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Old
02-20-2012, 03:08 PM
  #226
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Originally Posted by StreetSharks View Post
But he does have an enormous effect.


Anyone who has seen the last 4-5 games has seen White make completely stupid defensive plays that resulted in goals for the opposition.

He's been on the ice for most of the goals scored too.
He's had horrible luck this season. Niemi/Greiss have combined to post a 0.904 SV% at even strength when White has been on the ice. That isn't Colin's fault; there's no evidence that players can suppress opposing shooting percentage. He's made some mistakes but so has every other defenseman on the team, most of them far more than White. The difference is White's mistakes have found the back of the net. That's not something likely to persist.

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02-20-2012, 03:15 PM
  #227
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i know it's been mentioned in the past, but whatever happened to clearing the crease by defence? watching what rob blake did in front of our net, and how our D plays now im confused. is it better to blind our goalies with mass amounts of our team and their team in front of them? maybe its just a niemi strategy, because i dont quite see that with greiss in goal.

i love how niemi looks around defenders to see where the puck is coming from, very alert - didnt see nabby do it much from what i remember. never have thought of niemi as a great breakaway goalie, or when he has an open look at the puck and maybe is why we play this style.

give greiss a shot against better opponents, and in the playoffs if niemi falters. i know niemi's not great with time off between starts but maybe he could use it to reflect on his play and rest. use vandermeer more often, he wants/needs play time:
Most teams nowadays apply that strategy of stockpiling all five players in the middle of the zone. The good teams that apply that method also make sure they cover their men and clear out any rebounds or loose pucks in front of the net. San Jose becomes complacent time to time with clearing bodies in front of the goal.

As for clearing loose pucks, it's incredibly difficult considering the amount of rebounds Niemi tends to give. Eventually the puck will be at the wrong place at the wrong time and will favor the opposition. One thing I love about Greiss over Neimi, is that while both give up a good amount of rebounds, Greiss seems to have better control by kicking or blocking the puck into the corner and sometimes as far as the blue line.

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02-20-2012, 03:22 PM
  #228
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
I've already linked to the scoring chance totals in that series - the Sharks had more of them. It wasn't "shot quality" driving Niemi's SV% through the roof, it was randomness. You'd be best served to stop buying into the narrative and actually pay attention to what went on in that series.
There are chances and there are chances. It is not measured by scoring opportunities. I wish I had the link, but a breakaway has about a 25-33% chance of succeeding, clear odd-mans at about 12-15%. And it falls way off on cycle play. If a team can generate more high percentage opportunities, it can overwhelm the shot quantity argument. And I did see the Hawks cashing in on those high percentage opportunities and generating more of them. Part of that is reflected in the giveaway/takeaway numbers but again there are some gives/takes that are different from others.

The White W/L stat is somewhat simplistic but it can be reflective. When a single third tier player is observed to have a major component of responsibility in more than 2 opposition GWG's, it is affecting the team. He is on the ice for some very soft minutes and the quantity of miscues resulting directly in scores is mounting. What it does pickup is the effect on other players on the team. How effective is a vet's on-ice coaching? How much more comfortable are teammates with one player over another? What is the difference in team effect of one similarly talented player versus another?

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02-20-2012, 03:31 PM
  #229
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Clowe throwin' bombs, Abdelkader hanging on for dear life.

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02-20-2012, 03:34 PM
  #230
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Clowe throwin' bombs, Abdelkader hanging on for dear life.
Clowe just abused him, talk about out-matched.

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02-20-2012, 03:35 PM
  #231
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Clowe just abused him, talk about out-matched.
Abdelkader tried to pull what Jamal Mayers did when he fought Clowe, get 1 or 2 shots then dive to the ground. Except Clowe wasn't having it this time.

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02-20-2012, 04:00 PM
  #232
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There are chances and there are chances. It is not measured by scoring opportunities. I wish I had the link, but a breakaway has about a 25-33% chance of succeeding, clear odd-mans at about 12-15%. And it falls way off on cycle play. If a team can generate more high percentage opportunities, it can overwhelm the shot quantity argument. And I did see the Hawks cashing in on those high percentage opportunities and generating more of them. Part of that is reflected in the giveaway/takeaway numbers but again there are some gives/takes that are different from others.

The White W/L stat is somewhat simplistic but it can be reflective. When a single third tier player is observed to have a major component of responsibility in more than 2 opposition GWG's, it is affecting the team. He is on the ice for some very soft minutes and the quantity of miscues resulting directly in scores is mounting. What it does pickup is the effect on other players on the team. How effective is a vet's on-ice coaching? How much more comfortable are teammates with one player over another? What is the difference in team effect of one similarly talented player versus another?
I find it very hard to believe - and, more importantly, there's very little evidence to support it - that a team could create fewer scoring chances than another and have, within those already high-quality chances, a substantially greater number of "gimme"-style opportunities. If you have evidence to the contrary regarding that series, I'd love to see it.

Sure it's affecting the team but would you be willing to bet money on that continuing? On Niemi and Greiss maintaining a ridiculously low 0.904 even strength SV% when White is on the ice? Perhaps you would be, but it'd be an extremely bad bet. The implication that a third-pairing defenseman could be affecting results in that dramatic a manner is simply laughable.

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02-20-2012, 04:09 PM
  #233
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
I find it very hard to believe - and, more importantly, there's very little evidence to support it - that a team could create fewer scoring chances than another and have, within those already high-quality chances, a substantially greater number of "gimme"-style opportunities. If you have evidence to the contrary regarding that series, I'd love to see it.

Sure it's affecting the team but would you be willing to bet money on that continuing? On Niemi and Greiss maintaining a ridiculously low 0.904 even strength SV% when White is on the ice? Perhaps you would be, but it'd be an extremely bad bet. The implication that a third-pairing defenseman could be affecting results in that dramatic a manner is simply laughable.
Not laughable on the SV%. I have been watching White give up more than his share of gimme opportunities. My thought going into the season was that he would be an adequate 3rd pairing type guy. It is no longer. The same stuff out of youngsters would have them in Woostah in a hurry.

A lot of the stats stuff is interlinked. Teams tend to the middle because the coaches see it and adjust. You get the outliers when they haven't adjusted or don't have the personnel to adjust.

Regarding that series no, I don't have a quantitative thing. I am looking for some stats guy to take up the banner and see if they can derive it. IMO, the arena statisticians would have to do a zone stat at a minimum, when a team crosses the blueline. The initial work was done some time ago by someone who watched and compiled on his own. Ideally someone goes and does the watching and does raw numbers across multiple teams on oddman/breakaway opportunities on a larger sample size.

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02-20-2012, 04:39 PM
  #234
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
I find it very hard to believe - and, more importantly, there's very little evidence to support it - that a team could create fewer scoring chances than another and have, within those already high-quality chances, a substantially greater number of "gimme"-style opportunities. If you have evidence to the contrary regarding that series, I'd love to see it.

Sure it's affecting the team but would you be willing to bet money on that continuing? On Niemi and Greiss maintaining a ridiculously low 0.904 even strength SV% when White is on the ice? Perhaps you would be, but it'd be an extremely bad bet. The implication that a third-pairing defenseman could be affecting results in that dramatic a manner is simply laughable.
Giveaway - Takeaway ratios for defensemen (GVAs per one TKA):

Burns - 4.42
Boyle - 3.19
White - 3.00
Vlasic - 2.80
Demers - 2.50
Murray - 2.36
Braun - 1.13
Vandermeer - 0.50

It's fair to assume that offensive defensemen are more prone to giveaways considering the style they play. That explains the high Giveaway per Takeaway ratio for Boyle and Burns. Though in Burns' case it's also because he's struggled in his own end. Even though, he is an offensive defenseman, that doesn't excuse all his Giveaways.

When you look at the more defensive minded defensemen, the number is much lower. Yet, Colin White is slightly better than Dan Boyle, in this respect. When you look at the playing style of both them, things don't add up. One is a big body who's main job is to clear out the opposition in front of the crease and chip the puck out along the boards. The other is an adventurous playmaker who often takes a great deal of risk for the sake of an offensive opportunity.

Saying that White was the sole reason for all those 18 or so losses is not fair. But, to completely disregard that stat doesn't make much sense either. What is fair, is the assumption that Colin White has underperformed so far, and has easily been the worst defenseman on the team this season.

Oh, and Les, I'd suggest you not use words like "laughable" or "hilarious" to describe the view points of some of the other folks, it takes merit away from your actual argument and makes you sound incredibly smug. No one likes that, trust me I would know.

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02-20-2012, 04:48 PM
  #235
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Good stuff param. Yeah, I'd more or less excuse Burns and Boyle's giveaways, they are a result of a more risky style of play (although I'd love for Burns to control his more).

But Braun's is very striking. I'm loving everything about his game right now, minus that bad goal in OT vs. the Lightning. He's driving play in the right direction, even though Niemi/Greiss have posted a horrid sv% behind him at EV.

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02-20-2012, 04:48 PM
  #236
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Giveaways and takeaways are tracked extremely unreliably. The guy who scores Sharks games at the Tank thinks just about everything is a giveaway. Compare the Sharks' home and road ranks in giveaways over the past few seasons.

Here's a more pertinent number: When White has been on the ice at even strength this season, the Sharks have given up 23.2 shots per 60 minutes of ice time. Only Braun has given up shots at a lesser rate. A defenseman's primary responsibility, in a general sense, is to suppress shot rate and White does a fine job of that. Granted, he's accomplishing it against third-tier competition but hopefully no one expected him to take on tougher opposition than that.

And I'm sorry but the insinuation that a third-pairing defenseman has anywhere near that extreme of an impact on an NHL team's record is laughable, there's no other way to describe that point of view.

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02-20-2012, 07:34 PM
  #237
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While +- is not a particularly good stat for measuring players, White is -5 and second worst on the team playing against soft competition. If only he could suppress goals as well as he supresses shots.

White's give-away numbers are in line with what I would expect given how frequently he clears the zone by shooting the puck up the boards to no one in particular (or more specifically to the opposition's D) rather than making an outlet pass to keep possession. Anecdotally, he appears far poorer than the Shark's other D in this regard.


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02-20-2012, 07:45 PM
  #238
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Originally Posted by Clowe Me View Post


Clowe throwin' bombs, Abdelkader hanging on for dear life.
Man, he was inches away from landing a huge right cross at about 30 seconds. If he had, it might have been a broken jaw for Applicator.

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02-20-2012, 10:41 PM
  #239
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While +- is not a particularly good stat for measuring players, White is -5 and second worst on the team playing against soft competition. If only he could suppress goals as well as he supresses shots.

White's give-away numbers are in line with what I would expect given how frequently he clears the zone by shooting the puck up the boards to no one in particular (or more specifically to the opposition's D) rather than making an outlet pass to keep possession. Anecdotally, he appears far poorer than the Shark's other D in this regard.
Again, he's got a 0.904 ES SV% behind him. There's no proof that skaters can affect SV%, one way or the other. On-ice SV% invariably regresses towards 0.920.

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02-21-2012, 12:44 AM
  #240
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A lot of the stats stuff is interlinked. Teams tend to the middle because the coaches see it and adjust. You get the outliers when they haven't adjusted or don't have the personnel to adjust.
This, and I have mentioned this to Les Wynan before in stats discussion. I think it is a hugely underrated point in his ongoing commentary. Hockey seasons in general are ongoing evolutions of teams, improvements and responses to what other teams have done. This plays a HUGE role in the stats trends, yet the way Les Wynan discusses is as if adjustments are never made and all skill level, strategy, etc. is essentially unchanged from game to game. Everything in his view is effectively random.

Les I appreciate the stats you provide as far as for my own personal informedness, but your analysis of them is somewhat oversimplified. In other contexts, on other forums, I have seen this happen when a person wants to make a name for his or herself, acting as a contrarian in support of overbroad statements that contravene conventional wisdom, so as to establish his or her view as uniquely informed. I don't know if that's what you are trying to do here but clearly some players match up better against others and if you consistently get a bad matchup over a good one, average numbers will be below mean and stay there.

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02-21-2012, 12:58 AM
  #241
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This, and I have mentioned this to Les Wynan before in stats discussion. I think it is a hugely underrated point in his ongoing commentary. Hockey seasons in general are ongoing evolutions of teams, improvements and responses to what other teams have done. This plays a HUGE role in the stats trends, yet the way Les Wynan discusses is as if adjustments are never made and all skill level, strategy, etc. is essentially unchanged from game to game. Everything in his view is effectively random.

Les I appreciate the stats you provide as far as for my own personal informedness, but your analysis of them is somewhat oversimplified. In other contexts, on other forums, I have seen this happen when a person wants to make a name for his or herself, acting as a contrarian in support of overbroad statements that contravene conventional wisdom, so as to establish his or her view as uniquely informed. I don't know if that's what you are trying to do here but clearly some players match up better against others and if you consistently get a bad matchup over a good one, average numbers will be below mean and stay there.
If you want to believe every PDO regression that occurs is a result of strategic adjustment, that's your right and I have no concrete evidence to disprove you apart from saying that it's extremely improbable. Some if it certainly is, some if it is definitely randomness. Either way, to concern oneself with that is to miss the point I think. The end result is the fact that percentages-driven success isn't sustainable in the NHL right now, certainly not on a team level and, except for at the margins, not at an individual player level. If your goal is to predict future performance, that's something you can use to your advantage.

The simplest answer is usually the correct one. In a sport that involves a randomly bouncing piece of vulcanized rubber as its focal point, and features 30 teams that don't have huge differences in skill between them, it makes more sense to attribute the fluctuations we observe in shooting and save percentage to luck or randomness or binomial variance or whatever you're comfortable calling it.

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02-21-2012, 11:30 AM
  #242
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The fact that we have seen Whites errors directly lead to a goal means he influenced the game in a BIG way. you post high SV% by having a solid core in front of you.

Les: Not saying you are wrong, but you cannot try to prove one thing with stats and disprove another with "luck". Saying White has had bad luck doesnt say anything, he has made costly errors and been in poor position for shots, screening niemi, or deflecting the puck instead of stopping it. One of the Detroit goals went off of white, id have to watch the replay but it looked like he opened his legs instead of putting them together and the puck got tipped...go figure. When you score a goal and still end up -3 or -4 in a game, you are affecting the play.

As far as outplaying the hawks, the sharks generally put up more shots than the opponent, but they arent high percentage chances. you can pluck a shot stat or puck possession and put it out of context all you want, but if you give up high quality chances to the other team and they put them in the net, you got outplayed...not sure how that equates to luck.

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02-21-2012, 12:21 PM
  #243
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
I've already linked to the scoring chance totals in that series - the Sharks had more of them. It wasn't "shot quality" driving Niemi's SV% through the roof, it was randomness. You'd be best served to stop buying into the narrative and actually pay attention to what went on in that series.
Total scoring chances doesn't mean jack if they are crappy scoring chances. You'd be best served if you stopped reading box scores of games to try and understand them, and actually pay attention to what goes on in the game.

I hate to burst your bubble, but stats don't even come close to painting a full picture of the game.

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02-21-2012, 12:38 PM
  #244
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See: even Todd blames Mitchell for the Helm goal.

@pollakonsharks "Mitchell only skated one shift for #sjsharks after turnover that led to losing goal in DET on Sunday. Today's situation not a big surprise."

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02-21-2012, 12:44 PM
  #245
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its hard to win with a major weak link.

we have two.

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02-21-2012, 01:30 PM
  #246
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Total scoring chances doesn't mean jack if they are crappy scoring chances. You'd be best served if you stopped reading box scores of games to try and understand them, and actually pay attention to what goes on in the game.

I hate to burst your bubble, but stats don't even come close to painting a full picture of the game.
"Crappy scoring chances." Incredible how people grasp at straws to reinforce the media narrative. The way they tabulated scoring chances is clearly defined. Not all chances are created equal to be sure but they only counted high-quality opportunities.

You're the one obsessed with the "box score" in trying to paint a picture of what happened in that series. It's pretty funny that you think Niemi stopping 95% of the shots he faced was anything other than the bounces going his way.

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02-21-2012, 01:46 PM
  #247
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
"Crappy scoring chances." Incredible how people grasp at straws to reinforce the media narrative. The way they tabulated scoring chances is clearly defined. Not all chances are created equal to be sure but they only counted high-quality opportunities.

You're the one obsessed with the "box score" in trying to paint a picture of what happened in that series. It's pretty funny that you think Niemi stopping 95% of the shots he faced was anything other than the bounces going his way.
Some of this is forest/trees. In this case you need to look at the trees. The Sharks have difficulty with Nemo-style goalies. The Sharks have dramatically moved off the cross-ice chances in favor of point shots. That is part of their shot total increase from the RW days.

Some teams use their goalie coaches for their snipers. They assess weaknesses of opposition goalies. With Nemo, cross-ice is particularly deadly (Hiller too). Go to Lundqvist, not so much on cross ice. Lundqvist is weak glove high. Nemo is weak on top shelf and the Wings are catching on. Go to Nashville and you will find that Rinne gives a bit of five-hole when sliding across (so does Greiss). Go to Boston and you want cross ice or backdoor, Thomas comes way out particularly to the right. Draw him out and get the puck to the left side (easier said than done as Chara is protecting the left side). There is a stats site (don't recall link) that does a pictorial of goals allowed by goalie and there are differences in their maps.

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02-21-2012, 02:12 PM
  #248
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
"Crappy scoring chances." Incredible how people grasp at straws to reinforce the media narrative. The way they tabulated scoring chances is clearly defined. Not all chances are created equal to be sure but they only counted high-quality opportunities.

You're the one obsessed with the "box score" in trying to paint a picture of what happened in that series. It's pretty funny that you think Niemi stopping 95% of the shots he faced was anything other than the bounces going his way.
You talk like they are robots, giving the same effort and giving the same results. Players get hot. Niemi got hot. Period.

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02-21-2012, 02:15 PM
  #249
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Originally Posted by Les Wynan View Post
"Crappy scoring chances." Incredible how people grasp at straws to reinforce the media narrative. The way they tabulated scoring chances is clearly defined. Not all chances are created equal to be sure but they only counted high-quality opportunities.

You're the one obsessed with the "box score" in trying to paint a picture of what happened in that series. It's pretty funny that you think Niemi stopping 95% of the shots he faced was anything other than the bounces going his way.
Grasping straws? The media narrative? This is my personal opinion. For the past 4 years the Sharks have been masters of the bad angle and low percentage point shots that qualify as "scoring chances". Who is this "they" that tabulates scoring chances? Unless you go through each scoring chance there is no way to tell what they are counting. I do not consider scoring chances an objective look at who was the better team in a game. You do. It's a useful stat, but like I said doesn't come close to painting the whole picture.

And I rarely look at box scores to form my opinions, if ever. I'm really not sure what you are getting at there. I also think it's highly amusing you think Niemi stopping 95% of his shots was pure luck. We're even.

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02-21-2012, 02:25 PM
  #250
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You talk like they are robots, giving the same effort and giving the same results. Players get hot. Niemi got hot. Period.
Obviously he got hot. That's the point. It was coincidence that he got hot for the duration of that series. The fact that the Hawks rode his hot streak to a series victory does not mean they outplayed the Sharks.

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Originally Posted by irbelikewall View Post
Grasping straws? The media narrative? This is my personal opinion. For the past 4 years the Sharks have been masters of the bad angle and low percentage point shots. Who is this "they" that tabulates scoring chances? Unless you go through each scoring chance there is no way to tell what they are counting. I do not consider scoring chances an objective look at who was the better team in a game. You do. That pretty much sums up this entire discussion.

And I rarely look at box scores to form my opinions, if ever. I'm really not sure what you are getting at there. I also think it's highly amusing you think Niemi stopping 95% of his shots was pure luck. We're even.
I linked to the article already and you can go through the archive and look at every scoring chance they counted and cross-reference it with the game tape if you have a crapton of time on your hands. They're Oilers fans so it's not like they had some sort of nefarious plot to make the Sharks look good or Hawks look bad.

Give me some evidence that a greater percentage of the Sharks' shots over the past few seasons have been from poor angles than any other team in the NHL.

The object of the game is to outscore the opponent. Whether or not shots go in, especially over the course of just four games, is mostly out of anyone's control and predicated on a whole lot of randomness. When a team generates more high-quality opportunities than the other, as the Sharks did in that series, they deserve to win.

When someone has an established talent level and overachieves it for a four-game sample, it's pretty dumb to assume they made huge improvements in their play that they then conveniently forgot about later. Every starting goalie in the NHL has a four-game stretch where they post a 0.950 SV% or higher while every starting goalie has four-game stretch posting a 0.905 SV% or lower. Niemi had the former, Nabokov had the latter and that decided the series. Again, this doesn't mean the Sharks were the worse team.

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