Chris Stewart - ICON SMI

 

I’m sure you’ve heard of the phrase “the numbers don’t lie”. If you’re a dedicated follower of my columns here at DobberHockey, then you’re probably well aware of how much I utilize stats to inform me during my decision-making process. For the past couple of seasons, I’ve been tracking baseline values into forecasting future stats. This week we’ll take a look at those values to help us better plan for the rest of this fantasy season.

 

First, let's clear up some general misconceptions about projections. Here are 10 of Ma’s Laws for the second half:

 

1) First of all we need to place a realistic value on overall point production.


Year

# of point-per-game players

# of players > than 80 points

2007-08

23

19

2008-09

20

17

2009-10

21

17

2010-11

15*

9

2011-12

15**

17**

 

*includes Sidney Crosby and Derek Roy

 

** does not include Crosby

 

So, just by looking at the table above, realistically there’s roughly 20 or so players that will finish at a point-per-game pace, and probably around 17-19 that will tally more than 80 points. If you break it down to a standard 12-team league, that’s roughly one, maybe two, per team. If you’re expecting three or four, you either have one hell of a team or you’re dreaming.

 

2) Ice-time plays a huge factor in point production.


Of the nine players that hit the 80-point plateau last season, all of them are essentially top-line and top-PP “household” names. As a group they averaged 20:07 overall and 3:52 with the man advantage per contest, so unless they’re remotely close to those numbers, don’t expect miracles.

 

rm

 

3) SOG also plays a large factor in point production especially with defenseman.


Of the nine players that hit the 80-point plateau last season, only one (Henrik Sedin), averaged less than 200 SOG. Out of the top-30 in point production, only two more players (Ryan Getzlaf and Alex Tanguay), notched less than 150 SOG. So if you’re after point production, then pay attention to a player’s SOG.

 

rm

 

4) The number of points that a player tallies is directly linked to how offensive their team is. Below is a table of a player’s contribution as a percentage of team production in regards to his scoring position of their team.


Position on Team

Average % of team points

Max

Min

1st

11.47538

14.89362

8.333333

2nd

10.11953

13.98601

7.575758

3rd

9.028225

12.01354

7.272727

4th

8.284656

11.42285

6.802721

5th

7.438827

10.33435

5.943536

6th

6.599186

8.115942

5.335628

7th

5.981781

7.401033

4.397394

8th

5.310378

7.401033

3.745928

9th

4.735752

6.071429

3.745928

10th

4.418149

5.742297

3.191489

 

The Bruins have accrued 369 points so far this season. If you look at Tyler Seguin, who’s leading the team in scoring, he should contribute roughly 11.5 percent of that offense, which works out to be 42 points, which isn’t too far off from the 37 that he’s currently possesses.

 

A second way you can use this table is as a predictor. The Avs have 293 points as a team 43 games into the season. If you pro-rate that (assuming they stay on course), over an 82-game season, you’d end up with 558 points. If you predict that Paul Stastny finishes first or second in team scoring, you’ll probably look at him tallying somewhere around 10.5 percent of the team’s total points, which would be 58 points. If you take that away from the 22 that he currently has, it’d give him 36 points in the remaining 39.

 

5) The Eastern Conference teams are the slightly more offensive of the two conferences.


 

The Western Conference teams average 2.63 goals per contest, while their Eastern counterparts average 2.71.

If you have a comparison between two players in a similar point range, choosing the player in the Eastern Conference might give you a slight point advantage a Western Conference counterpart.

 

Western Conference Buys

Eastern Conference Buys

Red Wings

Canucks

Blackhawks

Sharks

 

Bruins

Flyers

Leafs

Senators

Penguins

Devils*

Western Conference Holds

Eastern Conference Holds

Stars

Oilers

Predators

Blues

Rangers

Capitals

Lightning

Jets

Canadiens

Western Conference Sells

Eastern Conference Sells

Coyotes

Avalanche

Flames

Blue Jackets

Wild

Kings

Hurricanes

Sabres

Panthers

Islanders

 

6) Beware of lofty expectations from rookies.


Year

# of rookies > 45 points

# of rookies > 50 points

# of rookies > 60 points

2007-08

6

4

2

2008-09

7

2

0

2009-10

3

2

0

2010-11

5

3

1

2011-12

5

2

2

 

Since 2007, there have only been three rookies (Patrick Kane, Nicklas Backstrom and Jeff Skinner), that have tallied above the 60 point plateau. So the “new NHL” is trending towards a lowered rookie production than that seen during the days of Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin.

 

With that said, two more could be added to the list if Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (depending on his shoulder injury), and Adam Henrique continue their roles on their respective clubs.

 

7)    Be wary of the second-half of the “magical fourth year” players

 

( ) current point pace.

 

*notable injuries

 

[ ] pro-rated 82-game injured pace

 

Claude Giroux – 27, 47, 76, (104)

Steven Stamkos – 46, 95, 91, (92)

James Neal – 37, 55, 45, (73*)

Blake Wheeler – 45, 38, 44, (62)

T.J. Oshie – 39, 48, 34* [56], (57)

Jake Voracek – 38, 50, 46, (53)

Kyle Okposo – 39, 52, 20* [43], (37)

Patrick Berglund – 47, 26, 52, (36)

Patrick Hornqvist – 7, 51, 48, (36)

Lauri Korpikoski – 14, 11, 40, (35)

Chris Stewart – 19, 64, 53, (33)

Cal Clutterbuck – 18, 21, 34, (32)

Nikolai Kulemin – 31, 36, 57, (32)

 

Second half numbers during the “magical fourth year” of recent fourth year breakouts: Mike Richards 1.03, Ryan Getzlaf 1.06, Pavel Datsyuk 1.17, Zach Parise 1.11, Ilya Kovalchuk 1.08, Jeff Carter 0.92, Mike Cammalleri 1.19, Anze Kopitar 1.02, and Paul Stastny 1.02.

 

Second half numbers point per game numbers of notable “magical fourth year” players from last campaign. Bobby Ryan (1.08), Patrick Kane (1.07), Jonathan Toews (1.00), Sergei Kostitsyn (0.77), Nicklas Backstrom (0.76), Derick Brassard (0.66), Brandon Dubinsky (0.59), Tobias Enstrom (0.57), Sam Gagner (0.58) and Kris Versteeg (0.44).

 

8)    Take advantage of split stats


Some common split stats:

 

  • first half vs. second half
  • home games vs. away games
  • monthly breakdowns
  • Daily breakdowns
  • points vs. division, points vs. conference
  • even-strength vs. power-play points

 

For example, Jason Pominville averages 1.17 points-per-game at home compared to 0.88 on the road. On the flip side, Jonathan Toews averages 1.56 on the road compared to 0.73 at home. Second example, 57.5 percent of Brian Campbell’s points have come from the league’s 12th ranked power-play. If that PP begins to slump, his points will struggle.

 

9)    Take advantage of key injuries to the top-six

 

Look for players who have increased in ice-time/SOG after a big injury to their team’s top-six.

 

For example, Michal Handzus went from averaging just 35 seconds on the PP to averaging 2:23 since Martin Havlat’s hamstring injury. Another example, since Ryan Nugent-Hopkins’ injury, Sam Gagner has bumped his average ice-time up to 20:11 (2:45 on the PP), in the last three contests.

 

10)    Take advantage of games played

 

Due to the disparity in scheduling, there are noticeable differences in games played throughout the league. If you swap out any Sens, Flames, Avs or Canes for Sharks or Bruins, you’d gain an extra five games worth of starts, which could be the difference between winning and losing a league championship come April.

 

Next week, we'll look at the real mathematical stuff!

 

Hopefully you can use the guidelines and numbers above to help you gain a better grasp of what to expect for player X moving forward. Now use this information and create changes to win yourself a fantasy championship. Of course if you are desperately seeking different opinions, hop onto the DobberHockey forums where there are plenty of fantasy fanatics who are ready to give you their opinions. Questions or comments? As always I’ll discuss them in the section below.

 

If you’re wondering who the players that the coloured dots in the graphs above represent, you can pop onto my Twitter page to find out. Should you be so inclined, follow me on Twitter if you think that my article/posts are useful.

 

 


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Comments (20)add comment

Brett Baxter said:

baxpens
Re: points per team (typo - phone auto spell) (that all you do is plug in numbers)
not pity in miners..haha
January 12, 2012
Votes: +0

Brett Baxter said:

baxpens
Re: points per team Meant total team points. Ok, thats what I did, just added the total of players' G & A....I was thinking I missed some points from guys that may be back in minors when I did mine, because when I added Boston & Colorado I got different totals (than your examples in the article). Thought maybe there was a good site with total overall points by team listed.

Also I made an excel spreadsheet (that all you do is pity in miners and it does the math) for my guys and to project potential waiver pick ups. Always nice to have another tool to help make decisions. If anyone wants the spreadsheet, let me know, I will email you or if enough people ask maybe Ryan will post it.
January 12, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Re: Points by team do you mean as in players for each team? I just use NHL and filter it by team...

If you mean total team points, I generally use Yahoo!

http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/teams/ana/stats

If you scroll down the bottom, it has the team totals of how many goals, assists, PIMs, SOG...

If you want to change teams just use the dropdown menu under depth charts on the top right.
January 12, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
Re: Rookies Definitely, which is why you don't really want to put a lot of faith in rookies.
January 12, 2012
Votes: +0

Brett Baxter said:

baxpens
Where to find points per game by team ? Do you know a site that has a chart of info to get the info to make predictions?

Basically what I need is number of points by team...Anyone ? I can find Goals/game easily but not points...
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

SavageGardener said:

SavageGardener
Re: Rookie Production ... and I guess they get a much shorter leash, even if they get the ice-time and can't produce right away? Don't even get a chance to become Windex Wonders with a hot streak later, to balance out a cold streak?

After watching HBO's 24/7 and seeing how the pecking order works on a pro sports team like on a hockey squad, you can extrapolate how veteran players would get a lot more rope than rookies, with the factor of seniority in the team chemistry equation...
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
RE: Rookie Production The thing is it's always been low if you look throughout history rookies have always been low scorers their first year. Then comes Ovechkin/Crosby/Malkin/Backstrom to come and buck the trend.

The thing that poolies don't take account is that during that season the goals scored was way up due to it being the year after the lockout, also the players getting adjusted to the new clutching and grabbing rules... The game that year averaged close to 6.17 goals per game, this year it's 5.59, so games are averaging half a goal less than a few years ago...

Also rookies tend to get relegated checking roles to "ease" them into the NHL, but you get a select few that just get a ton of time right away.

For me it's always been about ice-time. If a player averages 18 mins a game, no matter if they're a rookie or a 10th year player they'll average such and such points.

A lot of poolies think this kid is a superstar in juniors 100 points each and every season. When he gets into the NHL averages just 13 mins a game, and wonders what the heck is going on?

Ice-time = point production.
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

horrorfan said:

horrorfan
Thanks Ryan Nothing specific to comment on, just want to say thanks for another great piece. Always look forward to reading your columns.
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

SavageGardener said:

SavageGardener
Re: Ryan's Part 2 @Ryan: LOL absolutely not... just a fan of the artists, perpetually wondering what could have been had they not split. smilies/smiley.gif

About Point #6 - one day, I'd love to look into how performances from the CHL translate to the NHL. I see Taylor/Tyler rack up 100 points in the OHL, Ryan Johansen and Evander Kane be 90-pointers in the WHL, etc... and there's a tendency to think, "Come on, a player like that can't end up with 20 points in his rookie season, can he?" And yet they do. smilies/smiley.gif
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

edm said:

emurdoch
Player Names Just hover over any dot on the graph to see the star player he's referring to.
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
... RE: Part 2

Yeah it originally was supposed to be 1 whole column, but understandably Dobber wanted to make it 2 because it was just too long to hold the attention span of the readers... but hopefully he'll post it on Thursday so you won't have to wait too long and the stats are still valid.

P.S. Is SavageGardener supposed to be a joke regarding my Aussie residence?
January 11, 2012
Votes: +0

SavageGardener said:

SavageGardener
Can't wait for Part II Can't wait for Part II, Ryan! Most things in life are about "probability", and you definitely put the odds in our favor with your analysis. Agree wholeheartedly about SOG... you gotta have the puck around the net and even have a shooting lane available to get a SOG, and hence a player who can do that will stand a better chance of getting points - talented playmakers with a sniper sidekick, notwithstanding. Your stuff is probably my favourite feature on DH... keep up the great work!
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Steffen said:

Steffen
RE: Point 7 If you really want that A+, heh.
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
... RE: Point 7

Hmmm looks like I'll have to reword point 7...
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Steffen said:

Steffen
Terrific article! I used to try to teach stats to reluctant Arts students taking a required course. (I don't recommend it.) I'd grade this an A.

The charts and tables are excellent (except that 5+ decimal places implies a precision that isn't really there in your 4th point), and your interpretation of them almost flawless (no real conclusion to 7th point - connect the dots for us).

I agree with Pengwin7 on your 8th point: most splits should only really count if significant over careers that have provided lots of data.

Don't get me wrong - this is perhaps the best statistical article I've read here. You obviously put a lot of quality time into it.

Thank you very much, Mr Ma.
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
... RE: Magical Second Half

Basically I just looked at the point-per-game numbers of the second half of "notable" 4th year players.

So Mike Richards in the second half of his 4th year averaged 1.03 points per game... Getzlaf went off for 1.06 and Datsyuk went off for 1.17...

Then I looked at last years "magical 4th year" players. Ryan went off for 1.08, Kane 1.07 and Toews 1.00.

So I'm just trying to highlight who the "magical 4th year" players are this season, and who to look out for.
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Ma said:

Maaaasquito
... RE: Pengwin

Always one of the best comments, appreciate it!

i) definitely sounds like a good idea, but you have to keep in mind too is that you're also a "hardcore" poolie as well. So some of those comparisons would make perfect sense to you, but for the average poolie who's just in it for fun, probably would be way to confusing... so I want to keep it simple in that sense.

ii) once again I think SOG vs. Point production isn't a be all end all 100 percent efficient correlation, as with everything in the world there's always going to be exceptions. I think you hit it right on the head that Frolik and Seto aren't natural playmakers, but maybe just getting pucks to the net is how they're going to pick up their points (earn their living). It's the same as Ovechkin really... He isn't the purest of shooters and the main reason why he continues to pot 50 every year is that he shoots 400+. So I mean you really wouldn't fault Ovechkin for doing it, so why Seto or Frolik?

iii) Splits are interesting, I've never really bought largely into splits in the past, but I can see how some are definitely helpful... I mostly use them for goalies to be honest. There are some clear splits between home/road numbers that if you take advantage of them. It can really turn the tide in your favour. First half vs. second half is another big one that I use.

iv) is definitely useful, especially if you're in roto leagues and trying to make up games... or even H2H matchups gearing up to make a run for the playoffs.

Mathy stuff is great! Hopefully it's out on Thursday and you won't have to wait long.

January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Ryan Goddard said:

ridinryan44
Wow... Ma, the amount of work you put into this is incredible! Fantastic article, although I had a tough time understanding the "magical second half" part.... were the numbers there each player's second half numbers in the last three years?? I think that's it but I'm too lazy to go look myself.

Read every word of this dude, thanks!
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Brett Baxter said:

baxpens
UNREAL This is absolutely incredible work ! Love it. Probably since I am a huge Stat (numbers are my job) guy, with a degree in Applied Statistics!

Keep up the great pieces
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0

Pengwin7 said:

Pengwin7
My Faves By far, my favourite fantasy hockey articles at DobberHockey are from Ma.
Love-love-love.

Taking a break from complimenting... I'll throw in some of my own opinion on this list.

i) I'd love to see this list broken into a 5&5 presentation, with there being a 1a)Evaluation and 1b Forecasting. For example, item #1) PPG Players is a great eval and would be nicely combined with realistic projections of #7) 4th Year Players. Also, I love #2... which could be nicely combined with #9) Forecasting a player's rise based on increased ice-time by getting a Top 6 role. And rookies (#6) and splits (#smilies/cool.gif might go together well. (see my item iii)

ii) Item #3: SOG. While I like SOG, I think any correlation btw SOG&PTS needs to at least discuss a player's shooting percentage. For example, nobody (IMO) throws more trash on net than Michael Frolik - a guy who's shot just isn't clean enough to consistently beat NHL goalies. One of the most common "kick yourself" trades I see is people who invested in Frolik. Similarly, Devin Setoguchi is a guy who has trained himself to shoot-shoot-shoot. Yeah, he can bang in the gimmies... but his lack of passing game does nothing for his overall point totals and when removed from a top tier passer, Seto's game hits a wall. I'd prefer to see a mention of SH% in any SOGvsPTS discussion.

iii) re: Item #9... Splits are a love-hate affair for me. I like some splits... especially ES vs. PPP... I'm a "keeper investor" in players that are putting up big ES point totals (curse you Bobby Ryan). However, I have never put any stock in HOME-ROAD splits and I never look into NOV/DEC/JAN/FEB/MAR splits. I'm sure if you look at 100 samples (players) you can find trends. If you have 100 people each flip a coin 100 times you are also going to find somebody who "seems" to flip a heads on an odd turn and a tail on an even turn. If splits apply to anybody - I'd think a rookie may be likely to feel swayed by certain conditions (short NCAA seasons reflecting in 1st vs. 2nd half splits -or- Weekend Performers reflecting kids out of the CHL.) And what is "daily breakdown"?

iv) Love #10. In leagues allowing several transactions, I take advantage of weekly schedules, games played, and games remaining as OFTEN as possible!

Big thumbs up... can't wait for the mathy article!
January 10, 2012
Votes: +0
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