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Old
07-08-2013, 11:47 PM
  #76
leaffansince1961
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Originally Posted by HockeyCrazed101 View Post
I think that most of the responses in this thread would suggest that most people aren't afraid or dislike them but think that they are useful when used in the appropriate context. Stats help to figure out the odds, they don't guarantee the results. Stats only provide a figurative framework to logical predictions.

Variables aside:

-Generally speaking, a team that takes more shots and allows less shots against are more likely to be successful than a team that doesn't
-Generally speaking, a team that scores more goals than they allow are more likely to be successful than a team that doesn't
-Generally speaking, a player/team that spends more time with the puck rather than chasing it more likely to be successful than a player/team that doesn't.
- Generally speaking, a team that takes shots from the perimeter and/or long range (even if they are outshoot their opponent) will lose to a team that takes fewer shots but in prime scoring locations. For example, a good offensive team that works the puck for a good scoring chance than just firing the puck on net.

- Generally speaking, enough stats can support many different arguments and both support opposing statements.

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07-08-2013, 11:49 PM
  #77
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Originally Posted by LeafOfBread View Post
That's why I don't read Pension Plan Puppets anymore, they have some really smart people over there but the constant reliance and citing of stats gets annoying and the articles all seem to have the same rhetoric/tone, "Carlyle is not a good coach", "Tyler Biggs and Stuart Percy were bad draft picks, especially Tyler Biggs", "Reimer's save % is the only reason the Leafs made the playoffs", etc.
Let's take a second and think about how much that site has changed, wow. I'm going to put my hipster glasses on a bit and throw out that I was one of the first readers over there (freshman year of high school, ******* time flies), way back when PPP actually wrote everything and the GDTs had 20 comments in them max. I loved that site, read it every day, refreshed it every couple of hours. But it's such a mob mentality over there now. And like, they get enough trolls to where it makes sense that they're jaded, but they have a penchant for just trashing anyone who doesn't agree. Makes me sad. Used to be a much friendlier community.

Good post.

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07-09-2013, 12:00 AM
  #78
leaffansince1961
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LOL, I remember a poster trying to say that the 12-13 Leaf team was worse than the 11-12 team because Reimer's save pct was quite a bit higher, suggesting that the team was relying on more saves by the goalie to earn the wins this year.....never considering that the save pct was higher because more shots were being taken from the perimeter or long range, or because his line-of-sight had been cleared.

I like Burke's quote about the lamp post.

Stats can mean more when taken in controlled environments, thus minimizing or controlling undue influences.

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07-09-2013, 12:08 AM
  #79
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Originally Posted by 7even View Post
Let's take a second and think about how much that site has changed, wow. I'm going to put my hipster glasses on a bit and throw out that I was one of the first readers over there (freshman year of high school, ******* time flies), way back when PPP actually wrote everything and the GDTs had 20 comments in them max. I loved that site, read it every day, refreshed it every couple of hours. But it's such a mob mentality over there now. And like, they get enough trolls to where it makes sense that they're jaded, but they have a penchant for just trashing anyone who doesn't agree. Makes me sad. Used to be a much friendlier community.

Good post.
Interesting. I got into PPP about three years ago (i think, maybe two) and thought it was very good. It started getting pretty annoying listening to the naysaying and by playoff time, PPP and Jeffler were starting to get too much with their "bruins in 3" and "fire Carlyle" stuff... Leafs make the playoffs for the first time in a long time and my twitter was full of negative stuff. Needless to say, I unfollowed quite a few of them (Jeffler is still a beauty although at times too much) after this UFA period. It was overreaction nation.

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07-09-2013, 12:15 AM
  #80
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Originally Posted by 7even View Post
Let's take a second and think about how much that site has changed, wow. I'm going to put my hipster glasses on a bit and throw out that I was one of the first readers over there (freshman year of high school, ******* time flies), way back when PPP actually wrote everything and the GDTs had 20 comments in them max. I loved that site, read it every day, refreshed it every couple of hours. But it's such a mob mentality over there now. And like, they get enough trolls to where it makes sense that they're jaded, but they have a penchant for just trashing anyone who doesn't agree. Makes me sad. Used to be a much friendlier community.

Good post.
I agree, PPP has become jaded and tedious to read.

Although he shares some of the same sentiments and reactions as PPP I really like Cam Charron's blogs on The Leafs Nation (usually).

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07-09-2013, 12:20 AM
  #81
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Originally Posted by leaffansince1961 View Post
LOL, I remember a poster trying to say that the 12-13 Leaf team was worse than the 11-12 team because Reimer's save pct was quite a bit higher, suggesting that the team was relying on more saves by the goalie to earn the wins this year.....never considering that the save pct was higher because more shots were being taken from the perimeter or long range, or because his line-of-sight had been cleared.

I like Burke's quote about the lamp post.

Stats can mean more when taken in controlled environments, thus minimizing or controlling undue influences.
I'm not saying that 2011-12 was better but that year, after 48 games, the Leafs only had 2 less points than they had this year after 48 games. That's with goaltending sensation Jonas Gustavsson between the pipes for a good chunk of games. So it's not as laughable as you might think.

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07-09-2013, 01:18 AM
  #82
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I'm not saying that 2011-12 was better but that year, after 48 games, the Leafs only had 2 less points than they had this year after 48 games. That's with goaltending sensation Jonas Gustavsson between the pipes for a good chunk of games. So it's not as laughable as you might think.
That depends on whether you factored in how a different team system can influence the matter (and in this case, a case can be made that it does). I don't have numbers on hand to back it up but just based on what I recall of both seasons, the Leafs gave up more quality shots two seasons ago versus simply giving up more shots (but of lesser quality) this season. That can make a big difference. Under Wilson, each guy had his own player to take care of. When one guy lost his man, it often opened up prime real estate for a good shot to be taken. Under Carlyle's system, they defend their zone by simply collapsing around their net. They box out the opposition and protect the slot which forces teams to take perimeter shots and have to battle their way to the front of the net. It's not always effective (when they don't do it properly) but I recall reading plenty of game day threads on the opposition's board where they severely outshot us yet lost the game and every single one of those discussions had the same conclusion - their team generated a lot of shots but hardly anything that challenged the goalie to make big saves.

Don't get me wrong, Reimer has made several huge saves throughout the season and has stolen some games for the team, but even the best teams have had their goalie bail them out of bad games for them.

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07-09-2013, 01:21 AM
  #83
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Originally Posted by Totti View Post
I'm not saying that 2011-12 was better but that year, after 48 games, the Leafs only had 2 less points than they had this year after 48 games. That's with goaltending sensation Jonas Gustavsson between the pipes for a good chunk of games. So it's not as laughable as you might think.
That's a very flawed way of looking at things though. In the first 48 games of 2011-2012 the Leafs had an easy schedule and faced mostly non playoff teams. In the last 30 games or so their schedule became much more difficult, they had multiple games against top teams, and specifically teams they couldn't beat like Boston, Florida, Washington, Philadelphia, etc, and as a result they collapsed. This year, they played every team in the East proportionately, and did just fine.

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07-09-2013, 01:32 AM
  #84
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They can help sure, but with anything, there are limitations and pitfalls. And, like anything, they shouldn't be taken as a whole just part of the puzzle. Another piece.

If you follow James Mirtle though you would think they are essential to evaluating all trades, players, etc. In fact, I think Mirtle should go follow baseball as he's clearly a stathead and has little use for watching the game, rather just look at bar charts and draw Venn diagrams.

And yes, I know James reads this site. Hi James. Shouldn't you be reading Bill James' book on Win Shares to see how you can extrapolate that into the hockey world?
I honestly don't think Mirtle would be capable of doing his job without Hockey-Reference, Behind The Net and Microsoft Excel at his disposal.

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07-09-2013, 01:40 AM
  #85
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Just looking for some feedback on these advance stats that are creeping into hockey. Disclaimer I am old school 40 years old and don't get caught up in advance stats and rely more on watching games and not looking at a piece of paper to evaluate a player.

Now my question is how can these stats work if there are so many variables in play during a hockey game and each player is not measured against the same variables or situations during a game.

Teams don't play each team equally so if you played against a team such as Detroit who is a puck possession team vs NJ who plays a more conservation trap so to speak how can you measure that equally?

How do you measure a players numbers if he was playing hurt or if it was back to back games. How do you factor match ups into the stats. What happens if one of those match ups changes in the middle of a game or a guy misses a game say Patrice Bergeron missing half a period due to a fight would impact how Bozak's faceoff numbers are and how some of the stats are calculated.
I agree with this completely. I think they are the same as any stat, they are only numbers that can indicate various results. They are not absolute, cut and dry representations of a players performance. An empty net goal is not the same as a game 7 overtime winner. I'm sure these "advanced" stats have value, much like the traditional or "beginner" stats have value as well, but at the end of the day hockey will never be something that can be done by formula. If I see a player performing really well in some advanced stat and I'm a GM, I'm going to watch him play to see it in action before I trade for him.

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07-09-2013, 01:49 AM
  #86
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Let's take a second and think about how much that site has changed, wow. I'm going to put my hipster glasses on a bit and throw out that I was one of the first readers over there (freshman year of high school, ******* time flies), way back when PPP actually wrote everything and the GDTs had 20 comments in them max. I loved that site, read it every day, refreshed it every couple of hours. But it's such a mob mentality over there now. And like, they get enough trolls to where it makes sense that they're jaded, but they have a penchant for just trashing anyone who doesn't agree. Makes me sad. Used to be a much friendlier community.

Good post.
Thanks, and I agree 100%.

I used to read PPP and Maple Leafs Hot Stove often, eventually I cut PPP out cause of the crap that you mentioned.

I don't know what's happened on that site, but they've become almost elitist with their usage of advanced stats. I checked the site recently just to see what was going on there, and I remember in the comments some guy disagreed that Bozak was useless and tried to argue it, then a bunch of guys started pulling out Bozak's corsi stats and just outright mocking the guy. I'm not a fan of Bozak and I agree that he's not what we need, but he does have some areas of value and is not a completely useless player, and the way they treated that guy was kind of sad.

That's part of the reason why I've soured on James Mirtle lately too. As much as I respect him and his contributions, I feel like he's changed a bit in a way that I'm not really too fond of and his association with the PPP community is just too much for me. Still read his stuff but I disagree with a lot of it too.

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07-09-2013, 02:04 AM
  #87
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For me, the "advanced-statistician-personality" is the biggest turn off in the whole project. The bubble charts, pseudo scientific terms and numbers are a mild curiosity at best, but those rudimentary tabulations and simplifications of the sport are taken to actually show us more than meets the eye as opposed to only the partial picture it really is. And in turn, this 'insight' is packaged with that definitive tone as if they've cracked the code to the hockey universe, without ever asking why certain people get offensive zone starts, or characterizing all centers who start in the defensive zone as shut down centers, or ever stopping to consider that different styles of play encourage different amounts of puck possession, or finding any difference between a bunch of John Mitchell lone ranger shots on goal versus a Phil Kessel snipe, etc.

At the end of the day, when we're having an argument about a Game Seven meltdown, why are we talking about the size and position of a purple circle on a graph when we can actually talk about the plays in question?


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07-09-2013, 02:10 AM
  #88
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Originally Posted by leaffansince1961 View Post
LOL, I remember a poster trying to say that the 12-13 Leaf team was worse than the 11-12 team because Reimer's save pct was quite a bit higher, suggesting that the team was relying on more saves by the goalie to earn the wins this year.....never considering that the save pct was higher because more shots were being taken from the perimeter or long range, or because his line-of-sight had been cleared.

I like Burke's quote about the lamp post.

Stats can mean more when taken in controlled environments, thus minimizing or controlling undue influences.
This is a perfect example of what I was referencing earlier. You THINK that the leafs gave up more shots from the outside - yet you have not provided an ounce of analysis to support that statement. This is where stats (not just advanced) come in handy - don't just rely on a narrative created out of confirmation bias - actually look up the stats or facts to prove your case. Hockey, sports, politics, etc would all benefit from actually researching and proving the narratives that are often pounded into our heads from years of conditioning.

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07-09-2013, 02:30 AM
  #89
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For me, the "advanced-statistician-personality" is the biggest turn off in the whole project. The bubble charts, pseudo scientific terms and numbers are a mild curiosity at best, but those rudimentary tabulations and simplifications of the sport are taken to actually show us more than meets the eye as opposed to only the partial picture it really is.
In defense of the genre, Vic Ferrari, the guy who developed CORSI into what it is today, worked as an engineer, so that makes sense.

"Mild curiosity" may be a smidge dismissive of a metric that has shown some degree of validity.

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07-09-2013, 05:54 AM
  #90
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Let me break hockey stat analysis down into three things that are known to be true at this point:

1. Teams that put the puck into the net more than the opposition win more hockey games (duh)

2. Teams that generate more scoring chances score more goals. This relationship is linear, averages about 9 - 11% and is not affected by individual shooter skill or shooting distance on the whole. The last two points are counter-intuitive but have been proven to be true. These scoring chances are measured by Corsi Events

3. The best teams in the league are good puck possession teams ( ie. ones that generate more scoring chances than they allow)

Now with those three facts an engineer (like myself) or many of the stats guys instantly see a way to model a winning hockey club. That club generates more Corsi events than the opposition. Good players generate positive Corsi events within that model and elevate the play of their teammates. These individual contributions can also be measured in real time.

The great divide right now between stat heads and the great unwashed is the ability to understand these models or even to apply logic in general. The breakdown right now both on a league and avid fan basis is 30 - 70 against in my estimation. The leaf org is currently in the 70% camp.

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07-09-2013, 12:30 PM
  #91
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Interesting. I got into PPP about three years ago (i think, maybe two) and thought it was very good. It started getting pretty annoying listening to the naysaying and by playoff time, PPP and Jeffler were starting to get too much with their "bruins in 3" and "fire Carlyle" stuff... Leafs make the playoffs for the first time in a long time and my twitter was full of negative stuff. Needless to say, I unfollowed quite a few of them (Jeffler is still a beauty although at times too much) after this UFA period. It was overreaction nation.
I'll take it

I think a big issue is that these additional metrics give us a bigger picture on long term sustainability and the Leafs players and roster decisions have concerning numbers attached to them. It's like, the antithesis to people who gush over prospect potential, in a sense

I still maintain that the Leafs are an incredibly fun team to watch in the meantime. I'd like nothing more to be wrong when I look at something negatively long term, and there is no guarantee it happens, it's just warning signs.

(Though Bruins in 3 was just me being a "OH GOD THEY ALWAYS KILL US WE'RE SCREWED" doofus )

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Originally Posted by Stephen View Post
For me, the "advanced-statistician-personality" is the biggest turn off in the whole project. The bubble charts, pseudo scientific terms and numbers are a mild curiosity at best, but those rudimentary tabulations and simplifications of the sport are taken to actually show us more than meets the eye as opposed to only the partial picture it really is. And in turn, this 'insight' is packaged with that definitive tone as if they've cracked the code to the hockey universe, without ever asking why certain people get offensive zone starts, or characterizing all centers who start in the defensive zone as shut down centers, or ever stopping to consider that different styles of play encourage different amounts of puck possession, or finding any difference between a bunch of John Mitchell lone ranger shots on goal versus a Phil Kessel snipe, etc.

At the end of the day, when we're having an argument about a Game Seven meltdown, why are we talking about the size and position of a purple circle on a graph when we can actually talk about the plays in question?
I'll admit I don't see eye to eye with you a lot, but this is very true. The biggest issue with the advanced statistcs crowd is that as a whole, we're really bad at projecting what exactly we're talking about to the mainstream. Personally, I'm a big fan of dumbing down the terminology, explaining it, then using whatever stats I need as accessories to my arguments instead of "this is a bunch of corsi, everything else is wrong, don't worry about what that means", but more people need to be approachable in how they talk about it.

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07-09-2013, 12:42 PM
  #92
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As soon as someone brings up advanced stats I stop talking hockey with them. Try watching, it's a lot easier and also a lot more fun

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07-09-2013, 12:52 PM
  #93
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As soon as someone brings up advanced stats I stop talking hockey with them. Try watching, it's a lot easier and also a lot more fun
Do you think we sit there with notepads and calculators calculating fenwick instead of cheering and reacting like the rest you?

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07-09-2013, 01:03 PM
  #94
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Do you think we sit there with notepads and calculators calculating fenwick instead of cheering and reacting like the rest you?
You use a notepad still? I thought everyone used laptops and tablets.

Seriously though comments about watching the game are my pet peeve. If anything I'd wager that people who enjoy the added analysis that stats can bring watch much more hockey than the I don't understand them so I dismiss them crowd.

Ignorance is bliss though right?

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07-09-2013, 01:17 PM
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Let's take a second and think about how much that site has changed, wow. I'm going to put my hipster glasses on a bit and throw out that I was one of the first readers over there (freshman year of high school, ******* time flies), way back when PPP actually wrote everything and the GDTs had 20 comments in them max. I loved that site, read it every day, refreshed it every couple of hours. But it's such a mob mentality over there now. And like, they get enough trolls to where it makes sense that they're jaded, but they have a penchant for just trashing anyone who doesn't agree. Makes me sad. Used to be a much friendlier community.

Good post.
You see that on twitter if you disagree with one of their tweets they either retweet your tweet to mock you or their groupies come back at.

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07-09-2013, 01:28 PM
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This is a perfect example of what I was referencing earlier. You THINK that the leafs gave up more shots from the outside - yet you have not provided an ounce of analysis to support that statement. This is where stats (not just advanced) come in handy - don't just rely on a narrative created out of confirmation bias - actually look up the stats or facts to prove your case. Hockey, sports, politics, etc would all benefit from actually researching and proving the narratives that are often pounded into our heads from years of conditioning.
But again that is where you stats guys don't get it. I don't need stats to prove that the Leafs were having teams shoot more from the outside and having less quality changes against them. I see the game watch it and can see where most of the shots are coming from. I don't need to know what 1907 out of 2305 shots were from the outside I can see that over 75% of the shots were from the outside and hence in theory easier for a goalie to stop unless your Toskala.

I can also see that a a line facing Patrice Bergeron would probably have less puck possession as Bergeron wins over 60% of his draws and then Boston in theory controls the initial play after the puck drop.

Here is a stat the suns comes up 365 days a year and sets 365 days a year but I don't need a graph or numbers to tell me that...I know it happens cause I see it. I know that is probably a straw man but it just tells a point.

Just because someone doesn't back up an theory or point of view doesn't make his point of view any less legit or valid.

It don't make us sheep cause we listen to the narrative make our conclusions and believe them it provides us with confirmation that what we are seeing is seen by others.

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07-09-2013, 01:33 PM
  #97
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But again that is where you stats guys don't get it. I don't need stats to prove that the Leafs were having teams shoot more from the outside and having less quality changes against them. I see the game watch it and can see where most of the shots are coming from. I don't need to know what 1907 out of 2305 shots were from the outside I can see that over 75% of the shots were from the outside and hence in theory easier for a goalie to stop unless your Toskala.

I can also see that a a line facing Patrice Bergeron would probably have less puck possession as Bergeron wins over 60% of his draws and then Boston in theory controls the initial play after the puck drop.

Here is a stat the suns comes up 365 days a year and sets 365 days a year but I don't need a graph or numbers to tell me that...I know it happens cause I see it. I know that is probably a straw man but it just tells a point.

Just because someone doesn't back up an theory or point of view doesn't make his point of view any less legit or valid.

It don't make us sheep cause we listen to the narrative make our conclusions and believe them it provides us with confirmation that what we are seeing is seen by others.
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07-09-2013, 01:43 PM
  #98
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In defense of the genre, Vic Ferrari, the guy who developed CORSI into what it is today, worked as an engineer, so that makes sense.

"Mild curiosity" may be a smidge dismissive of a metric that has shown some degree of validity.
if the corsi proponents are going to outright mock the idea of intangibles, stating only corsi matters. then why is it wrong for people who actually know a bit about the game, and probably played some puck, to dismiss these kids who have never played before, and probably watched moneyball one too many times?

there are so many variables in the game that can't be quantified. A coaches system for instance. The game of hockey is a game of momentum, and swings, more than any other sport, except for basketball possibly. Hockey is also a game of pure emotion, which is something nobody can quantify. It's the reason why someone can go on a 15 game goal streak, or post up a .960 save% in the home stretch of the season to get his team in the playoffs. Or why a little used player, benched for most of overtime, happens to score a game winning goal in double overtime in game 7 to get his team in to the finals. Or why some players, show very little promise during the regular season. But all of a sudden, in playoffs, they become dominant players that carry their teams to much success. The opposite is also true, with some players excelling during the regular season, but disappearing during the playoffs.

I feel as though the stats pundits have never played the game, and don't understand the joy and emotion of it, highs and lows, the swings, and most importantly, situational hockey. Among the different scenarios a player can find himself in, the other aspect to it, is that in hockey, it's really a team sport. You rely on the other 5 guys on the ice at the time. And what you do depends on the who the 6 guys are you're facing, in what circumstance you're facing them in, and what part of the emotional roller coaster you're on. Baseball, and football, you have cogs in a machine, everyone has a job to do, and they do it individually, when everyone does their individual job properly, it leads to team success. Statistics is very applicable in these sports. Basketball, is sort of a mix between ultra individualistic, and team just because of the super star effect. And hockey, is the purest sense of team. Yes there's role players in hockey, but it's a total game of flow, and those 6 guys on the ice at one time, they become one unit. Not individual parts. Every statistic in hockey has everything to do with the guys on the ice with them. You know that old hockey cliche? Wouldn't have been able to do it without my linemates? It's not just lip service. Hockey players have team cliche's down to a science because it's all true.

I believe corsi says Phaneuf is a good player. He's really not. You only have to evaluate him with your eyes to know his first pass is average, he's not a very nice skater, he handles the puck like it's a grenade. His vision is also very uninspired, you see him trying to make passes like gardiner, and all you can do is roll your eyes. And he lacks the agility and quickness to keep up with forwards in our own end. He is learning to cope by being a statue and watching the play buzz around him so he doesn't leave the net wide open. But he's not suited for his role. I'm not saying this to start a phaneuf debate. I'm saying this because this is legitimately what's wrong with phaneuf. And 11th in voting or not, you can't be a cup contender when your #1 D has those deficiencies. And I'm pretty sure I recall people using corsi to state otherwise.

The bottom line is, corsi can be interesting to look at. But the majority of people present it as hockey dogma. And all that does, is show your lack of understanding.


Last edited by wulfio*: 07-09-2013 at 01:57 PM.
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07-09-2013, 01:55 PM
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But again that is where you stats guys don't get it. I don't need stats to prove that the Leafs were having teams shoot more from the outside and having less quality changes against them.
I don't appreciate the sweeping generalization of "you stats guys don't get it", perhaps you are the one who doesn't get it. Stats people don't try and claim they know all and are more important than watching the game. Stats provide evidence and help back up what our eyes see.

Some people do need stats to prove certain things since eyes can be deceiving and people also have their own personal bias on players they like and dislike and numbers are unbiased.

Which arguement holds more weight?

A) I saw with my eyes the Leafs gave up more shots from the outside

B) When watching the Leafs seemed to give up more shots from the outside so I looked into it and it turns out there were 62% of shots taken from 30ft or more in 12-13 and 64% in 11-12

In both options the person saw the games and formed an opinion, but in option B stats were used to back up the opinion or in this hypothetical example disprove what the person felt they saw.


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Just because someone doesn't back up an theory or point of view doesn't make his point of view any less legit or valid.
What??!?! You actually believe this?

I think Colton Orr is the most skilled goal scorer on the team.

Even if I don't back up this ludicrous statement you still believe this point of view is just as legit and valid? If you truly believed your quoted statement above every crackheaded opinion and BS statement would be as valid as well thought out opinions backed with reason, logic and numbers.

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07-09-2013, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Duke Silver View Post
Haha I thought of that article too.

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