RE 12-13: NICK SCHULTZ

Since the dawn of time (well, NHL time) teams have relied on men just like Nick Schultz. Tough, fearless, hard working men who do the nasty business of defending the real estate in front of and around the net. Schultz is a good one, a solid veteran.

79, 1-9-10

  1. Are you still missing Gilbert? Yes. Having said that, Schultz is a fine player and we should talk about him.
  2. Why do you think they made the move? The only thing that has ever made sense to me is that the club knew Justin Schultz was coming here at the deadline and wanted a veteran mentor to ease him into the league.
  3. Crazy talk. You bet, there’s no way they could have known. Still, if you follow the train of thought from the deadline–assuming Schultz was in the bag–then making the deal makes more sense.
  4. Is there any part of you that believes that? No. I don’t think the Oilers knew at the deadline.
  5. Why do you hate him? I don’t hate him. I love the calm feet, the physical ability, the way he works his tail off when he makes the mistake. I think an entire year of watching him will make me appreciate him more.
  6. You ramble on about needing defense and then they get one and you’re unhappy? Look, we’ve been through this before. IT WAS THE PRICE!
  7. You think Krueger will have him mentor Schultz the younger? That’s my current thinking, yes. Oilers could use Smid, Whitney, Sutton in the role and I’m sure there will be times when all get their chance. Schultz the elder seems to be a perfect fit though.
  8. Does Schultz PK? Yes. 2.5  minutes a night as part of his 20 minutes per game. Defensive defenseman through and through.
  9. Any offense at all? No. I think the Oilers will eventually move Whitney (or his replacement) into the top 4 but that probably doesn’t happen this coming season.
  10. So he’s Jason Smith? Similar players for sure, g-a-p per 82 games over their careers are similar. I don’t know that he’s as good as Smith–Jason Smith was a fine one–but this is the kind of player you need to see for awhile in order to appreciate.
  11. Zone starts? Toughest available in Minnesota.
  12. Vollman’s Sledgehammer? White bubble, I think he’s okay. I don’t think he’s so good the team will change the Smid-Petry pairing but again we need to see him for a year and then run the Vollman.
  13. Is Schultz really a good fit for Edmonton? Sure. Schultz doesn’t have the size (6.01, 200) to dominate players physically, but I’ve never seen him back down and he’ll give as good as he gets. If you look back–from Jason Smith to Kevin Lowe to Allan Hamilton to Larry Zeidel to Eddie Shore Edmonton loves these guys, always have. Nick Schultz is a good, hard nosed defender and if he can hang around long enough there’s going to be some good days for him as an Oiler.
  14. When will he wear out? Three years? Four? I’ll say another 320 games.
  15. You seem to be holding back endorsement of him. I always find it difficult to settle these things in my mind. We only saw him as an Oiler for 20 games. Also, in order to earn his pay, Schultz should be playing tough opposition with scary zone starts. I don’t see him doing that in the mentor role, at least not for this season.
  16. What are his positives? Good speed, gritty, he has an idea about where to be on the ice and the number one rule of defense (and real estate): location, location, location. It sounds simple but Oiler fans well know there are defensemen who can’t read or react in time.
  17. What are his negatives? He has a lot of miles on him, and his recent underlying stats aren’t fabulous. Now, much of that has to do with the quality of the team (stay-at-home types only have defense to show for their efforts. when it’s wanting, it is difficult to prove value). That’s why we need to see him for a year, add the math to the visual.
  18. A math sight wants visual proof? Show me any math first guy or girl who suggests they would prefer to NOT watch the games. It’s silly. One of the things that Eric Tulsky’s counting numbers may eventually show is the true value of the DD. How many sorties does he shut down in a year simply by making a smart play at the blueline, or breaking up the play by altering a pass. We don’t have that evidence, but someday we will.
  19. What will  it show? I think stay-at-homes on bad teams are perceived as having negative value because the plus minus and raw Corsi are so poor. However, they’re still doing the things that got them into the league and perhaps without them these poor teams would be even worse.
  20. So you need a year to see him play? Yes. We know what he is–hell he played well against us for years–but the shutdown defender is someone you appreciate over time.

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62 Responses to "RE 12-13: NICK SCHULTZ"

  1. "Steve Smith" says:

    Worst RelCorsi among Minnesota regulars, against middling competition. Tough zone start in absolute terms, but less so in the context of his team. What are the odds of a guy Nick Schultz’s age bouncing back?*

    I think we had our Calgary-trading-for-Staios moment, except instead of an impending UFA Aaron Johnson (and a pick) we gave up a signed Tom Gilbert.

    (I continue to hold to my unsubstantiated hypothesis that Gilbert asked for a trade to Minnesota, and the Oilers were making the best of a bad situation. Only way the trade makes sense.)

    * I’m expecting Eric Belanger to bounce back, so I’m hoping that the answer is “high”.

  2. gcw_rocks says:

    The mentor role is probably the right one, but I think you are right, it leaves a little of his value on the table because you can’t use him against the toughs the same way (unless Schultz Jr is a revelation). That said, if he gets second toughs all year, he should eat them for breakfast and we will be loving him.

  3. dessert1111 says:

    I think N. Schultz is a quality player that can play in any of your pairings. I think he is best-suited for 2nd pairing right now, but if the Oilers have a reasonable top four who is younger, I think he can slide down to the bottom pairing without making a fuss.

    I remember being quite surprised at his offense in Edmonton last year. For a stay-at-home guy, he seemed willing to be part of an offensive rush and I even recall times where he was behind the net in the offensive zone. There were several times when the announcers made mention of Schultz being involved in the offensive play and they always made it sound like it was super surprising, but after the fourth or fifth time they made a fuss about Schultz being involved in the O zone I started to wonder if perhaps his offensive instincts have been underrated. Maybe he was given specific instructions in Minnesota to curtail offense and he is excited playing for a team with some young offensive superstars? I’m not sure, and I think he is a defensive defenseman, but I also think there is a lot of room to be pleasantly surprised with some offense that he might add to the table. I’d suggest that he is more likely to put up closer to 20 points than 10 if what I saw from him as an Oiler is a fair representation, especially if he gets paired with someone like Justin Schultz and not Andy Sutton or Theo Peckham.

    I think the Oilers were planning to trade Gilbert for awhile, though I’m not sure if he asked for it. The fanbase never seemed to like him and before his injury I think he was playing the best he ever was, so it might have been a case of selling high. Although you’d think that if they were selling high, they would’ve gotten a bit more of a return, but that being said, I like N. Schultz just fine and I’m one of the few who doesn’t hate the trade.

  4. LoDog says:

    I’ve been watching Schultz play for a decade and have always marvelled at how good he is defensively. Head on a swivel and always making the right play. I forgot about Gilbert the minute he was traded. You watch what those two look like in their own end and there is no comparison.

  5. jp says:

    I wonder who wins the Smid/N Schultz scoring race? I’m gonna guess Schultz, but it’ll be close.

  6. Woodguy says:

    "Steve Smith":
    Worst RelCorsi among Minnesota regulars, against middling competition.Tough zone start in absolute terms, but less so in the context of his team.What are the odds of a guy Nick Schultz’s age bouncing back?*

    I think we had our Calgary-trading-for-Staios moment, except instead of an impending UFA Aaron Johnson (and a pick) we gave up a signed Tom Gilbert.

    (I continue to hold to my unsubstantiated hypothesis that Gilbert asked for a trade to Minnesota, and the Oilers were making the best of a bad situation.Only way the trade makes sense.)

    * I’m expecting Eric Belanger to bounce back, so I’m hoping that the answer is “high”.

    I’m not willing to lay Shultz’s bad numbers entirely at his feet only at this point.

    Shultz’s most common D partners in MIN were Zidlicky (35 years old) and Lundin (marginal NHLer)

    They were also the worst team in the NHL in terms of shot differential metrics and didn’t improve after Shultz left.

    I’m not thrilled at the numbers, but am willing to give him a fair look before concluding the trade is a disaster.

    His most common linemate when he got here was one legged Whitney.

    That’s a tough year with a fading Zidlicky, marginal Lundin and gimpy Whitney as playing partners.

    I hear v4.1 is trying to find an old piano with broken casters for Shultz to play with this year.

  7. Woodguy says:

    LoDog:
    I’ve been watching Schultz play for a decade and have always marvelled at how good he is defensively. Head on a swivel and always making the right play. I forgot about Gilbert the minute he was traded. You watch what those two look like in their own end and there is no comparison.

    Yeah, Gilbert is always moving the puck out and winning the shot differential battle against tough comp.

    No comparison.

  8. "Steve Smith" says:

    Woodguy: Shultz’s most common D partners in MIN were Zidlicky (35 years old) and Lundin (marginal NHLer)

    That’s all fair enough, but at some point you have to wonder why Schultz’s Corsi was worse than either of theirs.

    He could bounce back. It does sometimes happen that players have one aberrant year (maybe due to an undisclosed injury, or something), and he had built up a pretty solid track record of good defensive play prior to last year. But so had Staios.

  9. rickithebear says:

    "Steve Smith": Tough zone start in absolute terms, but less so in the context of his team. What are the odds of a guy Nick Schultz’s age bouncing back?*

    The same as an aged career 3.00GA ever covering the bet defensively.
    Gilbert 29
    Schultz 29

    Woodguy: I hear v4.1 is trying to find an old piano with broken casters for Shultz to play with this year.

    Yes a 1.60GA.
    the GF is lacking but it provides potential to break even or exceed.
    Gilberts GA leeds little chance of exceeding or breaking even.
    MGMT made the decision cause they want to win.

  10. commonfan14 says:

    “He has a lot of miles on him”

    Part of his high GP number is due to the fact that he’s played 10 seasons without a significant injury. It’s not like he’s damaged goods or anything at least.

  11. rickithebear says:

    Woodguy: Yeah, Gilbert is always moving the puck out and winning the shot differential battle against tough comp. No comparison.

    Yes shot differential. tom gilbert can get in the other zone.

    How does the finish results look . You know GF, GA.

    Can you say that is a D any forward can win with?

  12. ashley says:

    You seem to be holding back endorsement of him. I always find it difficult to settle these things in my mind. We only saw him as an Oiler for 20 games.

    What he needs to do is give a witty, confident interview with msm. That earned Ryan Whitney calls for naming him captain after a mere 19 games with the club. I wish I was joking.

    Like others, I am suspicious we will look more and more like the patsy on this trade. That’s not a criticism of Nick’s game as much as it is praise for Gilbert’s game and the likelihood of him excelling in greener pastures.

  13. Woodguy says:

    rickithebear: The same as an agedcareer 3.00GA ever covering the bet defensively.
    Gilbert 29
    Schultz 29

    Yes a 1.60GA.
    the GF is lacking but itprovides potential to break even or exceed.
    Gilberts GA leeds little chance of exceeding or breaking even.
    MGMT made the decision cause they want to win.

    Why do you insist on rating players by how good the goalie is behind them?

    Goals against/60 is ridiculously dependent on goal tending.

    Many have studied ONSV% fluctuation from year to year with the same player and have determined that any influence that a player has on ONSV% is so small that it can’t be counted on reliably.

    Shultz and Gilbert’s 5v5 ONSV% last 5 years:

    07/08 Shultz .930 Gilbert .907 Difference .023
    08/09 Shultz .934 Gilbert .913 Difference .021
    09/10 Shultz .917 Gilbert .909 Difference ..008
    10/11 Shultz .920 Gilbert .889 Difference .031
    11/12 Shultz .941 Gilbert .910 Difference 0.31

    Massive difference in quality of goaltending which in turn affect the GA/60.

    I think a better way of evaluation D is looking at shots against per 60.

    They have much more control over that.

    07/08 Shultz 28.0 Gilbert 29.1
    08/09 Shultz 29.2 Gilbert 29.1
    09/10 Shultz 27.6 Gilbert 28.2
    10/11 Shultz 29.4 Gilbert 25.8
    11/12 Shultz 30.1 Gilbert 24.7

    Looking at it this way, Gilbert seems to be getting better while Shultz is fading.

    Might be expected with Shultz having 787gp and Gilbert having 404gp. Same age, much different odometer.

    If MIN’s goaltending stays healthy Gilbert is probably a lock to have a better GA/60 this year.

    Given that Shultz is probably playing with a rookie and Gilbert is probably playing with Suter, Gilbert having a better SA/60, even though he’ll play tougher comp, is probably a slam dunk too.

  14. Woodguy says:

    rickithebear: How does the finish results look . You know GF, GA.

    How does the finish results look . You know GF, GA.

    You mean “Who was playing in net behind Gilbert”

    Dmen don’t stop the puck, they stop shots.

  15. Ducey says:

    I’m not thrilled at the numbers, but am willing to give him a fair look before concluding the trade is a disaster.

    I don’t “fair look” means what you think it means :)

  16. Woodguy says:

    rickithebear,

    Here’s Pronger’s GA/60 for the last 5 years and playoffs:

    2007-2008 Playoffs 935
    2007-2008 Season 930
    2008-2009 Playoffs 944
    2008-2009 Season 915
    2009-2010 Playoffs 899
    2009-2010 Season 923
    2010-2011 Playoffs 769
    2010-2011 Season 926
    2011-2012 Season 921

    Here’s Suter’s:

    2007-2008 Playoffs 918
    2007-2008 Season 921
    2008-2009 Season 900
    2009-2010 Playoffs 902
    2009-2010 Season 917
    2010-2011 Playoffs 934
    2010-2011 Season 938
    2011-2012 Playoffs 949
    2011-2012 Season 928

    Large fluctuations on both players, who are two of the best in the game, show what I’m talking about.

  17. justDOit says:

    From what I’ve seen of NS, he’s a much better passer than Gator ever dreamed of being. He’s also not as physical or mean, but I’ll take that.

  18. DSF says:

    Woodguy: Why do you insist on rating players by how good the goalie is behind them?

    Goals against/60 is ridiculously dependent on goal tending.

    Many have studied ONSV% fluctuation from year to year with the same player and have determined that any influence that a player has on ONSV% is so small that it can’t be counted on reliably.

    Shultz and Gilbert’s 5v5 ONSV% last 5 years:

    07/08Shultz .930 Gilbert .907 Difference .023
    08/09Shultz .934 Gilbert .913 Difference .021
    09/10Shultz .917 Gilbert .909 Difference ..008
    10/11Shultz .920 Gilbert .889 Difference .031
    11/12Shultz .941 Gilbert .910Difference 0.31

    Massive difference in quality of goaltending which in turn affect the GA/60.

    I think a better way of evaluation D is looking at shots against per 60.

    They have much more control over that.

    07/08 Shultz 28.0Gilbert 29.1
    08/09 Shultz 29.2Gilbert 29.1
    09/10 Shultz 27.6Gilbert 28.2
    10/11 Shultz 29.4Gilbert 25.8
    11/12 Shultz 30.1Gilbert 24.7

    Looking at it this way, Gilbert seems to be getting better while Shultz is fading.

    Might be expected with Shultz having 787gp and Gilbert having 404gp.Same age, much different odometer.

    If MIN’s goaltending stays healthy Gilbert is probably a lock to have a better GA/60 this year.

    Given that Shultz is probably playing with a rookie and Gilbert is probably playing with Suter, Gilbert having a better SA/60, even though he’ll play tougher comp,is probably a slam dunk too.

    Using shots against is just as fraught with inaccuracy as is GA.

    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Then to use that stat to measure the progress of an individual player over several seasons ignores team personnel changes and quality of team mates.

    For example, you have indicated Shultz is showing signs of deterioration without reference to the performance of the entire team over the sam time frame.

    Minnesota’s SA/G for the same 5 years you cited:

    07/08 30.1

    08/09 30.7

    09/10 29.5

    10/11 32.0

    11/12 31.4

    It would appear that Schultz’s stats are tracking in unison with the TEAM stat so attributing any of that to him as an individual is a huge reach.

    If we look at the Oilers numbers for the same period:

    07/08 31.4

    08/09 32.5

    09/10 33.1

    10/11 31.7

    11/12 30.7

    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    In both cases, the players did a little better than the team stat but I think it’s likely that Gilbert’s improvement is a function of playing with better team mates than he did earlier in his career while the opposite is true of Schultz.

  19. rickithebear says:

    Woodguy: Dmen don’t stop the puck, they stop shots.

    LOL, me thinks emotion took over when you wrote this!

    I think what you mean is Dmen try to reduce the scoring potential of pucks directed at the net. Some are better at it than others.
    As reflected by the difference in Save% relative to a goalies mean.

    Oh wait it is luck! Bahahahahahahahahahahaha!

  20. prairieschooner says:

    I got the impression that the Oilers D seemed a bit more consistent after Schultz joined the club.
    How was our goalscoring affected by the loss of Gilbert?

  21. jp says:

    Woodguy:
    rickithebear,

    Here’s Pronger’s GA/60 for the last 5 years and playoffs:

    2007-2008 Playoffs935
    2007-2008 Season930
    2008-2009 Playoffs944
    2008-2009 Season915
    2009-2010 Playoffs899
    2009-2010 Season923
    2010-2011 Playoffs769
    2010-2011 Season926
    2011-2012 Season921

    Damn, those are a LOT of GA/60!! Glad we kicked that guy to the curb :)

    Point taken though WG.

  22. jp says:

    prairieschooner:
    I got the impression that the Oilers D seemed a bit more consistentafter Schultz joined the club.
    How was our goalscoring affected by the loss of Gilbert?

    I kinda agree on this. I have a feeling that the Oilers D might tighten up considerably this season, with N Schultz playing a big part in it. I’ve got nothing to back this up other than “calm feet”, but I’m optimistic about the positive effect Schultz could have.

  23. TheOtherJohn says:

    N Schultz is not as good a player as T Gilbert. Wasn’t when he was in Minny and it is no different after they tradedn teams. Not to say that he does not have a useful role as a 4-5 D man on this roster.

    He is not a reasonable facsimile of Jason Smith.

    Actually heard someone in Oiler management say “we acquired Nic to protect the lead late in 1 goal games”. Love the concept. Love it!!! Simply a great idea. Now lets take steps to assemble an NHL roster that is capable of a late game 1 goal lead that needs protecting. Because we sure did not have many of those late last year.

    Expect Gilbert will, if paired with Suter, get much acclaim league wide for being a much better player than people thought he was.

  24. Moosemess says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    N Schultz is not as good a player as T Gilbert. Wasn’t when he was in Minny and it is no different after they tradedn teams.

    Internet discourse 101: Stating conclusions in a strong, self-assured manner helps create the illusion of unequivocal truth. Also helpful when chatting up the ladies.

  25. knighttown says:

    It’ll be very interesting to see if WG’s theory holds true. Since the goalies on both teams haven’t changed and goalies control ONSv%/60, Gilbert must outpace Shultz by 0.22 to cover the bet. Seem reasonable?

  26. russ99 says:

    Two reasons they made the deal:

    Gilbert (despite middling numbers for a supposed offensive defenseman), was playing well for a few months, and his trade value was the highest since he signed his big contract.

    Jeff Petry had advanced enough with his play where they can replace Gilbert’s skills with Petry – but with better defensive play and a lower cap number.

    And as for Justin Schultz – do you think the Oilers could have promised him whatever playing time/ powerplay time they supposedly did to land him if Gilbert were still on the roster?

    The way I see it: Petry / J. Schultz / N. Schultz > Gilbert / Petry / replacement level defenseman.

    And if the Oilers can get around for getting that additional veteran top-4 guy we’ve needed for 3+ years, then it’s an even bigger win.

  27. "Steve Smith" says:

    russ99: Gilbert (despite middling numbers for a supposed offensive defenseman),

    He is only supposed to be an “offensive defenseman” by his detractors. The rest of us suppose him to be an all-around defenceman, with better defensive chops than the Nick Schultz of 2011-2012 (and competitive with the Nick Schultz of old).

    I think a lot of people are subconsciously using logic like this:
    1. Tom Gilbert gets a fairly high number of points for a defenseman, which makes him an offensive defenseman.
    2. Nick Schultz gets very few points, which makes him a defensive defenseman.
    3. Defensive defensemen are better defensively than offensive defensemen, therefore Nick Schultz is better defensively than Tom Gilbert.

    It’s sort of like how in politics, anybody who’s boring is automatically considered to be cerebral.

    was playing well for a few months,

    Years.

    Jeff Petry had advanced enough with his play where they can replace Gilbert’s skills with Petry

    Petry hasn’t shown that he can play as well as Gilbert. He has shown, through a small sample size, that he can play very well, and he might reasonably be expected to improve. But we’re still relying on unknowns for a guy that young.

    but with better defensive play

    What basis could you possibly have for this claim?

    And as for Justin Schultz – do you think the Oilers could have promised him whatever playing time/ powerplay time they supposedly did

    Supposed by who? Schultz was emphatic that nothing was promised. He certainly could be lying, but absent evidence to the contrary I’m inclined to take his claims at face value.

  28. art vandelay says:

    The Oilers shouldn’t have traded Norris-trophy winning Tom Gilbert. He’s the missing piece to Cup 6. They could also use Jan Hejda, Kyle Brodziak, Curtis Glencross, Marty Reasoner and J Stoll.

  29. "Steve Smith" says:

    art vandelay,

    Hi Art!

  30. Traktor says:

    DSF: Using shots against is just as fraught with inaccuracy as is GA.

    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Then to use that stat to measure the progress of an individual player over several seasons ignores team personnel changes and quality of team mates.

    For example, you have indicated Shultz is showing signs of deterioration without reference to the performance of the entire team over the sam time frame.

    Minnesota’s SA/G for the same 5 years you cited:

    07/08 30.1

    08/09 30.7

    09/10 29.5

    10/11 32.0

    11/12 31.4

    It would appear that Schultz’s stats are tracking in unison with the TEAM stat so attributing any of that to him as an individual is a huge reach.

    If we look atthe Oilers numbers for the same period:

    07/08 31.4

    08/09 32.5

    09/10 33.1

    10/11 31.7

    11/12 30.7

    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    In both cases,the players did a little better than the team stat but I think it’s likely that Gilbert’s improvement is a function of playing with better team mates than he did earlier in his career while the opposite is true of Schultz.

    Best post in the thread. Just destroyed whatever WG was going on about.

    I hope you start posting more.. you’re one of the only reasons I even read the comment section. Just leave Vancouver out of the discussion.

  31. "Steve Smith" says:

    DSF: It would appear that Schultz’s stats are tracking in unison with the TEAM stat so attributing any of that to him as an individual is a huge reach.

    This is where RelCorsi comes in, because it removes team effects. Schultz’s RelCorsi last year stunk.

  32. Alpine says:

    art vandelay:
    The Oilers shouldn’t have traded Norris-trophy winning Tom Gilbert. He’s the missing piece to Cup 6. They could also use Jan Hejda, Kyle Brodziak, Curtis Glencross, Marty Reasoner and J Stoll.

    It’s funny because I would take the first three guys (Hejda, Brodziak, Glencross) back on the Oilers in a heartbeat.

  33. bookje says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    art vandelay,

    Hi Art!

    Oh my – How long is it until hockey season???

  34. DSF says:

    “Steve Smith”: This is where RelCorsi comes in, because it removes team effects.Schultz’s RelCorsi last year stunk.

    No. No it doesn’t.

    It attempts to but fails.

  35. LoDog says:

    DSF

    “Steve Smith”: This is where RelCorsi comes in, because it removes team effects.Schultz’s RelCorsi last year stunk.

    And Andy Sutton had a good RelCorsi, best on the team. But he is an overpaid bum the Oilers should not have resigned to that ridiculous contract.

  36. DSF says:

    knighttown:
    It’ll be very interesting to see if WG’s theory holds true.Since the goalies on both teams haven’t changed and goalies control ONSv%/60, Gilbert must outpace Shultz by 0.22 to cover the bet.Seem reasonable?

    All else being equal.

    But all else is not equal since Minnesota has upgraded their team significantly.

    It’s quite likely Gilbert plays with Suter and, with the changes Minny has made to their forward core, it’s quite likely their shots against will drop significantly.

    Chaos rules.

  37. godot10 says:

    The Oilers didn’t intend to re-sign Gilbert. (Or they were pretty sure he didn’t intend to re-sign in Edmonton.) Paying for his offense would be too expensive.

    In Nick Schultz, they get a similarly aged defenseman, a defensive D who they will be able to afford to re-sign, who plays textbook defensive D (Gilbert doesn’t, though he gets the job done).

    That textbook defensive D is extremely valuable when you are going to be breaking in one rookie D per year for several years. Hey rookie, look at how Nick Schultz does it. That is the way to do it.

    You can’t do that with Gilbert.

  38. Moosemess says:

    "Steve Smith": He is only supposed to be an “offensive defenseman” by his detractors.The rest of us suppose him to be an all-around defenceman, with better defensive chops than the Nick Schultz of 2011-2012 (and competitive with the Nick Schultz of old).

    I suspect the Oilers were expecting an offensive defenceman when they did this:

    http://oilersnation.com/2008/4/11/gilbert-signs-a-six-year-deal-with-the-oilers

  39. russ99 says:

    "Steve Smith": He is only supposed to be an “offensive defenseman” by his detractors.The rest of us suppose him to be an all-around defenceman, with better defensive chops than the Nick Schultz of 2011-2012 (and competitive with the Nick Schultz of old).

    I think a lot of people are subconsciously using logic like this:
    1. Tom Gilbert gets a fairly high number of points for a defenseman, which makes him an offensive defenseman.
    2. Nick Schultz gets very few points, which makes him a defensive defenseman.
    3. Defensive defensemen are better defensively than offensive defensemen, therefore Nick Schultz is better defensively than Tom Gilbert.

    Years.

    OK, Gilbert is a puck mover, not offensive defensman. Not much difference there, really…

    Guess you didn’t watch the 2010-11 season where Tom Gilbert treated every puck in his own zone like a hand grenade?

    Moving the puck out of the defensive end and making a good first pass can be replicated. That’s all he excelled at that season. Got caught cheating up way too often, couldn’t cover opposing forwards, coughed up the puck repeatedly – often in the crease, lost most board battles, etc. In the 20 or so Wild games a year I watch a season, I’ve rarely, if ever seen Schultz make those mistakes.

    And as for last season, yes, Gilbert improved after a rough first month, but I’d rather have the known defensive commodity that will make the plays in our end of the ice night in and out, than a guy who may have a good month, and may have a bad one, and is assured a top 4 spot out of necessity and perceived offensive acumen that isn’t backed up by numbers or overall quality of play.

    I’ve been railing on Gilbert for years, BTW – this isn’t something new. Nick Schultz is a better defensive player, period. Gilbert couldn’t carry a weaker partner, Schultz can. End of story.

  40. Moosemess says:

    Fascinating to read some of the quotes from Lowe now. On the basis of a single strong rookie season, he really thought he had the second coming of Larry Murphy with Gilbert.

    http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/sports/oilers/story.html?id=47c3b18b-1916-4663-a471-fec1f414eda5&k=99426

    Gotta think Oiler mgmt was highly motivated to dump that contract faux pas every season the team finished in the basement and Lowe’s prognostication abilities appeared less and less prescient.

    Like Horcoff, you can’t blame the player, but certainly players underperforming relative to their contract status has been a consistent theme during the cellar dwellar era.

  41. Woodguy says:

    DSF: Using shots against is just as fraught with inaccuracy as is GA.

    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Then to use that stat to measure the progress of an individual player over several seasons ignores team personnel changes and quality of team mates.

    For example, you have indicated Shultz is showing signs of deterioration without reference to the performance of the entire team over the sam time frame.

    Minnesota’s SA/G for the same 5 years you cited:

    07/08 30.1

    08/09 30.7

    09/10 29.5

    10/11 32.0

    11/12 31.4

    It would appear that Schultz’s stats are tracking in unison with the TEAM stat so attributing any of that to him as an individual is a huge reach.

    If we look atthe Oilers numbers for the same period:

    07/08 31.4

    08/09 32.5

    09/10 33.1

    10/11 31.7

    11/12 30.7

    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    In both cases,the players did a little better than the team stat but I think it’s likely that Gilbert’s improvement is a function of playing with better team mates than he did earlier in his career while the opposite is true of Schultz.

    This is a good, thoughtful, well balance post that stays on topic.

    Who are you and what did you do with DSF? :)

    I think the SA/60 is much, much, much more player controlled than GA/60.

    I agree with you that SA/60 is still a team metric, but like other shot metrics, is the best we have right now. Much more information that goal metrics.

    Let’s look at the difference between the overall team totals and the two individual totals for those years, as well as their most common partner:

    I looked at their Corsi QC and its basically the same for both players for each year, so its comparing apples to apples.

    Shultz
    07/08 -2.1 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    08/09 -1.5 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    09/10 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    10/11 -2.6 SA/60 compared to team – Brent Burns
    11/12 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Mareck Zidlicky

    Gilbert
    07/08 -2.3 SA/60 compared to team – Joni PItkainen
    08/09 -3.4 SA/60 compared to team – Denis Grebeshkov
    09/10 -4.9 SA/60 compared to team – Sheldon Souray
    10/11 -5.9 SA/60 compared to team – Theo Peckham
    11/12 -6.0 SA/60 compared to team – Ladi Smid

    I’m glad you pointed out the team metric. It shows Gilbert in an even more positive light.

    He keeps getting better every year and out performing the team average even though his most common team mate changes every year and he’s playing the toughest comp.


    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    Using the numbers you provided, Shultz remains somewhat steady, while Gilbert is significantly better.


    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Shots against for individual players have value in being a part of evaluation a player. Much, much , much more so than GA/60 as you are not relying on a goalie to have the same SV% behind each player.

  42. Woodguy says:

    Traktor,

    Just destroyed whatever WG was going on about.

    No, he actually built on it.

    I thought you were on an internet hiatus?

    Urge to come to LT’s and shit talk me too strong to deny?

  43. TheOtherJohn says:

    Gilbert has 2 more years to play on his contract. one year at $3.5m and the other at $3.0m. If the team was going gangbusters, he would have resigned here.

    Mosseness

    Do not think many believe N Schultz is a comparable player to T Gilbert. I may be wrong. Pittsburgh traded a similar type of player in Gologoski to Dallas for James Neal. We got N Schultz. I think there is a difference qualitatively.

  44. Woodguy says:

    rickithebear: LOL, me thinks emotion took over when you wrote this!

    I think what you mean is Dmen try to reduce the scoring potential of pucks directed at the net. Some are better at it than others.
    As reflected by the difference in Save% relative to a goalies mean.

    Oh wait it is luck! Bahahahahahahahahahahaha!

    No, just issues working and posting at the same time.

    I think what you mean is Dmen try to reduce the scoring potential of pucks directed at the net. Some are better at it than others.
    As reflected by the difference in Save% relative to a goalies mean.

    Read this: http://vhockey.blogspot.ca/2010/05/forest-v-trees.html

    Key bit from that link:

    The ability of defensemen to affect shot quality against does exist in the population, but it is so small that we will never be able to sensibly apply it to any player in particular. And a paradox is created, the type of defensemen who are helping the goalie save percentage a bit (presumably because they make fewer mistakes of the spectacularly bad variety) are, as a group, seeing slightly worse save percentages behind them, because they are the guys the coaches are leaning on to play tougher opposition. And the guys who have talent but are guilty of the occasional egregious error … as a group, they do a whisker better than average by 5v5 save percentage score. This is presumably because their coaches have the good sense not to play them much against Malkin, Kovalchuk and Heatley types.

  45. Moosemess says:

    TheOtherJohn:

    Do not think many believe N Schultz is a comparable player to T Gilbert. I may be wrong. Pittsburgh traded a similar type of player in Gologoski to Dallas for James Neal. We got N Schultz. I think there is a difference qualitatively.

    I think N Schultz is absolutely a better player defensively than Gilbert, but I also think it’s pretty much immaterial comparing the two. The better evaluation is the overall defensive core now vs at the time of the trade.

    The Oilers signed J Schultz whose offensive ceiling dwarfs Gilbert and added in N Schultz an excellent leader and stay at home defenseman who will add tremendous value as a mentor to the likes of Schultz jr, Klefbom, etc.

    Gilbert fanboys can rail away all they want on whether the Oiler brass knew when they traded him that they had a bird in the hand with J Schultz, but the fact of the matter is, the moves from trade out have worked out very well in terms of adding the right components to this team’s youth core. In time, Petry and J Schultz will both be significant offensive upgrades over Gilbert and N Schultz adds much needed defensive balance, stability and leadership to the team.

    And the unit’s in better shape capwise with nice value contracts for both Schultz’ and Petry. Not to mention Klefbom, Musil, Marincin and Gernat on the horizon.

    Now that’s progress. Nice work Tambi.

  46. Dipstick says:

    If I had to guess what precipitated the Gilbert – Schultz trade, I would say that Gilbert quietly let the Oil know that he wanted to be traded closer to home. I guess that since he did it the right way, they accommodated him. Otherwise, I would have to presume that the Oiler brain trust is sorely under equipped. RH two-way D are somewhat rarer than a LH who is competant and good in the room. I think that Gilbert was and will be somewhat more valuable than Schultz. Sometimes this sort of thing works in your favor (Smyth) and sometimes it doesn’t. That’s life.

  47. Woodguy says:

    knighttown: %/60, Gilbert must outpace Shultz by 0.22 to cover the bet.Seem reasonable?

    if DD plays 60 games at the same level as his last 32 (.920) in 11/12, that’s a significant upgrade for EDM.

    Oilers’ team SV% last year was .908 (19th in NHL)

    Be interesting to see if the spread stays near the same for sure.

  48. Woodguy says:

    DSF: No. No it doesn’t.

    It attempts to but fails.

    Explain why you think it fails.

  49. Traktor says:

    Woodguy:
    Traktor,

    Just destroyed whatever WG was going on about.

    I thought you were on an internet hiatus?

    Urge to come to LT’s and shit talk me too strong to deny?

    I’ve retired bro. Studying alternative medicine and got no time.

  50. JohnnyRocket says:

    There Gilbert trade made no sense unless 1) Gilbert asked for a trade and Tambellini had little leverage in getting a good return or 2) the Oiler’s pro scouting department are poor evaluators of talent or 3) the Oiler’s management team made a poor roster decision. I don’t see how the trade can be viewed any other way based both on the numbers and the “seen him good” crowd.

  51. "Steve Smith" says:

    Moosemess: I suspect the Oilers were expecting an offensive defenceman when they did this:

    http://oilersnation.com/2008/4/11/gilbert-signs-a-six-year-deal-with-the-oilers

    So what do you think they would have paid him if they realized that he was a complete defenseman?

    As for RelCorsi, I realized this afternoon that I misstated my case to some extent – RelCorsi doesn’t eliminate team effects, but it does substitute a different one: all else being equal, a player on a shitty team is going to have a deflated Corsi and an inflated RelCorsi (because he’s only being compared to his teammates, most of whom are shitty). Nick Schultz was a player on a shitty team, with a shitty RelCorsi.

  52. jb says:

    Woodguy:
    Shots against for individual players have value in being a part of evaluation a player. Much, much , much more so than GA/60 as you are not relying on a goalie to have the same SV% behind each player.

    Am I wrong in thinking SV% is just as much a team stat as shots against is? How I see it the whole reason a goalies SV% fluctuates behind different players is because some guys are simply better than other at defending, aka minimizing high quality scoring chances against.

    How does expecting goalies to have the same sv% behind various players help us evaluate players defensively? Doing so and just looking at shot data seems wrong to me, and pretty insignificant in the big picture..

    Two extreme scenarios, same forwards.

    Lundquist playing behind 6 Corey Cross’s
    Khabibulin playing behind 6 Chris Pronger’s

    If SV% is simply a measure of how good a goalie is, then you’d expect Lundquist to consistently post the better SV% here correct?

    I can tell you right now that Lundquist is going to see numerous breakaways and high quality chances against as Cross gets burned by his lack of speed.

    I can also tell you that Khabibulin will see roughly the same volume of shots per game, maybe +/- 10 in a game, but let’s be honest here, your very rarely going to get inside on Chris Pronger.

    Clearly Lundquist is the better goalie, no arguing that, but Khabibulin will appear to be the better goalie here.

    How much does shot volume really impact this scenario?
    I don’t know but shot data by itself seems pretty insignificant to me unless you can include the quality of the shot given up, or whether or not it actually impacted the game (goal)

  53. "Steve Smith" says:

    jb: Am I wrong in thinking SV% is just as much a team stat as shots against is? How I see it the whole reason a goalies SV% fluctuates behind different players is because some guys are simply better than other at defending, aka minimizing high quality scoring chances against.

    As Wood Guy pointed out earlier this thread, the evidence says otherwise.

    You cite extreme examples, and I think you’re probably right about what would take place in those cases. As I conceded to Traktor or DSF or somebody a few posts ago, if I played in the NHL I would have a consistently terrible PDO. But, among people who actually do play in the NHL, skater impact on SV% is negligible.

  54. "Steve Smith" says:

    Actually, let me take back part of that concession: I think you’re crazy if you think that six Chris Prongers would give up the same shot volume as six Corey Crosses. You qualified it by saying “maybe +/- 10 in a game”, which, given that it results in a variance of something on the order of 40%, makes your original claim largely meaningless.

  55. DSF says:

    Woodguy: This is a good, thoughtful, well balance post that stays on topic.

    Who are you and what did you do with DSF?

    I think the SA/60 is much, much, much more player controlled than GA/60.

    I agree with you that SA/60 is still a team metric, but like other shot metrics, is the best we have right now.Much more information that goal metrics.

    Let’s look at the difference between the overall team totalsand the two individual totals for those years, as well as their most common partner:

    I looked at their Corsi QC and its basically the same for both players for each year, so its comparing apples to apples.

    Shultz
    07/08 -2.1 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    08/09 -1.5 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    09/10 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    10/11 -2.6 SA/60 compared to team – Brent Burns
    11/12 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Mareck Zidlicky

    Gilbert
    07/08 -2.3 SA/60 compared to team – Joni PItkainen
    08/09 -3.4 SA/60 compared to team – Denis Grebeshkov
    09/10 -4.9 SA/60 compared to team – Sheldon Souray
    10/11 -5.9 SA/60 compared to team – Theo Peckham
    11/12 -6.0 SA/60 compared to team – Ladi Smid

    I’m glad you pointed out the team metric.It shows Gilbert in an even more positive light.

    He keeps getting better every year and out performing the team average even though his most common team mate changes every year and he’s playing the toughest comp.


    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    Using the numbers you provided, Shultz remains somewhat steady, while Gilbert is significantly better.


    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Shots against for individual players have value in being a part of evaluation a player. Much, much , much more so than GA/60 as you are not relying on a goalie to have the same SV% behind each player.

    Of course you’re comparing peaches and avocados when you attempt to use these stats to compare players on different teams with a huge number of variables that change from season to season.

    This stuff has more noise than recess at kindergarten in the Everglades.

    Saying “it’s the best we have” is like saying Khabibulin is the best available goaltender.

  56. DSF says:

    Woodguy: Explain why you think it fails.

    Way too many variables…on every shift…in every game…in every season.

  57. DSF says:

    “Steve Smith”: So what do you think they would have paid him if they realized that he was a complete defenseman?

    As for RelCorsi, I realized this afternoon that I misstated my case to some extent – RelCorsi doesn’t eliminate team effects, but it does substitute a different one: all else being equal, a player on a shitty team is going to have a deflated Corsi and an inflated RelCorsi (because he’s only being compared to his teammates, most of whom are shitty).Nick Schultz was a player on a shitty team, with a shitty RelCorsi.

    Now there’s a surprise!

    Want to bet Gilbert has a big jump in RelCorsi this upcoming season?

    I’d postulate it’s not because Gilbert has become a much better player in the offseason.

  58. Jamie says:

    Woodguy: This is a good, thoughtful, well balance post that stays on topic.

    Who are you and what did you do with DSF?

    I think the SA/60 is much, much, much more player controlled than GA/60.

    I agree with you that SA/60 is still a team metric, but like other shot metrics, is the best we have right now.Much more information that goal metrics.

    Let’s look at the difference between the overall team totalsand the two individual totals for those years, as well as their most common partner:

    I looked at their Corsi QC and its basically the same for both players for each year, so its comparing apples to apples.

    Shultz
    07/08 -2.1 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    08/09 -1.5 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    09/10 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Kim Johnsson
    10/11 -2.6 SA/60 compared to team – Brent Burns
    11/12 -1.3 SA/60 compared to team – Mareck Zidlicky

    Gilbert
    07/08 -2.3 SA/60 compared to team – Joni PItkainen
    08/09 -3.4 SA/60 compared to team – Denis Grebeshkov
    09/10 -4.9 SA/60 compared to team – Sheldon Souray
    10/11 -5.9 SA/60 compared to team – Theo Peckham
    11/12 -6.0 SA/60 compared to team – Ladi Smid

    I’m glad you pointed out the team metric.It shows Gilbert in an even more positive light.

    He keeps getting better every year and out performing the team average even though his most common team mate changes every year and he’s playing the toughest comp.


    Like Schultz, Gilbert’s numbers closely track the team numbers.

    Using the numbers you provided, Shultz remains somewhat steady, while Gilbert is significantly better.


    I think we can agree that SA/G is a team stat so, right off the hop, I can’t see how you would use it as a measure of an individual player.

    Shots against for individual players have value in being a part of evaluation a player. Much, much , much more so than GA/60 as you are not relying on a goalie to have the same SV% behind each player.

    Won’t zone starts play a major factor in this comparison? Not sure that is a balanced comparison if one guy (and I haven’t looked at theirs) is pushing the rock further up the hill?

  59. DSF says:

    Jamie: Won’t zone starts play a major factor in this comparison?Not sure that is a balanced comparison if one guy (and I haven’t looked at theirs) is pushing the rock further up the hill?

    There are a huge number of variables beyond zone start.

    I was just looking at shot differential and comparing it to success in the standings.

    The Canucks finished first in the overall standings despite being 11th in shot differential.

    The Jets had a shot differential of 0.0 and finished 22nd overall.

    Predicting success or failure based on shots is a waste of time.

  60. "Steve Smith" says:

    Jamie: Won’t zone starts play a major factor in this comparison?

    Definitely. This is why RelCorsi and ZoneStart (and QualComp) are almost always mentioned hand-in-hand (such as with the Sledgehammer graphs, for example).

  61. Woodguy says:

    DSF: Way too many variables…on every shift…in every game…in every season.

    You’re discounting the correlations that people are finding in the data.

    Its the process of teasing out useful information.

    Tons of noise, but the process is working. Some better than others.

  62. Woodguy says:

    Jamie: Won’t zone starts play a major factor in this comparison?Not sure that is a balanced comparison if one guy (and I haven’t looked at theirs) is pushing the rock further up the hill?

    Yup. I shouldn’t have left it out, it paints a different picture for Shultz for sure:

    07/08 Shultz 36.7 Gilbert 48.1
    08/09 Shultz 26.5 Gilbert 48.2
    07/08 Shultz 43.8 Gilbert 49.6
    07/08 Shultz 41.6 Gilbert 51.4
    07/08 Shultz 43.8 Gilbert 47.8

    Shultz was given the Sisyphusian rock to push up the hill in 07/08-08/09 for sure. Him still having a positive SA/60 vs. team average those years is quite awesome, but it was 4-5 years ago.

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