DER LEONARD

by Lowetide

It’s been so long since we heard one damn thing about the Leon Draisasitl contract situation some are contemplating an SOS. We did get a fractured google translate message sent under the door yesterday:

  • Leon Draisaitl: “I am in Cologne a few days to visit the family. This is part of the professional sport. Of course I would like to have clarified the situation as quickly as possible. I will not say more.” Source

Reading between the lines there appears to be very little between the lines. It would be nice to get an update but the truth is there’s no actual hurry. All the agents and managers are in short pants, Hawaiian shirts and are running around with umbrella drinks. This might take awhile.

CLUSTER OPTIMAL

Mr. Tierney is a worthy follow and his optimal lines are fascinating to me. He gathered the template for this lineup from Ryan Stimson’s article Identifying Playing Styles with Clustering. The two main ideas are that distributing a team’s best players throughout the lineup is optimal, and that certain “player types” complement some other player types more than others.  Recommend that linked article from Mr. Stimson.

There is no Zack Kassian as penalties took him out of the GAR race among Oilers forwards. I am fascinated by his lineup, expect you will be too, and have Sean coming on the Lowdown Friday to discuss.

I think it’s an interesting idea. Universally Oilers fans would want to put Maroon on 1line, but one of the issues on this team is not having enough quality when 97 is not on the ice. Maybe that third line could be part of the answer.

NHL EQUIVALENCIES SHOULD PREDICT WINTER

Last summer, we were looking at NHL equivalencies and wondering how many players would make the NHL from the prospect group. There wasn’t much work for prospect defensemen (Matt Benning aside), but the forwards saw a lot of work. Here are the pro players in the system a year ago:

2015-16

DEFENSE

  1. Jordan Oesterle 4-18-22. (2 NHL GAMES)
  2. Joey Laleggia 5-12-17.
  3. Matt Benning 5-9-14. (62 NHL GAMES)
  4. Dillon Simpson 3-11-14.  (3 NHL GAMES)
  5. Griffin Reinhart 3-10-13. (1 NHL GAME)
  6. David Musil 2-6-8. 
  7. Ben Betker 1-5-6

FORWARDS

  1. L Drake Cagguila 22-22-44 (60 NHL GAMES)
  2. R Patrick Russell 17-17-34
  3. L Jere Sallinen 10-15-25
  4. R Jesse Puljujarvi 11-12-23 (28 NHL GAMES)
  5. R Tyler Pitlick 7-15-22 (31 NHL GAMES)
  6. C Jujhar Khaira 8-13-21 (10 NHL GAMES)
  7. R Anton Slepyshev 10-7-17 (41 NHL GAMES)
  8. R Greg Chase 8-8-16
  9. C Bogdan Yakimov 5-11-15
  10. C Kyle Platzer 5-9-14

Edmonton saw two college kids grab 51 percent of the available games gifted to prospects on this list. The winners were Matt Benning, Drake Caggiula and Anton Slepyshev, with Jesse Puljujarvi and Tyler Pitlick getting into a substantial number of games. What about this year?

Ryan Mantha

2016-17

DEFENSE

  1. Ethan Bear 10-14-24
  2. Ryan Mantha  7-16-23
  3. Caleb Jones 4-19-23
  4. Ziyat Paigin  4-11-15
  5. Keegan Lowe 3-7-10
  6. Dillon Simpson 2-6-8
  7. Ben Betker 1-7-8

FORWARDS

  1. Joe Gambardella  14-26-40
  2. Kailer Yamamoto 15-20-35
  3. Jujhar Khaira  11-18-29
  4. Tyler Benson 8-21-29
  5. Joey Laleggia 16-12-28
  6. Jesse Puljujarvi 12-16-28
  7. Ty Rattie 11-14-25 
  8. Mitch Callahan 9-16-25
  9. Grayson Downing 6-11-17
  10. Greg Chase 2-9-11
  11. Patrick Russell 5-5-10
  12. Braden Christoffer 2-4-6
  13. Kyle Platzer 1-5-6

I’m using NHLE’s from Rob Vollman’s new book. My RE has completed the forwards group, and I have Joe Gambardella, Jujhar Khaira, Joey Laleggia, Jesse Puljujarvi, Ty Rattie and Mitch Callahan all getting some work.

CONDORS BLUE 2016-17

After running some of the CHL defenders yesterday, I thought it might be interesting to revisit Prospect-Stats.com and check out the Bakersfield Seven. Jordan Oesterle was the best offensive player and played the most, with Mark Fayne and Griffin Reinhart next men up.

The qual comp looks absolutely equal from here, unless I am misunderstanding the measure all of these guys rotated equally or damn close. In a case of this kind, I believe 5×5 GF-GA  best reflects performance (and yes this is plus minus and yes it is universally panned).

  1. Dillon Simpson 40-31 (+9)
  2. Mark Fayne 35-27 (+8)
  3. Griffin Reinhart 47-40 (+7)
  4. Ben Betker 23-17 (+6)
  5. Jordan Oesterle 43-31 (+2)
  6. Mark Fraser 34-38 (-4)
  7. Bryce Aneloski 12-16 (-4)

Interesting results. Dillon Simpson will be in tough this fall to get into NHL games, but his resume is quite good and always improves a little each season. Note: David Musil played for two teams, and I can’t separate the numbers, so excluded him from this look.

50-MAN

  • This week we’re going to spend a little time discussing possible additions to the group. You may recall the Oilers added Matt Benning, Kris Russell and Eric Gryba via signing and invite.
  • August 15 will be a big day, as several college free agents will become full UFA. This might be an area of interest for Edmonton.
  • A few comments on the 50-man have come this way over the last seven days. There are ways, like a small trade, to make more room on the list. I don’t think the Oilers are close to jeopardy in this area.

POSSIBLE COLLEGE FREE AGENTS

  • LC Alex Kerfoot, Harvard. He will be a free agent August 15. Shane Malloy, Hockey Prospect Radio: An intelligent puck possession playmaking center who can play on the wing that has good passing ability whether stationary or at speed. Uses the give and go well and can draw defenders to create time and space for his line-mates. Is a quick darting skater with the agility to dodge and roll off defenders. He defensive game has matured once his defensive habits such as an active stick, head on a swivel, taking correct angles became consistent.  Source
  • LC Dominic Toninato, Minnesota-Duluth. He will be a free agent August 15. SBNation: He’s a top line center with the ability to play on the power play and penalty kill. He plays with a physical edge that sometimes goes too far. He’s a decent skater, but will likely move from center to wing at the next level, where he should provide strong, gritty two-way play with the occasional offense chipped in as well. Source
  • LD Will Butcher, Denver. He will be a free agent August 15. Ben Kerr, LWS: Butcher is quick skater. He has excellent speed in both directions. He also has very good acceleration. Butcher has very good vision and the ability to thread the needle on passes both to start the transition game and in setting up plays in the offensive zone. He also has a good shot. While Butcher is a little undersized, and can be overpowered in the defensive zone, he works hard to avoid this making him a defensive liability. Expect Butcher to be NHL ready and push for a spot with whatever team signs him.  Source

NEW BLOG

Every once in awhile someone I’ve touched base with over the years starts a new adventure and I’m always happy to pass along the link. HockeyExtra is up and running after a lot of hard work, congratulations to them and if you have a chance check them out here.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

We’re back! At 10 this morning, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Jonathan Willis, Oilers Nation. What will the Pacific Division look like this winter?
  • Keegan Matheson, MLB.com. Jays and Mike Trout.
  • Scott Cullen, TSN. CFL Power Rankings, Jagr still waiting.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. I missed this!

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Munny

Woodguy v2.0: The “GAR” stat is pretty suspect as is any black box formula.

Agreed. I don’t have much time for them.

Munny

frjohnk: Every model will have its shortcomings.

Which is why I avoid them. The advantage of Math IMO is t eliminate bias and modelling is just a way to add bias back in.

frjohnk: Not sure how Sean calculates even strength defense but Pak has better on ice against metrics (shots, scoring chances goals against) than Kassian.

Pakarinen also has a miniscule sample size, and if Tierney is a Math guy, he should know better than to draw any conclusions. I don’t find the fact he is encouraging.

And if penalties are somehow eliminating Kassian, but sample size isn’t Pakman there is something very wrong with this GAR stat.

jp

OriginalPouzar:
Wonder which RE we get in the next few hours?Larsson?

Could still be Sekera, even with him missing 30 games.

My guess is Benning though.

Woodguy v2.0

frjohnk: 4 scoring lines?
*thud*
Was that Woodguy fainting and hitting the floor?

EDM had one full time center with an overall DFF% greater than 50%.

I’m just hoping for 2.

3 would be unreal.

4 is unpossible in the salary cap era.

frjohnk

Glass: Our tested and true fourth line is Caggiula/Letestu/Kassian. Has the potential to be a scoring line imo

4 scoring lines?
*thud*
Was that Woodguy fainting and hitting the floor?

frjohnk

Munny:
There is no Zack Kassian as penalties took him out of the GAR race among Oilers forwards. I am fascinated by his lineup, expect you will be too, and have Sean coming on the Lowdown Friday to discuss.

I have no faith in a model that excludes Kassian and then tells us the lines are “optimal”.

Every model will have its shortcomings. GAR definitely has its as well.

Id rather have Kassian than Pak on the 4th line but if we do look at what Sean is using for for GAR, we see that one of the areas that Kassian hurts the team is penalties taken compared to penalties drawn. He took 32 penalties last year compared to 16 drawn penalties.

Not sure how Sean calculates even strength defense but Pak has better on ice against metrics (shots, scoring chances goals against) than Kassian.

Woodguy v2.0

Munny:
There is no Zack Kassian as penalties took him out of the GAR race among Oilers forwards. I am fascinated by his lineup, expect you will be too, and have Sean coming on the Lowdown Friday to discuss.

I have no faith in a model that excludes Kassian and then tells us the lines are “optimal”.

Nor should you.

The “GAR” stat is pretty suspect as is any black box formula.

Glass

Lucic/McDavid/Draisaitl is interesting, wouldn’t of thought of it myself, given that Lucic/McDavid/Eberle failed hard early in the season. It has the makings of a very dangerous line.

I think Maroon would produce more with Nuge than Lucic would, tough to say really. My second line would be Maroon/Nuge/Slepyshev.

Third line is Jokinen/Strome/Puljujarvi, mainly because I prefer to ease in JP with his likely mentor, Jokinen.

Our tested and true fourth line is Caggiula/Letestu/Kassian. Has the potential to be a scoring line imo… Caggiula will continue to develop, Letestu mentioned 5×5 scoring as his main area of focus, and Kassian still has more to give imo. Kassian has size, speed and skill, I think it’s a lack of consistency & needing to put it all together at the moment.

Pechetr

Anyone else getting pop ups from this site now? Just started 2 days ago.

edit* I guess in reading the above comments that i am not the only one.

Munny

There is no Zack Kassian as penalties took him out of the GAR race among Oilers forwards. I am fascinated by his lineup, expect you will be too, and have Sean coming on the Lowdown Friday to discuss.

I have no faith in a model that excludes Kassian and then tells us the lines are “optimal”.

NativeNotFrench

RIP Glen Campbell

OriginalPouzar

Wonder which RE we get in the next few hours? Larsson?

BornInAGretzkyJersey

AZOIL,

Me too, Android here.

Gerta Rauss

Bag of Pucks:
Hi LT,

Noticed you’ve implemented a gaming popup ad into the site. Totally get and appreciate the need to amp up click ad revenues, but wanted to share a quick FYI with you in that a popup originating from a gaming url could cause your site to be blocked at some workplaces by overzealous network administrators.

I know for instance that the City of Edmonton blocks all employee browser traffic to gaming related urls.

Just passing that along in case you see any downturn in traffic as a result.

Would imagine most people have popup blocking defaulted by this time, so quite possibly the point is largely moot.

I’ve been getting this popup the last 2 or 3 days on a couple of different computers

I’ve been closing it before it loads…I’ll let it load next time and see what it is

AZOIL

OriginalPouzar,

I got the pop up too, on my iPhone actually. I closed it before it could load.

OriginalPouzar

Bag of Pucks:
Hi LT,

Noticed you’ve implemented a gaming popup ad into the site. Totally get and appreciate the need to amp up click ad revenues, but wanted to share a quick FYI with you in that a popup originating from a gaming url could cause your site to be blocked at some workplaces by overzealous network administrators.

I know for instance that the City of Edmonton blocks all employee browser traffic to gaming related urls.

Just passing that along in case you see any downturn in traffic as a result.

Would imagine most people have popup blocking defaulted by this time, so quite possibly the point is largely moot.

I’m not receiving any such pop-up.

russ99

Kbobbyg:
McNuge93,

Der die das is the easy part, instead of direct indirect object we have 4 different cases. Depending on the case they can change to dem, den, des or one of the others. I have german parents and have lived here for more then twenty years but I still screw up. I missed german grade school. However finnish is supposedly the real killer 14 cases or something like that.

Dative case utterly flummoxed me in German classes. The case shifts are the hardest part of learning the language. It just doesn’t come easy unless you memorize it at an early age.

Shouldn’t complain, it’s much harder for a German person to learn English, with all it’s wonky exceptions.

Cameron

Lowetide,

Ain’t that a shame?

Bag of Pucks

Hi LT,

Noticed you’ve implemented a gaming popup ad into the site. Totally get and appreciate the need to amp up click ad revenues, but wanted to share a quick FYI with you in that a popup originating from a gaming url could cause your site to be blocked at some workplaces by overzealous network administrators.

I know for instance that the City of Edmonton blocks all employee browser traffic to gaming related urls.

Just passing that along in case you see any downturn in traffic as a result.

Would imagine most people have popup blocking defaulted by this time, so quite possibly the point is largely moot.

OriginalPouzar

Lowetide: Lots of pressure points, from Nuge to backup goalie. I would guess the deal involves less money on the cap beginning 2018 fall.

So we’d be dealing term – interesting – sounds like a Nuge type deal which, at this point, I don’t see happening until the spring (unless the wheels are falling off mid-season).

I could hope for Russell but I’m not going to go there (and I don’t think Franson can plug that hole from a defensive standpoint and coach’s trust standpoint).

Kbobbyg

McNuge93,

Der die das is the easy part, instead of direct indirect object we have 4 different cases. Depending on the case they can change to dem, den, des or one of the others. I have german parents and have lived here for more then twenty years but I still screw up. I missed german grade school. However finnish is supposedly the real killer 14 cases or something like that.

Gerta Rauss

OriginalPouzar: Why type/level of player do you see going out?A young prospect tweener forward like Slepy or JJ? A depth d-man like Simpson?

Something more material like Nurse or Drake?

My guess is Fayne

Fayne with 1/2 retained ($1.8m) + a sweetener (pick?) in exchange for more salary coming back on an expiring contract (a forward)

My wish is Fayne + for Bozak

Cameron

I finally work up the nerve to google ‘Stubborn Dutchman’ (my advice, don’t), and I come back to find the place speaking in German.

These are truly the end of days

OriginalPouzar

Lowetide: I see a trade being most likely as well.

Why type/level of player do you see going out? A young prospect tweener forward like Slepy or JJ? A depth d-man like Simpson?

Something more material like Nurse or Drake?

John Chambers

What are folks’ thoughts around the Central Division? I have a hard time slotting where the six non-Colorado teams will rank at seasons end.

As of now I have it:

Dallas – (they’re going to be, like, real good)
Nashville
Minnesota
Chicago
Winnipeg
St Louis

You could flip any team in the stack rank and offer a compelling rationale for it.

Talent-wise Winnipeg could be #3 or #4 but they’ve been underperforming for years due to bad goaltending, yet somehow Manitobans seem resigned to the notion that they don’t deserve nice things.

Lois Lowe

I came for Drew Stafford jokes. I am disappoint.

Gayfish

The 50 man issue seems overblown to me. plugs with a contract get thown in all the time to make things work. Think Pochiro, or Coughlin.

judgedrude

Lutefisk:
No offense, but to be grammatically correct, it should be der Leonand not das Leon and definetly not die Leon.

Halt die Ohren steif Leon!

Ich glaube Herr Leon..

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T0GiULfGnoc

Lutefisk

Verzeihung KbobbyG
Ich habe Dein Comment verpasst.

McNuge93

Kbobbyg:
Hi Lowetide,
Long time reader first time poster. Love the blog. Just thought I d give you a german heads up, even in the danger of me being considered somewhat nit picky. Especially if you know it already. Well, here it goes. Das is the neutral form of the, der would be correct. Not really a big deal and das leon does sound cooler and more special. But you should know your literally literally objectifying him or neutering him, which could be considered insulting. Sorry but we germans just can t help ourselves when it comes to correcting people.

So that’s why my daughter complained about how hard German is to learn.

Lutefisk

No offense, but to be grammatically correct, it should be der Leon and not das Leon and definetly not die Leon.

Halt die Ohren steif Leon!

Kbobbyg

Hi Lowetide,
Long time reader first time poster. Love the blog. Just thought I d give you a german heads up, even in the danger of me being considered somewhat nit picky. Especially if you know it already. Well, here it goes. Das is the neutral form of the, der would be correct. Not really a big deal and das leon does sound cooler and more special. But you should know your literally literally objectifying him or neutering him, which could be considered insulting. Sorry but we germans just can t help ourselves when it comes to correcting people.

Woodguy v2.0

Georges: PuckIQ WOWY has this:

CMD GF60

w/ Lucic 3.46
w/o Lucic 3.96

The with number seems quite different from what you’re citing. Not as much of a drag.

My data is specifically for those 4 permutations of the lines..

That said, I’ll have G check his data.

What I had was from puckalytic’s SuperWOWY and those numbers had been vetted closely.

puckiq has 27 & 97 with 26 goals for and 13 against.
Naturalstatrick has it at 22 for and 12

Those 4 goals in 450 minutes are worth 0.53 GF/60

Leave it with me and I’ll see if G is including EN or something like that.

OriginalPouzar

Lowetide: They do have money to spend, you make a great point.

Money to spend but pressed up against the 50 contract limit (48 assuming a Leon signing and the two slides – Wells, Benson).

If they are going to sign a 49th, to me, it needs to be a material signing that is a good bet to help the team this year – I don’t think any of the soon to be college free agents meet that threshold for me.

A trade with a contract going out is my preferred approach unless we can get Jagr or Franson for one year.

dustrock

Edmonton_fan:
I’ve posted this before; nothing has changed. The deal has been agreed upon – they are just waiting for Leon to get back to Edmonton to have a big media announcement.

If this were not true, there would be tons of leaks in the media…

It is interesting there’s radio silence even in the media, thought for sure there’d be summer clickbait pieces from the Eastern media about an offer sheet being even more likely now.

Edmonton_fan

I’ve posted this before; nothing has changed. The deal has been agreed upon – they are just waiting for Leon to get back to Edmonton to have a big media announcement.

If this were not true, there would be tons of leaks in the media… 😉

OriginalPouzar

Woodguy v2.0:
Re: Leon signing

First pre-season game is Sept18th
First regular season game is Oct 4th

I set the over/under date of Leon signing at Sept 26.

That is unacceptable to me – I want him signed and ready for day 1 of camp.

Georges

Woodguy v2.0:
Re: Tierney

He is a great resource on twitter as his visualizations of other’s data is very cool and valuable.

In regards to the “optimal lines”I responded to his tweet with this:

Maroon (19) was important to McDavid (97) in GF/60 last year. Lucic(27) dragged him down.Eberle(14) and Draisailt(29) were interchangeable

This was accompanied with a graphic showing:

GF/60 5v5
19-97-29 – 3.87
19-97-14 – 3.57
27-97-29 – 2.58
27-97-14 – 2.41

Link: https://twitter.com/Woodguy55/status/894722828271984640

I find stuff like “optimal lines” interesting, but given the data set that everyone has to work with here I doubt it actually spits out optimal lines.

We won’t be able to do that unless you have full puck tracking and player tracking data and have figured out what the data means.

We are miles from that still in the public sphere.

PuckIQ WOWY has this:

CMD GF60

w/ Lucic 3.46
w/o Lucic 3.96

The with number seems quite different from what you’re citing. Not as much of a drag.

dustrock

Leon contract schnell! Macht schnell!

flea

I remember the contrast between Rasmus Ristolainen and Johnny Gaudreau last year – RR attended camp with no contract, JG held out. It’s a bit of different situation but was refreshing to see a player put their own training and team ahead of the contract.

I seriously doubt LD does the same, but here’s hoping he comes to camp with or without a new contract.

http://thehockeywriters.com/rasmus-ristolainen-buffalo-sabres-camp-with-no-contract-deal-imminent/

flyfish1168

I am not concern with Leon signing yet. But I wish he would sign now. This way PC would know where the CAP sits and maybe he can look at some possible trades or signings prior to the preseason.

N64

Woodguy v2.0:
Re: Leon signing

First pre-season game is Sept18th
First regular season game is Oct 4th

I set the over/under date of Leon signing at Sept 26.

Nice mid point. If I knew he was signing during that period I’d lean towards OVER, but with earlier or later as well… UNDER.

Woodguy v2.0

Re: Leon signing

First pre-season game is Sept 18th
First regular season game is Oct 4th

I set the over/under date of Leon signing at Sept 26.