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08-27-2013, 09:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Interactif View Post
My objection with advanced stats is I often see bloggers use them to try to justify bad performances or use them to mislead for argument sake. If you look hard enough, I am sure you can use a selected stat to make a player look better than what they are.

Defensive zone starts I have read a lot was the reason for one player's bad year for instance, a point reiterated so much, it seemed like this was the only reason for this player's off year. Such nonsense I thought to myself, that some would buy into the narrative.

Even less advanced stats such as face-off % can be misleading. Usually the best face-off men in the league face each other, a face off % such as 52.6% for a player like Bozak is misleading for instance when you compare him to Mcclement's 51.6% or Grabovski's 50.6% since he faces the other team's best face off men nightly, whereas Mcclement and Grabovoski face the 2nd or 3rd best on the opposing teams.

Saying this, I would agree there is a place for advanced stats in the game, just as plus minus stats are. Yet I hear people scoff at them.

Context is the key for me, watching games is still the best way to gauge the effectiveness of players in a game, nothing replaces scouts, no metric or analytic will. One of my main beefs is the over emphasis placed on possession stats. When playing without the puck is just as important. But if you read enough the analytics will almost always point to possession stats for a player being superior, this is faulty thinking IMO. A lot more to hockey than possessing the puck. Vision, Ice Q, grit, heart, playing without the puck, net presence, knowing when to shoot, when to pass. ect...

I would weight it this way:

Stats(advanced and old fashioned stats)

My belief is hockey will never be a stats game like baseball, too many intangibles to have it down to a science.
as far as faceoffs go, it has been argued that they arent as important as it seems.

im on the fence about it personally. I think anything over 40% starts in the defensive will have an affect on your offensive game depending on your total TOI. (4th liner vs. top 6).

There have also been studies showing that winning a faceoff can dramatically improve your shots on goal/chances of winning more than the other team will probably help...also a good shoutout to why your best faceoff guys are typically either an offensive specialist or a defensive specialist. obviously, you have your two way guys that can do it all as well...but whatever.

the possession/shot studies show over a considerable amount of sample size that out-possessing your opponents will generally lead to more wins than losses.

when you boil that down to one game, you run into sample size variance. (yuo can out-shoot and lose or get out shot and win) but over the course of a season if you consistently are shooting more, you will likely have a winning record. from the studies i have read, this has not only been shown to be true, but also predictive to an extent.

you are attributing an avoidance of cherry picking stats on what you see from HF boards users. read the studies, decide for yourself. but just because you believe that watching is the be all end all, doesnt mean that stats are wrong.

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