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Fear, loathing and assists.

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Old
03-03-2004, 08:38 AM
  #1
floop
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Fear, loathing and assists.

I have an issue with assists.

Giving 2 assists for every goal is roughly akin to giving the center kudos for hiking the ball to the quarterback who makes an amazing pass through 7 defenders for the touchdown. In some situations, like where Foppa sees Hejduk gaining a step on his cover, who then fires a pass to a crossing Tanguay, 2 assists are in order. However, I suspect there is a lot of times where 2 are not.

I have come to respect that there are a lot of innovative thinkers on this board, and in the name of debate I officially offer up the following questions:

1. What percent of "second" helpers are without merit?
(You know the ones, where an enforcer is lumbering down the RW and kinda "shoves" the puck in the "general vecinity" of a streaking Lecavalier who threads a pass onto the tape of St. Louis (and say it correctly in your heads while you are reading this, or else it will lose its significance) for the goal.)

2. Why haven't the owner's embraced removing 2nd assists as a tactic in the upcoming CBA? Removing the 2nd assist would remove a statistical category from many players that might drive prices downward.

3. We all know the garbage goal scorers... who are the garbage assist givers? e.g. the players from whom most of their assists are 2nd assists in a play on which they had no idea what was going on....

Thanks for the input in advance.

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Old
03-03-2004, 09:33 AM
  #2
Coburnfan05
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Intersting, but no I don't like it.

How about the times when more then 2 assists are deserved? I've seen plenty of times where there were 3 or more key passes leading to a goal. I would leave it as is.

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Old
03-03-2004, 09:51 AM
  #3
kyle
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If you are going to do that, then be prepared to give an assist to every player on the power play that doesn't score the goal. They thread the puck around so much that everyone touches it and makes a pass that contributes to the goal.

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Old
03-03-2004, 09:54 AM
  #4
Chainshot
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Something to consider is how international scoring (and to some extent in Europe) handles the awarding of assists as key to the scoring of the goal. Officially in the league rules:

<i>When a player scores a goal, an "assist" shall be credited to the player or players taking part in the play immediately preceding the goal, but no more than two assists can be given on any goal. Each "assist" shall count one point in the player's record.</i>

So it's the scorekeepers job, along with the official, to determine if the play lead directly to the goal. Some leagues you see far more stringent interpretation, such that far, far few second assists are awarded. In the NHL, it seems any player who touched the puck prior to being scored, regardless of the explicit intent of scoring a goal, are handed an assist. The classic bank off the boards clearing attempt getting a defenseman the second assist comes to mind, even though not pandemic, it's still foolish to think the players intent is scoring a goal rather than just getting the puck the heck out of his zone and watching one of his forwards win the loose puck and turn it into something at the other end of the rink.

As for removing it... It would look too contrived and would certainly add ammo to the NHLPA's next counter-salvo in the war of words prior to the negotiations. The last thing I think the league is interested in is handing PR material to labor in this dispute.

And for garbage assist getters...

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03-03-2004, 01:01 PM
  #5
West
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I'd go the other way on this discussion. Assits are underated by most people. Espically the second assit. If you watch a game it's pretty rare that you see more than say 2 or 3 passes in a row outside of the powerplay. That means alot of the time the player who gets the second assit was either the guy who gained control of the puck or moved it from a defensive to an offensive position. Easily worth a point IMO.

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Old
03-03-2004, 01:08 PM
  #6
Knucklez
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I'd say keep the 2 assists system. In my opinion, if you've touched the puck right before someone on your team has scored, you have assisted in the goal, and you deserve a point.

There is a problem with it that is basically unfixable, where a player can assist a goal more than anyone else, without even touching the puck, so they don't get a point. Example: The Canucks are on the PP, and right as Ohlund takes a point shot, Bertuzzi skates in front of the goalie, completely screening him, and thus causing a goal. Bertuzzi helped with that goal just as much if not more than the 2 assist getters did.

There was another case in Colorado where Bertuzzi took out 2 defenceman with one hit, leaving Daniel Sedin open in front for a goal, yet he doesn't get any credit.

I don't really think that problem can be fixed though, it would be too hard to tell if somebody assisted without touching the puck.

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Old
03-03-2004, 01:50 PM
  #7
Grady41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by floop
1. What percent of "second" helpers are without merit?
(You know the ones, where an enforcer is lumbering down the RW and kinda "shoves" the puck in the "general vecinity" of a streaking Lecavalier who threads a pass onto the tape of St. Louis (and say it correctly in your heads while you are reading this, or else it will lose its significance) for the goal.)

2. Why haven't the owner's embraced removing 2nd assists as a tactic in the upcoming CBA? Removing the 2nd assist would remove a statistical category from many players that might drive prices downward.

3. We all know the garbage goal scorers... who are the garbage assist givers? e.g. the players from whom most of their assists are 2nd assists in a play on which they had no idea what was going on.....
1.I really don't know but West has a point as does GagsIsDaMan, and SaloFan so I would probably have to say they are all warranted in some way or another.

2.The NHLPA would likely never give this up the most they would likely concede is to make the second helper hidden like the Hits block stats. And we as fan would hate to see yet another point of contention, so lets not give the owners any ideas.

3."the players from whom most of their assists are 2nd assists" If this is how you define garbage assist givers this is something you could look up. off the top of my head I don't really know. Before this season Tanquay was called a leetch because people thought he got most of his points by passing the puck to Forsberg and letting him do all the work. A lot of Kings fan think the same thing of Modry Pass to Allison or Ziggy and let them do all the work. By this definition you could perhaps call these players Garbage assist givers.

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03-04-2004, 04:11 AM
  #8
Pekka Lampinen
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NHL does seem to award a lot of assists compared to what I'm used to over here. I guess I should pick a suitable sample and find out about the real numbers some time. The NHL may not be the one doing it wrong, though, as the difference is often the lot of assists that are not passes. Hardly anyone is ever credited for a good screen.

Hockeystats.ch does a good job differentiating primary and secondary assists in the Swiss NLA. It does mess up the scoring table, but a separate list would be very nice.

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Old
03-04-2004, 11:45 AM
  #9
Heater15
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To answer #3 Peter Forsberg

I've watched a lot of games and I've been arguing with friends for a long long time about how he gets all the secondary assists (where he had nothing to do with the play but a bounce off the skate or him usually hogging the puck then losing it) gets him the assists. Don't get me wrong, he does make some unreal plays and passes, but a good portion of his assists - he doesn't really deserve!

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Old
03-04-2004, 06:36 PM
  #10
Blackjack
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Quote:
Originally Posted by West
I'd go the other way on this discussion. Assits are underated by most people. Espically the second assit. If you watch a game it's pretty rare that you see more than say 2 or 3 passes in a row outside of the powerplay. That means alot of the time the player who gets the second assit was either the guy who gained control of the puck or moved it from a defensive to an offensive position. Easily worth a point IMO.


I agree 100%. It's pretty rare that defenseman chips the puck out of the zone, then a streaking forward picks it up and 1 pass later it's in the back of the net. I'd say it's usually the 2nd assister that creates the chance for the play, the 1st assister that creates the chance for the goal, and (obviously) the scorer converts on the chance.

Obviously there are exceptions, but look at a goaltender like Brodeur, he probably clears the puck more than any other goalie, and I think he has like 20 assists in his career, I don't think that the 2nd assist distorts the picture more than just having 1 assist would.

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Old
03-04-2004, 07:00 PM
  #11
Breck Av
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Heater15
To answer #3 Peter Forsberg

I've watched a lot of games and I've been arguing with friends for a long long time about how he gets all the secondary assists (where he had nothing to do with the play but a bounce off the skate or him usually hogging the puck then losing it) gets him the assists. Don't get me wrong, he does make some unreal plays and passes, but a good portion of his assists - he doesn't really deserve!
I disagree. I watch every game and Forsberg usually earns his assists. If any Avalanche player fits the second assist profile it's Milan Hejduk, who is obviously one of the best finishers in the NHL but not in the same league as Forsberg and Tanguay as far as passing.

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Old
03-05-2004, 11:48 AM
  #12
tytech
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NHL--History and record books. You can't change something that was decided 100 years ago. It would not be fair to anyone. The lack in statistics for your cba arguement would also hurt an owner who would want to bring in a high profile player for marketing and ticket sales.

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Old
03-05-2004, 04:24 PM
  #13
Twisted Wrister
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I think it's fine as is. Over time, the inherent talent level of the players will make the numbers right. For example, the defensemen who chips the puck off the glass to a streaking forward who makes another pass for a goal isn't going to finish the season with a lot of assists and points if that's all he does. By chance he will occasionally get a point.

To turn it around, a player like Forsberg may get second assists from time to time due to the puck simply hitting his skate or some such, but his talent and vision also creates many plays over the course of the season that are not finished, perhaps due a great save by the goaltender, shot blocked, missing the net, etc.

So I think the system as is does a perfectly fine job of evening things out. And it's simple, which is always good.

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