good information. It tells me Lucic is a pretty good player at ES.

    Lucic’s rates are what they are. Only his last season was poor.

    I’m surprised you went back 10 years on Lucic when you accused me of cherry picking by going back 4 years on Hall and not 3.


    (BTW, the correlation between ES scoring and PP scoring for established forwards is pretty high. Coaches basically play ES scorers on the PP. If you’re going to focus on just scoring to evaluate forward play, then you should use total points. Doing something else is favoring less data over more data.)

    Lucic’s low PP totals were similar throughout his career until last year.

    Like Hall he was a 5v5 killer and not much on the PP.


    Lucic is scoring at a lower rate in the past 3 seasons overall than his peak Boston years. That’s concerning but not unexpected given the player age curve. The big dropoff last season is just plain unusual given his track record. It would have to be weighed against the consistent ES production in the prior seasons before drawing any inferences. With one season of unusual results, I’d question the situation and usage before questioning the player. But, who knows, players hit walls and you don’t always see it coming. So let’s see what happens this season.
    I’m sure you’ll be cheering just as hard as I will for Lucic to post big numbers all around.

    I cheer for every Oiler.

    The point of my exercise was to show how little there was to choose between the two when the perception is quite different.

    I’ll concede gp because Lucic has a history of health and Pou doesn’t over the last 3 years.

    What spurred this is all the talk of moving RNH or Sekera out next year because McDavid’s contract kicks in.

    No one ever mentions Lucic even though his first year as an Oiler was dismal in terms of 5v5 production.

    Hell, even RNH beat him.

  101. rickithebear says:

    avearage the last 3 seasons
    Hall:
    69 gm 20g 32A 52P -5 first line forward.
    13 gm of #13 to AHL forwards
    By failing to be heathy hall gave us 15.9% of games at below 4 th line performance.

    Lucic:
    81.33gm 20g 30a 50p +12
    .66gm #13 to ahl forward. 0.8% of games per season. Without 1 st line forward.

    I have allways believed in repeatability of performance.
    Like russels elite 0% Corsi rate for 80% of the season.
    Or
    Fistric being the best 0% Corsi Dman in league when Mact tried to sign the equivalent of russel for 3yr @ 1.25M

    But missed games have to be included in the measure.

    With hall missing 13 games his repeatabilty % is
    X% x 84.9%

    Lucic repeatability rate is x% x 99.2%

    Guess who belichek, myself and PC choose.

  102. rickithebear says:

    All you experts:
    Laughed about fistric.
    Even when i laid it out for you
    M…….. Jerry!

    Edm
    Ana
    1. 1evg 13 eva +23

    2. Best 0% Corsi Dman in league.
    2 evga to his side.

    3. Top 3 pkga dman in game.

    But i can understand how you guys felt we needed
    That elite off dman who generates at #10 forward rate
    Rather than his #11 forward rate.

    Yup so much more important than being the best dman in the game at making a goalies job the easiest.

    Fuck I still laugh how stupid that thought process is
    And when you read it.

    Priceless!

    Remember when trying to find the best
    1. D supression Dmen
    And
    2. 0% chance corsi dmen.

    Femwick is 50 to 100% less effective at letting you know a dman’s def value.

    I would really feel bad for anyone who used fenwick.
    Cause it captures the best def dmen in the game about 47% of the time season to season.

  103. Georges says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    If Lucic plays 57 games this year and Pouliot plays 82 and they both get similar rates, I’ll go with Pouliot scores more points next season. But things aren’t that unpredictable. I like Pouliot but Pouliot has never scored more than 40 points in a season. Pouliot outscoring Lucic next season wouldn’t be an even bet. But if your conclusion is “how little there was to choose between the two” and you think the outcomes are equiprobable then I’ll stop trying. By your last statement on RNH, sounds like you’ll be cheering for Lucic through gritted teeth. It’s still cheering in my book.

    As for the Hall reference, yeah, I can get on board. The patterns are similar. They both have a solid history of scoring, Hall obviously at a higher rate. And for both players, it’s been more scoring early, less scoring lately. Lucic’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (although LAK was kinda comparable). And Hall’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (not even close). But, yeah, sure, saying their best years scoring wise are likely behind them is probably not going too far out on the limb. Because Hall was an elite scorer, he had further to fall so it’s more noticeable with him.

  104. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Georges:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    If Lucic plays 57 games this year and Pouliot plays 82 and they both get similar rates, I’ll go with Pouliot scores more points next season. But things aren’t that unpredictable. I like Pouliot but Pouliot has never scored more than 40 points in a season. Pouliot outscoring Lucic next season wouldn’t be an even bet. But if your conclusion is “how little there was to choose between the two” and you think the outcomes are equiprobable then I’ll stop trying. By your last statement on RNH, sounds like you’ll be cheering for Lucic through gritted teeth. It’s still cheering in my book.

    As for the Hall reference, yeah, I can get on board. The patterns are similar. They both have a solid history of scoring, Hall obviously at a higher rate. And for both players, it’s been more scoring early, less scoring lately. Lucic’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (although LAK was kinda comparable). And Hall’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (not even close). But, yeah, sure, saying their best years scoring wise are likely behind them is probably not going too far out on the limb. Because Hall was an elite scorer, he had further to fall so it’s more noticeable with him.

    Gritted teeth?

    I guess tone is tough to get from my writing.

    No gritted teeth at all.

    I pray the Peter didn’t hobble McDavid’s team with a large unmoveable contract.

    Also,

    Hall’s 2nd (might be 3rd) best 5v5 pts/60 season was his last year as an Oiler

  105. Georges says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Gritted teeth?

    I guess tone is tough to get from my writing.

    No gritted teeth at all.

    I pray the Peter didn’t hobble McDavid’s team with a large unmoveable contract.

    Also,

    Hall’s 2nd (might be 3rd) best 5v5 pts/60 season was his last year as an Oiler

    Hmm… here’s what I get from nhl.com. They have ES data; that’s a good proxy for 5v5 and it has a higher correlation to points in the standings.

    Hall’s P/GP

    Season, ES, Total

    10-11, 0.48, 0.65
    11-12, 0.53, 0.87
    12-13, 0.80, 1.11
    13-14, 0.83, 1.07
    14-15, 0.60, 0.72
    15-16, 0.65, 0.79
    16-17, 0.53, 0.74

    So, yes, Hall’s ES scoring in 15-16 was his 3rd best result in his career. You could hang your hat on that and ignore the surrounding numbers. If you wanted to.

    Here’s Lucic:

    Season, ES, Total

    07-08, 0.31, 0.51
    08-09, 0.47, 0.58
    09-10, 0.38, 0.40
    10-11, 0.61, 0.79
    11-12, 0.62, 0.75
    12-13, 0.54, 0.59
    13-14, 0.59, 0.74
    14-15, 0.44, 0.54
    15-16, 0.58, 0.68
    16-17, 0.31, 0.61

    Lucic’s rates are nowhere near Hall’s, are they? Hall is an elite scorer. Lucic is a steady scorer. With such a discrepancy in rates, Hall must have contributed way more scoring to his teams over the past 7 years than Lucic has to his teams, right?

    ES Points in the past 7 seasons

    Hall, 284
    Lucic, 278

    Total Points in the past 7 seasons

    Hall, 381
    Lucic, 358

    There’s that thing about using rates without context, i.e., actual points that result from actual games played. The scoring contribution of these two players over the past 7 seasons is not that different.

    But, yeah, they both have scored less recently. I don’t know what the future holds but I think it probably holds less scoring for both. I’m happy to be wrong. Goals are fun!

  106. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Georges,

    You’re acting really weird.

    You said this:

    And Hall’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (not even close).

    I then pointed out that 15/16 was Hall’s 2nd or 3rd best 5v5 year so your statement was wrong.

    Then you wrote this:

    So, yes, Hall’s ES scoring in 15-16 was his 3rd best result in his career. You could hang your hat on that and ignore the surrounding numbers. If you wanted to.

    Which is weird because all I was correcting was your error saying “Halls’s last 3 years don’t look like his best year (not even close)”

    That’s all that my statement was, but you read way more into it.

    At no point was I comparing the two players except to say they both excelled at 5v5 and not so much 5v4.

  107. Georges says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Georges,

    You’re acting really weird.

    You said this:

    And Hall’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (not even close).

    I then pointed out that 15/16 was Hall’s 2nd or 3rd best 5v5 year so your statement was wrong.

    Then you wrote this:

    So, yes, Hall’s ES scoring in 15-16 was his 3rd best result in his career. You could hang your hat on that and ignore the surrounding numbers. If you wanted to.

    Which is weird because all I was correcting was your error saying “Halls’s last 3 years don’t look like his best year (not even close)”

    That’s all that my statement was, but you read way more into it.

    At no point was I comparing the two players except to say they both excelled at 5v5 and not so much 5v4.

    Hall’s last 3 years don’t look like his best years (not even close). They don’t if you look at totals. Which you really should if you’re going to look at scoring. All goals count. Even if you look only at ES, you said he maybe had his second best year on rates. But it actually was his third best year and the drop from second to third best in his case was the drop from elite year to a good Lucic year. I make errors. Not one here that needs to be corrected.

    As for the weird bit, I’m feeling OK, thanks. Weird depends on your point of view I guess. You put forward a weird Pouliot = Lucic based on rates argument. To which Chachi correctly replied: LOL. I added detail. Ricki added more and better detail. His observation is terrific: when a regular player doesn’t play, he has to be replaced with a not regular player. If you’re going to compare rates, at least compare Lucic to Pouliot plus replacement AHL-level player (or make some other attempt to estimate Pouliot replacement scoring). Not sure if your equation holds up if you do that.

    As always, I look forward to your next numbers-based argument. It’s always educational.

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