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MLD 2010 Mickey Ion 1st round: #3 Regina Capitals vs. #6 Philadelphia Blazers

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Old
07-17-2010, 11:40 PM
  #51
seventieslord
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
Arbour's small, small peak does not make up for his offensive shortcomings in comparison to Marotte. For the 10 seasons before that, he was not a real impact player if we're speaking in an MLD context. +/- is a terrible stat to judge an individual's performance especially. Here's a list of the last 5 +/- leaders in the NHL: Jeff Schultz, David Krejci, Pavel Datsyuk, Thomas Vanek, and Michal Rozsival. I'm certain nobody is dumb enough to select any of these guys. With the exception of Datsyuk (who is a phenomenal defensive player in his own right but benefited from a tremendous DET offense), all of those guys were the direct byproduct of having a successful offense. Schultz was a part of a mediocre defense with a dynamic Washington offense, Krejci was part of the 2nd best offense in the NHL where Boston and Tim Thomas had a freak year, Vanek scored 43 goals, and I'm just going to say Michal Rozsival. With the exception of Datsyuk, all 4 of those guys are mediocre defensively.
Who said anything about +/-?

Raw single season +/- is a poor way to judge any player. Adjusted +/-, taken over a large sample size (entire career, for example) does tell a good piece of a player's story.

It sounds to me like you're not sure what adjusted +/- is. It basically tracks what a team's goal differential is with a player on the ice versus when they are not.

Look at overpass' thread in the HOH section, it will tell you more. It should still be near the top.

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07-18-2010, 12:02 AM
  #52
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Who said anything about +/-?

Raw single season +/- is a poor way to judge any player. Adjusted +/-, taken over a large sample size (entire career, for example) does tell a good piece of a player's story.

It sounds to me like you're not sure what adjusted +/- is. It basically tracks what a team's goal differential is with a player on the ice versus when they are not.

Look at overpass' thread in the HOH section, it will tell you more. It should still be near the top.
I'm not sure there's any way you can adjust +/- to be a useful stat. To many variables that can't be accounted for.

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07-18-2010, 04:28 AM
  #53
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
What a weird list. Marotte is first, followed by some famous body checkers, with some of the most famous poke checkers in history who weren't really physical at all thrown in towards the end.
Yeah, it is very strange. Quite random, actually. Clearly not a "bodycheckers" list, just a list of checkers in general. And it even calls Marotte "one of the best of the 1960s and 70s", then places him at the top. Wouldn't the #1 guy on a list that looks very all-timey be the best of his decade at least?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
Arbour's small, small peak does not make up for his offensive shortcomings in comparison to Marotte. For the 10 seasons before that, he was not a real impact player if we're speaking in an MLD context.
Actually, how do you know this at all?

From the 1957 through 1962 seasons, Arbour was 24-29 years old and an NHL regular and a contributing player to 6 straight playoff teams including two cup winners. Right there we have the basis of an MLD resume. (see guys like Tex Evans and Warren Godfrey,and Jim Morrison, for example, solid guys who seemed to do not much more than just stick around and hold one of the 24 jobs available)

Then, from 1963 through 1967, all we really know about Arbour is that he was arguably the best defenseman in the AHL over that cumulative period (4-time 1st-team all-star), while at the same time not good enough to be in Toronto's top-4. What does that mean? It means he wasn't as good as Bobby Baun, toronto's 4th-best defenseman during that time, drafted 240th in this ATD, and in the case of 1967, it means that he wasn't as good as Larry Hillman, in the year Larry Hillman played probably by far his best hockey. Which of course is nothing to be ashamed of. Baun was consistently about the 10th-best defenseman in the league.

Then expansion happened and Punch Imlach couldn't hoard great players and keep them in the minors anymore. What happened to Arbour? At age 35, 36, and 37, he went and led St. Louis to three straight Stanley Cup finals. Now get this: He's 36, and he finishes 5th in all-star voting - with 7 points! Then, at 37, he finishes 5th in all-star voting again - with 3 points! Everyone complains that the all-star and norris voting is far too geared towards players who put up points, then we get a guy who places 5th twice, with a combined ten points over two seasons and no one wants to give him his due.

So needless to say, the guy was a defensive gem. If things like "never seemed to make a mistake", and "the most underrated defenseman in the game", and "always tough to beat", and "excellent defensively", and "one of the best defensemen ever to ride a driving wing off the puck" were things said about him thanks to his excellent years in St. Louis, what should that tell you about the rest of his career? I think it would be foolish to assume that Arbour was at his best at age 36 and 37, the years he placed 5th in all-star voting. He was likely just as good all along, and probably even better.

From 1957 to 1970, a period of 14 straight seasons, it is a reasonable assumption that Arbour was always at worst the 15th-best defenseman in the world. Again, Arbour was 5th in all-star voting with 7 points, then 3 points. Show me a defenseman who made even the top-8 in norris or all-star voting with less than 15 points.

what's the modern equivalent to being the 15th-best defenseman in the world in the O6 age? 30th today? That's pretty damn good. That's a guy who'd get top-pairing minutes (#1 or #2 on team) for 14 straight seasons despite being nonexistent offensively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
Gallant did get very minor Selke consideration in 87-88 and 88-89. Just to throw it out there. Granted, it was one vote each time, it may be negligible, but indicates that he was not a liability at least.
Yes it's negligible.

I don't think he was a liability. He better have been responsible! The guy was a nameless plugger in 7 of his 11 NHL seasons, of course he was playing some defense.

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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
I'm not sure there's any way you can adjust +/- to be a useful stat. To many variables that can't be accounted for.
There are variables to everything, and +/- is no exception. Quality of linemates is the most important. Quality of opposition is another, as well as quality of off-ice comparables.

There are cases of players whose adjusted +/- seems "boosted" by playing with great linemates for a long time - See Brad McCrimmon and Milan Hejduk for starters. There are no players who got "dragged down" by bad players for long periods of time that I know of.

Quality of opposition is an important consideration, and it doesn't take much to get over it - you know that the best players are seeing the best players most often, so if they can't improve their team's goal differential by a great degree, this is probably why. This is why the adjusted +/- of a guy like Lidstrom is so exceptional - he makes his team's numbers better, even though he's facing tougher competition than the rest of his team. On the other hand, very good players with specific roles - see Robyn Regehr, Normand Rochefort, Sylvain Lefebvre, Ed Westfall - will hover around even for their careers despite being excellent defensively, because all they did was "maintain" their team's ratios while on the ice, and considering their competition and that they generated little to no offense themselves, that's still good. So when looking at adjusted +/- you just need to keep in mind what type of player you're looking at, and adjust your assessment accordingly.

Quality of off-ice comparables only affects a specific few guys. Overall team quality has been built into overpass' formula so the only issue to really worry about is guys who have a generational talent racking up crazy numbers when they are off the ice - so, Mark Messier for example, or Ron Francis, or Ted Green in Boston. Their numbers will be confounded by the basic fact that they couldn't possibly make their team better than it was when Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, or Bobby Orr were on the ice. (of course, there are two other lines and/or one other defense pairing to be compared to, as well). So it is something to keep in the back of your mind for certain rare cases, but not too often.

Anyway, just go look at the career leaders and it is pretty clear that the formula works. No one plays with the exact same linemates, against the exact same opposition, for the exact same strength of team, for 20 straight years, so over the course of a career you see them perform in a wide range of situations and in a high sample size. So you do get a good idea of whether the player was a positive or negative impact on their team's goal differential. One look at the career leaders tells you that the formula clearly has a ton of merit - the greatest players gravitate to the top of the list, almost like magic.

I'm sure overpass could do an even better job of explaining the formula and how it works. You should know this by now, though. It's been around for a while. Overpass is always the first to point out its limitations but it would be foolish to act like it doesn't work. It does.

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Old
07-18-2010, 04:31 PM
  #54
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Use whatever stats you want, McCabe is a sub-par defensive player. He just is.

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07-18-2010, 06:24 PM
  #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
Use whatever stats you want, McCabe is a sub-par defensive player. He just is.
Regardless of a few high profile gaffes (game 5 against Philly in 2004, scoring into own net in 2007 vs. Buffalo in OT, etc) McCabe has not been poor defensively. He's been pretty good, but is subject to brain farts much like, say, Kevin Hatcher or Al Iafrate or Ed Jovanovski.

At even strength, his team's goal differential has always been better with him on the ice, than when he is off the ice. This is indisputable.

No matter what you think of McCabe, he is paired with Al Arbour, who is probably the best defensive defenseman in the entire ATD. McCabe will not be facing top lines, is extremely well-insulated by his partner, and is being counted on to do what he does best - play the powerplay.

Look at the roster thread and look at the rest of the league - If you didn't put an "offensive specialist" in your lineup, you're behind the pack, not me, for having a 1000 game, 500 point, 2nd team all-star and two-time captain with a career adjusted +101 who plays over 50% of his team's powerplays and has only three times been as low as 3rd on his team's depth chart.

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07-18-2010, 07:42 PM
  #56
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McCabe periodically makes mistakes and has brain farts. A quick search through Google news reveals this:

Quote:
t was a third-period turnover by Bryan McCabe that figured greatly in the ... Now McCabe is going to pay for that mistake by sitting out tonight's game
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during what proved to be a long afternoon for [Bryan McCabe
Quote:
A lot of the goals were a direct result of my mistakes out there." ...
-A quote from McCabe himself

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Ottawa on Tuesday to two pivotal moments_when defenseman Bryan McCabe turned over ... "Mistakes are part of the game, and work ethic covers up for that. ...
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could help the struggling Bryan McCabe
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but two mistakes by Bryan McCabe, who now is a staggering league-worst minus-16, were just enough to cost ...
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Jeff Friesen scored with 44.1 seconds remaining in the first after Bryan McCabe turned ...
Assumed to mean turned the puck over...

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With defence partner Bryan McCabe playing the role of co- conspirator ... from hell with a game that was riddled with mistakes and missed assignments. ...
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Boston's first goal, from Rob Zamuner, came after a Bryan McCabe pass at his own blue line was picked off. ...
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still prone to glaring mistakes on occasion McCabe
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Dallas tied it at 2-2 in the third when Bryan McCabe turned the puck
Quote:
Has a propensity to make mistakes in the defensive zone and take too many bad penalties. Can be distracted by criticism when he struggles in pressure situations.

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07-18-2010, 10:43 PM
  #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
McCabe periodically makes mistakes and has brain farts. A quick search through Google news reveals this:

-A quote from McCabe himself

Assumed to mean turned the puck over...
...and yet, despite all this, his teams have been much better with him on the ice than without, and coaches keep giving him the most, or second-most minutes on the team. What a bunch of idiots they must be, those NHL coaches.

These types of quotes can be found for any player by anyone willing to look. McCabe is a modern player and news saturation has never been higher, plus the huge minutes he plays against top players means there will always be screwups.

Redmond, Brown, Tallon, Sydor, Lumme, Babych, Hamrlik, Bodger, Murray, Galley, Crossman... practically everyone has a player just like this. McCabe just happens to be the best of all of them. (none of them approach his adjusted +/-, only Hamrlik(7), Sydor(8), Babych(9), and redmond(10) have ever had a season where they were an all-star voting presence, none of them have had his kind of minutes, none of them played the PK as much as he did, and I don't think any of them have been a captain) - He's the best of his class. Your implication that having an offensive specialist in my lineup is just going to make everything unravel with turnover after turnover, is nothing short of silly.

McCabe was 34 last season, playing on a mediocre to bad team. He played a ton of minutes, yet, he was 107th in the NHL in giveaways. Just 24 players in the league had more blocked shots and more hits than McCabe.

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07-18-2010, 11:42 PM
  #58
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Look at who McCabe was up against. He was periodically behind or about equal to Tomas Kaberle and behind Svehla the one year he spent in Toronto, and the best guy he beat out was an aging Dmitry Yushkevich. He also beat out the studly Dennis Seidenberg and Jordan Leopold to lead FLA in ice time. It's not as though he was beating out top quality competition, fighting for ice time. McCabe's shortcomings in the defensive zone are what detract from his ability to be a top pairing defenseman in this. You say he's better than any other defenseman on my team despite this, which is incorrect.

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07-19-2010, 01:22 AM
  #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
Look at who McCabe was up against. He was periodically behind or about equal to Tomas Kaberle and behind Svehla the one year he spent in Toronto, and the best guy he beat out was an aging Dmitry Yushkevich.
Yep, and that was one of only three of fourteen seasons that he was as low as 3rd in ice time. What does that tell you?

Quote:
He also beat out the studly Dennis Seidenberg and Jordan Leopold to lead FLA in ice time. It's not as though he was beating out top quality competition, fighting for ice time.
Gilles Marotte played all of 29 playoff games, so clearly he was not on very good teams either, and therefore not in huge competition for his icetime on the blueline. Yet over his 12-year career he averaged about 2.7 on his team's depth chart (taking his first two seasons into consideration, based on the names on Boston in those seasons) - that is one full spot lower than McCabe was.

Quote:
McCabe's shortcomings in the defensive zone are what detract from his ability to be a top pairing defenseman in this.
Disagree, but hey, good thing I'm not using him as a top pairing defenseman!

Quote:
You say he's better than any other defenseman on my team despite this, which is incorrect.
You're grasping at straws. There is no way I'm going to believe that a guy who averaged 2.7 on his team's depth chart and played his last NHL game at 31 and was 11th in all-star voting at his best, is better than a guy who's averaged 1.7 on his team's depth chart, is still a #1 defenseman at age 34, and has been a 2nd team all-star. Nor should anyone else!

Let me repeat something that everyone should keep in mind: No one here is old enough to have watched Marotte's career - there is no "I saw him play" trump here. He's evaluated along with Quackenbush and Cleghorn and all the other defensemen we've never or rarely seen. So to judge him we use the same things we'd use to assess those guys - like all-star voting, statistics, what was said and written about him, time on ice, contribution to team success, etc. And by these standards, Marotte simply does not measure up to Redden, McCabe, or Arbour - sorry. If we're just arbitrarily deciding someone is better than someone else despite a lack of evidence provided, what are we doing here?


Last edited by seventieslord: 07-19-2010 at 01:35 AM.
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07-19-2010, 02:44 AM
  #60
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Let's move along from the defensemen and look at the forwards. I'm going to analyze the lines in a little different way than I've done it before:

First Line

The Designated Talent

In selecting who fills this role on each line, there was little thought required. Regina's prime offensive threat is Herb Jordan, and Philly's is Andre Lacroix. Now, if I had a "standard" MLD center like, say, Marc Savard or Alexei Yashin maybe this would be a really tough comparison where I try to put 1.43 PPG in the WHA into an NHL context to better understand how dominant Lacroix was. But that's not needed. Jordan is no standard MLD center. This is a guy who had five seasons where he was top-4 in points in his league, and two other seasons where he'd have been top-4 in his league if he played a full schedule. Only Russell Bowie, Frank McGee and Marty Walsh prevented him from a couple of scoring titles. His playmaking ability is well-substantiated, he was not just a finisher who let others do all the work, he carried the puck up ice, he passed, he made combination plays, and he was lethal around the net. Jordan is better, no contest, and this is no disrespect to Lacroix at all.

The tough guy with some talent

This is a Paul MacLean vs. Leo Labine comparison. MacLean was more offense-oriented, but a big, strong guy, Labine more about the defense and toughness, but the guy could score, too. So who provides more value?

MacLean was a very consistent 30-goal scorer, in the highest-scoring era ever. MacLean was not a very good playmaker, but managed to finish 18th and 20th in the NHL in goals playing with Dale Hawerchuk. (his next-best finishes were 23rd, 26th, and 30th)

Unfortunately, comparing Labine and MacLean's finishes is not a fair thing to do. Labine finished 8th, 16th, 19th, 20th and 30th in his five best goalscoring years (he was also not much of a playmaker) which makes him look better but then, his five good seasons ranged from 41 to 63% of the 2nd-place guy, and MacLean's five best seasons ranged from 55 to 71% which makes him look a little better. On the other hand, in a larger league there are 63 first-line spots to go around. Labine was obviously one of the best 63 forwards and would have had a first line role if the 1950s NHL expanded to 21 teams, and MacLean might not have been if the 1980s NHL contracted to 6. Lastly, Maclean had a huge amount of help from Dale Hawerchuk for the entire decade, and Labine was never playing on a top line with Bucyk and the Ukes; his best linemate was Don McKenney and that didn't last too long. Offensively I call it a draw.

Defensively, Labine is better (he was a noted penalty killer at least) but it does't really matter as neither is the defensive guy of the line.

MacLean was tough, The guy had 54 NHL fights, and was a big, strong, robust forward who was tough to move and wasn't scared of contact. Labine made Newsy Lalonde's all-time tough team, he was described as one of the toughest, meanest, and craziest players of his era. MacLean isn't in that kind of league; he was just your run of the mill quasi-power forward. Which one will do a better job of protecting the small, talented center? Labine, no doubt.

The glue guy

This is the worker bee comparison - Chris Drury vs. Fred Scanlan. A really fun, although difficult comparison.

Scanlan was a winner who got into the HHOF by being the workhorse of the top (only) line of the early Shamrock dynasty, doing the dirty work and being a strong team player (and most likely defensive presence) for the star, Harry Trihey. Scanlan was not really a factor offensively but his value was rewarded with his HHOF induction. Drury is actually quite the parallel. An excellent two-way player, he is an 8-time 50 point scorer in the past low-scoring decade and received significant Selke votes in 3 seasons, peaking at 4th in 2007. He, too, has a real reputation as a winner, as well as a leader and clutch scorer. He has only once flirted with being an elite offensive player, being merely above average for the rest of his career.

My verdict: Both guys can play the glue guy role fine. Drury was more of a factor offensively for sure, particularly in the playoffs, but Scanlan likely would have had a similar defensive reputation if better records of the era were kept; it just appears he was that kind of player. Small advantage to Drury thanks to better-demonstrated offense.

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07-19-2010, 03:41 AM
  #61
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Second Lines:

The small, fast, offensive guy

Slava Kozlov vs. Cliff Ronning. These guys have careers that overlap 11 seasons so they should make for a fun comparison.

Both were small. Both were fast, finesse players. neither was a bruiser but they both played bigger than they were. Both have had careers of almost identical length. Ronning actually averaged 0.836 adjusted points per game, Kozlov 0.831. 42% of Kozlov's points have been goals; 35% for Ronning. An elementary calculation of adjusted playoff PPG puts Kozlov at 0.77 and Ronning at 0.74. Ronning was a one-time cup finalist, Kozlov a two-time winner as well as a finalist. Bigger difference, though - Kozlov was a huge clutch scorer in the playoffs. Defensively, neither is all that special, but Kozlov has the edge. Both used their puck control skills rather than much defensive acumen to earn remarkably high adjusted +/- totals in their careers: +161 for Kozlov, +165 for Ronning. Ronning was on the ice for a measly 1% of his team's PPGA (which puts him among the all-time least-used penalty killers), Kozlov 8% (which isn't much, but is something). Both were great complementary players, Ronning averaging 16.3 min/GP in his career, Kozlov 16.8. Both loved the PP - Ronning scored 43% of his points on the PP, Kozlov 40%. Kozlov has to get the edge here overall, mainly because of his stellar playoff resume. I admit it's situational (i.e., he was set up for success more than Ronning was) but in such an equal case like this, the team success comparison can become the tipping point. Kozlov, narrowly.

The tough guy with offensive responsibilities

On both of these lines there is a guy who is clearly tougher than his linemates. They are Cal Gardner and Gerard Gallant.

Gallant was a fireball at LW, securing a 2nd all-star team spot while riding shotgun for Steve Yzerman. He hit, he worked the corners, he fought. There is lots of information to suggest that Gardner was a very tough, rugged, physical player himself but the impression that I get is that he wasn't quite at Gallant's level.

Defensively, I think Gardner is much better (there are more quotes and info to suggest his prowess in this area than Gallant, and Gallant rarely killed penalties) but this is not the essence of either of their games.

Offensively, it is Gardner in a landslide. Gardner was not much of a goalscorer (finishing top-10 once, top-20 twice) but he was an excellent playmaker, finishing in the top-20 five times. gallant was never top-20 in anything, although for a short time, he came close, with Yzerman's great assistance, that is. Gardner ended up with 0.72 adjusted points per adjusted game (tougher to do in the O6 with fewer top-line spots) and no elite help. Gallant finished with 0.71 points per adjusted game, mainly thanks to four strong years with Yzerman. In Gallant's best 10-season range, he was 76th in the NHL in points, and 82nd in points per game among the top-100. Gardner was 8th in points in his best ten-year period, and 35th in PPG among the top-100, (although seven of those guys ahead of him had less than half as many points in that period) Talent pool sizes be damned, there's no way 76th can be spun to be as impressive as 8th.

With Gardner securing decisive offensive and defensive victories while giving up some, but not much, toughness, the overall edge has to go to him.

The other guy

I won't have to spend much time on this one. Wally Hergesheimer vs. Ladislav Trojak.

Hergesheimer has perhaps the best goalscoring peak in the MLD - 3rd, 4th, 8th, and 11th in the NHL in goals. He was also a star scorer before and after that, no matter what league he was in.

But the important part was that he proved himself against the best. And Trojak simply didn't. Last MLD, I did an extensive analysis of Josef Malecek's international history, comparing his scoring stats to the Canadian competition that he faced and was able to come to some reasonable conclusions based on the quality of the canadian competition (i.e., were they NHL alumni? Did they go on to a successful minor league career, etc?) and whether he outscored them or vice versa, and my conclusion was that although Malecek was an excellent scorer in the Czech league, he didn't appear to be demonstrably better than the scores of amateurs that Canada sent overseas to the worlds, guys who had no chance at an NHL career. I don't think Malecek should be selected in the MLD at all. This should tell you what I think about Trojak. He was Malecek's glue guy and to a lesser extent, playmaker. His work ethic and skill set are admirable but you have to remember the context of these skills. The Czech domestic league, and international play where the very best competition was Canadian scrubs. You could say his work ethic and skill set are transferrable but the simple fact is his skill level is not. You wouldn't look at a guy in today's senior leagues and say "that guy has a good work ethic, let's bring him up to the NHL" - he'd get murdered. that's what's going to happen to Trojak.

Easily Hergesheimer.

One more point about these two lines: Regina has a designated playmaker in Gardner, a designated goalscorer in Hergesheimer, and a guy who is very balanced all-around in Kozlov. But who's the shooter on this line? Ronning and Gallant never cracked the top-20, Ronning was definitely pass-first, Trojak's bio said he much preferred to set up teammates, and Gallant had some years as a solid finisher, but his center was Yzerman. This line might have to be happy just cycling lots and maintaining possession. the best goalscorer here is easily Ronning, and that's not the role he craves!

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07-19-2010, 04:37 AM
  #62
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Third Lines:

The Two-way center

Ted Hampson vs. Cully Dahlstrom

Offensively: Dahlstrom was actually not a good offensive player. Consistently average, but made the top-10 in assists just once, and was never top-10 in anything beyond that. Hampson was 6th, 9th, and 15th in assists in the NHL in a tougher era to do so. (Dahlstrom played during WW2 and the slightly weaker period just before then) In Dahlstrom's 8 seasons, he was 24th in the NHL in points and 62st in PPG among the top-100. Hampson was 27th in points and 43rd in PPG among the top-100 in his six consecutive NHL seasons before heading to the WHA. Hampson is definitely better offensively.

Defensively: Check Hampson's bio, he was a defensive star. If the Selke trophy existed in the 60s and early 70s, he would have certainly received votes on a consistent basis. they called him "The Tick". Dahlstrom is once mentioned as "a good two-way player" but that in no way constitutes a body of work like Hampson's.

Physically: Hampson was a true gentleman, winning the WHA's version of the Lady Byng. Dalhstrom has extremely low PIM totals and there is nothing said of his physical game or lack thereof. This department is even.

Intangibles: I've never heard anything about Dahlstrom as a leader. Hampson oozes leadership; he was a captain practically everywhere he went, minor leagues, NHL, WHA. The glowing remarks his ex-teammates and coaches have to say about him are truly exceptional and worthy of mention.

Hampson all the way.

The extremely versatile, durable, pretty good offensively, very good defensively, utility forward

This is probably going to be the comparison that is the hardest to do. And really fun because I love both players. These are two very similar players. In fact, even their nicknames are similar. MacMillan was "Mack the Knife" and Lever was "Cleaver", both nicknames apparently earned by how they can cut up a defense!

Quick note about durability: Both are very durable. Lever played 15 pro seasons and played 67+ games in 13 of them (including time in the minors in his last year) MacMillan played at least 68 games in 12 of his 13 seasons too.

Offensively: MacMillan easily has the best peak season of the two, with 97 adjusted points, 5th in the NHL. This was the only time either player made the top-20 in points. MacMillan also had two seasons top-15 in goals. Lever made the top-15 in goals once, that's it. However, MacMillan experiences more of a dropoff later on, than Lever does. Lever's best 6 adjusted points seasons: 63, 63, 60, 54, 54, 48. MacMillan's: 97, 67, 56, 55, 52, 48. So these two are practically identical with the exception of MacMillan's monster season, which gives him the edge. (both had very limited playoff opportunities and have almost the exact same stat line, with both picking up the majority of their playoff points in 1981 with Calgary)

Defensively: Lever was 10th in Selke voting in one season, MacMillan has no major recognition that I can see. However, records are incomplete in 1978, 1980, 1983, and of course both players played a number of years before its introduction. MacMillan consistently made his team better at even strength: his adjusted +/- is +64. Lever's is an abysmal -106. Lever killed 30% of his team's penalties, MacMillan 25%. I read all of Don Lever's scouting reports from throughout his career and it is remarkable how similar to MacMillan he was. Very similar wording was used about them all throughout their careers regarding their leadership, team play, versatility, defensive play and penalty killing. I give MacMillan an edge defensively because of the 170-point adjusted +/- edge he holds, and this is especially telling because the two of them played on the same team for five straight years, (even changing teams at the same time twice!)

So overall, MacMillan gets the slight edge. It should also be noted that although MacMillan and Lever can both play all three positions, MacMillan is at his natural position and Lever is playing the position he prefers the least.

The Pesky Clutch Scorer

Jaroslav Jirik vs. Don Grosso. Similar styles of players, but a rather difficult comparison to make. I will do my best.

Offensively, Grosso had one really awesome season, finishing 3rd in the NHL in points. Then, throughout the three WW2 years, he failed to even crack the top-20 in points despite extremely reduced competition. He was better in the playoffs, though, leading the league in 1942 in a losing (choking) cause, and then was a solid scorer in a cup win in 1943. His playoff per-game average of 0.60 is pretty solid. (On another note, I just noticed he went from 0.27 PIM/GP in the regular season, to 1.31 in the playoffs, five times higher. What's up with that?)

Of course, comparing his offensive resume to what Jirik would have done if he was an NHL player, is impossible. It's pure speculation. Now, all of Jirik's top-10s in the Czech league don't all translate to NHL greatness, but I think his four top-3s in goals do. That is a solid indication that he could have had four solid seasons, perhaps of the Leo Labine variety (Labine was 8th, 16th, 19th, 20th) if he was an NHL player. Based on the results of some other players in that league and how we generally view them, I don't think this is unreasonable. His 61 points in 56 big international games (very big, given the political conditions at the time!) also indicate some clutch ability. For the simple reason that his offense was more established long-term, I would have to give Jirik the overall offensive edge despite Grosso's superior one-season peak. But it's really tough to get over Grosso's lack of a single top-20 season during the 3 war years, agree?

Defensively, both players are easily the 3rd-best on their line. Grosso's bios indicate he killed some penalties, Jirik was called "a good two-way player" once by Scotty Bowman. Advantage to Grosso, as Jirik's only evidence was pretty fleeting.

Physically, I don't see anything that Grosso had much of a physical game, and his PIMs don't tell us much either. Jirik was not necessarily physical, but he was a terror to defensemen, according to his bio, and was impossible to move from the front of the net, which is a different kind of physical. Edge to Jirik.

Grosso was described in one quote as "pesky" so he may have had some agitating qualities. However, Jirik is one of the best agitators in the whole MLD, check some of the quotes about his abilities in this regard. Edge to Jirik.

Overall, Jirik should be a better complement to his two-way linemates than Grosso. Besides the fact that he's just a better player, Jirik brings big game experience and definitely likes to play a tough game and score, while his linemates are gentlemen with limited playoff records, who pass more than shoot. It's a perfect combination of complementary skills.

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07-19-2010, 05:50 AM
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Fourth Lines:

In this case I am just going to compare positionally by default, because all of these players can be said to have similar skill sets, with the exception of Jason Arnott, who is definitely the most unique player on either line.

The Agitating LW:

Tony Granato was a good little player for a while. Boudrias was an even better little player. Let's start with offense. Granato had his best seasons with Gretzky's Kings, posting adjusted totals of 72, 66, 63, 57, 46, and 45 in his best six seasons. Boudrias' 76, 73, 68, 65, 65, 63 is a significant upgrade on that. Boudrias flirted with the assists and points leaderboards on multiple occasions; Granato was 20th in goals once. What's more, Boudrias was always the catalyst of his line, creating career seasons for Don Lever, Dennis Ververgaert, and Roseaire Paiement. Granato didn't make his teammates better; he was a complementary player. Definitely Boudrias.

Defensively: Boudrias was a noted strong defensive player and penalty killer. Granato was not. The first scouting report I picked up on him from his prime stated: "he does not make good reads defensively but because of his tenacity can be a solid defensive player". More of a will-vs-skill thing. Their numbers come out relatively even, though. Boudrias killed 32% of his team's penalties and was an adjusted +58. Granato killed 20% of his team's penalties and was an adjusted +84. Draw.

Physically: Both guys were tenacious checkers but Granato had the ability to go over the edge. Boudrias, generally a clean player, did not. Both irritated opponents just as much, but Granato had the ability to really hurt you.

Intangibles: Granato came back from a serious brain injury, and was described as "a coach's dream". Boudrias was also described as a great team man, and was also a captain. Draw.

Overall: If you really, really really value physicality, then Granato could get the overall edge. However, being a great all-around hockey player still counts and Boudrias was an excellent all-around player, certainly better than Granato despite the physicality difference.

The Two-Way C:

Nothing against Laurie Boschman, the classic 4th line MLD center, but he gets killed here. Jason Arnott has quietly put together such a strong career that it's almost as good as that of ATD regular Bobby Smith, and no one noticed! Note in Arnott's bio, that only Rick Kehoe, with the benefit of the 1970s, has more 25-goal seasons than Arnott, and no one has more 54-point seasons and 0.73 PPG seasons than Arnott. (Kehoe has just 9 seasons of 25+ adjusted goals, Arnott has 13) But enough about Kehoe, back to Boschman! Boschman's best seasons for adjusted points were 66, 64, 59, 44, 43, 38. Arnott's six best were 83, 79, 72, 70, 66, 66. In other words, six seasons as strong as Boschman's best. Arnott has the clear offensive edge.

Defensively, there are two sides to this one. First, even strength. Arnott's career adjusted +/- is +169; Boschman's is -112. That's a gap of 281 goals over almost identical-sized careers. Arnott was easily a much bigger factor at even strength when it came to making his team's goal differential better. Boschman, however, was a much more frequent penalty killer. He killed 23% of his team's penalties, compared to just 5% for Arnott. Neither was ever a factor in selke voting, and neither was known as among the best defensively, just adequate. Due to the overwhelming edge in adjusted +/-, Arnott wins this one.

Physically, there are two sides to this one too. First, size. Arnott towers over most players at 6'5". You barely have to try to use your size when you're that big. Boschman was 6'0" (I call him an adjusted 6'1") so he had average size. Arnott was more laid back. He had the ability to be dominant physically but didn't always use it. When he did, he was a major force. Boschman had less ability but used every ounce of it that he had. As an "energy" player there is no doubt that Boschman provides more of it than Arnott. He's also no less effective around the boards and behind the net despite being smaller. As a "team man", Boschman excels with his infectious work ethic and never-say-die attitude. Arnott is just not that type of player.

However, in the end, what this comes down to is a comparison between an MLD 4th liner and a guy who would not look out of place on an ATD 4th line with the resume he's slowly but surely built. Advantage Arnott.

The Tough RW

Grant Warwick was top-20 in goals six times in the late 1940s and 1950s, and only once was in a war year (1945). He is, along with Arnott and Boudrias, among the strongest offensive 4th-liners in this draft. But I didn't just try to fill up a 4th line with one-dimensional scorers. Like Boudrias, with his pesky forechecking, penalty killing, leadership and defensive play, and Arnott, with his size, physicality, two-way ability, and PP point prowess, Warwick is actually a very tough player who managed to keep his PIMs down. In this regard he is very much like Bulldog Fairbairn. Let's take a look at Fairbairn's offensive resume: one top-20 in assists, that's all. Of course, the late 40s wasn't exactly the most competitive era ever (not like WHA-diluted 1970s were, either) so let's look further. They had similar length careers: 9 full seasons. Their best adjusted point seasons are really simiar too: 60, 59, 58, 56, 55, 50 for Warwick, 63, 63, 62, 61, 57, 30 for Fairbairn. Fairbairn ended up with 0.64 adjusted points per game, Warwick 0.71. Fairbairn was 42nd in points during his 9 full seasons, and 71st in points per game among the top-100. The leader, Phil Esposito, put up 144% more points than Fairbairn. Warwick was 12th in the NHL in points during his 9 seasons and 43rd in PPG among the top-100. The leader, Doug Bentley, had 54% more points than Warwick during this time. Like the Gardner-Gallant comparison, there is no way 42nd can be spun to be as impressive as 12th. Easily Warwick.

Defensively: Fairbairn was a solid two-way player who had a good adjusted +/- of +57 and killed 36% of his team's penalties. I can't tell you anything about Warwick's defensive abilities because I know nothing. Easy default win to Fairbairn.

Physically: Warwick was deceptively tough despite his low PIMs in the NHL. Frank Boucher, who played with and coached Warwick, called him a tough little fire hydrant. He was also described as robust, tough, cagey, and more. However, the references are a bit fleeting. Warwick was also the ringleader of the band of rowdies who went overseas and knocked around Bobrov and Babich to take back our gold medal. However, it is impossible to ignore the multitude of quotes out there supporting Fairbairn as a clean, physical, tough player who was great at both ends and a strong leader. Slight advantage to Fairbairn.

Overall: These two are fairly even. Fairbairn does have more demonstrated two-way ability and physicality; however, Warwick was a much more dominant scorer in his era.

final judgment on the 4th lines: I cannot deny that the three players Philly chose for 4th liners are "classic" 4th line players - they all have the same high effort level, grit, and physicality. In the case of Boschman and Granato, they are simply not as good as their counterparts Arnott and Boudrias. If Regina's 4th line was composed of a bunch of the best remaining offensive retreads out there, I'd concede the 4th line advantage, but even though they are all very strong offensive players, none of them is out of place on a 4th line! they all have some combination of physicality, agitation, toughness, size, or defensive ability to go with their scoring prowess. The line has a clear playmaker, with three top-20s in assists, and it has two clear goalscorers - Warwick was top-20 six times (when he was drafted there wasn't even anyone else left with five) and Arnott has topped 25 goals more than any MLD player except Kehoe. Boschman, Fairbairn and Granato will all play a rough and tumble energy game but ultimately fall short of the effectiveness of our unit.

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07-19-2010, 01:01 PM
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The Designated Talent

In selecting who fills this role on each line, there was little thought required. Regina's prime offensive threat is Herb Jordan, and Philly's is Andre Lacroix. Now, if I had a "standard" MLD center like, say, Marc Savard or Alexei Yashin maybe this would be a really tough comparison where I try to put 1.43 PPG in the WHA into an NHL context to better understand how dominant Lacroix was. But that's not needed. Jordan is no standard MLD center. This is a guy who had five seasons where he was top-4 in points in his league, and two other seasons where he'd have been top-4 in his league if he played a full schedule. Only Russell Bowie, Frank McGee and Marty Walsh prevented him from a couple of scoring titles. His playmaking ability is well-substantiated, he was not just a finisher who let others do all the work, he carried the puck up ice, he passed, he made combination plays, and he was lethal around the net. Jordan is better, no contest, and this is no disrespect to Lacroix at all.
While I don't disagree that Jordan is better than Lacroix, I wouldnt say it's "no contest". I think it's actually rather close.

Lacroix is definately one of the top-3 playmakers in this whole draft, and he might even be the best.

Despite what you have provided, he's nowhere near Lacroix in terms of passing skill. The information you gathered shows me that he was a solid, but unspectacular playmaker - somewhere in the average range.

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07-19-2010, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Fourth Lines:



Defensively, there are two sides to this one. First, even strength. Arnott's career adjusted +/- is +169; Boschman's is -112. That's a gap of 281 goals over almost identical-sized careers. Arnott was easily a much bigger factor at even strength when it came to making his team's goal differential better. Boschman, however, was a much more frequent penalty killer. He killed 23% of his team's penalties, compared to just 5% for Arnott. Neither was ever a factor in selke voting, and neither was known as among the best defensively, just adequate. Due to the overwhelming edge in adjusted +/-, Arnott wins this one.
At even strength in NJ, Arnott usually played with Patrik Elias, one of the best two-way wingers in recent memory flanking him. Arnott was okay defensively, but Elias was definitely the best of the line.

And backing the A-line? Usually Scott Stevens and Brian Rafalski. Playing with guys of this calibre behind you has to help his adjusted plus/minus a bit, don't you think? Elias led the league in +/- one year I remember and he was always Arnott's linemate.

I don't remember Arnott being anything more than average in his own zone (did this change in Nashville?) Certainly nothing close to Elias. The A-line always had a very high +/- largely because they were so good at cycling the puck in the offensive zone (similar to why the Legion of Doom always had a high +/-). I'm not sure if that's defensive ability per se. And, of course, usually playing in front of Stevens/Rafalski helped ensure the puck didn't spend all that much time in the defensive zone.

I am curious to see how much of Arnott's high adjusted +/- came from his NJ years.

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07-19-2010, 02:04 PM
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I'll get to the forwards when I'm done plotting Paul Holmgren's assassination.

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07-19-2010, 02:54 PM
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Thanks for the comments, guys, it's nice to see you read my ramblings.

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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
While I don't disagree that Jordan is better than Lacroix, I wouldnt say it's "no contest". I think it's actually rather close.

Lacroix is definately one of the top-3 playmakers in this whole draft, and he might even be the best.

Despite what you have provided, he's nowhere near Lacroix in terms of passing skill. The information you gathered shows me that he was a solid, but unspectacular playmaker - somewhere in the average range.
Lots of quotes show that he was the catalyst all the way up the ice and not just the finisher. Then, aside from having the 2nd-most goals throughout his and Bowie's career, he also has the 2nd-most assists. He's as good a playmaker as he is a goalscorer; I am not sure how much more info you'd want to see for a player from over 100 years ago. It's well-demonstrated by now, and I'm sure if he was your player you'd think so.

The statement about Lacroix being one of the best playmakers in the draft needs to be qualified somehow. What are his WHA years worth? Is there an acceptable constant to measure WHA point totals by to put them in context? And so on...

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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
At even strength in NJ, Arnott usually played with Patrik Elias, one of the best two-way wingers in recent memory flanking him. Arnott was okay defensively, but Elias was definitely the best of the line.

And backing the A-line? Usually Scott Stevens and Brian Rafalski. Playing with guys of this calibre behind you has to help his adjusted plus/minus a bit, don't you think? Elias led the league in +/- one year I remember and he was always Arnott's linemate.

I don't remember Arnott being anything more than average in his own zone (did this change in Nashville?) Certainly nothing close to Elias. The A-line always had a very high +/- largely because they were so good at cycling the puck in the offensive zone (similar to why the Legion of Doom always had a high +/-). I'm not sure if that's defensive ability per se. And, of course, usually playing in front of Stevens/Rafalski helped ensure the puck didn't spend all that much time in the defensive zone.

I am curious to see how much of Arnott's high adjusted +/- came from his NJ years.
I admit I didn't look further into what caused his ridiculously high career number. I do know that a figure that high can't be influenced too much by just a few years, otherwise I would have. But since you asked:

It's an interesting career path. He started out strong in Edmonton, +27 over 3 seasons. Then, -38 over the course of almost 2 full seasons with Edmonton. (which perfectly coincides with his career path as told by legend - he came on like gangbusters and then wore out his welcome) Then with Jersey, +52 over what amounted to 4 full seasons. Believe it or not, it was with Dallas and especially Nashville where his numbers really took off. He was +50 in three seasons plus a fragment. In Nashville he has always been in the positive, with this year's +2 being his lowest ever. +78 in four seasons.

So basically: EDM: -2.3 per season
NJ: +13 per season
DAL: +15.4 per season
NSH: +19.5 per season

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I'll get to the forwards when I'm done plotting Paul Holmgren's assassination.
Wow, you really hate Holmgren, eh?

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07-19-2010, 03:17 PM
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Thanks for the comments, guys, it's nice to see you read my ramblings.
I try to read through all the threads, and comment when I have something to add. Hopefully, everyone else at least reads through all the threads.

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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Lots of quotes show that he was the catalyst all the way up the ice and not just the finisher. Then, aside from having the 2nd-most goals throughout his and Bowie's career, he also has the 2nd-most assists. He's as good a playmaker as he is a goalscorer; I am not sure how much more info you'd want to see for a player from over 100 years ago. It's well-demonstrated by now, and I'm sure if he was your player you'd think so.
Perhaps I am being too picky, but to me a handful of quotes saying "he passed the puck to Bobby" or "he was involved in a nice play" doesn't make him a great playmaker.... but at the same time, you've gathered enough of them, combined with the numbers, to suggest he was a good playmaker.

In an all-time context, I'd say he's an average playmaker. When I was doing a little work-up on the top playmakers in this draft, he was in my top-10, so I suppose he's still one of the better ones in this draft. (For the record my top 3 were Savard, Janney, and Lacroix. Rounding out the top-10 was Bodnar, Nilsson, Jordan, Reibel, Himes, and Romnes)

Quote:
Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
The statement about Lacroix being one of the best playmakers in the draft needs to be qualified somehow. What are his WHA years worth? Is there an acceptable constant to measure WHA point totals by to put them in context? And so on...
I, too, am not sure exactly how to convert WHA totals. Lecroix was, however, dominant enough fro me to think he was still among the top playmakers. He was clearly the best playmaking forward in the WHA's short history - 1st, 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in assists, as well as the league's all-time leading scorer and assister. I would think that, at absolute worst, those finishes are equal to top-10s in the NHL, which nobody else has. So, even with the most conservative conversions, he has 6 top-10s, which is the most in the draft.

When he played in the 1974 Summit Series, he was among the leading scorers and was the leading playmaker.

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07-19-2010, 03:44 PM
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Lacroix's numbers speak for themselves. To help you out, here are some quotes about just how good a passer he was:

Quote:
... he's very elusive and hard to hit. There are some guys that the puck just seems to follow around, and that's the way it is with André. The hardest thing to do in hockey is pass the puck well, and André does it as well as anybody."
Quote:
... the Flyers' most dangerous offensive player during the team's first four years of existence.
Quote:
He became an instant star in the WHA's first season, scoring 50 goals and 74 assists for 124 points - earning him the Hunter Trophy as leading score and the Davidson Trophy as the league's first MVP.
Quote:
André played with 5 WHA teams in 7 years, playing 551 games. His 574 assists are a league high, almost 200 more than second place J.C. Tremblay.
Quote:
André's 251 goals ranks 4th all time, giving him a league leading 798 WHA points, ahead of second place Marc Tardif by 132 points, and 160 points more than Bobby Hull.
Lacroix is a dynamic player that is one of the most talented offensively in the draft at playmaking.

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07-19-2010, 06:34 PM
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Perhaps I am being too picky, but to me a handful of quotes saying "he passed the puck to Bobby" or "he was involved in a nice play" doesn't make him a great playmaker.... but at the same time, you've gathered enough of them, combined with the numbers, to suggest he was a good playmaker.

In an all-time context, I'd say he's an average playmaker. When I was doing a little work-up on the top playmakers in this draft, he was in my top-10, so I suppose he's still one of the better ones in this draft. (For the record my top 3 were Savard, Janney, and Lacroix. Rounding out the top-10 was Bodnar, Nilsson, Jordan, Reibel, Himes, and Romnes)
Romnes, really?

Good to see someone else had Jordan on their radar. I kinda had the impression he was still way more obscure than he deserved to be. I found it a bit of a gamble to take him so early and put him in such a role, it represented a massive jump from his last role (aaa first liner). At the same time I wasn't going to take him for granted with guys like jfa here who have a stiffy for pre-1910 players.

Quote:
I, too, am not sure exactly how to convert WHA totals. Lecroix was, however, dominant enough fro me to think he was still among the top playmakers. He was clearly the best playmaking forward in the WHA's short history - 1st, 1st, 2nd, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in assists, as well as the league's all-time leading scorer and assister. I would think that, at absolute worst, those finishes are equal to top-10s in the NHL, which nobody else has. So, even with the most conservative conversions, he has 6 top-10s, which is the most in the draft.
I wish it were that simple, but I don't think it is. There's no way a 4th represents a top-10 in the NHL. By saying that you are essentially constructing a consolidated top-10 where the guy that was 6th in the nhl was at the same level as the guy who was 4th in the wha. Doesn't pass the smell test to me. Most likely the same thing with a 3rd place finish. Is 3rd in the wha worth the existing 7th place finish in the nhl in the same season? I am thinking no.

Probably a more precise science (but not definitive) would be to either look at his stats and age before leaving to the wha, and after coming back, and try to assemble a reasonable career stat panel from it using what we know about career paths of the era, or, simply assign a constant that wha points can be multiplied by based on logic and actual results other players attained. I am thinking 0.6 might be a good starting point, how does that number sound to you?

I am on my phone so can't do the work. But what do Lacroix's stats look like when multiplied by 0.6, and where would that rank him in the nhl those years?

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07-19-2010, 09:02 PM
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.6 is low if you ask me. The two firsts and two 2nds should definitely represent top 10s, the 3rd and 4th more like top 15 or 20. In the very beginning of his career, the Flyers went as Andre Lacroix went. Vic Stasiuk was also a more defensive coach with an aggressive system, a system Andre clearly doesn't fit in. In his 2nd and 3rd year, he had solid totals as the Flyers struggled as an expansion team. Those are t-30th and actually t-25th in points, which are pretty good as a youngster in a system he didn't fit in. He was also t-38th and t-20th in assists respectively.


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07-19-2010, 11:05 PM
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Originally Posted by BiLLY_ShOE1721 View Post
.6 is low if you ask me. The two firsts and two 2nds should definitely represent top 10s, the 3rd and 4th more like top 15 or 20. In the very beginning of his career, the Flyers went as Andre Lacroix went. Vic Stasiuk was also a more defensive coach with an aggressive system, a system Andre clearly doesn't fit in. In his 2nd and 3rd year, he had solid totals as the Flyers struggled as an expansion team. Those are t-30th and actually t-25th in points, which are pretty good as a youngster in a system he didn't fit in. He was also t-38th and t-20th in assists respectively.
You could be right. I still haven't been home to test the worthiness of that constant. But my initial instinct was the same as yours - that the 1st & 2nd would be like top-10s, the 3rd & 4th a top-15 and top-20.

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07-20-2010, 12:48 AM
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Romnes, really?
Why isn't Romnes one of the top playmakers?

Reibel - 4th, 5th, 6th
Himes - 3rd, 6th, 8th (not much offensive help)
Romnes - 3rd, 4th, 7th
Bodnar - 4th, 5th ,7th, 7th (most during the war)
Nilsson - 2nd, 10th + WHA + Sweden

Of the group, Romnes almost certainly has the best play-off resume.

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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Good to see someone else had Jordan on their radar. I kinda had the impression he was still way more obscure than he deserved to be. I found it a bit of a gamble to take him so early and put him in such a role, it represented a massive jump from his last role (aaa first liner). At the same time I wasn't going to take him for granted with guys like jfa here who have a stiffy for pre-1910 players.
He wasn't on my radar untill I finished reading your bio

I would have taken a shot at him for second line duty, but you have definately shown he is, not only a solid first liner, but one of the best offensive player in the draft.

I still, however, like him much more for his goalscoring than his playmaking.

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I wish it were that simple, but I don't think it is. There's no way a 4th represents a top-10 in the NHL. By saying that you are essentially constructing a consolidated top-10 where the guy that was 6th in the nhl was at the same level as the guy who was 4th in the wha. Doesn't pass the smell test to me. Most likely the same thing with a 3rd place finish. Is 3rd in the wha worth the existing 7th place finish in the nhl in the same season? I am thinking no.

Probably a more precise science (but not definitive) would be to either look at his stats and age before leaving to the wha, and after coming back, and try to assemble a reasonable career stat panel from it using what we know about career paths of the era, or, simply assign a constant that wha points can be multiplied by based on logic and actual results other players attained. I am thinking 0.6 might be a good starting point, how does that number sound to you?

I am on my phone so can't do the work. But what do Lacroix's stats look like when multiplied by 0.6, and where would that rank him in the nhl those years?
I just compared him directly to Kent Nilsson, who played in the WHA and NHL during his prime.

Both Lacroix and Nilsson played in 1978 and 1979. Adding up both of their assist totals from both seasons, and theyt each ended up with 133.

Nilsson at 22/23 vs. Lacroix at 34/35. Also, those last 2 years were clearly Lacroix's weakest. Based on that, it was easy to say Lacroix was a much stronger playmaker than Nilsson, and since Nilsson was one of the stronger guys in my second tier, it was easy to put Lacroix in the first group with Savard and Janney.

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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
You could be right. I still haven't been home to test the worthiness of that constant. But my initial instinct was the same as yours - that the 1st & 2nd would be like top-10s, the 3rd & 4th a top-15 and top-20.
That would be fair, and it still had Lacroix among the elite playmakers.

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07-20-2010, 01:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Dreakmur View Post
Why isn't Romnes one of the top playmakers?

Reibel - 4th, 5th, 6th
Himes - 3rd, 6th, 8th (not much offensive help)
Romnes - 3rd, 4th, 7th
Bodnar - 4th, 5th ,7th, 7th (most during the war)
Nilsson - 2nd, 10th + WHA + Sweden

Of the group, Romnes almost certainly has the best play-off resume.
Hmmm, maybe.

Although you may be putting him on a bigger pedestal than he deserves. Paul Haynes didn't make your list and he was top-10 four times during Romnes' time: 2, 3, 7, 7. Cal Gardner doesn't have such gaudy finishes himself but if you look at the large sample sizes, their primes, his looks more impressive, too:

1933-1939, a 7-year period: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points Romnes is 4th in assists and 10th in per-game among the top-100.

1947-1957, an 11-year period: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points Gardner is 8th in assists in 29th in per-game among the top-100.

But, look who the competition was. Romnes was behind Chapman, Barry, and Thompson. Gardner was behind Howe, Lindsay, Richard, Olmstead, Kennedy, Harvey, and Kelly. (aside from the fact that one was over a 7-year period and the other over an 11-year period) Are you going to say it's more impressive to be 4th, behind 3 non-HHOFers, than it is to be 8th, behind 7 HHOFers, five of whom are top-30 players?

Basically, I think that Romnes and Haynes' dominance is a bit of an illusion, this happened during a major lull in top-end talent. Reibel too, for that matter - he just got to play a few years with Howe, and honestly, didn't get as many assists as he probably should have playing there. there's definitely more behind some of these stats.


Quote:
He wasn't on my radar untill I finished reading your bio

I would have taken a shot at him for second line duty, but you have definately shown he is, not only a solid first liner, but one of the best offensive player in the draft.

I still, however, like him much more for his goalscoring than his playmaking.
His offensive credentials are as good as Marty Walsh and Ernie Russell, but he doesn't appear to have a 3rd/4th line skillset, so he might continue to be an MLD star. But, if anyone ever grows a pair and takes Russell Bowie for their ATD 2nd line, Jordan is the next logical step.


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I just compared him directly to Kent Nilsson, who played in the WHA and NHL during his prime.

Both Lacroix and Nilsson played in 1978 and 1979. Adding up both of their assist totals from both seasons, and theyt each ended up with 133.

Nilsson at 22/23 vs. Lacroix at 34/35. Also, those last 2 years were clearly Lacroix's weakest. Based on that, it was easy to say Lacroix was a much stronger playmaker than Nilsson, and since Nilsson was one of the stronger guys in my second tier, it was easy to put Lacroix in the first group with Savard and Janney.



That would be fair, and it still had Lacroix among the elite playmakers.
I tried multiplying his assist totals by 0.65. He ended up with finishes of 5, 10, 13, 14. I think this is plausible. And yes, based on this he would be among the finer MLD playmakers.

I wonder how universal a 0.65 constant can be. Bobby Hull's totals would be 33, 34, 50, 34, 14 (in 34 games), and 30 in his six full seasons at ages 34-39. His best finishes would have been 13th, 4th, 22nd, which I think is plausible. He'd have also been on pace for a 15th in 1977 and a 6th in 1973. This may seem low for someone of Hull's stature, but keep in mind that he missed some games each season, and this would still be possibly the best goalscoring resume of anyone at that age (which would make sense because he had the best goalscoring resume of anyone at the ages directly below those)

But then you look at a guy like Danny Lawson - NHL scrub, scored 61 in 1973, this would translate to 40 in the NHL. It took him 219 NHL games to score just 28 goals. This guy throws off my work any time I try to start speculating about WHA to NHL comparisons. Is he just a weird outlier?


Last edited by seventieslord: 07-20-2010 at 01:59 AM.
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07-20-2010, 03:09 AM
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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Hmmm, maybe.

Although you may be putting him on a bigger pedestal than he deserves. Paul Haynes didn't make your list and he was top-10 four times during Romnes' time: 2, 3, 7, 7.
Haynes was actually on my list, but I forgot him in the post. Were you wondering why my top-10 was only 9 players?

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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
Cal Gardner doesn't have such gaudy finishes himself but if you look at the large sample sizes, their primes, his looks more impressive, too:

1933-1939, a 7-year period: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points Romnes is 4th in assists and 10th in per-game among the top-100.

1947-1957, an 11-year period: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play...rder_by=points Gardner is 8th in assists in 29th in per-game among the top-100.
I have jumped on board with your "larger sample size" idea, but it does have some flaws. Once you go much further than 5 or 6 years it really starts to flatter the person's numbers. Lots of players can share the same 5 year prime, but the same 11 year prime? Not likely!

Looking at a 10 year prime doesn't work.

Split Gardiner's prime in half and look at each half.....
1947-1952: he's 15th in assists
1952-1957: he's 14th in assists

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Originally Posted by seventieslord View Post
But, look who the competition was. Romnes was behind Chapman, Barry, and Thompson. Gardner was behind Howe, Lindsay, Richard, Olmstead, Kennedy, Harvey, and Kelly. (aside from the fact that one was over a 7-year period and the other over an 11-year period) Are you going to say it's more impressive to be 4th, behind 3 non-HHOFers, than it is to be 8th, behind 7 HHOFers, five of whom are top-30 players?

Basically, I think that Romnes and Haynes' dominance is a bit of an illusion, this happened during a major lull in top-end talent. Reibel too, for that matter - he just got to play a few years with Howe, and honestly, didn't get as many assists as he probably should have playing there. there's definitely more behind some of these stats.
I'll give you Gordie Howe, but the rest aren't much better tha what Romnes faced.

Just because the 3 that finished ahead of Romnes weren't HHOFers doesn't mean he didn't play against any. Morenz/Joliat, Boucher/Cook, Primeau/Conacher, Shore, Apps, Cowley....

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