A TRIP TO REASONABLE (FWDS 2014-15 PROJECTED)

I’ve projected the Oilers’ forwards to score 22 more goals season over season—an impressive total but I think they’re capable based on three things. First, the maturation of Taylor Hall and the cluster kids. Nail Yakupov and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins should have recovery seasons, aiding that young cluster in a big way offensively. Second, the new arrivals have some real NHL ability—Pouliot, Purcell and even Leon Draisaitl should help the offense. Finally, I’m projecting Craig Ramsay’s offense to be far superior to the previous admin.

RE 14-15 FORWARDS

NAME GP G A PTS
TAYLOR HALL 73 33 50 83
JORDAN EBERLE 80 30 38 68
RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS 82 24 44 68
DAVID PERRON 72 23 29 52
NAIL YAKUPOV 72 21 21 42
TEDDY PURCELL 80 11 28 39
LEON DRAISAITL-rookie 66 12 22 34
BENOIT POULIOT 74 14 18 32
MARK ARCOBELLO 62 7 20 27
BOYD GORDON 72 5 15 20
ANTON LANDER 50 4 6 10
TYLER PITLICK-rookie 45 3 7 10
MATT HENDRICKS 51 3 6 9
JESSE JOENSUU 23 2 4 6
LUKE GAZDIC 48 1 3 4
WILL ACTON 12 0 2 2
STEVE PINIZZOTTO 10 0 2 2
IIRO PAKARINEN-rookie 7 0 1 1
BOGDAN YAKIMOV-rookie 2 0 0 0
MITCHELL MOROZ-rookie 1 0 0 0
ANDREW MILLER-rookie 1 0 0 0
RE TOTAL FOR 2014-15 983 193 316 509
LAST YEAR’S ACTUAL TOTALS 972 171 267 438

The offense ends after Arcobello, I don’t think Edmonton is going to have three scoring lines this season. The top line (Hall-Nuge-Eberle) projects to score 87 goals, 45% of the forward group’s entire total. This compares with last season, when that trio scored 43% of the total goals by Edmonton’s forwards.

Other items:

  • The Draisaitl number reflects just how unsure we should be about him. The Nuge scored 52 points in 62 games as a rookie. However, he had a wider range of skills and was an expert skater. The Draisaitl is a completely different item. We’ll see. Big risk by the GM, I cannot understand the depth chart at center heading into such an important season.
  • I badly missed on Nuge and Yak a year ago, and tempered my projection on Yakupov. In regard to Nugent-Hopkins, I decided his ability warranted this number and hope he can cover it. Nugent-Hopkins is central to the script in 2014-15.
  • If even one of these kids trying to make it (Lander, Pitlick, others) that’s  a big damn deal. Value contracts are missing from the $1M range for this team.

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47 Responses to "A TRIP TO REASONABLE (FWDS 2014-15 PROJECTED)"

  1. D says:

    Would love to see these guys break 200 goals this year.

  2. Bar_Qu says:

    22 goal improvement is good. Decreasing the goals against is more important.

    I am looking forward to the D and G for your predictions on that. Because honestly it wasn’t the goals scored by the Forwards last season that sunk the team.

    Great job on the RE series so far!

  3. TheOtherJohn says:

    +22 goals would be great. Think Nuge with an off season to workout will be huge. Do not think anyone else will pick up appreciably but 3-4 guys picking up 2-3-4 goals can add up to 22.

    An awful lot of expectations placed on Craig Ramsay. Thinks a smart hockey man but…..we’re asking a lot from him. Unfairly?

    With no top pairing, 2C & unproven starting goaltending this team could see a nice start and competing into February or ……not. Asking all the D to play above their competency and if neither Fasth or Scrivens show they’re capable of being a true #1 this could be another long season.

    Hope both Nirse & Draisatl play 60+ games in the CHL expect I’ll be wrong on at least 1 of them

  4. Numenius says:

    I love that 83 pts in 73 gms really is Hall’s reasonable.

    You can’t say that about Kane and Toews. (edit: though their GA are better, esp. Toews)

    Hall’s contract will be massive once this one’s over.

  5. nycoil says:

    Thanks as always for your efforts, LT.
    Interesting you see the first line scoring so much and the rest not so much.

    From this post:
    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2014/07/opening-night-2014-15.html/comment-page-1#comment-327991
    I think the top line will score 80 goals (30-20-30)
    I think the 2nd line as you have constructed it will score 55 goals. (25-15-15) This is Perron, Draisaitl, Purcell
    The 3rd line you have above will score 45 goals (15-10-20) Pouliot, Arco, Yak.
    The 4th line plus spares will score 20 goals (5-7-5 / 3-2) Hendicks, Gordon, Lander + 5 from the odd fill-in/call-up

    200 total

  6. leadfarmer says:

    That hole in center is still there and MacT is channeling his inner Tambellini. If Nuge or Gordon go down with injury, which neither has been entirely healthy in their career, this is a lottery year. Its going to be hard for players to score with an AHLer or The BeLander triangle centering those high power wingers.

  7. LadiesloveSmid says:

    22 goals which is about 4 more wins I think. Pair that with some average goaltending and EDM can jump back up to 24th!

  8. justDOit says:

    You’re a brave man, LT. Trying to project how many goals this inconsistent bunch will score (shut out 10 times last year) is a fool’s game. With an improved back-end, better depth wingers, and a Ramsay influence that can get the puck to the forwards in a position to do something with it, well – anything is possible.

    Damn. Shut out in over 12% of the games last season. I may not know much about stats, but that’s a bad one.

  9. Hammers says:

    What you have shown is reasonable BUT if they want to at least be in the game come March / April they need more goals so I’m guessing / hoping the “D” gives us 5-10 more goals over last years totals . The only other place they may come from is Leon & Yak . I had 90 for the 1st line and 64 from Leon , Yak & Pouliot . Maybe wishful thinking by me . I have forgotten last year and only look forward . I don’t see goals from most of the bottom dozen but I do see 55 from Perron , Arco & Purcell .So much will be dependent on how they run there lines 3 plus 1 with the crappy part of the game or does Gordon go 3rd with say Pouliot & Purcell . So hard to predict both Eakins & Ramsay’s new PP.

  10. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Just curious again about this Hendricks number. Any guess on what he would fetch if traded?

    Are you envisioning a 4th rounder at the deadline kind of thing?

  11. Lowetide says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Just curious again about this Hendricks number. Any guess on what he would fetch if traded?

    Are you envisioning a 4th rounder at the deadline kind of thing?

    I envision money becoming an issue, and yes that seems about right.

  12. Ryan says:

    Lost in many of these RE posts is the fact that LT is the closest thing we have to fucking Nostradamus in the Oiligosphere. Some of your predictions are so ridiculously good, it’s hard to believe. :)

    Great work!!!

  13. Ryan says:

    Lowetide: I envision money becoming an issue, and yes that seems about right.

    Who else do you think we’ll be selling at the deadline?

  14. Ryan says:

    justDOit,

    I think he’ s a brave man predicting 50-4-6-10 for lander.

    That’s a big hop from 27-0-1-1

  15. robertosanchezzz says:

    Love the RE series and thing its very “R”. Only thing I will say is I expect one of Pouliot or Purcell to have a much better year then you’re expecting. One of these vets is gonna click with one of the young cluster and make magic. I can feel it. Hoping it’s Pouliot as he still has the skills to be a 50-60 point guy easy. I see Purcell being a solid 40-50 point guy. And Yakcity is the complete wildcard. 30 points? Mayyybe. 30 goals? If not this year then next.

    Also love the D moves this year. Good luck with that RE. Dang near impossible. Shultzy, 25 point or 55? Nikitin, 15 points or 40? And finally Petry… I think he may break out big time under Ramsey.

    Good read as always Lowes. Thank you muchly.

  16. robertosanchezzz says:

    p,s, What say you about a new series or two. Best case/worst case? Not player by player but maybe a blog each? I know I’d enjoy reading/pondering that jazz

  17. jp says:

    leadfarmer:
    That hole in center is still there and MacT is channeling his inner Tambellini.If Nuge or Gordon go down with injury, which neither has been entirely healthy in their career, this is a lottery year.Its going to be hard for players to score with an AHLer or The BeLander triangle centering those high power wingers.

    Not saying it’s a probability, but wouldn’t it be spectacular if Arcobello and Draisaitl played well enough to make the 3 scoring lines a reality? It really could happen – wouldn’t be crazy at all.

    TheOtherJohn:
    +22 goals would be great. Think Nuge with an off season to workout will be huge. Do not think anyone else will pick up appreciably but 3-4 guys picking up 2-3-4 goals can add up to 22.

    You really think Yakupov is a complete bust? Like not even an NHL player? Projecting him for +10 goals is damn close to a no brainer, at least IMO.

  18. Numenius says:

    Ryan:
    justDOit,

    I think he’ s a brave man predicting 50-4-6-10 for lander.

    That’s a big hop from 27-0-1-1

    If Lander channels his inner Gordon, and I think he might, he’ll get way more than that.

    Gordon went 25-0-1-1 in his second NHL audition (comparable to Lander’s) and then blossomed to 71-7-22-29 in his third.

    Gives one hope at least.

    http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=50642

  19. Gerta Rauss says:

    Ryan: Who else do you think we’ll be selling at the deadline?

    Petry, I’m afraid. I’m hoping they can get something done in January and it doesn’t come down to a staring contest.

    I’m hoping we’re buying at the deadline, not selling.

  20. VanOil says:

    Tremendous work LT.

    The conclusions not reasonable. It is not even close too reasonable. They are likely spot on but that does not make it any better.

    This group of Forwards is unlikely to be good enough secure a playoff spot, even if the defense and goal tending sections improve all the way to average. Sure they will be better but that is like a suspected case of Ebola improving to Leprosy.

    Florida’s all time playoff futility record is in serious jeopardy. But they were a expansion team playing in a City where the average person has only ever seen ice in a Mojito, not that there is anything wrong with that. For the once mighty, then consistently scrappy, Edmonton Oilers to be threatening this record is the furthest thing from reasonable.

  21. jp says:

    Numenius: If Lander channels his inner Gordon, and I think he might, he’ll get way more than that.

    Gordon went 25-0-1-1 in his second NHL audition (comparable to Lander’s) and then blossomed to 71-7-22-29 in his third.

    Gives one hope at least.

    http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=50642

    There’s also his NHLE of 82-14-27-41. He won’t reach that, but he’s a rather good bet to improve considerably on 27-0-1-1.

    Plus he had a 3.57% on ice shooting % and a 943 PDO, 10th and 8th worst in the NHL among forwards with >20GP.

    Our man also had a positive CorsiRel with 39.5% OZone starts. He’s got more to give, and I hope the Oilers are the ones to get it out of him. I think he wins the spot next to Gordon and Hendricks (assuming that shutdown line materializes).

  22. sliderule says:

    If the defence get the oil 25 goals like last year that brings them up to 218 goals total.

    All the playoff teams last year had a positive goal deferential.

    There is no way the oilers will get their goals against down to under 230 so we will be right in McDavid Eichel sweepstakes.

    Depressing.

  23. Numenius says:

    sliderule:
    If the defence getthe oil 25 goals like last year that brings them up to 218 goals total.

    All the playoff teams last year had a positive goal deferential.

    Thereis no way the oilers will get their goals against down to under 230 so we will be right in McDavid Eichel sweepstakes.

    Depressing.

    Being in the sweepstakes is one thing, and not depressing if they’re just out of the playoffs.

    If they’re bottom 5? That’d be depressing.

  24. Hammers says:

    On reviewing again I notice you have Hendricks playing in 51 Lander in 50 while Gazdic & Pitlick get 48 & 45 respectively . I’m trying to determine how this happens . Without a trade for a center you have Leon missing 16 and Arco 20 while Gordon misses 10 . That’s 46 games . Lander covers the bet on injuries or benching for the “C” position. I may be wrong but I thought with Eakins saying Lander had to be prepared to play all 3 forward positions he would get more games. It takes Joensuu games to cover the 2 – 4th line wingers games assuming there the ones trading of that lines games . Hell maybe i’m just trying to get Lander more games .

  25. jp says:

    sliderule:
    If the defence getthe oil 25 goals like last year that brings them up to 218 goals total.

    All the playoff teams last year had a positive goal deferential.

    Thereis no way the oilers will get their goals against down to under 230 so we will be right in McDavid Eichel sweepstakes.

    Depressing.

    You mean in the West? Detroit made it in the East at -8 GF/GA.

    Also, a league average (or at least league median) save percentage of .913 instantly cuts off 32 GA (Scrivens and Fasth were at .916 and .914 with the Oilers last season). That would bring the Oil within spitting distance of 230 GA.

    Factor in what I believe is an undeniably improved D corps and some new assistant coaches, and an even goal differential is at least plausible. Philly and Detroit made the playoffs in the East this year with +1 and -8 goal differentials, while Dallas and Minnesota made it in the West with +1 and +7. It’s not all doom and gloom despite most likely still being in the McDavid sweepstakes. Lighten up.

  26. jp says:

    Hammers:
    On reviewing again I notice you have Hendricks playing in 51 Lander in 50 while Gazdic & Pitlick get 48 & 45 respectively . I’m trying to determine how this happens . Without a trade for a center you have Leon missing 16 and Arco 20 while Gordon misses 10 . That’s 46 games .Lander covers the bet on injuries or benching for the “C” position. I may be wrong but I thought with Eakins saying Lander had to be prepared to play all 3 forward positions he would get more games. It takes Joensuu games to cover the 2 – 4th line wingersgames assuming there the ones trading of that lines games .Hell maybe i’m just trying to get Lander more games .

    Acton and Yakimov also play a combined 14 games.

    Agree with getting Lander more games though.

  27. Deadman Waiting says:

    Reasonable: sweet spot the size of pink grapefruit.

    I mean the target, not the club (or the chub).

  28. sliderule says:

    jp: You mean in the West? Detroit made it in the East at -8 GF/GA.

    Also, a league average (or at least league median) save percentage of .913 instantly cuts off 32 GA (Scrivens and Fasth were at .916 and .914 with the Oilers last season). That would bring the Oil within spitting distance of 230 GA.

    Factor in what I believe is an undeniably improved D corps and some new assistant coaches, and an even goal differential is at least plausible. Philly and Detroit made the playoffs in the East this year with +1 and -8 goal differentials, while Dallas and Minnesota made it in the West with +1 and +7. It’s not all doom and gloom despite most likely still being in the McDavid sweepstakes. Lighten up.

    You are right it was only in west but Detroit was an anomaly as when they had their full lineup they were tough.Key injuries cost them.

    I don’t see any way the oil can get their GA under 230 .It will probably be closer to 240.

    The coach may want them to play defence but they are not built that way.

    If they want to be in playoff hunt they have to do a Colorado and score a bunch more.I would say there is a better chance of that happening than them becoming a shutdown team.

  29. Henry says:

    Sliderule, Numenius

    I think there is a very real danger that one of those guys will be playing in Calgary for about 12 years.

  30. jp says:

    sliderule:

    I don’t see any way the oil can get their GA under 230 .It will probably be closer to 240.

    You may well be right, but a league average SV% gets them to ~235 GA. It wouldn’t take much tweaking on top of that to get under 230. I’m not saying it will happen, but it certainly could.

  31. thejonrmcleod says:

    Wow! It looks like Tyler Dellow might have been hired by the Oilers.

  32. PerryK says:

    Off topic (sorry!).

    One of our favourites, just landed a job with an NHL team (oilers?). BobMcKenzie tweeted:

    Summer (Year?) Of Hockey Analytics (#fancystats) continues: Tyler Dellow (aka @mc79hockey) leaving blogging world to work for an NHL club.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) August 5, 2014

    I guess MC79.com is off line as well!

    Update: More BM:

    Dellow's site (http://t.co/O9pBqDyov8) ceased to be operational/accessible overnight. Dellow's landing spot believed to be EDM. #fancystats— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) August 5, 2014

  33. jp says:

    thejonrmcleod:
    Wow! It looks like Tyler Dellow might have been hired by the Oilers.

    Incredible!! Hall’s corsi will be fixed. Improved zone entries. 3 scoring lines. Unicorns.

    I suppose I’m going off the deep end a bit, but this is good!

  34. russ99 says:

    thejonrmcleod,

    Wow. That’s awesome if it’s the Oilers.

    Gonna miss his insight.

  35. Ryan says:

    thejonrmcleod:
    Wow! It looks like Tyler Dellow might have been hired by the Oilers.

    Wow is right! Hope you’re not joking.

    Source?

  36. Pouzar says:

    I hope this true regarding Tyler D.

    I think he does a great job of articulating these advanced stat concepts and comes off as non-threatening while doing it. Very cool if true.

  37. dtk says:

    Ryan,

    Bob McKenzie @TSNBobMcKenzie · 36m

    Summer (Year?) Of Hockey Analytics (#fancystats) continues: Tyler Dellow (aka @mc79hockey) leaving blogging world to work for an NHL club.

    Bob McKenzie @TSNBobMcKenzie · 30m

    Dellow’s site (http://www.mc79hockey.com ) ceased to be operational/accessible overnight. Dellow’s landing spot believed to be EDM. #fancystats

  38. wheatnoil says:

    Congratulations to @mc79hockey. Another NHL team makes a smart analytics hire.— Scott Cullen (@tsnscottcullen) August 5, 2014

  39. wheatnoil says:

    Good for Tyler Dellow! I’ve only really tuned in to the Oilers blogosphere in the last few years, but Dellow has consistently put out among the most interesting work. There was some evidence last year that the Oilers were reading his blog (MacT’s comments on Dubnyk early in the year, the abrupt change in Hall’s usage).

    I wonder if we’ll get any info on exactly what his role will be and whether it’ll be interacting with coaching strategies, scouting, trades or all of the above.

    Edit: We know Dallas Eakins is open to analytics… I have a feeling he’d be really open to Dellow’s input. I know the narrative around here sometimes is that Eakins is a rigid, arrogant prick… and he certainly comes across that way at times, but I also think there’s evidence that he wants to improve and is open to seeking out advice and feedback from others when it makes sense.

  40. Pouzar says:

    Wow!

    So cool.

    I wonder if he will continue his spot with Stauffer…doubt it but very cool.

  41. Pouzar says:

    So the “Steve Simmons to the Maple Leafs” hire should only be a matter of time?

  42. wheatnoil says:

    Pouzar:
    So the “Steve Simmons to the Maple Leafs” hire should only be a matter of time?

    It’ll be vetoed by Dubas.

  43. Pouzar says:

    wheatnoil,

    Good thing that Simmons ambush on the radio didn’t cost TD a job :P

  44. wheatnoil says:

    Pouzar,

    Come on ‘Steve Simmons to the Flames’! (crosses fingers)

  45. Ducey says:

    wheatnoil: Pouzar, Come on ‘Steve Simmons to the Flames’! (crosses fingers)

    Come on man! We all know Burkie doesn’t need any help – (except with tying his tie and combing his hair)

    Truculence and bluster will conquer all.

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