Originally Posted by Skin Blues
As for Corey Perry, he's also had a drastic drop in A1s. 0.95 to 0.66 to 0.47 (per 60 mins) over the past 3 seasons. That's very concerning.
Then you have old guys like Ray Whitney and Kimmo Timonen just skyrocketing their A1 totals. I don't really know what to think about all this...
I like your dig on Perry.
I do believe there is some value in that.
I mean, we all know that Perry is a goal-scorer... so perhaps it's not so much a "decline" as it is that the 0.95 was WAY too high, and maybe the 0.66 way a bit too high or his average.
Often times a goal-scorer gets his rebound banged in = A1. (LUCK assist)
Or the defenses key on him so hard that he can slip in easy gimme tap-in to a teammates on the other side of the net = A1. (SKILL assist, from being overmarked.)
We all have a tendency to use words like "increasing" or "decreasing"... but I think it's also key to look at a player and just point out when a season was lucky or everything-clicked (like Perry's HART season). Goals are easiest to adjust. Playing with a great passer (Oates, for Hull) or just having a great shooting percentage season are very obvious things to adjust, statistically. But assist totals have always been the black-box of point-scoring-analysis & predictions
The find on Whitney & Timonen may also have value.
I mean... these older guys may get slower... but their hands are as good as ever and their vision/timing/hockey-sense only improves with age.
This is part of the reason I don't downgrade old-guys too much... the old guys with "hockey-sense" are very valuable on the PP.
So, it's not necessarily a surprise to see their A1 stats/ratio improve.
Essentially - a passer can control his A1 output, more than he can control his A2 output
A guy like Ray Whitney had played a few years with Doan & Vrbata (I believe those were his linemates) so every year he plays with them, the value in his hockey-sense allows him to anticipate how to make the perfect pass for those players.
Same goes for Timonen... another year with Giroux & a chance to play with a deft PP-guy like Jagr allows his hockey-sense to get maximize value by threading nice passes - hence, nice A1 count.
In any small sample size (one season), there will be a lot of skewed stats... but I do believe there is some value there - and I think you are uncovering some of it.!!