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Are defensive forwards overrated?

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Old
02-01-2006, 07:23 PM
  #26
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The Canucks a team of checkers and grinders? Never heard anyone refer to Tony Tanti, Petri Skriko and Patrik Sundstrom as a checker/grinder. In fact, outside of three or four forwards, the Canucks had one of the softest forward corps in the league.

Keep one thing in mind with the Oilers: As good as they were offensively (and they were GOOD), they don't win any Cups without Fuhr. You still need a goalie to win, and there have been few goalies better in the big games, or with the game on the line, than Fuhr.

In the end, I'll take management/coaching/teammates perspective when evaluating the value of a player, and then the media, and most Cup winning teams will tell you their top defensive forward/checking line was of utmost value, in many cases of near or equal value to their top scorers.

There's a reason that they say defence wins championships. Doesn't matter the sport.

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02-01-2006, 07:32 PM
  #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada
. Keep one thing in mind with the Oilers: As good as they were offensively (and they were GOOD), they don't win any Cups without Fuhr. You still need a goalie to win, and there have been few goalies better in the big games, or with the game on the line, than Fuhr.
Fuhr was great and all but the Oilers probably still win as many Cups without him (ie if Moog was the goalie) Of course Moog was still a great goalie in his own right but the Oilers weren't winning championships only because of Fuhr. To say they wouldn't have won ANY cups without Fuhr is just ridiculous.

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Old
02-01-2006, 08:57 PM
  #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada
The Canucks a team of checkers and grinders? Never heard anyone refer to Tony Tanti, Petri Skriko and Patrik Sundstrom as a checker/grinder. In fact, outside of three or four forwards, the Canucks had one of the softest forward corps in the league.

Keep one thing in mind with the Oilers: As good as they were offensively (and they were GOOD), they don't win any Cups without Fuhr. You still need a goalie to win, and there have been few goalies better in the big games, or with the game on the line, than Fuhr.

In the end, I'll take management/coaching/teammates perspective when evaluating the value of a player, and then the media, and most Cup winning teams will tell you their top defensive forward/checking line was of utmost value, in many cases of near or equal value to their top scorers.

There's a reason that they say defence wins championships. Doesn't matter the sport.
Bill Ranford might beg to differ

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02-01-2006, 10:10 PM
  #29
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Well, one has to consider the basic idea of outscoring: if you're on the ice for as many or more goals against as you are for goals for, you aren't helping your team. Bure could notch a hatty, but it doesn't matter if his line is victimized for three or four goals in the same game.

I'd argue that outscoring didn't mean much with Gretzky and Lemieux on the ice, because they were arguably the two greatest talents in the game and you couldn't stop them. However, they are the outliers, the exceptions. Would they produce more with Gainey on their wing? I don't know if they'd produce more 'noticable' points- IE 225 instead of 215- but the outscoring balance I think WOULD change. Instead of Wayne being on the ice for ~215 goals for and say 150 against, the GA would drop. This might lead to wins in a few games where they were outscored, allowing Gretzky's differential to be, say, +4/-3 EV instead of +4/-4 EV. That's one more goal for his side that could change a game from a tie to a win or whathaveyou.

So if outscorers (a more specific and better quantified term than 'defensive forward') could help even Wayne or Mario even a bit, imagine what they do for other players. As igor of Oilers board fame says, outscorers can 'zoom' other players, or make it look as though those lesser players are performing at a higher rate or whathaveyou when that's not actually the case.

I think outscorers bring the following:

-They can jack up the trade value of their linemates by making them look good.
-They can help shelter young players at EV. Ex: Dvorak with Torres and Stoll.
-They can make the opposing team's best scorers invisible. Ex: Legwand or Peca
-They can eat up these tough minutes so that other players can play softer ones.

In conclusion, outscorers are, if anything, underrated. Your team can't go without them.

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02-01-2006, 11:00 PM
  #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Bugg
Well, one has to consider the basic idea of outscoring: if you're on the ice for as many or more goals against as you are for goals for, you aren't helping your team. Bure could notch a hatty, but it doesn't matter if his line is victimized for three or four goals in the same game.
So no player in the league with a +/- below zero is helping their team?

All of the following players have been on the ice for more goals against than for(at even strength):

Kovalchuk, Crosby, Naslund, Marleau, Kariya, Svatos, Drury, Madden, Boyle, and so on...

Perhaps linemates, defence, and goaltending have something to do with it?

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Old
02-01-2006, 11:26 PM
  #31
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Wow, there was alot to look at in this thread. My two cents:

In Sim and fantasy leagues defensive forwards are highly overated.

To the average fan they are highly underrated. They do not get the publicity, press, or recognition that "scorers" get.

As a coach or a GM. Any of them would love a Madden, Fisher, or Draper on their team. Ask Team Canada: There are hundreds of centers more offensively talented than Drper, yet Draper is on the team.

Every team needs a few shut down guys.

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02-02-2006, 12:01 AM
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cup2006sensrule
Fuhr was great and all but the Oilers probably still win as many Cups without him (ie if Moog was the goalie) Of course Moog was still a great goalie in his own right but the Oilers weren't winning championships only because of Fuhr. To say they wouldn't have won ANY cups without Fuhr is just ridiculous.
Of course. But lets keep in mind that Moog (around for three Cups) and Ranford (two Cups, a Conn Smythe winner for one of them) were dynamite goalies, too. (Some maintain that Moog should be in the HHOF). The bottom line is that the Oilers could have all the offence in the world, but without a top-notch goalie, they don't win any Cups. It wasn't just the goal scorers. (They also had some ultra-reliable, steady defensive defencemen beyond Kevin Lowe who never got any credit, but that's another story for another time).

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Old
02-02-2006, 12:43 AM
  #33
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So no player in the league with a +/- below zero is helping their team?

All of the following players have been on the ice for more goals against than for(at even strength):

Kovalchuk, Crosby, Naslund, Marleau, Kariya, Svatos, Drury, Madden, Boyle, and so on...
With the exception of Drury and Madden, you've nailed the players I and most others would identify as terrible outscorers. Madden's numbers are suffering because the quality of opposition he faces along with the struggles Brodeur and the NJ defensive corps had earlier this year are still reflecting upon his EV +/-. I'd say the same about Drury- he's facing tough QO.

Now, you're probably going to say "What the hell? Those players DO help their team. Remember that one game when..."

Anedoctal evidence like that is too narrow a view. You have to look over the course of a season. Sure, Kovalchuk is flashy, but the amount of ice-time and the soft QO he needs to accomplish what he does is simply terrible. He's not efficient, not yet. Maybe he won't ever be, ala Bure. He's won one Art Ross, he might win a few more, and that's nice. But behind the flash, there isn't much.

Think of it this way: you're paying Kovalchuk $5 mill to score +100/-120 EV. And let's say there's Smyth at $2.8 mill, who is a +75/-85 (hypothetical numbers for both). Who is the more efficient use of money?

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02-02-2006, 01:32 AM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Bugg
With the exception of Drury and Madden, you've nailed the players I and most others would identify as terrible outscorers. Madden's numbers are suffering because the quality of opposition he faces along with the struggles Brodeur and the NJ defensive corps had earlier this year are still reflecting upon his EV +/-. I'd say the same about Drury- he's facing tough QO.

Now, you're probably going to say "What the hell? Those players DO help their team. Remember that one game when..."

Anedoctal evidence like that is too narrow a view. You have to look over the course of a season. Sure, Kovalchuk is flashy, but the amount of ice-time and the soft QO he needs to accomplish what he does is simply terrible. He's not efficient, not yet. Maybe he won't ever be, ala Bure. He's won one Art Ross, he might win a few more, and that's nice. But behind the flash, there isn't much.

Think of it this way: you're paying Kovalchuk $5 mill to score +100/-120 EV. And let's say there's Smyth at $2.8 mill, who is a +75/-85 (hypothetical numbers for both). Who is the more efficient use of money?
You can't blame Kovalchuk for every goal scored against while he is on the ice. There are 5 other players, including three whose job it is to stop the opposition, that can share the responsibility. You blame forwards far too much in this equation. Primarily, their job is to score goals, preventing goals is a secondary function of a forward. The defense and the goaltender are much more in a position to accept blame and reward for the goals against.

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02-02-2006, 02:17 AM
  #35
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Forwards still have to backcheck. You are not seriously expecting the defensemen to deal with all three forwards on their own.

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Old
02-02-2006, 02:31 AM
  #36
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You can't blame Kovalchuk for every goal scored against while he is on the ice.
Of course not. But when Kovalchuk is being sheltered, you know where the problem is. Coaches don't shelter bad outscorers.

As well, the guy is absolutey gifted powerplay minutes. He leads the league in that department by a good 35 minutes, and while he does lead the NHL in PP scoring, he's not very efficient:

Naslund: 8.63 PPP/H
Datsyuk: 7.62 PPP/H
Brind'Amour: 6.57 PPP/H
Crosby: 6.10 PPP/H
Heatley: 5.75 PPP/H
Nagy: 5.53 PPP/H
Kovalchuk: 5.49 PPP/H
Cammalleri: 5.48 PPP/H
Ovechkin: 5.40 PPP/H
Jagr: 5.32 PPP/H
Kariya: 5.15 PPP/H
Marleau: 5.03 PPP/H
Stoll: 4.90 PPP/H
Weight: 4.20 PPP/H
Iginla: 3.68 PPP/H

So now I ask: who is more valuable to his team winning, and who is more valuable in terms of cap space versus performance?

Ladislav Nagy: 5.53 PPP/H, +28/-15 EV, $1.9 million
Ilya Kovalchuk: 5.49 PPP/H, +29/-29 EV, $6.5 million

Quote:
Primarily, their job is to score goals, preventing goals is a secondary function of a forward.
Never said it wasn't. But your team isn't going to win if you can't outscore unless you're the Oilers or Canadiens of the past. I don't know what's so hard to understand about that.

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02-02-2006, 10:14 AM
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Bugg
Of course not. But when Kovalchuk is being sheltered, you know where the problem is. Coaches don't shelter bad outscorers.

As well, the guy is absolutey gifted powerplay minutes. He leads the league in that department by a good 35 minutes, and while he does lead the NHL in PP scoring, he's not very efficient:

Naslund: 8.63 PPP/H
Datsyuk: 7.62 PPP/H
Brind'Amour: 6.57 PPP/H
Crosby: 6.10 PPP/H
Heatley: 5.75 PPP/H
Nagy: 5.53 PPP/H
Kovalchuk: 5.49 PPP/H
Cammalleri: 5.48 PPP/H
Ovechkin: 5.40 PPP/H
Jagr: 5.32 PPP/H
Kariya: 5.15 PPP/H
Marleau: 5.03 PPP/H
Stoll: 4.90 PPP/H
Weight: 4.20 PPP/H
Iginla: 3.68 PPP/H

So now I ask: who is more valuable to his team winning, and who is more valuable in terms of cap space versus performance?

Ladislav Nagy: 5.53 PPP/H, +28/-15 EV, $1.9 million
Ilya Kovalchuk: 5.49 PPP/H, +29/-29 EV, $6.5 million



Never said it wasn't. But your team isn't going to win if you can't outscore unless you're the Oilers or Canadiens of the past. I don't know what's so hard to understand about that.
Perhaps you have some axe to grind with Kovalchuk, and that is fine. My point has nothing to do with how much a player is paid or powerplay time. Defensive forwards are necessary but overrated; I am not sure of the point you are trying to make with the stats you have come up with.

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02-02-2006, 11:07 AM
  #38
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Great discussion thus far.

I think that defensive forwards are underrated. Yes, I said it. Underrated. Imagine the strain that the new rules put on defensemen, including no two-line pass and no change allowed after icing the puck. Now you tell me how badly a coach wants backchecking forwards to aid these defensemen. Only the best of the best defensemen can play 28-30 minutes per game, whereas most forwards are somewhere around 14 minutes. If I'm making a team, I want my forwards to be defensively responsible, and think defense first unless their style of play is glaringly bias towards offense.

I'm willing to bet you that 8 or 9 times out of 10, goals scored on three-on-two odd man rushes are scored by the trailer. The trailer should be picked up by a backchecking forward. Give me any skilled player in the league and they will bury a shot from the slot. That trailer is a forward's responsibility. I wouldn't want pointmen firing at will with all of the traffic in front of the net. I agree that it is the defenseman's responsibility to clear the front of the net and to clear rebounds. However, with the new rules, it's difficult for defensemen to do that without getting whistled for interference or something. If the forward is pressuring that defenseman, he has to dump the puck, or best case, the forward blocks the shot and the play goes out to the neutral zone.

Personally, I'd love a guy like Jere Lehtinen or Kris Draper on my team. To piggyback my point, I'll refer to a penalty kill. Most powerplays operate on the strength of the pointmen. If you don't have defensively responsible forwards and have some of these floating offensive players, it's like shooting ducks in a barrel for the pointmen. Defensively responsible forwards can also stop the opposition's progress in the neutral zone, and help to create more turnovers, thus more scoring chances.

As a request, keep the flaming out of this thread so it can stay open. This is a very good discussion topic.

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02-02-2006, 11:22 AM
  #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada
Of course. But lets keep in mind that Moog (around for three Cups) and Ranford (two Cups, a Conn Smythe winner for one of them) were dynamite goalies, too. (Some maintain that Moog should be in the HHOF). The bottom line is that the Oilers could have all the offence in the world, but without a top-notch goalie, they don't win any Cups. It wasn't just the goal scorers. (They also had some ultra-reliable, steady defensive defencemen beyond Kevin Lowe who never got any credit, but that's another story for another time).
I am not even going to look this up but I am sure Edmonton won at least 1 or 2 of their cups without even going to a 6th or 7th game in any series. Osgood wojn a cup with Detroit and so did Vernon and Vernon won a cup with Calgary too. And Vernon while decent is not an all-time great goalie, and Osgood isn't even close. Edmonton benefited from having Fuhr for sure. He was a great big-game goalie. He deserves to be in the HOF and the Canada Cup starting jobs he had. But Fuhr was no Roy, Hasek or Brodeur. Fuhr won the games he should win not the games he shouldn't have won. To be honest in 1990 Ranford won the cup and the Oilers were not even the best team in the NHL. In all of Fuhrs championships the Oilers WERE the best team in the NHL. Clearly the Oilers would not have won cups with a terrible goalie. But with a decent goalie they still win a whole lot of Cups.

To give credit to Fuhr since I said he wasn't as good as Roy, Brodeur and Hasek... Fuhr was great in some ways. He was Money. He might let in 5 goals in a game including a softie or 2 but he didn't let it get to him at all and if it was close he doesn't let in many goals. He makes important saves late in games. I actually love Fuhr, he is one of my favorite players ever. Bur without him the Oilers still win 3 or 4 cups pre the Ranford Era. He is important but not the be all and end all of those teams. The same with Dryden. The Habs win those cups without him. The Habs were BY FAR the best team in the NHL for his entire career. They had three or 4 (if you include Langway) HOF D-Men. Dryden was great but a decent slightly above average NHL goalie and they win all those Cups they won too.

For Roy... The 1986 and 1993 cups are his. He won them straight out. The 1996 cup in Colarado the Avs win without him with an above average goalie. Same with the Hasek cup in Detroit. Hasek was great especially in the 3rd round but the Wings could have possibly won it without him. Would Buffalo have gone to the finals without Hasek a few years before? No Freakin Way. You have to understand a hot goalie takes you a long way in the playoffs but if you have the best team you don't need the best goalie you just need a decent one.

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02-02-2006, 11:29 AM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Mr Brownstone
Great discussion thus far.

I think that defensive forwards are underrated. Yes, I said it. Underrated. Imagine the strain that the new rules put on defensemen, including no two-line pass and no change allowed after icing the puck. Now you tell me how badly a coach wants backchecking forwards to aid these defensemen. Only the best of the best defensemen can play 28-30 minutes per game, whereas most forwards are somewhere around 14 minutes. If I'm making a team, I want my forwards to be defensively responsible, and think defense first unless their style of play is glaringly bias towards offense.

I'm willing to bet you that 8 or 9 times out of 10, goals scored on three-on-two odd man rushes are scored by the trailer. The trailer should be picked up by a backchecking forward. Give me any skilled player in the league and they will bury a shot from the slot. That trailer is a forward's responsibility. I wouldn't want pointmen firing at will with all of the traffic in front of the net. I agree that it is the defenseman's responsibility to clear the front of the net and to clear rebounds. However, with the new rules, it's difficult for defensemen to do that without getting whistled for interference or something. If the forward is pressuring that defenseman, he has to dump the puck, or best case, the forward blocks the shot and the play goes out to the neutral zone.

Personally, I'd love a guy like Jere Lehtinen or Kris Draper on my team. To piggyback my point, I'll refer to a penalty kill. Most powerplays operate on the strength of the pointmen. If you don't have defensively responsible forwards and have some of these floating offensive players, it's like shooting ducks in a barrel for the pointmen. Defensively responsible forwards can also stop the opposition's progress in the neutral zone, and help to create more turnovers, thus more scoring chances.

As a request, keep the flaming out of this thread so it can stay open. This is a very good discussion topic.
That's maybe the best strategical analysis I have ever seen on these boards. Great post. You wouldn't happen to be a coach, would you?

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02-02-2006, 12:29 PM
  #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogopogo
Are you trying to say that the Oilers won the cup BECAUSE of Lumley and Hunter? Did the Islanders dominate the NHL because of Wayne Merrick and Butch Goring?

The point is, the Oilers won the cup because of Gretzky, Kurri, Coffey, Messier and Anderson. Without Hunter and Lumley, they still would have won 5 cups. They would have found a couple of other spare parts to put in their place.

Not one player you listed is the reason for a cup victory. All teams need checkers and they do help but, they are spare parts. The scorers are what makes a team great, the spare parts are interchangeable.

The players that made those teams champions were guys like Gretzky, Trottier, Bossy, Clarke, Brodeur, Sakic, Lafleur, Dryden, Esposito, Orr. The teams would have won the cup without the checkers you listed. Just insert the name Matt Cooke instead of any checker you have listed - those teams would still have won the cup.
Most of the players you name as making those champions were superb at keeping the puck out of the net. 3 of the forwards named have Selke nominations in fact, and one's even won it a few times.

Gretzky never won a cup without Messier and Kurri. But Messier and Kurri won it without Gretzky, and both of them were excellent defensively. Trottier is one of the finest 2way players the game has ever seen, and the most dominant line the Isles ever seen wasn't dominant just because it could score in bunches, but because it could also shut anyone down.

If we're going to compare guys that are one dimensional in a defensive sense, then it's not really fair to compare them to guys that were some of the most complete players the game has seen. It's like saying Yzerman won Selkes and was a great defensive forward and Pavel Bure scored a lot of goals. Since Yzerman was the better player, defense is greater than offense.

As a side note, Butch Goring's acquisition at the deadline before the Islanders' first cup is generally considered the final piece to the puzzle for the Isles. He was hardly an interchangeable part.

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02-02-2006, 01:50 PM
  #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogopogo
The way I see it, great offensive forwards are much more valuable than great defensive forwards. A Gretzky, Lemieux or Lafleur are significantly more valuable to their teams than players like Gainey, Carbonneau or Lehtinen. Most players can be good defensively, it is a skill they can learn - it takes something special to win scoring titles. Take a look at the Hart trophy balloting over the years, the one dimensional defensive player like Gainey was never seriously considered for the NHL's MVP. Honestly, would you take one of: Spezza, Staal, Forsberg, Jagr, Heatley, Alfredsson, Crosby, Ovechkin, Kovalchuk, Hossa, Iginla, Naslund, Sakic, Datsyuk, Thornton or would you rather have the BEST defensive forward in the NHL - Kris Draper?

As well, if a forward blows his defensive assignment, he has two defensemen and a goaltender to cover his butt. He is not the last line of defense by a long shot, his role as a defensive player is almost more of a bonus and a helper to the d and the goaltender.

If a defensive player is truly valuable, he should receive some consideration for the Hart trophy. Even the best defensive players in the history of the game, guys like Gainey, Carbonneau, Tikkanen and Lehtinen have never even finished in the top 7 in the Hart trophy balloting. Players like Trottier and Yzerman who were very good defensively were among the vote leaders many times but, they had a great offensive game to go with their defense.

Not trying to bash defensive players, they are good to have on a team. Just saying that they might be much less valuable than many people seem to think. I see posts on occasion that bash one dimensional scorers but, in reality, a one-dimensional scorer, most times is a lot more valuable than a one-dimensional checker.
You basically said it yourself. Most people who get that award are very sound defensively as well. Take a look at the players you mentioned. they all can play defense. So you compare a complete player to a one dimensional one. When you want to choose between offensive forwards and defensive ones, you have to mention players that are pure offense and no defense at all. The thing about defensive forwards is that they produce too but are simply better playning defense than offense.

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02-02-2006, 02:28 PM
  #43
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Originally Posted by Mr Bugg
As well, the guy is absolutey gifted powerplay minutes. He leads the league in that department by a good 35 minutes, and while he does lead the NHL in PP scoring, he's not very efficient:
Good analysis. I did something similar last year and got similar results. Kovalchuk had a great season, but some people overrated him because he got a ton of ice time, especially on the powerplay. I'd rather have someone score 70 pts in 15 minutes per game rather than 80 pts in 20 minutes per game (all other things being equal). Similarly, given two players who both scored 80 pts in 20 minutes per game, I'd rather have one with 5 minutes on the powerplay rather than the guy with 8 minutes per game (all other things being equal). Efficiency is hugely important in determining which team wins, and is almost never discussed.

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02-02-2006, 10:49 PM
  #44
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Originally Posted by Hockey Outsider
Good analysis. I did something similar last year and got similar results. Kovalchuk had a great season, but some people overrated him because he got a ton of ice time, especially on the powerplay. I'd rather have someone score 70 pts in 15 minutes per game rather than 80 pts in 20 minutes per game (all other things being equal). Similarly, given two players who both scored 80 pts in 20 minutes per game, I'd rather have one with 5 minutes on the powerplay rather than the guy with 8 minutes per game (all other things being equal). Efficiency is hugely important in determining which team wins, and is almost never discussed.
Thats why Canadians always win the scoring title in international play.

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02-02-2006, 11:17 PM
  #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr Bugg
With the exception of Drury and Madden, you've nailed the players I and most others would identify as terrible outscorers. Madden's numbers are suffering because the quality of opposition he faces along with the struggles Brodeur and the NJ defensive corps had earlier this year are still reflecting upon his EV +/-. I'd say the same about Drury- he's facing tough QO.
I think your mistake is that you're putting full resposibility on Kovalchuk for every goal against, when really it could be any one of the other players on the ice (including the plethora of terrible goalies Atlanta had for most of the year).

I know there's no stat to prove it, but I'm pretty confident that Kovalchuk's proficiency as a scorer is greater than his deficiency as a defender (especially when compared to your average player).

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Old
02-03-2006, 12:14 AM
  #46
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The bottom line is this: Every one of us would take a great offensive forward over a great defensive forward for our teams. Examples:

Who would you pick?

The greatest pure offensive forward ever - Wayne Gretzky
or
The greatest pure defensive forward ever - Bob Gainey


How about the #2 pure offensive forward - Mario Lemieux
or
The #2 pure defensive forward - Guy Carbonneau


How about '03 - '04's best offensive forward - Martin St. Louis
or
'03 - '04's best defensive forward - Kris Draper



The best offensive players are always more valuable than the best defensive players.

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02-03-2006, 12:31 AM
  #47
God Bless Canada
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ogopogo
The bottom line is this: Every one of us would take a great offensive forward over a great defensive forward for our teams. Examples:

Who would you pick?

The greatest pure offensive forward ever - Wayne Gretzky
or
The greatest pure defensive forward ever - Bob Gainey


How about the #2 pure offensive forward - Mario Lemieux
or
The #2 pure defensive forward - Guy Carbonneau


How about '03 - '04's best offensive forward - Martin St. Louis
or
'03 - '04's best defensive forward - Kris Draper



The best offensive players are always more valuable than the best defensive players.
Again, you're drawing on an excellent all-round forward for your third comparison. St. Louis finished fourth in Selke voting, and was only a few votes away from being in the top three. His defensive contributions cinched the Hart and Pearson Trophies for St. Louis.

I would take Gretzky and Lemieux ahead of Gainey. But that's because no matter how much of a liability they were defensively, Gretzky and Lemieux were worth it. But Bob Gainey vs. Pavel Bure? Or Gainey vs. Kovalchuk? I'd take Gainey, one of the top 100 players in the history of the game, especially in the playoffs. (Gainey would own Bure in a best-of-seven, just like MacTavish/Lowe did in 1992, Blake/Zhitnik in 1993 and Stevens in 2000).

Your question at the start of the thread wasn't who's worth more: a great defensive forward or a great offensive forward. Even Jacques Lemaire would take Gretzky ahead of Gainey. (Chooch might take Gainey over Gretzky, but nobody takes chooch seriously). Your quesiton was "Are defensive forwards overrated." Ask anyone who has ever won anything at a high level of hockey (and trust me, I've talked to a lot of them), and they will glowingly talk of the very valuable contributions of their defensive forwards.

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Old
02-03-2006, 12:38 AM
  #48
DownFromNJ
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A goal saved is a goal earned...


Problem is, it is difficult to quanitfy defense. And being a great offensive player doesn't mean that you don't play defense.

The difference between a great defensive player and an average defensive player is much smaller than that between a great offensive player and an average offensive player.

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Old
02-05-2006, 01:36 PM
  #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Bless Canada
Your question at the start of the thread wasn't who's worth more: a great defensive forward or a great offensive forward. Even Jacques Lemaire would take Gretzky ahead of Gainey. (Chooch might take Gainey over Gretzky, but nobody takes chooch seriously). .
Hmm lets see..The Soviets said "there are a thousand Gretzky's in the Soviet Union".

The Soviets said what about Gainey?

Gainey had 6 Cups.

Gainey NEVER missed the playoffs.

Gainey is one the most respected minds in Hockey; he doesnt bury lucky loonies.

Gainey was captain of his team and retired as such for sixteen glorious years and was never traded for Carson and then went to the Blues and then the sad sack Rangers to try and do what Messier had already done.

There are no Gainey retirement figurines.

Gainey played against the top lines every shift for 16 years with character and class.

I'll take Bowmans preferences over anyones elses.

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02-05-2006, 03:01 PM
  #50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chooch
Hmm lets see..The Soviets said "there are a thousand Gretzky's in the Soviet Union".

The Soviets said what about Gainey?

Gainey had 6 Cups.

Gainey NEVER missed the playoffs.

Gainey is one the most respected minds in Hockey; he doesnt bury lucky loonies.

Gainey was captain of his team and retired as such for sixteen glorious years and was never traded for Carson and then went to the Blues and then the sad sack Rangers to try and do what Messier had already done.

There are no Gainey retirement figurines.

Gainey played against the top lines every shift for 16 years with character and class.

I'll take Bowmans preferences over anyones elses.
As usual, cooch quips in with material that is presented for no other reason than to troll for trouble.

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