JOE THE LION

by Lowetide

No matter the AAV or the length of his next contract, the Edmonton Oilers are going to need big production from Leon Draisaitl. One of the things we’re all wondering about (aside from the cap number) is what the big forward can do with a line of his own. Can you push the river, Leon?

DRAISAITL 2015-16 WOWY TAYLOR HALL

  • At 5×5, Leon Draisaitl scored 2.32/60 alongside Taylor Hall in 2015-16.
  • At 5×5, Leon Draisaitl scored 1.13/60 without Taylor Hall in 2015-16.
  • Source

This is a little unfair, Draisaitl played just 160 minutes without Hall during the 2015-16 season. Draisaitl and Hall had real chem, although a long cool run later in the season caved their overall totals together. Still, a very successful first full season for LD.

DRAISAITL 2016-17 WOWY CONNOR MCDAVID

  • At 5×5, Leon scored 2.23/60 alongside Connor McDavid in 2016-17.
  • At 5×5, Leon scored 1.79/60 without Connor McDavid in 2016-17.
  • Source

Crazy as it looks, Draisaitl had slightly better offensive numbers with Hall in 2015-16 than with 97 this past season. Why does this matter? Doesn’t really, but in doing the RE for the coming season I’m trying to handicap Leon’s minutes. If we give him the same number of power-play and PK points as a year ago, and run him solo center, what is the general area of reasonable for Leon sans McDavid in 2017-18?

  • Draisaitl 5×5: 82, 13-22-35
  • Draisaitl PP: 82, 10-17-27
  • Draisaitl PK: 82, 0-0-0
  • Draisaitl: 82, 23-39-62

That’s fine production for a 2line C (would have ranked No. 15 among C’s a year ago) and if he can win the possession battle with (say) Milan Lucic and Anton Slepyshev, Edmonton should consider that a raging success. Question: Is that good enough for $8 million times eight years? Or do you stick him with McDavid and push for 85 points?

Bigger question: If you run McDavid and Leon together, and Nuge has a successful year on the 2line, is there a way  to move heaven and hell in the NHL to keep RNH past 2017-18?

50-MAN LIST

  • There is room for two more contracts, but I think the Oilers might be done.
  • The Jokinen signing gives clarity and structure to the forward group.
  • Jesse Puljujarvi would have to play poorly in pre-season in order to avoid a feature role.
  • There are two spots in the top 9F for three youngsters: Puljujarvi, Anton Slepyshev and Drake Caggiula. JP is going to get an enormous push, who wins the other job?
  • Slepyshev and Caggiula can be sent down. I don’t think that will be a factor, but if push comes to shove, something to keep in mind.
  • I have Jujhar Khaira on the roster as forward No. 13, for me the battle for the final spot comes down to Pakarinen versus Malone versus going with 8D (speeds has been mentioning that possibility on twitter).
  • My dark horse F for opening night? Joe Gambardella. Forechecks like a demon, creates offense from those exchanges 150 feet from his net. Ryan Lambert raved about just this thing, we talked about it when he signed.
  • The signing of Auvitu had a similar impact to Jokinen’s signing on the defense. Ideally, he passes Ryan Stanton, Mark Fayne and Eric Gryba on the depth chart and becomes an everyday player. His outlet passes alone could add to the offense and on this roster he is a lock for some power-play time.
  • We’ll chat about pairings as the summer rolls, but for me keeping Klefbom with Larsson has so much appeal. You need a pairing to count on.

Photo by Rob Ferguson

PETRY, CHORNEY AND WILD

Do you remember our long conversations about these three college defenders back in the day? Cody Wild may well have been the most talented offensively, but too much chaos without the puck limited his progress. Taylor Chorney was too small to play a feature role and arrived in Edmonton during a time of addling, so took the long route to the NHL  (now at 141 games). Jeff Petry was the winning lottery number of the trio, he blossomed into a solid NHL player (now at 445 games).

I wrote about four new hires for the AHL team (Ethan Bear, Caleb Jones, Ziyat Paigin, Ryan Mantha) over at ON last night, this is going to be a very interesting follow for the coming year. There aren’t going to be enough at-bats for all four men, meaning someone is going to sit and possibly see time in the ECHL (Wichita!).

NHLE’S (DEFENSE)

These defensemen are going to have lots of time to make the adjustment to AHL play, makes me wonder which of them will push for NHL time first. No hurry, which makes the current experiment far different than the college trio of years ago.

https://twitter.com/FriedgeHNIC/status/885122851254259712

His spike in goal-scoring in the AHL is an underrated portion of the Oilers season (prospects division). From Boxing Day forward, he went 43gp, 18-13-31. Moved to wing from defense and kick-started his career.

In looking at Laleggia’s progression, I’m reminded of just how difficult it can be to track college men. Each spring I do a “Farm Workers” post and mention this area of procurement:

  • Exceptions are college menPlaying 4 NCAA seasons means turning pro at 22, meaning a “late start” for some quality prospectsCondors 2016-17Yeah, this remains for sure. Drake Caggiula skipped the AHL so far, and Matt Benning played just two AHL games. Nick Ellis is also in this conversation, and I think Jordan Oesterle will have an NHL career, although I doubt it will be with the Oilers. Joey Laleggia is also in this category, with the added delay of playing a different position. Source

College players are such a different group, they deserve their own category. Rob Vollman has done some impressive work on NHLE’s, but one of the main areas of innovation was applying different numbers for various NCAA divisions. Playing in the NCHC is far different than playing in another division. Which brings us back to Gambardella.

NHLE’S (FORWARDS)

I don’t know that Joe Gambardella takes training camp by storm and  pushes his way into the conversation, but the things we track with math are speaking volumes about this player. Drake Caggiula’s NHLE (44) a year ago isn’t far removed from Gambardella’s season run through the Vollman NHLE.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

The wide world of sports this morning at 10, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Luke Wileman, TSN. The emerging story that is the Canadian men’s soccer team.
  • Dave Dawson, Onside CFL Fantasy. We’ll talk about value players and who you should choose at quarterback this week.
  • Rob Vollman, ESPN and NHL.com. Rob tweeted out yesterday “you could pay McDavid in the $20M/yr range (if it were permitted by the CBA), and it still projects to a positive value contract” and we’ll talk about that and Leon’s contract.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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who

Woodguy v2.0: Good thing I didn’t compare Drai to Brown then.

I brought up Brown in a conversation with Vor about whether or not zooming exists.

You also said:

This is why it is dangerous to just use stats to try and predict a players future performance.

What does this mean?

That what someone does in the past has no indication of the future?

That goals and assists are now “stats” when they are used in a way that you don’t agree with?

Confusing statement.

If you can’t use history to try to predict the future, what exactly do you use?

It seemed to me that you were using Mario zooming Brown as a comparable to Connor zooming Drai. That’s the way I read it.
And yes you can use history to predict future performance but the trick is to use similar players and you still can’t account for potential injury. Comparing the zoomed stats of hockey players like Brown to Drai is kind of like comparing the prices of apples and oranges in the grocery store. They are both fruits but that is where the similarity ends.

Woodguy v2.0

VOR,

Not sure what any of them tell us about Leon – he might bust like Brown – he might thrive like Stevens and lose it all to injury – he might be a good player struggling against chronic injuries like Simpson – the only three guys that really completely fit the Draisaitl profile. I don’t see any predictive power in the simple fact a guy played with Lemieux in terms of the next eight years of their career.
Hopefully you can see this makes my case for me – inconsistent zooming by arguably the second best player the game has ever seen – zooming telling us nothing about the future – injury is predictive – zooming not predictive. Pig’s ears not the common pattern. Nobody close to that status turned into a silk purse.

I appreciate the complete response Vor. Conversing and disagreeing with you is always fun and informative.

I think we agree on most salient points.

1) Zooming exists
2) In order to be zoomed to a high end a high end skill set needs to exist

I also agree that predicting long term is very tough.

I also agree that Leon may equal his Hall and McDavid rates without either, but , like 99% of players, will still need good help on his wings.

That help doesn’t exist today, so its probably best to project Leon somewhere between his 1.80 w/o 97 and 2.32 w/ 97 from last year.

If Lucic comes in regains his BOS/LAK form and his RW takes a step up it could be good.

If Lucic repeats his 5v5 16/17 season and no good scoring RW emerges for that line it could be bad.

Then we also need to add in the fact that Leon won’t be playing 3rd line QoC away from 97 this year but a 1/2 QoC it adds in even more variability.

Woodguy v2.0

who: This is why it is dangerous to just use stats to try and predict a players future performance. I really don’t remember much about Blair MacDonald but I do remember Rob Brown. Comparing him to Drai is quite a reach.
Rob Brown was a subpar skater with a good pair of hands, who was smart enough to go stand beside the net and wait for Mario to feed him. Maroon would be a good comparable.
Drai is a totally different animal with a much bigger skill set. Watching a few oiler games this past year should visually confirm this for any serious hockey fan.
I don’t know how to predict what his numbers will be for the next 10 years but this is a special player with a very unique skill set. I don’t think signing him for 8 x 8 is a very big risk.

Good thing I didn’t compare Drai to Brown then.

I brought up Brown in a conversation with Vor about whether or not zooming exists.

You also said:

This is why it is dangerous to just use stats to try and predict a players future performance.

What does this mean?

That what someone does in the past has no indication of the future?

That goals and assists are now “stats” when they are used in a way that you don’t agree with?

Confusing statement.

If you can’t use history to try to predict the future, what exactly do you use?

GMB3

N64: When coach was asked after the Sharks series why he lost the line matching battle, he gloated that he actually *preferred* the matchup the Sharks wanted.

Perhapscoach and Russ99 are talking about Nuges in parallel universes. A nasty Nuge slipped out of a transporter somewhere and delivered the coach’s plan.

Oiler fans sometimes deserve what they ask for.

Russ can verify that Drake Caggiula’s stick flex is off, and that Todd Mclellan doesn’t think RNH fits into Into his system. This is who he is, and what he posts on the daily. This is who he is and what he posts everyday.

Need that big cycle game to beat the best teams in the west! Not speed and cerebral players (it really sunk Pittsburgh in the playoffs last couple of years)

VOR

Woodguy,

Actually examining Lemieux’s ability to zoom people is a great way to see the points I am trying to make.

The list of guys who played with Lemieux either as a key part of PP1 or as his regular wingers is long indeed:

Warren Young – a fine career minor league player who was tough as nails Young apparently could really shoot the puck. Shooting thirty percent he scored 40 goals with Lemieux – didn’t qualify for my database because of age and short career but definitely zoomed. Pigs ears can’t shoot 30%.

Doug Shedden – a center who for two years played on PP1 and some wing with Lemieux. He had a 67 point season before Lemieux and 66 points in 67 games after and his best season with Mario zooming him was 67 points, Not a pig’s ear.

Terry Rutkowski – pugnacious little prick. Playing with Lemieux seemed to have no impact on his performance. Not a pig’s ear.

Randy Cunneyworth – another tough guy that Mario lifted to career heights. In four years together Cunneyworth had 45, 53, 74, and 44 points. Injury reduced his foot speed and his defence suffered and Pittsburgh traded him away. The one year is far beyond anything he will ever do again but as a third and fourth liner he will have 36 points twice for Ottawa and adjusted for minutes played that comes to right around 55 points during his minutes in Pittsburgh. So one zoomed year and the closest so far to a pig’s ear.

Craig Simpson – had 51 points in his 20 year old season playing with Lemieux for stretches and on the power play. Then he was traded and exceeded this level for 6 straight seasons before those back injuries killed his career. Definitely not a pig’s ear.

Rob Brown – great example of the weirdness of hockey. The last two years of junior he had 173 and 212 points. He goes to Pittsburgh and in 51 games he had 41 points mostly with Lemieux. Then the year Mario has 199 he jumps to 115 points. Then Mario falls to 123 points and Brown goes to 80 in 80 but Mario missed 21 of Brown’s games. Pittsburgh gets impatient and trades him to Hartford where he is nearly a point a game player. In other words it looks like 115 is zooming and 80 is probably not. Then Brown gets traded to Chicago and who knows what goes wrong but he ends up playing years in the minors racking up insane numbers before eventually returning to the NHL as a journeyman veteran presence. What I am saying is Brown had real talent not a pigs ear by any means.

Dan Quinn – a center, played for 4 years on PP1 with Mario. When Mario had 199 points he had 94. The only year that is really out of keeping with what he did previously in Calgary and would do subsequently in Vancouver. Close to a point a game player without help. Not a pig’s ear.

Bob Errey, that same 199 point year Errey played a lot of LW with Lemieux and ended up with 58 points. But without Lemieux he was a 20 goal scorer and 35 to 40 points. So in Lemieux’s best year he zoomed Rob Brown around 35 points and Bob Errey maybe 20 points. Errey is probably, after Warren Young, the closest to a pig’s ear of any of Lemieux’s supporting cast. And he was a good two way 15 to 20 goal a year player who got zoomed all the way to 26 goals and 58 points at the peak of Mario’s career. Not a silk purse.

John Cullen – another center that gets some minutes with Lemieux and on power play one. It might look like he was zoomed by Mario but his best years with Pittsburgh came when Mario missed 21 games and then 56 games the next season. Great player who was a point a game away from Pittsburgh and then had his career interrupted first by a herniated disc in his neck and then by a battle of his own with cancer. Definitely not a pig’s ear.

Kevin Stevens – had seasons of 86 and 88 without Mario. This is a guy who had 325 shots in a season. A great power forward. Sadly a massive injury in the playoffs that required his entire face to be rebuilt killed his career. Lemieux’s Kurri up to that point, his perfect other. Unequivocally not a pig’s ear.

Joey Mullen played with Lemieux and looked great. Just not as great as he had looked without him. Another guy a long way from being a pig’s ear and one that Lemieux had no impact on.

Rick Tocchet – playing with Lemieux he would have the last great year of his fine career. Lemieux definitely zoomed him but I don’t think any sane person would refer to Tocchet as a pig’s ear. At least not to his face.

Jaromir Jagr – already established as a star before he got his at bats with Mario, which lead to his greatest season and one of Mario’s finest. Amazing what happens when two of the games greatest players play together. Do I need to say it, definitely not a pig’s ear.

Petr Nedved – another established player who will have a career year with Lemieux. Again, not a pig’s ear.

14 players – only Errey, Young, and Cunneyworth are close to being pig’s ears and Mario only managed to make one, the career tough guy with the incredible shot – Young into a real impact player.

13 of them are real NHL players with or without Lemieux. Mario has no effect really on Shedden. None on Rutkowski. None on Cullen or Mullen. He doesn’t seem to have had much effect on Craig Simpson.

Quinn he seems to zoom for one of the years they played on the same team.

Rob Brown he definitely zooms, quite a lot. Over multiple years. But until things went south Brown was a way above average NHL player.

Kevin Stevens looks like the major beneficiary of zooming until you realize this is a better than a point a game player without Lemieux. A great career largely destroyed by a freak injury that makes him look like he tanks without Lemieux.

Tocchet and Nedved are definite zoom jobs but way above average NHL players without Mario.

Jagr and Lemieux probably come pretty close to zooming each other.

So there is no consistent pattern and at least 11 of the 14 are definitely not pig’s ears. Errey and Cunneyworth get zoomed but even Lemieux can’t make them into stars. Young’s two year shooting average and the number of shots suggests there was some talent there somewhere. 5 players there is no Mario effect at all. Total inconsistency of zoom. As I said. Not pig’s ears as I said.

Hard to say how you would use these players to make any sort of prediction about how Draisaitl (or any other young RFA might do over the next eight years.)

of the guys who fit the rough pattern I am looking for in terms of youth –

John Cullen isn’t zoomed by Lemieux
Doug Shedden isn’t zoomed by Lemieux
Dan Quinn was certainly zoomed but only played with Lemieux on the power play
Craig Simpson – apparently not zoomed or at least his best years were elsewhere
Bob Errey – never close to the offensive player Leon is and not comparable as a result
Petr Nedved almost fits but was all ready an established pro with many years experience and a point a game player when he got zoomed
Jaromir Jagr – what can I say, I only wish I thought there was a universe where he is a comparable for Leon Draisaitl
Rob Brown – and there is probably a story here but I don’t know it. A world of talent wasting away in the minors.
Kevin Stevens – a stunning talent destroyed by a freak injury.

Not sure what any of them tell us about Leon – he might bust like Brown – he might thrive like Stevens and lose it all to injury – he might be a good player struggling against chronic injuries like Simpson – the only three guys that really completely fit the Draisaitl profile. I don’t see any predictive power in the simple fact a guy played with Lemieux in terms of the next eight years of their career.

Hopefully you can see this makes my case for me – inconsistent zooming by arguably the second best player the game has ever seen – zooming telling us nothing about the future – injury is predictive – zooming not predictive. Pig’s ears not the common pattern. Nobody close to that status turned into a silk purse.

who

Woodguy v2.0:
VOR,

The big take away is this: despite common consensus you can’t zoom a pig’s ear. To date, all the data I have examined is telling a very consistent story. You can’t stick just anybody on Connor McDavid’s wing and expect to get a Leon Draisaitl.
So:
You need Draisaitl to give Connor a zoomable talent to play with.
You need Draisaitl for the playoffs.
You have to take the bet on the next eight regular seasons, knowing you will probably lose, in order to get the first two.

I’m going to disagree with that Vor.

Blair MacDonald was tied for 10th in NHL scoring the year he played with Gretzky.

That’s pretty much a pig’s ear.

WHA 78/79 – 0.89 pts/gm (some with Gretzky)
NHL 79/80 – 1.18 pts/gm with Gretzky
NHL 80/81 – 0.90 pt/gm (most games with Oilers
NHL 81/81 – 0.56 pt/gm with Vancouver

Textbook zoom.

Rob Brown is another one.

20 year old year scored 1.69 pts/gm playing next to Lemieux.
21 year old year 1.00pts/gm

The other 395 games in his NHL career was at 0.62 pts/gm

Kevin Stevens well over 1pt/gm with Mario, barely 0.5/gm without Mario

Sheary going from 0.22pts/gm to 0.87 pts/gm with Crosby

Zooming happens all the time.

Addendum: The players I mentioned weren’t awful and maybe that’s what you meant by “a pig’s ear”, but the zoom does happen.

Here’s one I forgot:

220 NHL games with 34 goals = 0.154 goals/gm
81 NHL games with McDavid 27 goals = 0.333 goals per game.

Maroonzoom.

This is why it is dangerous to just use stats to try and predict a players future performance. I really don’t remember much about Blair MacDonald but I do remember Rob Brown. Comparing him to Drai is quite a reach.
Rob Brown was a subpar skater with a good pair of hands, who was smart enough to go stand beside the net and wait for Mario to feed him. Maroon would be a good comparable.
Drai is a totally different animal with a much bigger skill set. Watching a few oiler games this past year should visually confirm this for any serious hockey fan.
I don’t know how to predict what his numbers will be for the next 10 years but this is a special player with a very unique skill set. I don’t think signing him for 8 x 8 is a very big risk.

Woodguy v2.0

VOR,

By your own math Maroon in 2013-2014 sets an established level of ability/possibility and over two years with McDavid he hasn’t risen to that same level. Minimally McDavid hasn’t proven he can zoom Maroon more than luck can do to Maroon all on its own. Sort of makes my point. If he isn’t zooming Maroon why is he zooming Draisaitl?

I mentioned Maroon’s 1031 PDO that year in my post. While that’s a possibility, its not ability. I assume that when I’m conversing with you showing a 1031 PDO speaks for itself and what it represents.

Its clear that he’s zooming Maroon and I showed that in my 2nd post.

Maroon is a career 1.71 pts/60 guy without McDavid. That’s a nice number and a nice player.

Maroon is 2.36/60 with McDavid.

Over a 82 game season that’s a difference of ~13 points.

I never said zooming wasn’t a real thing. I never said players don’t do worse without the guy who zoomed them. I said whether a young player is zoomed or not isn’t predictive of what they do over the next eight years. In other words I am putting forth the proposition that zooming has no predictive power in forecasting the player Leon Draisaitl will be over the next 8 years.

I can buy that for certain players. I hope Leon is among them.

I went on to say I believe it is not predictive because of a) human nature – the best players want their best line mates and while there are coaches who have succeeded in overcoming this prejudice the great have for the good it is uncommon and b) zooming is not a consistent phenomenon. Simple experiment, try defining zooming. Or look at the difference in impact playing with McDavid has on Maroon and on Draisaitl’s production.

I agree that zooming is not a constant. Coaches do play their best together so there is always some degree of it going on for everyone.

Hall zoomed RNH”s numbers, but Eberle was pretty consistent away from Hall.

As for Maroon and Drai, I showed Maroon is a 0.65pts/60 difference, which is quite large.

Look at each of Leon’s seasons:

16/17
With McDavid 2.24 pts/60
Without McDavid 1.80 pts/60

15/16
With Hall 2.32pts/60
Without Hall 1.13/60

14/15
1.06 pts/60

We can see the growth in Leon’s game and I have no doubt that he can achieve over 2 pts/60 away from McDavid next year if he gets decent wingers.

You haven’t come close to proving me wrong about zooming’s lack of predictive power nor about the consistency issues that bedevil any thought of using it in a rational discussion of a player’s long term career prospects. You haven’t even tried to present counter evidence.

I didn’t really address that because I don’t really know.

In my original post I only quoted this part as this was the only part I addressed:

The big take away is this: despite common consensus you can’t zoom a pig’s ear. To date, all the data I have examined is telling a very consistent story. You can’t stick just anybody on Connor McDavid’s wing and expect to get a Leon Draisaitl.
So:
You need Draisaitl to give Connor a zoomable talent to play with.
You need Draisaitl for the playoffs.
You have to take the bet on the next eight regular seasons, knowing you will probably lose, in order to get the first two.

I focused on the “pig’s ear” part because there is a laundry list of players who have career years with the Gretzky, Lemiuex, Crosby and now McDavids.

Rob Brown played 11 years. He should have shown up in your database. Great junior player. Killed it with Lemiuex. Not much after.

John Cullen should show up too although since he came to the NHL via NCAA he started later.

Jaxon

Trade fits to save money and add an integral piece to the puzzle: Boone Jenner, Brendan Gallagher, Radko Gudas.

Jaxon

It will be interesting to watch Vancouver and Buffalo this year to see if they are in a playoff spot and if Evander Kane and Erik Gudbranson indicate that they’ll re-sign. If not, they would be amazing rentals for a playoff push. They’d also be great fits if the Oilers can then sign them ahead of free agency. They’d cost a pretty penny, though and the Oilers would have to dump even more salary than they already have to.

jm363561

Good morning from Hua Hin, Thailand – golf trip. Just an amazing thread. Amazing.

Off to practice my putting!

oilfan17

OmJo:
oilfan17,

Going off memory, didn’t Lucic get most of his 5v5 offense while playing with McDavid early on in the season? Then slowly the duo started to fall apart and Lucic got replaced with Maroon.

Just looking quickly at the game summaries, even strength points for Lucic:
October 6 pts in 8 games
November 5 pts in 15 games
December 2 pts in 14 games

Power play points aren’t included.

There were a lot of different line combinations during those 3 months but Lucic was pretty much always on McDavid’s line until January.

Looks like the zooming effect dried up over time.

VOR

Woodguy,

By your own math Maroon in 2013-2014 sets an established level of ability/possibility and over two years with McDavid he hasn’t risen to that same level. Minimally McDavid hasn’t proven he can zoom Maroon more than luck can do to Maroon all on its own. Sort of makes my point. If he isn’t zooming Maroon why is he zooming Draisaitl?

I never said zooming wasn’t a real thing. I never said players don’t do worse without the guy who zoomed them. I said whether a young player is zoomed or not isn’t predictive of what they do over the next eight years. In other words I am putting forth the proposition that zooming has no predictive power in forecasting the player Leon Draisaitl will be over the next 8 years.

I went on to say I believe it is not predictive because of a) human nature – the best players want their best line mates and while there are coaches who have succeeded in overcoming this prejudice the great have for the good it is uncommon and b) zooming is not a consistent phenomenon. Simple experiment, try defining zooming. Or look at the difference in impact playing with McDavid has on Maroon and on Draisaitl’s production.

You haven’t come close to proving me wrong about zooming’s lack of predictive power nor about the consistency issues that bedevil any thought of using it in a rational discussion of a player’s long term career prospects. You haven’t even tried to present counter evidence.

Jaxon

Lowetide: I think about it all the time. They would be impatient billionaires to trade him. Alas, Ed Snider is dead.

The one I think about often is Maroon plus for Evander Kane. Even with his perceived problems, a sniper with his kind of speed could be deadly with McDavid. His next contract will be huge too, though. They’d really have to dump some salary as on Nuge plus Lucic (which would be impossible with his NMC).

Woodguy v2.0

OmJo:
oilfan17,

Going off memory, didn’t Lucic get most of his 5v5 offense while playing with McDavid early on in the season? Then slowly the duo started to fall apart and Lucic got replaced with Maroon.

Lucic with McDavid – 11pts in 452 min = 1.46/60
Lucic with RNH – 8pts in 431 min = 1.11/60

Lucic with Drai at C – I can’t separate out individual points with no McDavid on the ice, but you can get Oiler goals. They Oilers scored 4 goals in 134 minutes with those two together and no McDavid

Lucic with Drai at C (no McDavid) 1.78 GF/60
Lucic with McDavid at C 2.92 GF/60
Lucic with RNH at C 1.95 GF/60

Woodguy v2.0

Georges:
WG:

Great to have you back.

Thanks Georges.

Woodguy v2.0

oilfan17: Why couldn’t McDavid zoom Lucic,Eberle or any of the other wingers they tried over the last 2 years? (these players were not awful either)

Because chemistry is a thing and it flows both ways.

My next post shows he actually had more chemistry with Eberle.

I’m not trying to shit talk Drai.

I like him a lot and he being capable of driving a 2nd line vs tough comp is key to the Oilers success and I cheer vehemently for the Oilers.

I’m just trying to temper expectations.

Woodguy v2.0

Here’s another misconception about Drai.

“The Oilers scored more when he was with McDavid than when Eberle was with McDavid”

On the surface this is true, but as it turns out, its an artifact of TOI with Lucic vs Maroon

Check this out: (all last year 5v5)

19-97-14 scored 3.87 GF/60
19-97-29 scored 3.57 GF/60

27-97-14 scored 2.58 GF/60
27-97-29 scored 2.41 GF/60

Crazy eh?

If “he scored well with McDavid” is an argument for Drai, then you have to concede “but not as well as Eberle when you control for LW”

Hardly a ringing endorsement for $8MM+ when it was decided that $6MM was too much for Eberle.

I’m not sure anyone is making that argument here, but its a common one on twitter and elsewhere.

Here’s the TOI of each of the above trios which shows why 14’s overall GF/60 wasn’t as good as 29’s with 97

19-97-14 scored 3.87 – 139min
19-97-29 scored 3.57 – 538 min

27-97-14 scored 2.58 – 232min
27-97-29 scored 2.41 – 74min

OmJo

oilfan17,

Going off memory, didn’t Lucic get most of his 5v5 offense while playing with McDavid early on in the season? Then slowly the duo started to fall apart and Lucic got replaced with Maroon.

N64

Rake 2.0:
russ99,

So you’re trading the teams best defensive center at the deadline for picks when we’re trying to win the cup?

When coach was asked after the Sharks series why he lost the line matching battle, he gloated that he actually *preferred* the matchup the Sharks wanted.

Perhaps coach and Russ99 are talking about Nuges in parallel universes. A nasty Nuge slipped out of a transporter somewhere and delivered the coach’s plan.

Oiler fans sometimes deserve what they ask for.

oilfan17

Woodguy v2.0:
VOR,

Zooming happens all the time.

Addendum: The players I mentioned weren’t awful and maybe that’s what you meant by “a pig’s ear”, but the zoom does happen.

Why couldn’t McDavid zoom Lucic, Eberle or any of the other wingers they tried over the last 2 years? (these players were not awful either)

Because chemistry is a thing and it flows both ways.

Woodguy v2.0

VOR,

You all know he played worse than in 2013-2014 or 2014-2015 don’t you?
In 2014-2015 he had 34 points in 1014.55 and in 2017-2017 he had 42 in 1355.45. Converted to raw 60 minute play (not allowing for power play etc.) Maroon with McDavid was 1.86 points per 60 player. In 2014-2015 he had 2.01 points per 60 minutes played.

You must have messed up a calculation somewhere Vor I don’t get 1.86 for Maroon with McDavid anywhere.

Maroon with McDavid in 16/17 was 27 points in 730 minutes = 2.21pts/60 (all 5v5)

Maroon with McDavid in 15/16 was 7 points in 134 minutes = 3.13 pts/60 (all 5v5)

Total Maroon with McDavid both years 34 points in 864 minutes = 2.36/60

Total Maroon career without McDavid 64 points in 2247 minutes = 1.71/60

Maroon broken down per year:

2012-13 Anaheim 1.53
2013-14 Anaheim 2.37
2014-15 Anaheim 1.79
2015-16 Edmonton 1.41
2016-17 Edmonton 1.82

Great year in 13/14. Running a 1031 PDO will do that for you.

I agree that a player has to have some kind of skill to play well with McDavid, Crosby, Lemiuex or Gretzky. No argument.

To suggest that playing with these players doesn’t boost (or zoom) their totals isn’t right and there are many players who show this.

Rake 2.0

russ99,

So you’re trading the teams best defensive center at the deadline for picks when we’re trying to win the cup?

Woodguy v2.0

OF17: Plus, Draisaitl is the only guy on the team I’d rather have than Nuge with the puck on his stick trying to spring McDavid. Keep McDavid-Draisaitl for the PP, since Drai works well down low, but 19-97-93 at 5v5 would be very interesting.

Agreed.

29-97 ran the 4th best PP in the NHL last year.

Don’t mess with it.

VOR

Woodguy,

I think I made it pretty clear my database was made up of guys who played 11 years in the NHL. Blair McDonald doesn’t qualify.

I hope it was clear that I am interested in seeing what happens over the next 8 years to players who were zoomed in their early careers. Call it the Draisaitl Question. McDonald offers up no useful information to help us in answering this question.

I stand by my position – zooming provides no predictive value over the population of players I was looking at – 11 years in the NHL, zoomed or not at either 21, third or fourth year in NHL, or both.

That isn’t that there aren’t examples (I would have used Kevin Stevens who just made my analysis cut off of max age 25) that indicate that taking the superstar zoomer away leaves a player not worth as much money – though God the years Stevens and Lemieux played together are something to behold. Just that the predictive value of their zoom status remains zero.

There are two reasons for this:

a) second bananas are good for first bananas stats and because first bananas have enormous say into how their teams are run second bananas tend to keep getting reunited with first bananas.

b) zooming is a remarkably uneven phenomenon.

Consider Draisaitl and Maroon.

Draisaitl explodes – we say it is down to McDavid
Maroon explodes in goals scored we say it is down to McDavid

It is surely just as sound to say look how poorly Maroon played in relation to his established ability that must be because he is stuck with McDavid.

You all know he played worse than in 2013-2014 or 2014-2015 don’t you?

In 2014-2015 he had 34 points in 1014.55 and in 2017-2017 he had 42 in 1355.45. Converted to raw 60 minute play (not allowing for power play etc.) Maroon with McDavid was 1.86 points per 60 player. In 2014-2015 he had 2.01 points per 60 minutes played.

So Maroon’s point improvement is more than explained by his total minutes on the ice. No zooming there. Quite the opposite. Though I would say it sure looks like he was zoomed in terms of goals. I will say it again. Zooming is not a consistent phenomenon.

In fact, if McDavid was suppressing Draisaitl’s point production as much as he was Maroon’s then Leon is probably an 83 point player without McDavid the boat anchor.

I am just being silly but I hope everybody will remember zooming is not predictive, zooming is not consistent. If you still don’t believe me do the exercise I just did with Maroon except do it with Chris Kunitz.

You will find Crosby zooms him some years more than others. Then there is the fact that adjusted for time on ice and Kunitz has years he is below his own established ability while playing with Sidney Crosby. Zooming, just not a consistent thing.

We need to drop it from our conversation about Leon Draisaitl – unless one of you can explain how McDavid drove Maroon’s point production down and Draisaitl’s up.

John Chambers

Patrice Bergeron in ’08-’09 went 64 8-31-39 in the reg season and 11 0-5-5 in the playoffs, with Boston bowing out in round 2.

I’m sure people at the time said – “his 70+ point seasons were after the lockout, and he’s not a guy you can really commit to as a top centre, etc etc”.

I don’t expect RNH to follow Bergeron’s trajectory entirely, but good players DO have down years, but you watch the guy skate with the puck and it’s obvious his skill level is well below McDavid, a notch below Draisaitl, and ahead of everyone else on the team.

vinotintazo:
that slavin kid….getting paid 5.3×7

Amazing deal by Carolina. Echoes of the Ryan McDonagh deal. Slavin should fire his agent.

hags9k

They would be crazy not to find room for Nuge long term.

Guys are always injured.

The 3 centers and the 3 sasquatches. That’s the forward core I would try and keep.

John Chambers

russ99,

Agree to disagree.

McLellan obviously values RNH. Leans on him a ton. Chiarelli gave him a resounding vote of confidence at the year-end presser.

Obviously everyone wants more offense out of the guy, but everything else he does (aside from faceoffs, perhaps) is Bergeron-like.

Gayfish

I’d be surprised if Lucic and Sekera weren’t shopped next summer. I don’t think Chiarelli would keep them over Nuge, but I’m not positive.

Richard S.S.

This year however, things can still happen. For each game Sekera misses on LTIR, how much overall Cap Relief does he provide? There still about $2.0 Million of Cap space in unearnable Bonuses. So something else might happen. Only Chiarelli knows how much he has and when he wants to spend it.

Visually better

Lowetide: I think about it all the time. They would be impatient billionaires to trade him. Alas, Ed Snider is dead.

Just so hard to make a read on philly’s short term plan.

Giroux and voracek are making a boat load of money and probably put pressure on MGMT to be In a sort of win now mode, however with good drafting and lots of prospects they could be an up and coming team if they tore it down. Provorov, sanheim, konecny all in the past couples years.. and I’ve read they had a really solid draft in June with Patrick obviously and Ratcliffe, frost etc..

Very hard to say what they are aiming to do but I would be willing to give a ransom for Wayne simmonds and is under 4 million a year contract.

meanashell11

Richard S.S.,

Adam Larsson???

Richard S.S.

McDavid (12.5), Draisaitl (8.0), Nugent-Hopkins (6.0), Lucic (6.0), Puljujarvi (3.425), Kassian (1.95), Khaira (.65), Klefbom (4.167), Larsson (4.166), Sekera (5.5), Russell (4.0), Gryba (.900), Talbot (4.1676) and the Pouliot Buyout (1.333) are the only contracts (13 Players) signed for next year at a cost of about $62.758.

With only $12.242 to sign 10 more players means:
1) Ryan Strome (2.5), Drake Caggiula (.925), Anton Slepyshev (.925), Laurent Brossoit (.75), Darnell Nurse (.864) and Matthew Benning (.925) cannot be re-signed unless they’ll take no raises.
2) 10 Players would earn an average of $1.22 Million. Even paying 7-9 players just $1.0 Million, the Oilers are unlikely to keep more than one RFA.

Trading Ryan Nugent-Hopkins next offseason for just picks only leaves $18.242 to sign 11 Players. Even then the Oilers can’t keep them all. Despite what I’d like, the Cap would need to rise $7.5 Million next year to do it all.

EDIT: Made the change, thank you.

krakman

russ99,

Is the system also a bad fit for Lucic?

russ99

John Chambers:
jtblack,

RNH saw a lot of Benoit Pouliot and an unproductive Jordan Eberle as his linemates last season. He still scored decently well.

If TMAC eventually runs Maroon – McDavid – Puljujarvi, RNH could rebound significantly if he had Lucic and Draisaitl as his regular wingers. Give him some guys who can cycle and score and he could hit 55-60 points.

RNH should be a useful part of a championship team (skates like a demon), even at $6M.

This was due to RNHs play as well. His scoring was down, he was timid with the puck, stayed behind the circles and ineffective and often lost the puck on the cycle, especially in the playoffs,

The weak winger excuse doesn’t work, RNH’s preferred rush game is a poor fit in this system with this player group.

Unless he changes his game and shows up 20 lbs heavier/stronger and willing to get to the tough areas, he’ll be gone at the deadline.

Right now we can’t pencil him in the top 6, we have to see what player comes back at camp.

I’m going with:
Maroon- McDavid – Strome
Lucic – Draisaitl – Slepyshev
Jokinen – RNH – Kassian
Caggiula – Letestu – Puljujarvi

Visually better

Daily I want Wayne Simmonds post. Does anyone here there is any possibility Philadelphia would ever trade him?

Would Maroon (cost effective replacement) plus a first, a 2nd and Caleb jones do it?

Would they have any reason to want to trade him? hell if i know

texmex

John Chambers,

I just watched the Philadelphia feed of the maroon manning scrap. Called maroon a homer!!! lol. The philly broadcast team is almost as bad as Boston.

misfit

Patrick Maroon the almost 30 goal scorer is definitely a result of McDavid, but Patrick Maroon the good hockey player isn’t.

I was shocked when the Ducks traded him for a nothing prospect and a late pick, and completely floored when I found out they retained salary on the deal too.

I remember thinking about him as an ideal middle 6 winger and wished we could find a player like him (but not him because he’d obviously never be available).

I’m glad we have him, and would like to see him extend his contract, but he’s definitely from the Bryan Bickell branch of the hockey player tree. Just because he can play on the 1st line, it doesn’t mean he’s a 1st liner. It DEFINITELY doesn’t mean he should be paid like one.

John Chambers

Lowetide: The question I have about Puljujarvi is goal scoring. I’ve never questioned his ability to be a quality two-way player, in fact, I think he’s close to being that now. Goals. That’s my question.

You’re going to underrate him in your RE.

There’s not other choice, really, as the player has no basis to project performance, but he’s going to go full Pastrnak in a hurry.

Impossible to nail down a performance trajectory for JP in ’17-’18. My guess is 22-26-48

John Chambers

Woodguy v2.0,

The MaroonZoom is apt.

That said, a 6’3″ 230 banger and board boss with soft mittens is a pretty nice compliment for McDavid. Maroon’s beatdown of Brandon Manning was one of my top-5 moments from last season, and IMO was a catalyst for the team making the leap beyond a middle-of-the-pack club to the upper echelon.

I’m okay if the Oilers give Maroon an extension in the $3-$4M range for 3-4 seasons. It’s like Chris Kunitz’ contract where everyone acknowledges it’s a fair price for a player performing in a dream situation.

If some idiot GM wants to give Patty $25M / 5 for the zoom, then they’ll have to try and Bickell their way out of it eventually.

misfit

VOR,

I enjoyed reading that, but since you posted it as a reply to me, I get the sense that you misunderstood what my point was.

My point wasn’t on the merits of Draisaitl the player, but more along the lines of what Thinker posted almost immediately after you did. I’m worried about what the response from the masses (media, fans, and people inside the org alike) will be if (when) he doesn’t finish top 10 in scoring or finishes with less than 60 points.

Right now, Draisaitl as a player is less than his point totals suggest. He could very well be much more than his point totals suggest a year from now, but is that the story that will be told? If Horcoff/Torres/Stoll/Gagner/Eberle/etc.etc.etc. are any indication, no.

OF17

Woodguy v2.0:
Stauffer suggested these as lines:

Maroon-McDavid-RNH
Lucic-Leon-Slepyshev
Caggiula-Strome-Puljujarvi
Jokinen-Letesu-Kassian
Khaira-Pakarinen

Source

When I talked to him about it I mentioned (and he agreed) that the weakest part of McDavid’s game was Dzone coverage.

RNH as RW could also play F1 in the dzone freeing McDavid up to play higher in the dzone and making him available for jail break passes more often.

I like to see that to start to see if it works.

McDavid’s overall GF/60 was 3.53 and GA/60 was 2.15 last year.

If having RNH play F1 in the dzone and he (RNH) rediscovers his offence I could see McDavid getting up to GF/60 of 3.85+ and drop the GA/60 below 2.00

3.85 GF/60 was McDavid’s GF/60 away from Lucic last year btw……

The biggest weapon on the team is McDavid’s speed.

Might as well work the lines to exploit it to its full potential.

Plus, Draisaitl is the only guy on the team I’d rather have than Nuge with the puck on his stick trying to spring McDavid. Keep McDavid-Draisaitl for the PP, since Drai works well down low, but 19-97-93 at 5v5 would be very interesting.

SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo!

Woodguy v2.0,

Makes sense that TMac would want to give CmD-Nuge a whirl. I watched as much Erie hockey as I could during McDavid’s draft year and this was how Knoblauch ran Strome and CmD. Strome would play F1 down low in the dzone and CmD would take LW (or F2 I dunno how the descriptors work these days) where the play would be to spring CmD and let his wheel’s do the work. If you go back and look at his draft year highlight videos its pretty obvious especially in the playoffs.

It would also be a different look for teams defensively. Kane blew up a few years ago when Panarin was able to provide a new outlook as Kane worked his magic. Having Nuge feeding outlet passes to CmD as he’s in stride up the wing is the kind of stuff that dmen have nightmare’s about.

The flexibility that is starting to emerge on this roster could be mind blowing. Hopefully that Leon fella can drive his own line…

misfit,

Excellent post! And generally I agree with your rationalization on the stats. I’m borderline giddy about this team these days and I was hoping you’d go a bit further with your analysis. My own bias is that for once this team will take a step forward next season rather than running in place or stepping back. Lots of folks (not necessarily you) seem to think that relying on internal development vs going out and trading for/signing big names is the most surefire way to build a winner. I vehemently disagree and point to Chicago and Pittsburgh as to why I feel that development is the best way forward. As always we wait.

Professor Q

Just listening to Lowdown. The Nuge at Connor’s wing has been a thing all year, not just now, and even yes you, Lowetide, have expressed interest in trying it out (not your vehement against it stance as of late, haha, although mentioning that it doesn’t use all of skills, yes, and it doesn’t; but it does use his smarts and speed).

I think it would interesting to try it out. You can always put him at centre again, and do the change up with a variety of players. The plug and play could add versatility to the entire fromt of the team.

Obviously pure-scoring quick wingers would take MOST of that time. But what about certain PP and PK times with McDavid? Or other times?

OriginalPouzar

Seismic Source:
If Slepyshev doesn’t get burried early on the 3rd and 4th lines he’s going to have a shot at working his way up to that cherry starboard McDavid spot. That spot is his for the taking and he will never have a greater opportunity than this year. The only road blocks are Leon and I have a feeling he only goes back to RW if nobody grabs the horns. I don’t see RNH shooting enough, and I doubt the young Fin has the head for it yet.

I wonder if we even called Vegas about James Neal. The guy would have been perfect.

Nuge was 3rd on the team in shots last year with 200.

OriginalPouzar

OmJo:
If the Oilers commit to McDavid-Nuge for the entire season, do you try to get Draisaitl to sign a bridge contract? If you give him 9.5×1 and his Sh% goes back to normal, can you offer him less for his next deal?

We’d have to give him a qualifying offer at that salary in order to keep his rights