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01-14-2013, 06:01 PM
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Originally Posted by banalpie View Post
and meanwhile we all talk about how "clutch" or "unclutch" certain players are in a variety of sports with the same breathless tones, yet remain unable to quantify or correlate what that means and how it actually affects teams

the thread was started under the following premise: that fighting in lockout shortened seasons will go up and whether the bruins would have enough pugilists to win these fights; in fairness, colt never made the direct correlation of winning fights to winning games, but certainly one could be forgiven for making that jump

i took a look at that particular season's fighting data and point values and saw no direct correlation; is there data that supports his claim
But do you really want to, have to, take a "Sabremetrics" type approach about this? Maybe it's very difficult to quantify or it's ala a placebo, or whatever. If you want to make a definitive conclusion that "fighting has no bearing on winning," then you have to do a little more work in my book as to why every GM who signs a "tough guy," every coach who plays a tough guy, including in the Stanley Cup final, every player who says tough guy X is very important to the team, is essentially wrong to waste resources on such players. Either they have some value or they don't, and if so many teams/managers/players are wasting resources on players with no value and they are "wrong" for doing so, I say you have some work to do to really build a definitive case. Not "a" case, a "definitive" case. You are taking on some fairly credible hockey professionals by saying they are all wet for continuing to employ tough guys.

Just because you can't figure out the form of the correlation or because it's ephemeral or elusive or it's more psychological-than-statistical-but-maybe-that-counts-as-statistical-in-some-way-of-looking-at-things... leaves it as an open question. Here's a correlation for you... the Bruins won the Stanley Cup while giving SCF ice time to enforcer Shawn Thornton, therefore winning the Stanley Cup sometimes is correlative with employment of an enforcer. The incidence of that and what it means... I leave to you to worry about.

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