Blue Velvet

I have completed my projections for the RE series (will publish before the season opens) and there are some interesting items. I’m projecting 51 power-play goals (up from 31), six on the penalty kill (down from 11) and a healthy increase (but nothing crazy) in even-strength goals. Surprisingly, with the increase in year over year goals, and several career highs among forwards, only one of the major players on defense—Matt Benning—projects to reach a career high in points. The big man among the blue, offensively and in time on ice, will be Oscar Klefbom (photo by Rob Ferguson).

THE ATHLETIC!

Give The Athletic as a gift or get it yourself and join the fun! Offer is here, less than $4 a month! I find myself reading both the hockey (Willis, Dellow, Pronman, et cetera) and the baseball coverage a lot, it’s a pure pleasure to visit. We’ll sell you the whole seat, but you’ll only need the edge.

PROJECTED RE TOI, OILERS BLUE 2018-19

  • I have Andrej Sekera’s season wiped out with the injury. It’s a projection based on two severe injuries in such a short time and that cryptic comment from Peter Chiarelli a couple of weeks ago.
  • Projection has all of Edmonton’s six primary defensemen missing some time during the campaign, ranging from nine games (Benning) to 82 games (Sekera).
  • My projections for the blue as a group have them coming in very close to last season’s numbers (32 goals, 97 assists). Last year’s power-play goal total by defensemen (2) climbs to eight, but the rest of the story is less impressive. I didn’t plan it that way, perhaps the loss of Sekera curtails the offense enough to make the downturn logical.
  • Klefbom and Larsson improve over last year’s boxcars, but neither man approaches his career best.
  • I have Klefbom, Larsson and Nurse playing a lot, a ton at 5-on-5. It’s reasonable to expect one of two developments: Someone on the roster emerges to replace Sekera, or a trade is made.

PROJECTED RE TOI, OILERS FORWARDS 2018-19

  • I have several forwards having career seasons, including McDavid, Nuge, Puljujarvi.
  • I am also projecting another top-heavy offensive season from the forwards.
  • A year ago, McDavid (41), Leon (25) and Nuge (24) delivered 39 percent of Edmonton’s offense. The trio was followed by several players who couldn’t manage 15 goals: Patrick Maroon (14), Strome and Caggiula (13), Puljujarvi (12), Khaira (11) and Lucic (10).
  • My projections this season have McDavid, Draisaitl and Nuge once again scoring 40 percent of the goals in 2018-19, and five forwards scoring between 10 and 19 goals. A fourth scoring forward has to emerge, but the projections I use have the group shy again. The good news is that the forwards who aren’t hitting 20 goals are young and improving.

TYLER BENSON

Some great quotes in this article by Min Dhariwal of the CBC from Benson and Perry Pearn. A quality article.

FANDOM

I’ve been meaning to get to this but haven’t had the chance until today. I wanted to pass along a quick message about fandom and why it is wise to disregard anyone telling you “how” to be a fan. The world is made up of several different types of people, one of which spends day and night telling other people what to think. This, combined with something nearing acidic aggression, means you are likely to encounter someone online who will try to bully you today.

Fan as you wish. Here are some wrinkles in my fandom across all kinds of interests:

  • Although I have been a fan of the Oilers since 1972, there were several periods where I didn’t follow the team closely. In the period after I bought my first car and had walking around money, in the period after the team traded Mark Messier, when my kids were born, even the Pat Quinn season, I stepped away a little. No one, not one human taking in a breath of air today, can tell me I’m wrong unless allowed to by me. You have that choice. Screw ’em. If someone is trying to make you feel bad about being an Oilers fan, imagine how awful their life must be, and then move along to something more pleasant like demon liquor or the fairer sex.
  • I am a fan of the Stones from Beggar’s Banquet through Exile on Main Street, but always stopped at Goats Head Soup. Recently, I have re-listened to that album and it has grown on me. A cool 45 years after it was released, it’s beginning to find its way into my good books.
  • I try every summer to get back into baseball as an interest, partly because it is a connection to my Dad. I didn’t really make an attempt this summer, might try if the Expos ever return. I’ve come to the conclusion that what made baseball special (Dad, Expos) is no longer here, so it’s fine and true to let those things remain in the past. Baseball is no longer my game, it’s for someone else and that’s fine. Sail on, baseball, you do you.
  • I’m a Neil Young fan. His politics don’t rhyme with many, so saying that out loud can get you in trouble with some people. I’m a fan of Young because of the guitar sound he found on Zuma, because he wrote so beautifully about Canada, because his voice speaks to me, and because Powderfinger is filthy good.
  • I’m noticing more people talk about politics in general now, that isn’t bad in and of itself. I will say that there’s a difference between speaking your mind and getting familiar with me about my opinions. I have not, at any time, expressed publicly my political leanings, although they probably match many of you. I will say this: If you support a party that in any way allows race, color, orientation or creed to divide, then you lost me in that instant.
  • My Dad taught me, when I was a child, that the number to remember is one. When one person has his or her rights compromised, then every single one of us is in danger. There is no middle ground here. None.

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131 Responses to "Blue Velvet"

  1. innercitysmytty says:

    Thanks for the glimpse behind the curtain!

  2. innercitysmytty says:

    WG enjoyed your predictions yesterday. I don’t have time to run through all teams, so won’t, but as always the logic you provide aligns very closely with my thoughts. Maybe I sold wood in a previous life!

  3. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    innercitysmytty:
    WG enjoyed your predictions yesterday. I don’t have time to run through all teams, so won’t, but as always the logic you provide aligns very closely with my thoughts. Maybe I sold wood in a previous life!

    Thanks!

    We all come from People of The Wood somewhere down the ancestral chain

  4. jm363561 says:

    I read the article on Tyler Benson. I always rooted for Brandon Davidson as he fought his way into the NHL after overcoming serious health issues. Similarly, Tyler has shown incredible resilience to get where he is now. Should be an interesting season for him and I really wish him well. I had not realised quite how serious / numerous his problems were. What a high risk pick that was by the Oil.

  5. Ryan says:

    “Surprisingly, with the increase in year over year goals, and several career highs among forwards, only one of the major players on defense—Matt Benning—projects to reach a career high in points.”

    Yes, Benning’s a lock for the second power play unit and a corresponding bump in pp toi.

    What’s the fallback plan if Benning or Klefbom get injured? I guess you can call up bear.

  6. Wilde says:

    “My projections this season have McDavid, Draisaitl and Nuge once again scoring 40 percent of the goals in 2018-19, and five forwards scoring between 10 and 19 goals. A fourth scoring forward has to emerge, but the projections I use have the group shy again. .”

    Wonder what this means, in terms of relating to playoff teams?

    I’ll use last years numbers.

    St. Louis

    Tarasenko – 33
    Schenn – 28
    O’Reilly – 24
    Schwartz – 24
    Maroon – 17
    Perron – 16
    Steen – 15
    Pietrangelo – 15

    New hopefuls – Thomas, Kyrou, Bozak (18 goals in 2016-17)

    Winnipeg

    Laine – 44
    Connor – 31
    Ehlers – 29
    Wheeler – 23
    Scheifele – 23
    Perrault – 17
    Little – 16

    New hopefuls – Roslovic, Vesalainen, Petan

    Vegas

    Karlsson – 43
    Haula – 29
    Marshessault – 27
    Smith – 22
    Stastny – 16
    Tuch – 15

    New hopefuls – Glass, Suzuki

    Colorado

    MacKinnon – 39
    Rantanen – 29
    Landeskog – 25
    Kerfoot – 19
    Soderberg – 16
    Nieto – 15

    Newcoming hopefuls – Kamanev

    Philadelphia

    Van Riemsdyk – 36
    Giroux – 34
    Couturier – 31
    Simmonds – 24
    Konecny – 24
    Voracek – 20
    Provorov – 17

    Newcoming hopefuls – Frost, Lindblom

    Florida

    Trochek – 31
    Dadanov – 28
    Huberdeau – 27
    Barkov – 27
    Hoffman – 22
    Bjugstad – 19
    Ekblad – 16

    Newcoming hopefuls – Borgstrom, Tippett

    Edmonton

    McDavid – 41
    Draisaitl – 25
    Nugent-Hopkins – 24

    Newcoming hopefuls – Yamamoto

    It’s a long way up for this forward corps. I think this gets lost in the debates over the defence. There’s nothing concrete here past three players, to round out a top six you need two ~20 year olds to hit and Lucic to bounce back.

  7. Lowetide says:

    Ryan:
    “Surprisingly, with the increase in year over year goals, and several career highs among forwards, only one of the major players on defense—Matt Benning—projects to reach a career high in points.”

    Yes, Benning’s a lock for the second power play unit and a corresponding bump in pp toi.

    What’s the fallback plan if Benning or Klefbom get injured? I guess you can call up bear.

    I think it goes Klefbom, Benning, Nurse, Gravel among the regulars, with Evan Bouchard as an early option and Bear as a later one. In reality, a trade is more likely than anything.

  8. Wilde says:

    By the way, I added to my Yamamoto series, doing a post addressing one of the things I read and hear about Yamamoto – That he’ll need to build up more strength to be able to make the NHL and drive the middle lane.

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/2018/09/arrival-time-of-kailer-yamamoto-driving.html

  9. anonymous says:

    Couldn’t agree more. I’ve never faltered as far as paying full attention to the oilers. That being said I’m no longer in the die hard category, even with McDavid a cup win won’t be as sweet as winning it in 06’ or the party that would have been had the Weight led oilers pulled it out. The Katz era has left me a little dead inside.

  10. Wilde says:

    I’d run Benning on the top unit with Him, McDavid, Nuge, Yamamoto and Puljujarvi.

    Benning at the point, Yamamoto at the bumper, Puljujarvi left circle and Nuge/McDavid rotating netside and halfwall.

  11. Lowetide says:

    Wilde:
    I’d run Benning on the top unit with Him, McDavid, Nuge, Yamamoto and Puljujarvi.

    Benning at the point, Yamamoto at the bumper, Puljujarvi left circle and Nuge/McDavid rotating netside and halfwall.

    I’m no expert when it comes to the power play but like PP’s that move. 97 and 93 are both witches, I’d try to make it work with both of them before moving 93 to No. 2 power play (where he will no doubt land).

    After that, I agree two RH shooters are required (WG has been on this forever), with JP, KY and Strome all candidates. I have been trained by years of awful to expect insane decisions and poor results on the 5-on-4.

  12. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Wilde,

    It’s a long way up for this forward corps. I think this gets lost in the debates over the defence. There’s nothing concrete here past two players, to round out a top six you need two ~20 year olds to hit and Lucic to bounce back.

    Let’s not forget that EDM only scored 14 less goals last year than in 16/17

    They were 20th last year in all situation goals with 229
    They were 8th in 16/17 in all situation goals with 243

    243 was good for 15th place (NJD) in 17/18

    LT has them increasing a bit 5v5 and +15 on special teams. (20 more on PP, 5 less on PK)

    Of course you want to be in the group in the top 10 and in 17/18 that meant getting to 255 (COL) so 26 more than last year.

    That’s a tougher row to hoe, but I think the current roster can do it, especially with a new PP coach.

  13. Ryan says:

    Lowetide: I think it goes Klefbom, Benning, Nurse, Gravel among the regulars, with Evan Bouchard as an early option and Bear as a later one. In reality, a trade is more likely than anything.

    If that’s the plan, it might be good to preempt the situation with a trade. The price always goes up when teams know you’re desperate. Cough, I won’t ruin this thread by restarting the trade for 27 discussion.

    Bear was a high event guy on the PP last year.

    Positive: 9.12 GF on/60.
    Negative: 1.82 GA on /60

    Small sample sizes and all. Nurse had 40 minutes on the PP last year. His 1.49 GG/60 couldn’t outscore Bear’s GA/60.

  14. Ryan says:

    Wilde:
    I’d run Benning on the top unit with Him, McDavid, Nuge, Yamamoto and Puljujarvi.

    Benning at the point, Yamamoto at the bumper, Puljujarvi left circle and Nuge/McDavid rotating netside and halfwall.

    You’re miles ahead of me in your understanding of hockey systems, but…

    Mclellan likes Klefbom on the PP based on toi/60.

    Yamamoto might be a little small for the bumper? I liked Leon in this role two years ago because of his size, backhand passing ability.

    JP needs to trim his sideburns. Might have to shave his entire head to get on the first unit.

  15. Wilde says:

    Lowetide: I’m no expert when it comes to the power play but like PP’s that move. 97 and 93 are both witches, I’d try to make it work with both of them before moving 93 to No. 2 power play (where he will no doubt land).

    Yes, it’s interesting that the thought has been that since 97 & 93 play the same spot on the ice in the power play and are both good at it that they should man separate units, but often 29 & 97 would swap spots during the play anyways, just as they could with Nuge.

    The way I see it is that you can’t focus on having two units going good by spreading out your magicians if the first one’s not going yet.

    I think you can get so, so much out of Nuge and McDavid if you cut their PK TOI and run them both on the PP1. I honestly believe we’re talking about a ten point swing (for both players) there, on the season, if it plays out just right.

    Amusingly enough, how much input McLellan has on the powerplay personnel may play a role here in whether or not you see 93 on that top unit to start. He generally plays the players that are together 5v5, together on the powerplay, doing so with Nuge and McDavid at the end of the year:

    http://naturalstattrick.com/linestats.php?season=20172018&stype=2&sit=5v4&score=all&rate=n&team=EDM&view=log&loc=B&gpfilt=none&fd=2017-10-04&td=2018-04-08&tgp=82&strict=incl&p1=8476454&p2=8478402&p3=0&p4=0&p5=0

    Basically when they got put together 5v5, they got put together 5v4.

    So, if this practice continues and they open the season with 5v5 informing 5v4, we may see them on the same unit.

    But, Gulutzan also talked about trying a five leftie powerplay, which can pre-emptively go to hell.

    (please prove me wrong)

  16. Wilde says:

    Ryan: You’re miles ahead of me in your understanding of hockey systems, but…

    Mclellan likes Klefbom on the PP based on toi/60.

    Yamamoto might be a little small for the bumper? I liked Leon in this role two years ago because of his size, backhand passing ability.

    JP needs to trim his sideburns. Might have to shave his entire head to get on the first unit.

    McLellan played Yamamoto at bumper during his 9 NHL games

    (There’s video of this on my newest post on my blog)

    Kailer played a different role on a good (looking, don’t know their numbers) powerplay unit in Spokane, it was similar to EDM’s 2017-18 PP where they kept closing in and trying to hit guys in the middle.

    Basically Spokane was Yamamoto left side, Anderson-Dolan right side, and they just seam passed to each other at will.

    I’d see where Yamamoto’s shot is at before trying him there, especially since Puljujarvi was legendary in Finland in that role when he was growing up.

  17. Pescador says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Thanks!

    We all come from People of The Wood somewhere down the ancestral chain

    It’s great to be alive!
    We all have wood to thank, one way or another

  18. Ryan says:

    Wilde,

    Yes. My biggest annoyance with Mclellan is his use of the big guys on the PK.

    McDavid should not be playing a minute per game on the PK. That’s indefensible.

    Crosby who has a better two-way rep than 97 played under 10 seconds a game iirc last season.

    A minute for each of Draisatl and McDavid and a 1:40 per game of Nuge.

    That’s a lot of wasted opportunity in my opinion too.

  19. Wilde says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Let’s not forget that EDM only scored 14 less goals last year than in 16/17

    They were 20th last year in all situation goals with 229

    They were 8th in 16/17 in all situation goals with 243

    243 was good for 15th place (NJD) in 17/18

    LT has them increasing a bit 5v5 and +15 on special teams. (20 more on PP, 5 less on PK)

    Of course you want to be in the group in the top 10 and in 17/18 that meant getting to 255 (COL) so 26 more than last year.

    That’s a tougher row to hoe, but I think the current roster can do it, especially with a new PP coach.

    The other ace-in-the-hole is that they’re going to have a new architect of 5v5 offense as well, with Woodcroft in Bakersfield.

    There’s a lot of forwards on this team who either haven’t played for any other coaching staff in their career, or they came here and saw a dip in production under the last guys.

    That’s why Gulutzan kinda scares me. He had the same type of corgi-defying offensive team in Calgary last year. Year before was different, but in the way that they didn’t even have shot volume /on top/ of being a bottom ten 5v5 GF/60 team.

  20. godot10 says:

    Wilde:
    I’d run Benning on the top unit with Him, McDavid, Nuge, Yamamoto and Puljujarvi.

    Benning at the point, Yamamoto at the bumper, Puljujarvi left circle and Nuge/McDavid rotating netside and halfwall.

    Yamamoto as the bumper…the ball in a pinball machine.

  21. Oilman99 says:

    Lowetide: I’m no expert when it comes to the power play but like PP’s that move. 97 and 93 are both witches, I’d try to make it work with both of them before moving 93 to No. 2 power play (where he will no doubt land).

    After that, I agree two RH shooters are required (WG has been on this forever), with JP, KY and Strome all candidates. I have been trained by years of awful to expect insane decisions and poor results on the 5-on-4.

    97&93 move the puck much quicker, seems when Drai is with 97 the play gets too slow because they are trying to look for each other and things get out of sync. Here’s hoping Benson rocks it this year, still remember his bantam stats, there is too much talent there not to make an impact at the NHL level if he can stay healthy.

  22. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Wilde,

    That’s why Gulutzan kinda scares me. He had the same type of corgi-defying offensive team in Calgary last year. Year before was different, but in the way that they didn’t even have shot volume /on top/ of being a bottom ten 5v5 GF/60 team.

    I think you can chalk a lot of that up to scoring talent.

    Getting the corgi and getting the goal can be two different skill sets.

    Also,

    I don’t know if you saw my post yesterday, but team level CF% was not correlated with team GF% at any time last year.

  23. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    godot10: Yamamoto as the bumper…the ball in a pinball machine.

    Sam Gagner was the bumper when CBJ was killing 5v4 two years ago.

    The bumper doesn’t get near the beating a “net front” guy gets.

  24. Woodguy v2.0 says:


    Frank Seravalli
    ‏Verified account @frank_seravalli

    Vegas @GoldenKnights defenceman Nate Schmidt has been suspended 20 games by the #NHL for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.

    Glad I bet the under already.

    Losing the Dman who carried the 1st pair is gonna hurt bad.

  25. Wilde says:

    godot10: Yamamoto as the bumper…the ball in a pinball machine.

    Smaller players play bumper quite often, actually

    Gallagher, Point, Guentzel, Atkinson etc

  26. Wilde says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Sam Gagner was the bumper when CBJ was killing 5v4 two years ago.

    The bumper doesn’t get near the beating a “net front” guy gets.

    Also, if one of your guys is stretching out/messing up the diamond to like… hit the bumper guy… you’re pretty screwed. That’s a benching for most coaches.

  27. Clarkenstein says:

    I’m actually a bit more optimistic about the Oil this year even with that mind boggling schedule to start the season. Why? I like the new veterans. I think the room needs them for their maturity and experience. I also like the coaching changes. Having said that I would give Todd Mac 30 games to prove that last year was an anomaly. That happens to be Dec. 09. I’m going to mark it on my calendar.

  28. Oilman99 says:

    Woodguy v2.0:

    Frank Seravalli
    ‏Verified account @frank_seravalli


    Vegas @GoldenKnights defenceman Nate Schmidt has been suspended 20 games by the #NHL for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.

    Glad I bet the under already.

    Losing the Dman who carried the 1st pair is gonna hurt bad.

    The guy finally arrives, then blows it up, not smart.

  29. jtblack says:

    ” I will say this: If you support a party that in any way allows race, color, orientation or creed to divide, then you lost me in that instant.”

    +1

  30. godot10 says:

    //My Dad taught me, when I was a child, that the number to remember is one. When one person has his or her rights compromised, then every single one of us is in danger. There is no middle ground here. None.//

    Post-modern cultural marxists and gender fluidists have thoroughly muddied all the waters.

    Example: Consider a real case. A self-identified pre-op trans woman (i.e. full male genitalia) shows up at a women’s shelter and is put in room with a cis woman who has been raped and beaten by her former husband. What should happen? Self-identified pre-op trans women do show up at women’s shelters these day.

    This is sort of a case where one is going to have to pick a side. It is actually causing a civil war in feminism.

  31. Wilde says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I think you can chalk a lot of that up to scoring talent.

    Getting the corgi and getting the goal can be two different skill sets.

    Also,

    I don’t know if you saw my post yesterday, but team level CF% was not correlated with team GF% at any time last year.

    You can, but the same problem exists on this team

    And yeah, I did see that. About mid-way through last year I was at the point where it’s like, I don’t think I want to use CF% for team performance anymore. There’s teams that are doing the old meme ‘shot quality’ thing, except, they’re legit. Like Minnesota.

    I still like CF% for players and duos even if it’s just scouting usage and little things like that.

  32. Oilman99 says:

    Wilde: Smaller players play bumper quite often, actually

    Gallagher, Point, Guentzel, Atkinson etc

    Those guys are much more stalky and solid on their skates, Yammer not so much.

  33. Wilde says:

    I wish it was McNabb instead.

    Can we suspend McNabb instead? Just because?

  34. jtblack says:

    Woodguy v2.0:

    Frank Seravalli
    ‏Verified account @frank_seravalli


    Vegas @GoldenKnights defenceman Nate Schmidt has been suspended 20 games by the #NHL for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.

    Glad I bet the under already.

    Losing the Dman who carried the 1st pair is gonna hurt bad.

    Massive loss.

    I love Gallant and his “style”. But everytbing is aligning for Vegas to take a big step back. This hurts them.

  35. Ryan says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Wilde,

    It’s a long way up for this forward corps. I think this gets lost in the debates over the defence. There’s nothing concrete here past two players, to round out a top six you need two ~20 year olds to hit and Lucic to bounce back.

    Let’s not forget that EDM only scored 14 less goals last year than in 16/17

    They were 20th last year in all situation goals with 229
    They were 8th in 16/17 in all situation goals with 243

    243 was good for 15th place (NJD) in 17/18

    LT has them increasing a bit 5v5 and +15 on special teams. (20 more on PP, 5 less on PK)

    Of course you want to be in the group in the top 10 and in 17/18 that meant getting to 255 (COL) so 26 more than last year.

    That’s a tougher row to hoe, but I think the current roster can do it, especially with a new PP coach.

    Let’s hope those five less PK goals has something to do with McDavid taken off the PK.

    Think about it.

    McDavid plays a minute per game on the PK where he gets out scoreD,

    That’s one more minute a game he could be playing even strength and out scoring the opposition.

    Boggles the mind.

  36. godot10 says:

    godot10:
    //My Dad taught me, when I was a child, that the number to remember is one. When one person has his or her rights compromised, then every single one of us is in danger. There is no middle ground here. None.//

    Post-modern cultural marxists and gender fluidists have thoroughly muddied all the waters.

    Example:Consider a real case.A self-identified pre-op trans woman (i.e. full male genitalia)shows up at a women’s shelter and is put in room with a cis woman who has been raped and beaten by her former husband.What should happen?Self-identified pre-op trans women do show up at women’s shelters these day.

    This is sort of a case where one is going to have to pick a side.It is actually causing a civil war in feminism.

    And then there is the who issue of trans women in women’s sports.

    And the whole thing about who is eligible for women’s scholarships or set asides becomes murky.

  37. Melvis says:

    Politically speaking, the foreign minister isn’t very stylin’. She needs a dresser and a lesson in black works when white doesn’t. Jeez.

  38. Wilde says:

    Oilman99: Those guys are much more stalky and solid on their skates, Yammer not so much.

    Any particular reason why you feel this way? Was there any game in particular of Yamamoto’s nine that you felt this was displayed?

  39. defmn says:

    //I’m a Neil Young fan. His politics don’t rhyme with many, so saying that out loud can get you in trouble with some people.//

    Young’s voice gives me chills in certain songs. In an industry that values uniqueness he still stands out as one of a kind. I have a lot of respect for that.

    As to his politics?

    Artists, in general, know as much about politics as politicians know about art.

    What a voice.

  40. dustrock says:

    Thanks for the words of wisdom, LT. The Oilers may never find balance but you provide it in every one of your posts.

  41. jtblack says:

    Schmidt just volleyed back. Basically saying he has 1/7th of a billion in his system. Says its BS

  42. Lowetide says:

    Clarkenstein:
    I’m actually a bit more optimistic about the Oil this year even with that mind boggling schedule to start the season. Why?I like the new veterans. I think the room needs them for their maturity and experience.I also like the coaching changes.Having said that I would give Todd Mac 30 games to prove that last year was an anomaly. That happens to be Dec. 09.I’m going to mark it on my calendar.

    I think that’s fair.

  43. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Wilde: You can, but the same problem exists on this team

    And yeah, I did see that. About mid-way through last year I was at the point where it’s like, I don’t think I want to use CF% for team performance anymore. There’s teams that are doing the old meme ‘shot quality’ thing, except, they’re legit. Like Minnesota.

    I still like CF% for players and duos even if it’s just scouting usage and little things like that.

    I haven’t seen anyone check player level CF%–>GF% yet, but I’d be surprised if the correlation collapsed there too.

    I still like it to quantify what happened for players in small samples too.

    Will be interesting to see what comes this year at the team level.

    I think the main driver is the coaches adapting.

    SH% is up, rush goals are up, some teams are focusing on creating the high SH% situations, etc.

    This year the goalies all get the smaller chest protectors and upper body gear and that will move the SH% needle a little too.

    Also,

    The CF% spread from best to worst among teams has shrunk so the differences don’t mean as much as they used to.

    Standard deviation on team level CF% in 11/12 was 2.70, last year it was 2.04

    CF% superiority was exploited and now has been countered so its on to other things.

  44. pts2pndr says:

    Wilde: Smaller players play bumper quite often, actually

    Gallagher, Point, Guentzel, Atkinson etc

    Did they do it as raw rookies? Worth a try in preseason but is not something to expect great success from early!

  45. Pescador says:

    jtblack:
    Schmidt just volleyed back.Basically saying he has 1/7th of a billion in his system.Says its BS

    Not trying to be judge & jury but if its in your system, doesn’t that mean you were using it?
    Is he saying it doesn’t count because i didn’t inhale?

  46. Bag of Pucks says:

    I’m right there with you on baseball LT. The Jays are fun on occasion, but it’s simply not the same since the Expos. That said, a warm summer night in one of America’s great ballparks is still time extremely well spent.

    RE: The Stones. Curious to your thoughts on Tattoo You and Voodoo Lounge? Those are the two albums regarded as their best returns to form after Some Girls.

    Tattoo You came at a time when the Mick and Keef frictions were starting and Richards was embroiled in a lot of legal and addiction issues. As a result, much of that record was Mick combing back through the Mick Taylor era for leftover riff gems. Always loved the format of that record (A side rockin’, B side mellow/trippy). For younger posters, if you like the Foo Fighters ‘In Your Honour,’ go back and check out this Stones classic. For a couple years, side B of that record was my Sunday morning hangover recovery go to.

    Voodoo Lounge is a good not great record imo but the two tracks with Richards on lead vocals are money. Keef channels his inner Tom Waits and gives us some true reinvention of the blues.

    And yes, personal fan loyalty will ebb and flow but don’t presume to tell me how to support my team. This organization has approached Steinbrenneresque dysfunction at times, and I’ve stuck with them through it all. If there’s time when I’ve stepped back, that’s because it’s the sane thing to do. For a couple weeks after they sided with Eakins over Perron, I did briefly flirt with firing them into the sun. Fortunately my lovely and prescient wife considered all of the Oil memorabilia in our pad and said no effing way! Lol. And then….McDavid. Music.

  47. jtblack says:

    Pescador: Not trying to be judge & jury but if its in your system, doesn’t that mean you were using it?
    Is he saying it doesn’t count because i didn’t inhale?

    Not sure the whole story and not sure what the substance was.

    Sometimes they can take nyquil or something like that and it will have a banned substance in it. or he’s guilty. We Wait!

  48. teddyturnbuckle says:

    Excited about Benson, hope he can stay healthy throughout this season. Seems like a bit of a leader too.

  49. Bag of Pucks says:

    Like Neil Young’s music a lot, but if you want to convince me of the validity of your environmentalism, then you have to walk the talk. That means zero carbon footprint and alternative power wherever possible. Neil drives around in vintage gas guzzlers whilst insisting that oil is evil. That’s hypocritical at best, narcissistic at worst.

    One thing I’ll never understand is how so many environmentalists ignore the connection between petroleum products and plastic resins. We can theoretically ween ourselves off fossil fuels as energy sources but we are addicted to plastic with our consumer products. Bioresins has to be a dominant talking point for anyone who’s serious about a true paradigm shift on this behaviour imo.

    And the oil sands are a drop in the bucket in regards to the impact on climate change compared to carbon emissions in China and India. That doesn’t give us any moral high ground on this issue, but that context is important in the face of the misinformation fed us by dilettante celebrity environmentalists like Neil Young, Jane Fonda and James Cameron.

  50. JimmyV1965 says:

    Great article LT. Love the stuff about being a fan. We should all cheer a team the way we like, even if it means jumping off the bandwagon for awhile. There are no good fans and bad fans. Sometimes I wish Oiler fans were not so passionate, that we walk away from the rink when the team stinks. Would give mngt a little more incentive to run a good franchise. But here we are talking Oilers every day, rain or shine.

    Neil Young was my favourite Canadian artist. Powderfinger is still one of my favourite songs, although I deleted it from my playlist. I felt betrayed when he turned his back on Alberta. I always thought he was a working man’s artist, but not so much I guess. On tho bright side, there’s so much great music out there. I binged watched Can’t You See on YouTube the other night. I listened to the Marshall Tucker version and about 15 covers. Frickin love that song.

  51. Lowetide says:

    BofP: After Goats Head Soup, I go:

    It’s only rock and roll: Some very good songs, especially side one
    Black and Blue: Dull
    Some Girls: Loved the album, even the disco parts. Before they make me run great Richards’ song
    EMotional Rescue: Good title song +She’s so Cold but their material wasn’t strong
    Tattoo You: Some of their best songs (Waiting on a friend, Start me Up) but a couple of them came from close to a decade before. They missed Taylor and Richards didn’t seem to be Richards either.
    Undercover: I actually missed this album entirely, caught up with it after it had been out for a time. Not a lot of inspiration.
    Dirty Work I liked. Seemed to be more of a band even though the songs weren’t as good as before
    Steel Wheels I also liked, although Mixed Emotions is the worst well known song they ever recorded (taking over from We Love You)
    Voodoo Lounge I liked the sound on, and some of the songs were really good (Love is Strong), this would probably be my favorite albums since Some Girls.
    Bridges to Babylon I have listened to through maybe five times.
    A Bigger Bang I liked the sound on songs like Streets of Love, you reach a point where you’re kind of pulling for your favourites and I think this was about as good as could be expected based on age/inspiration. Biggest Mistake is also good, I like Mick’s voice on that song.

    Honestly, Plundered my Soul is probably better than anything since Tattoo You (and that was also an album of some older tunes married to new ones). As with all bands, the songs are the key. They’re easily my favourite band. Get yer Ya-Ya’s Out is the greatest live album ever, just incredible. As for studio albums, I’m always going between Let it Bleed, Sticky Fingers and Exile. My current choice is Sticky Fingers but that will change.

  52. 106 and 106 says:

    “I will say this: If you support a party that in any way allows race, color, orientation or creed to divide, then you lost me in that instant.”

    Sunday Lowetide is always a special Lowetide. One of the best lines written on this blog; thanks LT.

  53. Bag of Pucks says:

    Lowetide:
    BofP: After Goats Head Soup, I go:

    It’s only rock and roll: Some very good songs, especially side one
    Black and Blue: Dull
    Some Girls: Loved the album, even the disco parts. Before they make me run great Richards’ song
    EMotional Rescue: Good title song +She’s so Cold but their material wasn’t strong
    Tattoo You: Some of their best songs (Waiting on a friend, Start me Up) but a couple of them came from close to a decade before. They missed Taylor and Richards didn’t seem to be Richards either.
    Undercover: I actually missed this album entirely, caught up with it after it had been out for a time. Not a lot of inspiration.
    Dirty Work I liked. Seemed to be more of a band even though the songs weren’t as good as before
    Steel Wheels I also liked, although Mixed Emotions is the worst well known song they ever recorded (taking over from We Love You)
    Voodoo Lounge I liked the sound on, and some of the songs were really good (Love is Strong), this would probably be my favorite albums since Some Girls.
    Bridges to Babylon I have listened to through maybe five times.
    A Bigger Bang I liked the sound on songs like Streets of Love, you reach a point where you’re kind of pulling for your favourites and I think this was about as good as could be expected based on age/inspiration. Biggest Mistake is also good, I like Mick’s voice on that song.

    Honestly, Plundered my Soul is probably better than anything since Tattoo You (and that was also an album of some older tunes married to new ones). As with all bands, the songs are the key. They’re easily my favourite band. Get yer Ya-Ya’s Out is the greatest live album ever, just incredible. As for studio albums, I’m always going between Let it Bleed, Sticky Fingers and Exile. My current choice is Sticky Fingers but that will change.

    My fave band is probably Zeppelin but the Stones are a very very close second. And I love this summary! We are very similar in our tastes re: their catalogue. Exile and Sticky are always jockeying for position as the best for me and Some Girls was by far their best after Taylor. Only LP we diverge a tad on is Undercover. I quite like that record. There’s nothing groundbreaking on it, but it’s chock a block full of toe tapping rockers. If the Clash had released that record, the critics would’ve loved it.

    I’m also a sucker for some of Jagger’s more sentimental stuff, Blinded by Love, Let it Loose, Angie.

    And I love love love when the boys do country. Faraway Eyes, Sweet Virginia, Dead Flowers. Dear Doctor. Those songs take me to my happy place.

  54. Wilde says:

    pts2pndr: ,

    Yep, Gallagher’s first year he was on that powerplay unit, spent ~500 mins evens and ~110 mins powerplay. Ditto Point, 170 mins his rookie year.

    Most teams as of late are actually putting their talented rookies on the powerplay straight out of the box, figuring you’d better just put the most skilled players on the ice so long as they fit right instead of using powerplay time as a reward.

  55. dustrock says:

    Pescador: Not trying to be judge & jury but if its in your system, doesn’t that mean you were using it?
    Is he saying it doesn’t count because i didn’t inhale?

    At that level, he could have inhaled it.

    The easy anecdote is the lady fired from her job for getting a positive opiate result.. Turns out she ate a poppyseed muffin.

    The poppy seeds were enough to produce a positive result.

  56. Bruce McCurdy says:

    106 and 106:
    “I will say this: If you support a party that in any way allows race, color, orientation or creed to divide, then you lost me in that instant.”

    Sunday Lowetide is always a special Lowetide. One of the best lines written on this blog; thanks LT.

    Agreed. My own list includes gender, & I suspect yours does too.

  57. tileguy says:

    Can’t you hear me knocking.

  58. jp says:

    Oilman99: The guy finally arrives, then blows it up, not smart.

    You think the arrival wasn’t aided by the same substances the suspension is for?

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    anonymous:
    Couldn’t agree more. I’ve never faltered as far as paying full attention to the oilers. That being said I’m no longer in the die hard category, even with McDavid a cup win won’t be as sweet as winning it in 06’ or the party that would have been had the Weight led oilers pulled it out. The Katz era has left me a little dead inside.

    Living in Calgary as a junior associate in 2006, I attended 7 games at Rexall (would have been more but I had to watch 2 in Acapulco at a national firm retreat and the commute would have been a little far).

    As an aside, my national financial services department head had a special satellite brought in to the resort so that the game could be watched at one of the outdoor bars, feet from the ocean. I mentioned, half jokingly, that I wasn’t coming on the retreat without knowledge I could get the game. He took it to heart.

    Anyways,now I’m 41 and a partner and my commitment, I believe, is just as strong as always.

    Go Oilers!

  60. OriginalPouzar says:

    Its interesting to talk PP systems, however, I will remember that Manny Viverios has been hired and, from accounts, he is all about innovation on the PP for systems that include lots of movement.

    We may see a PP that bears very little resemblance to the past.

  61. OriginalPouzar says:

    Ryan:
    Wilde,

    Yes. My biggest annoyance with Mclellan is his use of the big guys on the PK.

    McDavid should not be playing a minute per game on the PK. That’s indefensible.

    Crosby who has a better two-way rep than 97 played under 10 seconds a game iirc last season.

    A minute for each of Draisatl and McDavid and a 1:40 per game of Nuge.

    That’s a lot of wasted opportunity in my opinion too.

    While your opinion is valid, the opposite opinion is far from indefensible just because you are vehemently against it.

    I can make valid argument for McDavid to spend some time here or there on the PK.

  62. OriginalPouzar says:

    Oilman99: Those guys are much more stalky and solid on their skates, Yammer not so much.

    Is this really true? How much Yamamoto have you seen play to come to this conclusion?

    Not to mention, he is now months older with a full summer of training to get stronger.

    This seems to be a narrative that one wants to to fit “facts” in to.

  63. Ryan says:

    OriginalPouzar: While your opinion is valid, the opposite opinion is far from indefensible just because you are vehemently against it.

    I can make valid argument for McDavid to spend some time here or there on the PK.

    My preference would be for someone to call GeorgeXS to crunch the numbers for me.

    Though I didn’t articulate my position due to being rushed, I was referring to the marginal advantage (if any) of a minute per game of a superstar killing a penalty vs a bottom sixer compared to one extra minute of that superstar playing 5v5 vs a bottom sixer.

    Still rushed lol.

    On the PK, McDavid isn’t necessarily going to suppress shots or goals more than a bottom sixer. Last year, he did have one shortie and three assists.

    On the other hand, one minute of McDavid at 5v5 is much more likely to be a minute we outscore the opposition than a minute of a bottom sixer.

    Never mind the risk of McDavid blocking shots…

  64. oilersfan says:

    Woodguy

    I love your prediction of the flames missing the playoffs

    Can you flesh it out an explain why?

    Many commentators have their offseason moves putting
    The.m in the playoffs.

    Is it trading their top Dman for a third pairing one?

    Gio being 35 ?

  65. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    I posted this on twitter the other day:

    @Woodguy55

    Hot take: Flames down graded their Dcorps enough that it doesn’t matter what they added up front.

    They also have an 36 year old goalie who hasn’t posted north of .920 overall since 11/12.

    EDM beats CGY in the standings in 18/19 if the Good Gord willing and the creek don’t rise.

    Needless to say Oiler fans loved it, but Flames fans have not. 🙂

    Some have made good arguments for their team, but most don’t hold water imo.

    Flames fans are making a big deal of adding Neal and Lindholm up front and Hanifin in the back end.

    I’ve been using RelTGF% quite a bit because to me it describes the change in play a player add/subtracts from his team mates better than any single metric. Its not perfect, but players I value using a myriad of metrics always seem to do well via RelTGF% as well.

    That said, last two years of Neal, Lindholm and Hanifin via RelTGF%

    16/17
    Neal -6.3%
    Lindholm +0.78
    Hanifin +0.96

    17/18
    Neal -5.9%
    Lindholm -2.96%
    Hanifin -2.87%

    None of them rate very well here.

    Hanifin went from 18% vs Elites in 16/17 to 23% in 17/18. That probably effected his GF%.

    There is also the fact that Faulk did pretty much the same GF% wise with Hanifin as he did with Fleury while TVR was 7%GF better with Fleury than Hanifin.

    Hanifin will probably be a decent Dman in the future, but today he doesn’t look top 4.

    Nurse didn’t look top 4 in 16/17 but did in 17/18 so you can’t say these things with certainty, but in my time of looking at this stuff Nurse is a bit of an outlier in how quick his metrics turned around.

    Hamonic is a good partner to break a young Dmen into top 4 work as well. It might work but the deck is stacked against them for the first year imo.

    Here’s the player’s CGY gave up RelTGF% over the last 2 years:
    16/17
    Hamilton +11.84
    Ferland +1.96

    17/18
    Hamilton +6.04
    Ferland +10.4

    Now Hamilton played with Gio and Ferland played a lot with Monahan/Gaudreau in his final year so you can’t attribute all of this to them.

    That said Gio did better with Hamilton than without and in the +700minutes with Ferland Monhan/Gaudreau were +8.5% GF,

    CGY might be in for a tough year after capping out.

  66. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    oilersfan:
    Woodguy

    I love your prediction of the flames missing the playoffs

    Can you flesh it out an explain why?

    Many commentators have their offseason moves putting
    The.m in the playoffs.

    Is it trading their top Dman for a third pairing one?

    Gio being 35 ?

    Ha!

    I was working on the post below yours while you wrote this.

    Add to my post that Smith is 36 this year and injury prone……

    He’s put up .914-.916 steady for the last 3 years but even if he re-produces that performance I don’t think its enough.

    CGY will give up more chances this year with Hanifin in 2nd pair and Brodie in 1st pair so there’s a chance that Smith melts down at some point (he has a reputation of bitching at his team mates if he feels they aren’t doing their job)

  67. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    oilersfan:
    Woodguy

    I love your prediction of the flames missing the playoffs

    Can you flesh it out an explain why?

    Many commentators have their offseason moves putting
    The.m in the playoffs.

    Is it trading their top Dman for a third pairing one?

    Gio being 35 ?

    Also,

    Gio-Hamilton was one of the best Dpairs in the NHL for the last 2 seasons. The Flames were *much,much* better with them on ice.

    Gio-Brodie were good 3 years ago, but the Flames weren’t *much,much* better with them, just better.

    Check this out:

    17/18 GF%
    Gio & Hamilton on 52.5
    Gio & Hamilton off 45.6
    Team Overall 48.2

    16/17 GF%
    Gio & Hamilton on 66.7
    Gio & Hamilton off 44.7
    Team Overall 49.3

    15/16 GF%
    Gio & Brodie on 48.8
    Gio & Brodi off 45.2
    Team Overall 47.5

    I think that Brodie will really drag down Gio compared to Hamilton and as a result CGY loses a huge weapon that they’ve had for two years.

    If that happens and Hanifin is wobbly to start his Top 4 career it could get ugly.

    Also,

    Here’s the above using CF%. GF% is fine to use for full seasons imo, but some prefer CF%

    17/18 CF%
    Gio & Hamilton on 58.3
    Gio & Hamilton off 50.8
    Team Overall 53.5

    16/17 CF%
    Gio & Hamilton on 56.7
    Gio & Hamilton off 47.9
    Team Overall 50.5

    15/16 CF%
    Gio & Brodie on 49.9
    Gio & Brodi off 46.3
    Team Overall 48.0

  68. Side says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Not sure if I missed it in your writings, but does Bill Peters being the new head coach factor into your prediction of the Flames performance this year?

  69. jp says:

    Ryan: My preference would be for someone to call GeorgeXS to crunch the numbers for me.

    Though I didn’t articulate my position due to being rushed, I was referring to the marginal advantage (if any) of a minute per game of a superstar killing a penalty vs a bottom sixer compared to one extra minute of that superstar playing 5v5 vs a bottom sixer.

    Still rushed lol.

    On the PK, McDavid isn’t necessarily going to suppress shots or goals more than a bottom sixer. Last year, he did have one shortie and three assists.

    On the other hand, one minute of McDavid at 5v5 is much more likely to be a minute we outscore the opposition than a minute of a bottom sixer.

    Never mind the risk of McDavid blocking shots…

    This is actually a really interesting question.

    I looked at Natural Stat Trick for all forwards in the NHL with either 800 min 5X5 or 80 min 4X5 (~10 min/game even strength or ~1 min/game PK respectively).

    McDavid 5X5 on ice GF/60 and GF% (so the team with McDavid on ice)
    3.62 GF/60 (11th in the league) and 57.04% (56th overall)

    McDavid 4X5 on ice
    3.53 GF/60 (1st in the NHL) and 33.3% (3rd in the NHL – behind Cogliano and Barkov).

    So even at 4 on 5 the team scores at basically the same rate with McDavid on the ice as with McDavid 5 on 5. Obviously they give up more, being on the PK, but kind of amazing.

    For context the best team at 5X5 was TB leading the league at 3.02 GF/60 and 57.3% GF%. On the PK the Oilers were first with 1.5 GF/60, and Ana lead with 19.2% GF% (the Oilers were actually 10th in GF% on the PK at 15.2%).

    Maybe McDavid on the PK really is a good idea (or at least a wash with his 5×5). The team scores at the same rate and he can drag the GF% from 15% to 33%.

  70. pts2pndr says:

    Wilde: Yep, Gallagher’s first year he was on that powerplay unit, spent ~500 mins evens and ~110 mins powerplay. Ditto Point, 170 mins his rookie year.

    Most teams as of late are actually putting their talented rookies on the powerplay straight out of the box, figuring you’d better just put the most skilled players on the ice so long as they fit right instead of using powerplay time as a reward.

    Tnx. I just feel that there is great risk in placing rookies on the hot seat so to speak,too soon! When it works fine but you risk the players confidence and the damage can be irrepairable!

  71. jp says:

    Woodguy v2.0:

    I think the main driver is the coaches adapting.

    SH% is up, rush goals are up, some teams are focusing on creating the high SH% situations, etc.

    I wonder if the correlation comes back once more coaches adapt in the same direction?

    That is, the low correlation may be indicative of being in the middle of a change, if you know what I mean. Time will tell I guess.

  72. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Side:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Not sure if I missed it in your writings, but does Bill Peters being the new head coach factor into your prediction of the Flames performance this year?

    I don’t know enough about how coaches effect things or have a data base to research it

    That said, Peters’ CAR team was always long on CF% and short on GF%.

    I think a lot of that is talent in both scoring and preventing goals, but the way CAR became a goalie graveyard has me suspecting there’s something to his Dzone coverage, but I don’t know enough about it.

  73. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    jp,

    McDavid 5X5 on ice GF/60 and GF% (so the team with McDavid on ice)
    3.62 GF/60 (11th in the league) and 57.04% (56th overall)

    McDavid 4X5 on ice
    3.53 GF/60 (1st in the NHL) and 33.3% (3rd in the NHL – behind Cogliano and Barkov).

    So even at 4 on 5 the team scores at basically the same rate with McDavid on the ice as with McDavid 5 on 5

    Holy shit

  74. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    jp: I wonder if the correlation comes back once more coaches adapt in the same direction?

    That is, the low correlation may be indicative of being in the middle of a change, if you know what I mean. Time will tell I guess.

    That’s an interesting question.

    Every structure has a way to beat it.

  75. Wilde says:

    jp: McDavid 4X5 on ice
    3.53 GF/60

    e: for non-nerds this is an first-line level offensive goals for rate if it were 5v5.

    there are teams in this league that, with their best offensive duo on the ice, don’t hit this goals rate 5v5.

  76. Wilde says:

    although, I think with a less offensive 4v5 structure I don’t doubt that rate could be subject to a drop for the greater good

  77. Rondo says:

    Interesting discussion regarding sports and politics.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EUOEPsNbqk

  78. Richard S.S. says:

    Sample sizes vary according to the needs of the data acquired. Decisions can be made from the data obtained. The bigger the sample size, the increase in the data. Better/more accurate decisions can be made. Small sample size means insufficient data for a decision. But sometimes all that exists is the small sample size. WARNING: small sample size indicates possibilities only and are not definitive.

    1 minute in a game of 60 minutes is small sample size. 82 minutes in a season of 2460 minutes is still small sample size. It only indicates possibilities and is too small to base firm decisions on. Or in other words, Connor McDavid does what he wants to do.

  79. Melvis says:

    Lowetide,

    Yeah, but how do you really feel –

    About the Dave Clark Five?

    Catch Us If You Can might be a good, in yer face goal song when up 6-1 on the Flame late in the third. Because there’s nothing more dangerous than a five goal lead in the 2nd.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKw9AYPeCz8&frags=pl%2Cwn

  80. Melvis says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Yeah, we took three of four from VGK last year, but I don’t think Fleury was in goal for at least two of them.

  81. Melvis says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    I have a thing about the cuffs and collars matching. I don’t wanna have to explain that…

  82. Pretendergast says:

    Call me a pessimist when it comes to powerplay but until the NHL stops overcompensating to not show Mcdavid favourtism, the gains will be negligible.

    Edmonton 31st in Powerplay opportunities. Edit: 210 chances.

    Next closest: Ducks at 214
    Flames had 269, Colorado had most at 296.

    Almost 100 more powerplays!

    At 296 powerplays the Oilers would have scored 44 powerplay goals, which would still be bad but 19th in the league.

    Opportunity is almost as key as making opportunities count.

  83. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Pretendergast:
    Call me a pessimist when it comes to powerplay but until the NHL stops overcompensating to not show Mcdavid favourtism, the gains will be negligible.

    Edmonton 31st in Powerplay opportunities. 201 chances.

    Next closest: Ducks at 214
    Flames had 269, Colorado had most at 296.

    Almost 100 more powerplays!

    At 296 powerplays the Oilers would have scored 44 powerplay goals, which would still be bad but 19th in the league.

    Opportunity is almost as key as making opportunities count.

    It was 210 powerplays, and it was the fewest by any NHL team in a non-lockout season since the Oilers entered the NHL in 1979, a sample of 938 team-seasons.

    http://www.nhl.com/stats/team?report=powerplay&reportType=season&seasonFrom=19791980&seasonTo=20172018&gameType=2&filter=gamesPlayed,gte,50&sort=ppOpportunities
    (click on PP Opp at top to reverse the order, & save yourself the hassle of scrolling through 19 screens of 50 team-seasons each)

    WITH McDAVID.

    To call it horseshit is to leave out two or three expletives describing said horseshit.

  84. Lowetide says:

    Pretendergast:
    Call me a pessimist when it comes to powerplay but until the NHL stops overcompensating to not show Mcdavid favourtism, the gains will be negligible.

    Edmonton 31st in Powerplay opportunities. 201 chances.

    Next closest: Ducks at 214
    Flames had 269, Colorado had most at 296.

    Almost 100 more powerplays!

    At 296 powerplays the Oilers would have scored 44 powerplay goals, which would still be bad but 19th in the league.

    Opportunity is almost as key as making opportunities count.

    It’s one of the reasons I stopped at 51. If the Oilers received the number of PP chances McDavid earns, they might score 80 goals with the man advantage.

  85. Pretendergast says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Man that’s a stat, unbelievable.

    Also, the Nhl has cut powerplays in half since 05-06, mindblowing.

  86. Woogie63 says:

    If Aberg or Rattie can be effective on RW with 97/93 that solves a lot up front.

  87. Lowetide says:

    For The Athletic: A Labour Day weekend chat about the 2018-19 Edmonton Oilers and what may come https://theathletic.com/501795/2018/09/02/a-labour-day-weekend-chat-about-the-2018-19-edmonton-oilers-and-what-may-come/

  88. Woogie63 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: It was 210 powerplays, and it was the fewest by any NHL team in a non-lockout season since the Oilers entered the NHL in 1979, a sample of 938 team-seasons.

    http://www.nhl.com/stats/team?report=powerplay&reportType=season&seasonFrom=19791980&seasonTo=20172018&gameType=2&filter=gamesPlayed,gte,50&sort=ppOpportunities
    (click on PP Opp at top to reverse the order, & save yourself the hassle of scrolling through 19 screens of 50 team-seasons each)

    WITH McDAVID.

    To call it horseshit is to leave out two or three expletives describing said horseshit.

    Bruce, this points to absolute lack of danger in the balance of Oiler line up. For 40 minutes a night we are too slow, spend too much time without the puck or too much time in our own end. Did you have confidence Slepy, Letestu, Strome, Lucic, Nurse, or Larsson we’re going to draw a penalty, or more likely they skate the puck to bad ice?

  89. Ryan says:

    jp: This is actually a really interesting question.

    I looked at Natural Stat Trick for all forwards in the NHL with either 800 min 5X5 or 80 min 4X5 (~10 min/game even strength or ~1 min/game PK respectively).

    McDavid 5X5 on ice GF/60 and GF% (so the team with McDavid on ice)
    3.62 GF/60 (11th in the league) and 57.04% (56th overall)

    McDavid 4X5 on ice
    3.53 GF/60 (1st in the NHL) and 33.3% (3rd in the NHL – behind Cogliano and Barkov).

    So even at 4 on 5 the team scores at basically the same rate with McDavid on the ice as with McDavid 5 on 5. Obviously they give up more, being on the PK, but kind of amazing.

    For context the best team at 5X5 was TB leading the league at 3.02 GF/60 and 57.3% GF%. On the PK the Oilers were first with 1.5 GF/60, and Ana lead with 19.2% GF% (the Oilers were actually 10th in GF% on the PK at 15.2%).

    Maybe McDavid on the PK really is a good idea (or at least a wash with his 5×5). The team scores at the same rate and he can drag the GF% from 15% to 33%.

    Well. There’s a lot of different ways to look at this. No question McDavid scored well last season 4v5. Hilariously well, actually.

    If he weren’t McDavid, he’d be the type of guy you’d like on the PK too because he’s ridiculously fast, opportunistic, and smart. But he’s McDavid and the risk of getting injured from PK’ing doesn’t make sense to me.

    Now, I don’t have the math to prove this, but intuitively i know that there’s a lot more variability in scoring rate date for and against at 4v5 then there is at 5v5 for a given player.

    If you will allow me to cherry pick data here.

    Right off the hop, Jujar played an hour of PK last season similar to McDavid. He was -2.94 goals for / against per hour while McDavid was -3.53.

    If you were able to give most of McDavid’s minute per game of PK to JJ, you’d already be ahead +0.86 goals over the season right there.

    Then if you were to correspondingly give those 5v5 minutes of JJ to McDavid, you’d gain 1.44 goals per hour for a net of + 2.86 goals total.

    4 goals is enough for a win on the season, so 2.86 goals is not enough to get excited about, but not much point in playing McDavid on the PK when it’s actually costing you goals in this scenario.

    Even if you use Strome as an example…

    You actually gain 2 goals on the PK with McDavid playing an hour instead of Strome, but you lose 1.54 goals at 5v5, so you’re only gaining 0.46 goals. Over a season, that’s not enough to matter much.

    Also, there’s tremendous variability in GF-GA per 60 at 4v5 from year to year.

    Last year McDvaid was -4.91 goals for per hour on the PK while Drake played 40 minutes with a GF% of 50, lol.

    There’s not guarantee that these rates would hold up if we shifted minutes around, but it does show that there’s no huge advantage to playing McDavid on the PK.

    Granted if you’re down a goal late in an important game or other mitigating circumstances, it might be worth thinking about.

  90. Side says:

    Woogie63: Bruce, this points to absolute lack of danger in the balance of Oiler line up.For 40 minutes a night we are too slow, spend too much time without the puck or too much time in our own end.Did you have confidence Slepy, Letestu, Strome, Lucic, Nurse, or Larsson we’re going to draw a penalty, or more likely they skate the puck to bad ice?

    Do you have confidence that Slepy, Letestu, Lucic, Nurse or Larsson are the slowest players in the league? Which is why they can’t draw penalties?

    If so, I’m curious to see your thoughts on why the 16/17 Oilers didn’t have many issues drawing penalties.

  91. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Pretendergast:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    Man that’s a stat, unbelievable.

    Also, the Nhl has cut powerplays in half since 05-06, mindblowing.

    Check this post out: http://becauseoilers.blogspot.com/2017/09/if-nhl-refs-called-games-like-they-used.html

    I wrote it about a year ago

    Some of the changes in the NHL vis a vis powerplays and goals over the last 30 years are unreal.

  92. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy v2.0: CF% superiority was exploited and now has been countered so its on to other things.

    My concern about fancy stats from Day One was that hard & fast conclusions were being drawn from data that had little history. That has been alleviated somewhat as that history has grown to 10 full seasons plus 1 runt, but during that decade the game has continued to evolve, whether independent of fancy stats or because of them or (my bet) some combination of the two. The game has always evolved.

    Advanced stats started in 2007-08 with Behind the Net, and most fancy sites still hearken back to that season. So happened that the powerhouse team of that time was the Detroit Red Wings, the last team to win both the Presidents’ Trophy and the Stanley Cup in a full season. (The Blackhawks did the double in 2013 so technically they’re the most recent.)

    That Wings team was a RIDICULOUS outlier for shot volume, averaging 34.4 shots per game (5th most among 301 team-seasons 2007-18, excluding 2013), and allowing just 23.5 shots per game, the very best of any team in that same span. Their SF% of 59.4% was off the charts, and their GF% of “just” 58.5% was 4 percentage points clear of any other team, despite the Wings being slightly below the NHL average in both (!) Sh% and Sv%, with a mediocre PDO of .997. Their dominance was all about the outshooting.

    In so doing those outrageously talented Wings of Lidstrom, Rafalski, Kronwall, Chelios, Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Holmstrom, Franson et al set the gold standard that dominated the conversation for some years to come. Some unfortunate offshoots of this included the characterization of PDO as an expression of shooting “luck”, with some variations accounting for goaltending and very few analysts rating shooting as more than an individual skill that was apt to balance out on a team-wide basis.

    But…

    Other eras outside the fancystats convo had seen other gold standards. One excellent example is the 1981-88 Edmonton Oilers, who merely broke even on the shot clock while persistently outscoring their opposition by a rate exceeding 4:3. In particular — and to hearken back to yesterday’s thread — the Oilers had a perennially high shooting percentage that was at least 15.5% in all seven of those years, topping out at 17.1% in 1983-84.

    Only three other teams in that span — the 1981-82 Dynasty Islanders and the 1981-82 AND 1983-84 Quebec Nordiques — managed seasons north of 15%, while the Oilers comfortably exceeded that milestone seven years running. Persistent shooting percentage? Yes. High PDO? Yes, again. Luck?? Uhh, no.

    Oh how I would love to have detailed individual fancies from that era, but of course they aren’t available. Which is different from saying that era never happened, or that it isn’t possible to dominate on the basis of average SF% and dominant PDO, the mirror image of those 2007-08 Red Wings (or 2009-10 Blackhawks) who had dominant SF% and average PDO.

    And yes of course the era of dynasties is likely ancient history, but so too is 2007-08 which is now a decade in the rear view as the game continues to evolve.

    So while the exceptional teams cited above made off like bandits with shot quantity OR shot quality, for non-exceptional teams the best case scenario is some combination of those two things (which is why I love Danger Fenwick as a stat btw). It’s interesting but frankly unsurprising to me to see the game evolving back towards that middle ground.

  93. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Side: Do you have confidence that Slepy, Letestu, Lucic, Nurse or Larsson are the slowest players in the league? Which is why they can’t draw penalties?

    If so, I’m curious to see your thoughts on why the 16/17 Oilers didn’t have many issues drawing penalties.

    Because that was before McDavid “pointed up stairs”

    I’m convinced the refs let him get mugged the rest of the year to teach him a lesson.

  94. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bruce McCurdy: It was 210 powerplays, and it was the fewest by any NHL team in a non-lockout season since the Oilers entered the NHL in 1979, a sample of 938 team-seasons.

    http://www.nhl.com/stats/team?report=powerplay&reportType=season&seasonFrom=19791980&seasonTo=20172018&gameType=2&filter=gamesPlayed,gte,50&sort=ppOpportunities
    (click on PP Opp at top to reverse the order, & save yourself the hassle of scrolling through 19 screens of 50 team-seasons each)

    WITH McDAVID.

    To call it horseshit is to leave out two or three expletives describing said horseshit.

    I knew they were last in the league in opportunities but I had no idea is an era-low amount of opportunities. That is crazy.

    Thank you Bruce.

  95. OriginalPouzar says:

    I think its been shown via posts by people much smarter than me that McDavid on the PK is not indefensible – there are definitely arguments for it and numbers that support it.

    That was my only point.

    I also am not worried about McDavid getting injured on the PK more than any other game situation.

    Oilers fans are scarred from Nuge getting hurt on the PK but I don’t believe injuries happen at a higher rate on the PK than any other game situation. Seems to me McDavid’s injury wasn’t on the PK, Sekera’s injuries weren’t on the PK, the multitude of shoulder injuries over the years weren’t on the PK.

    No, I wouldn’t be in favor of McDavid being on PK1 every time we are in the box but I’ve got no issue with him taking the 3rd shift on the PK.

  96. Woogie63 says:

    Side: Do you have confidence that Slepy, Letestu, Lucic, Nurse or Larsson are the slowest players in the league? Which is why they can’t draw penalties?

    If so, I’m curious to see your thoughts on why the 16/17 Oilers didn’t have many issues drawing penalties.

    Letestu, Larsson, Lucic and Slepy (could add Kassian) all were not the player they were in 2016/17. I am not sure why but injuries, age and some sad personal issues effected this group.

  97. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy: My concern about fancy stats from Day One was that hard & fast conclusions were being drawn from data that had little history. That has been alleviated somewhat as that history has grown to 10 full seasons plus 1 runt, but during that decade the game has continued to evolve, whether independent of fancy stats or because of them or (my bet) some combination of the two. The game has always evolved.

    Great post, Bruce. I remember push back years ago when we discussed save percentage on this blog and others, talked about equipment and coaching and even playing styles having enormous impact. We talk about era’s as if they are in the distant past, we would all do well to remember we’re in one now. And it is evolving.

  98. Woogie63 says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    I posted this on twitter the other day:

    @Woodguy55


    Hot take: Flames down graded their Dcorps enough that it doesn’t matter what they added up front.

    They also have an 36 year old goalie who hasn’t posted north of .920 overall since 11/12.

    EDM beats CGY in the standings in 18/19 if the Good Gord willing and the creek don’t rise.

    Needless to say Oiler fans loved it, but Flames fans have not.

    Some have made good arguments for their team, but most don’t hold water imo.

    Flames fans are making a big deal of adding Neal and Lindholm up front and Hanifin in the back end.

    I’ve been using RelTGF% quite a bit because to me it describes the change in play a player add/subtracts from his team mates better than any single metric.Its not perfect, but players I value using a myriad of metrics always seem to do well via RelTGF% as well.

    That said, last two years of Neal, Lindholm and Hanifin via RelTGF%

    16/17
    Neal -6.3%
    Lindholm +0.78
    Hanifin +0.96

    17/18
    Neal -5.9%
    Lindholm -2.96%
    Hanifin -2.87%

    None of them rate very well here.

    Hanifin went from 18% vs Elites in 16/17 to 23% in 17/18.That probably effected his GF%.

    There is also the fact that Faulk did pretty much the same GF% wise with Hanifin as he did with Fleury while TVR was 7%GF better with Fleury than Hanifin.

    Hanifin will probably be a decent Dman in the future, but today he doesn’t look top 4.

    Nurse didn’t look top 4 in 16/17 but did in 17/18 so you can’t say these things with certainty, but in my time of looking at this stuff Nurse is a bit of an outlier in how quick his metrics turned around.

    Hamonic is a good partner to break a young Dmen into top 4 work as well.It might work but the deck is stacked against them for the first year imo.

    Here’s the player’s CGY gave up RelTGF% over the last 2 years:
    16/17
    Hamilton +11.84
    Ferland +1.96

    17/18
    Hamilton +6.04
    Ferland +10.4

    Now Hamilton played with Gio and Ferland played a lot with Monahan/Gaudreau in his final year so you can’t attribute all of this to them.

    That said Gio did better with Hamilton than without and in the +700minutes with Ferland Monhan/Gaudreau were +8.5% GF,

    CGY might be in for a tough year after capping out.

    Love this, WG I am going to “steal” a bunch of this. It can be tough being an Oiler fan living in Calgary.

  99. Woogie63 says:

    I am going to the rookie game September 9, I have a good sightline on the Oiler rookies.

    NCAA players will not be there, who do the Flames have other than,

    Valimaki, Dube, Gawdin and Phillips.

  100. Lowetide says:

    Woogie63:
    I am going to the rookie game September 9, I have a good sightline on the Oiler rookies.

    NCAA players will not be there, who do the Flames have other than,

    Valimaki, Dube, Gawdin and Phillips.

    I still haven’t seen the rookie schedule, I know they play Sept 9, 11 against Nait/MacEwan and 12 against Flames rookies in Red Deer.

  101. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Woogie63: Love this, WG I am going to “steal” a bunch of this.It can be tough being an Oiler fan living in Calgary.

    Fill yer boots!!!

    Note: Dug a little deeper into Neal and his negative RelTGF% isn’t as cut and dried (read:earned) as Lindholm’s. But I still don’t like him for that contract at that age.

    Also,

    I remember Mike Parkatti was doing draft stuff in Lindholm’s draft year and he had Lindholm #1. He went 5th behind MacKinnon, Barkov, Drouin and Jones.

    Mike mentioned that he had Lindholm in the same conversation as the Sedins.

    He said “he might be the best player, but like the Sedins, he might take until he’s 25 like they did”

    Lindholm turns 24 this December.

  102. pts2pndr says:

    Lowetide: I’m no expert when it comes to the power play but like PP’s that move. 97 and 93 are both witches, I’d try to make it work with both of them before moving 93 to No. 2 power play (where he will no doubt land).

    After that, I agree two RH shooters are required (WG has been on this forever), with JP, KY and Strome all candidates. I have been trained by years of awful to expect insane decisions and poor results on the 5-on-4.

    The Oiler had a coach that had the Oilers power play in the top 10 and the most effective power play since The Gretzky days and McTavish replaced him with Dallas Eakins! Damb shame!

  103. pts2pndr says:

    Woodguy v2.0: That’s an interesting question.

    Every structure has a way to beat it.

    I agree and that is why prescouting is so important! It is an area tha I believe has to be improved! Given the video available it should be easier than ever given the right people doing the analysis!

  104. Ryan says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I think its been shown via posts by people much smarter than me that McDavid on the PK is not indefensible – there are definitely arguments for it and numbers that support it.

    That was my only point.

    I also am not worried about McDavid getting injured on the PK more than any other game situation.

    Oilers fans are scarred from Nuge getting hurt on the PK but I don’t believe injuries happen at a higher rate on the PK than any other game situation. Seems to me McDavid’s injury wasn’t on the PK, Sekera’s injuries weren’t on the PK, the multitude of shoulder injuries over the years weren’t on the PK.

    No, I wouldn’t be in favor of McDavid being on PK1 every time we are in the box but I’ve got no issue with him taking the 3rd shift on the PK.

    You are a partner in a law firm. Career-wise, that puts you at the head of the class here.

    As for my use of “indefensible,” well I am prone to hyperbole, I stand by my assertion.

    The better teams in the NHL don’t deploy their top three offensive players anywhere near the rates that Mclellan does on the PK. They don’t. That’s a fact.

    Lastly, the marginal advantage of one minute of Connor McDavid vs anyone else on the Oilers on the ice at 5v5 is real and certain. It’s undeniable. Two seasons ago, he was +1.37 gf/hr at 5v5. That’s insane.

    At 4v5, Connor McDavid is an offensive threat and one of the Oilers better Pk’ers, but they should have enough serviceable guys in Brodziak, Strome, and Reider, that he doesn’t play 1 minute per night on the PK.

  105. ArmchairGM says:

    jtblack:
    ” I will say this: If you support a party that in any way allows race, color, orientation or creed to divide, then you lost me in that instant.”

    +1

    Is there a mainstream party in North America that does??

  106. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    pts2pndr: I agree and that is why prescouting is so important! It is an area tha I believe has to be improved! Given the video available it should be easier than ever given the right people doing the analysis!

    I know that most NHL coaches and assistant coaches put in a ridiculous amount of time pre-scouting teams.

  107. pts2pndr says:

    OriginalPouzar: Is this really true?How much Yamamoto have you seen play to come to this conclusion?

    Not to mention, he is now months older with a full summer of training to get stronger.

    This seems to be a narrative that one wants to to fit “facts” in to.

    How have we gotten from a player (Yamamoto) that you have said personally is not even a sure thing to make the team to the belief that he would make a good bumper on the Oiler power play! I understand a leap of faith but this defies logic. This should not be about Yamamoto’s size but about his lack of experience!

  108. Surgeons Knot says:

    Hey Lowetide community. I’ve been living in Ontario for a decade and only making it to the Oilers games when they come to Buffalo. I’ve got a chance to come to my first home game at Rogers in December and am looking at tickets. A bit disheartened by the prices, but will fork out the cash. My question is, are there any sections in Rogers that are so poor it’s not worth the money? I’d hate to be disappointed and would rather pay a bit extra to have somewhat decent seats. Thanks!

  109. Lowetide says:

    Surgeons Knot:
    Hey Lowetide community. I’ve been living in Ontario for a decade and only making it to the Oilers games when they come to Buffalo. I’ve got a chance to come to my first home game at Rogers in December and am looking at tickets. A bit disheartened by the prices, but will fork out the cash. My question is, are there any sections in Rogers that are so poor it’s not worth the money? I’d hate to be disappointed and would rather pay a bit extra to have somewhat decent seats. Thanks!

    I have had the chance to sit most everywhere and can say there’s not a bad seat I’ve been in. Dress warmly, if you’re bringing the fairer half make sure she knows it’ll be so cold she might wear a sweater and your jacket.

    My favorite spot is behind the net Edmonton scores on in the first and third periods. I saw McDavid score a goal coming down the wing from there and it was a religious experience. I grabbed Almeida’s leg!

  110. pts2pndr says:

    Woogie63: Letestu, Larsson, Lucic and Slepy (could add Kassian) all were not the player they were in 2016/17.I am not sure why but injuries, age and some sad personal issues effected this group.

    Offensively aggresive teams draw more penaties than more passive teams. The Oilers in my opinion were coached to play not to lose which explains why they were down early in so many games. This strategy is akin to football’s prevent defense. They were forced to play a more physicaly passive game due in part to a terrible PK!

  111. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: I’ve been using RelTGF% quite a bit because to me it describes the change in play a player add/subtracts from his team mates better than any single metric.Its not perfect, but players I value using a myriad of metrics always seem to do well via RelTGF% as well.
    That said, last two years of Neal, Lindholm and Hanifin via RelTGF%
    16/17
    Neal -6.3%
    Lindholm +0.78
    Hanifin +0.96
    17/18
    Neal -5.9%
    Lindholm -2.96%
    Hanifin -2.87%
    None of them rate very well here.
    Hanifin went from 18% vs Elites in 16/17 to 23% in 17/18.That probably effected his GF%.
    There is also the fact that Faulk did pretty much the same GF% wise with Hanifin as he did with Fleury while TVR was 7%GF better with Fleury than Hanifin.
    Hanifin will probably be a decent Dman in the future, but today he doesn’t look top 4.
    Nurse didn’t look top 4 in 16/17 but did in 17/18 so you can’t say these things with certainty, but in my time of looking at this stuff Nurse is a bit of an outlier in how quick his metrics turned around.
    Hamonic is a good partner to break a young Dmen into top 4 work as well.It might work but the deck is stacked against them for the first year imo.
    Here’s the player’s CGY gave up RelTGF% over the last 2 years:
    16/17
    Hamilton +11.84
    Ferland +1.96
    17/18
    Hamilton +6.04
    Ferland +10.4
    Now Hamilton played with Gio and Ferland played a lot with Monahan/Gaudreau in his final year so you can’t attribute all of this to them.
    That said Gio did better with Hamilton than without and in the +700minutes with Ferland Monhan

    I never provided any opinion about him being ready to the bumper on the PP but just the position that Yamamoto isn’t as strong on his skates as certain other smaller players.

  112. Surgeons Knot says:

    Lowetide,

    Thanks Lowetide. Appreciate the response. Can’t wait to see McDavid in action. I will make sure to keep the Mrs warm!

  113. pts2pndr says:

    OriginalPouzar: I never provided any opinion about him being ready to the bumper on the PP but just the position that Yamamoto isn’t as strong on his skates as certain other smaller players.

    Sorry my bad! Pound for pound he is very strong on his skates! I have noticed a more mature attitude in his early interviews as well. He seems to be much more self assured!

  114. hunter1909 says:

    pts2pndr: The Oilers in my opinion were coached to play not to lose which explains why they were down early in so many games.

    What a ridiculous approach to sports.

    If true, then the number one player in the world is metaphysically forced to play like a 3rd liner.

  115. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Lowetide,

    My favorite spot is behind the net Edmonton scores on in the first and third periods. I saw McDavid score a goal coming down the wing from there and it was a religious experience. I grabbed Almeida’s leg!

    *Notes that Almeida isn’t doing the show with you on Saturday anymore*

    *nods*

  116. jtblack says:

    Lowetide: I have had the chance to sit most everywhere and can say there’s not a bad seat I’ve been in. Dress warmly, if you’re bringing the fairer half make sure she knows it’ll be so cold she might wear a sweater and your jacket.

    My favorite spot is behind the net Edmonton scores on in the first and third periods. I saw McDavid score a goal coming down the wing from there and it was a religious experience. I grabbed Almeida’s leg!

    And that is what it is all about. When you witness Greatness or a team accomplishing greatness and it becomes a part of you. A part of your memory bank.

    I was lucky enough to see Gold Medal game in Utah (2002). The play where Mario leet the puck go thru his legs on purpose. Still burned in my memory. Also Fleury had a playwhere he walked 3 guys from blueline in and didnt score; but was jaw dropping.

  117. jtblack says:

    McDavid is a combination of;

    Pavel Bure : SPEED
    Alexei Kovalev: HANDS
    Crosby: GAME AWARENESS

    #97
    #LEGEND

  118. hunter1909 says:

    jtblack: it becomes a part of you. A part of your memory bank.

    I still remember some newspaper vendor without any teeth eating a sandwich from years ago.

  119. jtblack says:

    hunter1909: I still remember some newspaper vendor without any teeth eating a sandwich from years ago.

    +1. hahahah

  120. jp says:

    Ryan:
    Well. There’s a lot of different ways to look at this. No question McDavid scored well last season 4v5. Hilariously well, actually.

    If he weren’t McDavid, he’d be the type of guy you’d like on the PK too because he’s ridiculously fast, opportunistic, and smart. But he’s McDavid and the risk of getting injured from PK’ing doesn’t make sense to me.

    Now, I don’t have the math to prove this, but intuitively i know that there’s a lot more variability in scoring rate date for and against at 4v5 then there is at 5v5 for a given player.

    If you will allow me to cherry pick data here.

    Right off the hop, Jujar played an hour of PK last season similar to McDavid. He was -2.94 goals for / againstper hour while McDavid was -3.53.

    If you were able to give most of McDavid’s minute per game of PK to JJ, you’d already be ahead +0.86 goals over the season right there.

    Then if you were to correspondingly give those 5v5 minutes of JJ to McDavid, you’d gain 1.44 goalsper hour for a net of + 2.86 goals total.

    4 goals is enough fora win on the season, so 2.86 goals is not enough to get excited about, but not much point in playing McDavid on the PK when it’s actually costing you goals in this scenario.

    Even if you use Strome as an example…

    You actually gain 2 goals on the PK with McDavid playing an hour instead of Strome, but you lose 1.54 goals at 5v5, so you’re only gaining 0.46 goals. Over a season, that’s not enough to matter much.

    Also, there’s tremendous variability in GF-GA per 60 at 4v5 from year to year.

    Last year McDvaid was -4.91 goals for per hour on the PK while Drake played 40 minutes with a GF% of 50, lol.

    There’s not guarantee that these rates would hold up if we shifted minutes around, but it does show that there’s no huge advantage to playing McDavid on the PK.

    Granted if you’re down a goal late in an important game or other mitigating circumstances, it might be worth thinking about.

    You’re right, there are a lot of different ways to look at this.

    Your point about PK rates being more variable is correct, and would be expected based on the smaller samples/minutes. And I hadn’t looked until this evening, but McDavid didn’t have the same otherworldly scoring rates prior to this year, so the 17-18 numbers above may not be something we can expect to continue.

    If that is McDavid’s real ability on the PK though, I’m not sure how you can argue he’s more valuable 5X5. If the team gives up a normal/average rate of PK goals when he’s on the ice, but scores GF at McDavid’s 5X5 rate, that’s a dominant PK. And dominant PK minutes (where the team scores goals at an elite even strength rate) are every bit as valuable (more?) as dominant even strength minutes.

    Your examples certainly show that McDavid trading PK minutes with some other players COULD be an overall benefit. But it seems like you only found one example of switching McDavid’s minutes from 17-18 that actually benefited the Oilers. And JJ’s stellar PK results also don’t entirely look sustainable to me (though the same skepticism applies to McDavid’s results from last year).

    In any case, none of this fits with the “McDavid is wasted on the PK” narrative. The jury is still out I think. And my guess is he may actually be every bit as valuable on the PK as at even strength.

    (FWIW I started out this morning generally agreeing with your theory, but seeing McDavid’s PK numbers has definitely given me pause).

  121. frjohnk says:

    jp: You’re right, there are a lot of different ways to look at this.

    Your point about PK rates being more variable is correct, and would be expected based on the smaller samples/minutes. And I hadn’t looked until this evening, but McDavid didn’t have the same otherworldly scoring rates prior to this year, so the 17-18 numbers above may not be something we can expect to continue.

    If that is McDavid’s real ability on the PK though, I’m not sure how you can argue he’s more valuable 5X5. If the team gives up a normal/average rate of PK goals when he’s on the ice, but scores GF at McDavid’s 5X5 rate, that’s a dominant PK. And dominant PK minutes (where the team scores goals at an elite even strength rate) are every bit as valuable (more?) as dominant even strength minutes.

    Your examples certainly show that McDavid trading PK minutes with some other players COULD be an overall benefit. But it seems like you only found one example of switching McDavid’s minutes from 17-18 that actually benefited the Oilers. And JJ’s stellar PK results also don’t entirely look sustainable to me (though the same skepticism applies to McDavid’s results from last year).

    In any case, none of this fits with the “McDavid is wasted on the PK” narrative. The jury is still out I think. And my guess is he may actually be every bit as valuable on the PK as at even strength.

    (FWIW I started out this morning generally agreeing with your theory, but seeing McDavid’s PK numbers has definitely given me pause).

    I wonder if the reason McDavid scored so well on the PK is because most teams deploy a 4 F 1D PP.

    And usually the 1 D man on the PP is not great defensively. And the other guy back playing D is a forward.

    McDavid may have an easier time breaking through the D when on the PK.

  122. Ryan says:

    jp: You’re right, there are a lot of different ways to look at this.

    Your point about PK rates being more variable is correct, and would be expected based on the smaller samples/minutes. And I hadn’t looked until this evening, but McDavid didn’t have the same otherworldly scoring rates prior to this year, so the 17-18 numbers above may not be something we can expect to continue.

    If that is McDavid’s real ability on the PK though, I’m not sure how you can argue he’s more valuable 5X5. If the team gives up a normal/average rate of PK goals when he’s on the ice, but scores GF at McDavid’s 5X5 rate, that’s a dominant PK. And dominant PK minutes (where the team scores goals at an elite even strength rate) are every bit as valuable (more?) as dominant even strength minutes.

    Your examples certainly show that McDavid trading PK minutes with some other players COULD be an overall benefit. But it seems like you only found one example of switching McDavid’s minutes from 17-18 that actually benefited the Oilers. And JJ’s stellar PK results also don’t entirely look sustainable to me (though the same skepticism applies to McDavid’s results from last year).

    In any case, none of this fits with the “McDavid is wasted on the PK” narrative. The jury is still out I think. And my guess is he may actually be every bit as valuable on the PK as at even strength.

    (FWIW I started out this morning generally agreeing with your theory, but seeing McDavid’s PK numbers has definitely given me pause).

    Yes, the margins when you actually run the numbers make the issue more trivial than I thought.

    However, in principle before I ran the numbers I started with the premise that if you take 1 minute of 5v5 time away from McDavid and give him 1 minute of PK time, you’re making a sucker’s bet.

    Basically, if you do that in principle, you’re betting that a Jujhar or Drake or a Latestu is going to perform better at 5v5 in that minute per game over the course of a season than McDavid. You’re going to lose that bet all down the roster.

    Conversely, you’re also betting that McDavid is going to PK better than a Jujhar, or Letestu. In this case, you’ll be right more than wrong, but you’ll still be wrong last year with Jujhar and the year prior with Drake and Anton Lander.

    Speaking of Lander, he scored 2.98 GF/60 on the PK two years ago.

    Last season, Mclellan ran his top 3 offensive players for over 3 and half minutes per game on the PK!

    Now at evens, a Draisatl, McDavid, or Nuge is always going to outperform a bottom sixer, but on the PK not necessarily.

    Last year on the PK collectively, Draisatl, McDavid, and Nuge were out performed by 1.67 goals per hour by JJ, Strome, and Kassian. If you multiply that per sixty rate by 3.5 hours of ice time, you have lost 5.85 goals on the season.

    At evens, the opposite was true in which predictably an average of +0.92 goals per hour. So there you scrounge another 3.22 goals.

    In total and it’s not really completely fair because of the volatility in the 4v5 numbers, you could have nine goals on the season. That’s enough for two wins.

    So yeah, let’s play the heck out of Nuge, McDavid, and Draisatl on the PK so that Kassian, Strome, and JJ can get more time playing at evens.

  123. Ryan says:

    Ryan,

    Last year the top three team scorers (forwards) time on pk/gp

    Penguins: 15 s
    Capitals: 52 s
    Jets: 1:12
    LV: 1:52
    Toronto: 4s
    Bolts: 2:20 (Brayden Point)
    Preds: 2:59
    Bruins: 3:30 (Bergeron, Marchand)
    Sabres: 3:15
    Sens: 1:23
    Yotes: 1:15
    Jackets: 1:31

  124. Ryan says:

    Ryan,

    There’s Babcock for ya. Sure he has the horses, but he doesn’t waste a drop. Top 11 kill without using his 3 best scorers at all.

    The Bruins and Preds used their top three scorers a bunch, but they were top six kills.

    The Oilers ran there top three scorers hard on the kill too… for a 25th ranked pk.

    You can’t write this stuff.

  125. Wilde says:

    frjohnk: I wonder if the reason McDavid scored so well on the PK is because most teams deploy a 4 F 1D PP.

    And usually the 1 D man on the PP is not great defensively. And the other guy back playing D is a forward.

    McDavid may have an easier time breaking through the D when on the PK.

    It’s also the aggressive PK structure they used.

    I don’t think we can expect that same scoring rate if they’re trying to bleed less goals against.

    (and they should)

    Here’s the rates for McDavid on the PK

    GF/60

    Year 1 – 0.00

    Year 2 – 1.80

    Year 3 – 3.33

    Points/60

    Year 1 – 0.00

    Year 2 – 1.80

    Year 3 – 2.66

  126. Walter Gretzkys Neighbour says:

    Was at my cottage this weekend, for the last fling of summer! Very spotty internet and then why the heck am I on the internet at the cottage!

    So I missed this post. LT, I cannot say enough how much I enjoy your writing and this site. The way you paint a picture with words, the subject, the ambience of your writing is amazing. All this really echoes my own history in many ways.

    Not that it matters, but your take on the Oilers – drifting in and out of the team orbit at different stages of life, your take on baseball – for me it was the last strike – ruined it for me for the most part though I still enjoy attending a game when I’m in different cities. Also your political allusions. Which by the way is another reason I have drifted away from baseball.

    The political thing is important. We are in a difficult time. Not just south of the border but that is a huge piece. I’m not interested in orating here, but for those interested in the notion that “those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it” sort of thing, there are some interesting books I would recommend.

    I will say I am very concerned that we as a civilization could once again be on the cusp of a significant upheaval. To that end: “It Can’t Happen Here”, by Sinclair Lewis, a novel with a very instructive take, written in the 30’s is a very good read.

    From a more nonfiction perspective. I suggest “On Tyranny”, by Timothy Snyder and “Fascism, A Warning, by Madeleine Albright .

    Hope this is ok to do LT. again thank you for all you do for “us” as a community here!

  127. jp says:

    Ryan: Yes, the margins when you actually run the numbers make the issue more trivial than I thought.

    However, in principle before I ran the numbers I started with the premise that if you take 1 minute of 5v5 time away from McDavid and give him 1 minute of PK time, you’re making a sucker’s bet.

    Basically, if you do that in principle, you’re betting that a Jujhar or Drake or a Latestu is going to perform better at 5v5 in that minute per game over the course of a season than McDavid. You’re going to lose that bet all down the roster.

    Conversely, you’re also betting that McDavid is going to PK better than a Jujhar, or Letestu. In this case, you’ll be right more than wrong, but you’ll still be wrong last year with Jujhar and the year prior with Drake and Anton Lander.

    Speaking of Lander, he scored 2.98 GF/60 on the PK two years ago.

    Last season, Mclellan ran his top 3 offensive players for over 3 and half minutes per game on the PK!

    Now at evens, a Draisatl, McDavid, or Nuge is always going to outperform a bottom sixer, but on the PK not necessarily.

    Last year on the PK collectively, Draisatl, McDavid, and Nuge were out performed by 1.67 goals per hour by JJ, Strome, and Kassian. If you multiply that per sixty rate by 3.5 hours of ice time, you have lost 5.85 goals on the season.

    At evens, the opposite was true in which predictably an average of +0.92 goals per hour. So there you scrounge another 3.22 goals.

    In total and it’s not really completely fair because of the volatility in the 4v5 numbers, you could have nine goals on the season. That’s enough for two wins.

    So yeah, let’s play the heck out of Nuge, McDavid, and Draisatl on the PK so that Kassian, Strome, and JJ can get more time playing at evens.

    I’m still not convinced that running offensive players on the PK is necessarily a bad idea. Much less sure of that actually than when I started.

    I understand the logic of your premise, but the numbers don’t provide clear cut support for it.

    If McDavid can score at a near 5×5 rate on the PK without the PK giving up more because of it that’s winning those minutes relative to what other players could do. And that’s what McDavid did last year. His PK numbers, when you take into account the goals for we’re better than most of his teammates.

    JJs results were better, but his GA numbers were also out of line with CA, SA, etc. Also, it’s not at all fair to question McDavids results based on small sample size then use other equally small sample sizes to say others performed better.

    I’m acknowledging that McDavids 17-18 numbers may not be repeatable, and could additionally be driven by an overly aggressive PK. He could also be a really good PKer who’ll keep scoring at unusual rates SH. I don’t know. But i’m also not seeing anything that strongly supports your position.

  128. SwedishPoster says:

    What would be more beneficial. To play Nuge, Drai, McDavid on the PK or to always load up with the three of them for the first shift after the PK is done? Momentum swings etc.
    On the other hand, in games where there’s a lot of PKing you sometimes need to get your top players into the rotation or they might lose rythm.
    There is ofc game state to consider as well, if the Oil is chasing you’d want McDavid out there. On the other hand if it’s about shutting down, other players might be more useful on the PK and instead let McDavid tilt the ice 5v5.

  129. OriginalPouzar says:

    Ryan:
    Ryan,

    There’s Babcock for ya. Sure he has the horses, but he doesn’t waste a drop. Top 11 kill without using his 3 best scorers at all.

    The Bruins and Preds used their top three scorers a bunch, but they were top six kills.

    The Oilers ran there top three scorers hard on the kill too… for a 25th ranked pk.

    You can’t write this stuff.

    What was their usage from February 1 on when the PK was #1 in the NHL?

  130. Dominoiler says:

    Thanks for sharing your Random Thoughts, LT.. i couldn’t have agree more..

    I come here for the hockey talk, but it’s the personal touches that​ mentor some of us closer to reasonable that i find really enduring.. many thanks

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