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The old core leadership fallacy: a number analysis

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07-02-2014, 08:46 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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The old core leadership fallacy: a number analysis

With the medias going nuts about how much of a big part of the core leadership we lost by trading Gorges and letting Gionta go, I decided to have some fun and crunch some numbers. We have the general feeling that the leadership core of modern post-lockout teams is getting younger and younger, but I think that we are due for some numbers to confirm that. First table I'd like you to consult, the current captain's average age across the league and the age they got the captaincy:



Now, let's look at that magic "age named captain" average at 26 years old. Price is 26, both Subban and MaxPac are 25. I'm not saying that we name them captains, I am saying that it's congruous with how modern NHL leadership cores are built around 25-26 years old leaders.

Let's continue our analysis with Table 2, consisting of the past five Cup Winners teams analysis. If the team won the Cup twice under the leadership of the current captain, I took his age at the first cup win (Brown, Toews).



So not only are we following league average by lowering our leadership core's age, we also follow the standard of past cup winners. We find the magical 26 years old captain number again. In other words, I think we'll be just fine without Gorges and Gionta. Price, Subban and Pacioretty are in the average years of being core leaders of modern teams. Feel free to use this data in blogs or whatever. If you feel like giving me some credits, PM me.


Last edited by SpreeEndaz: 07-02-2014 at 09:30 PM.
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07-02-2014, 08:49 PM
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Richiebottles
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Give Gallagher the C.

He is a heart and soul guy who seems like a natural leader.

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07-02-2014, 08:51 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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(I'll redo the tables without the Microsoft Word autocorrect red lines)

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07-02-2014, 08:54 PM
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JLP
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Wow thanks for this. So half the NHL teams named as their captain a player who was PK's age or younger. Sort of defeats the "he's not ready yet" argument.

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07-02-2014, 09:01 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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Quote:
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Wow thanks for this. So half the NHL teams named as their captain a player who was PK's age or younger. Sort of defeats the "he's not ready yet" argument.
Exactly. I mean, 8 of the current captains were named at 24 years old or younger, Brendan Gallagher wouldn't be such a stretch if we truly think he deserves it.

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07-02-2014, 09:09 PM
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Pk is 25. Max is 26.

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07-02-2014, 09:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpreeEndaz View Post
Exactly. I mean, 8 of the current captains were named at 24 years old or younger, Brendan Gallagher wouldn't be such a stretch if we truly think he deserves it.
Or PK

My money is on PK

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07-02-2014, 09:11 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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Pk is 25. Max is 26.
We're actually both wrong; Price is 26 and both PK and Max are 25.

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07-02-2014, 09:12 PM
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ECWHSWI
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wasted lots of time on this to prove nothing really...


Lots of things in hockey, or life in general, can be quantified, but trying to do it with courage, heart, leadership, etc ? really ?


besides, the only thing your tables are showing are the age of various captain, it has nothing to do with leadership.

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07-02-2014, 09:17 PM
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Originally Posted by ECWHSWI View Post
wasted lots of time on this to prove nothing really...


Lots of things in hockey, or life in general, can be quantified, but trying to do it with courage, heart, leadership, etc ? really ?


besides, the only thing your tables are showing are the age of various captain, it has nothing to do with leadership.
I think the captain's age is a good metric of what is the relative age of the core leadership in the locker room. Yeah, obviously it's not an exact science. Nevertheless, I know it's possible, but I have a bad time picturing a team driven by a 30+ years old leadership core with the 'C' strapped on a youngster.

Look at it this way. In the 2005 CBA, they dropped the UFA age from 31 to 27. This means that you have, in my humble analysis of post-lockout era, to build your core around younger players and expect 27+ to be more interchangeable than before.

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07-02-2014, 09:24 PM
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I do concede that you need a few veterans in the locker room during the playoffs, maybe I should have named the threat "The need of an experienced core fallacy", but I think the idea behind the analysis stays the same.

A lot of teams build around a younger core since the lockout and not only bad teams, I think this will be the new reality of the league. Off the top of my head, I can't find many examples of teams that aren't doing so. The Bruins and the Wild might be two of them, but then again, it's congruous with their captain's age.

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07-02-2014, 09:26 PM
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So i see that we need a captain this year and if he follows the average we will win the Cup in 3.5 years...

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07-02-2014, 09:30 PM
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Thanks for the stats! Though i have been on the "the captain doesn't need to be 10-year vet" train for awhile now. I have absolutely no issue giving the C to Subban or Gallagher, though Subban makes the most sense since he'll probably be given a long-term deal this summer. Personally i have no problem with a bunch of guys with A's this year. let the captaincy kind of come about organically as the season goes along.

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07-02-2014, 09:41 PM
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Erik Estrada
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Great analysis Spree. I agree with your conclusion... Confirms some of my impressions. I'll bring more on this....

Exhibit A Mark Messier
1-Around 1980 (Messier is only 19 or 20 years old) : "But early on Sather recognized the value of (Kevin) Lowe and Messier.... Lowe remembers that Sather "pushed " him and Messier into leadership roles, "straight out" telling them: "Hey, you guys take charge. You tell 'em when they're screwing up" per Klein: Messier. p.31
2-The only player to captain two different professional teams to championships

Exhibit B Chris Pronger
1- Was 23 years old when first named Captain. He was pushed in a leadership role despite his prior (major) off ice issues and spats with the team. He's now lauded as a great leader, HOF and no one remembers all the crap from early in his career.


Last edited by Erik Estrada: 07-02-2014 at 10:14 PM.
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07-02-2014, 10:08 PM
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I really appreciate the time you put into that analysis, Spree.

Can I ask one little more factoid? I know it's maybe much to ask but..

Could you add how many full-NHL seasons these players had under their belt when they were named captain? I mean.. 1.. 2, 3, 4 NHL seasons? Subban just finished his 4th (yes. Lockout season counts)

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07-02-2014, 10:14 PM
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Baruch
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Considering that our core is drafted and developped by ourselves (Except for Eller), and that our next captain will certainly be a player drafted/developped by the Habs, I centered your graphic to players named captain that fit that category (hence excluding players like Chara, Ference, Salvador, Thornton and Phaneuf).


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07-02-2014, 10:17 PM
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Erik Estrada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PricePkPatch View Post
I really appreciate the time you put into that analysis, Spree.

Can I ask one little more factoid? I know it's maybe much to ask but..

Could you add how many full-NHL seasons these players had under their belt when they were named captain? I mean.. 1.. 2, 3, 4 NHL seasons? Subban just finished his 4th (yes. Lockout season counts)
For Chris Pronger it was 4 full NHL season (including 1 drunk-driving arrest and 1 bar-room brawl)

Before Pronger became captain (story from Roger Neilson, quoted in Johnson/Walter, Simply the best. p.275)
"I will always remember the great story of when Mike Keenan came to St-Louis and Chris Pronger wasn't playing well. There were some rumours that he was out a little too late at night, so Mike brought him into his office in St-Louis along with his parents. My office was just outside Mike's. Mike was really giving it to him, really reaming him out. I heard Mke say, "You know, I'm old enough to be your father, and I'm in better shape than you. That guy sitting outside the door (that was me), he's old enough to be your grandfather!"
So Pronger comes out and says, "Hi, Gramps". Mike really reamed him out, and he brought his parents in and went through the whole thing with them"...


Saku Koivu was 25, and had only 4 full NHL seasons which is nothing exceptional... For example, Gretzky and Lemieux were 22.


Last edited by Erik Estrada: 07-02-2014 at 10:43 PM.
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07-02-2014, 10:19 PM
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Wasn't Lidstrom the captain for Detroit in 2007-08.

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07-02-2014, 10:22 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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Wasn't Lidstrom the captain for Detroit in 2007-08.
That could be accurate, I checked the 07-08 Red Wings Wiki page and it seemed to say Zetterberg, but I might be mistaken.

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07-02-2014, 10:22 PM
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Zetterberg got it that late because lidstrom was still there or else he might of got it earlier.

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07-02-2014, 10:22 PM
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just goes to reinforce that, if he were treated the way players league-wide of his ability/personality are treated, Subban would be a no-brainer for Captain of this team.

pretty obvious that this won't happen, to each their own as to assessing the "why"... i'd say it's rather obvious.

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07-02-2014, 10:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpreeEndaz View Post
I think the captain's age is a good metric of what is the relative age of the core leadership in the locker room. Yeah, obviously it's not an exact science. Nevertheless, I know it's possible, but I have a bad time picturing a team driven by a 30+ years old leadership core with the 'C' strapped on a youngster.

Look at it this way. In the 2005 CBA, they dropped the UFA age from 31 to 27. This means that you have, in my humble analysis of post-lockout era, to build your core around younger players and expect 27+ to be more interchangeable than before.
as long as you go with C = leader, no C = not a leader...


what do you think, that once a C is given to a younger guy the older ones stop talking in the room or something ? that whatever leadership they had is gone ? that because Getzlaf is a C guys like Koivu, Selanne and co dont have a say in what's going on anymore ?

you're really confusing having a letter on a jersey and being one of the leader in the room.

It's pretty clear actually that you can't really quantify leadership, we saw it two seasons ago, both Gionta and Gorges offered to have the kids live at their place - something 24/25 yo players couldnt do really, but at the same time while PK is younger we hear that other younger guys (Beaulieu we've heard) are looking up to him but in turn, PK is looking up to guys like Markov, like Eller when asked he awnsered that he'd like to be a Plekanec, so yeah, he's looking up to an older guy as an example, but... you could also make a case of Plekanec who looked more dynamic and al' when given guys like Galchenyuk and Gallagher as winger...

and you come up with the conclusion (sort of) that giving letters to younger guys automatically meas the leadership group is younger ?

if you want to "analyze", you got to put more thoughts into it than what you did so far.

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07-02-2014, 10:26 PM
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SpreeEndaz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PricePkPatch View Post
I really appreciate the time you put into that analysis, Spree.

Can I ask one little more factoid? I know it's maybe much to ask but..

Could you add how many full-NHL seasons these players had under their belt when they were named captain? I mean.. 1.. 2, 3, 4 NHL seasons? Subban just finished his 4th (yes. Lockout season counts)
That might take a bit more time to gather the data. If the conversation is alive and well during the weekend, some extra numbers could be fun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Baruch View Post
Considering that our core is drafted and developped by ourselves (Except for Eller), and that our next captain will certainly be a player drafted/developped by the Habs, I centered your graphic to players named captain that fit that category (hence excluding players like Chara, Ference, Salvador, Thornton and Phaneuf).

Another good perspective! Sometimes you sign a UFA and give him the C like Chara with the Bruins or Rivet with the Sabres though (before being waived a few months later hah). Nonetheless, I don't see which UFA would fit that profile.

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07-02-2014, 10:37 PM
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As you said, nothing is an exact science, however it is still an interesting thing to look at. Good job.
I've made it clear that PK is my candidate. To me he really represents everything you want from a captain.
The only reason why I'd be hesitant a bit to give it to him this year is the fact it would also be the first year of a huge increase in salary. So he will come into next year with the added pressure to live up to his contract. Add the huge pressure of being a captain to it, and I agree with Mike Johnson that there's being a captain and then there's being a captain of the Montreal Canadiens. So I would think about going into next season with 3 assistants, one of which being PK, and the following year most likely give it to him.

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07-02-2014, 10:41 PM
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PricePkPatch
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As you said, nothing is an exact science, however it is still an interesting thing to look at. Good job.
I've made it clear that PK is my candidate. To me he really represents everything you want from a captain.
The only reason why I'd be hesitant a bit to give it to him this year is the fact it would also be the first year of a huge increase in salary. So he will come into next year with the added pressure to live up to his contract. Add the huge pressure of being a captain to it, and I agree with Mike Johnson that there's being a captain and then there's being a captain of the Montreal Canadiens. So I would think about going into next season with 3 assistants, one of which being PK, and the following year most likely give it to him.
I agree it's not a bad thing to err on the side of caution..

A - Pleky
A - Markov
A - Subban

It'll be obvious when Subban will be ready, and it might be as soon as next year.

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