Prospect Ramblings – Monday, June 16th

Austin Wallace

2014-06-16

Monday, June 16th


Come check out our mock draft here. The first surprise pick is Leon Draisaitl at number three, by Steve Laidlaw of DobberHockey.


Well, hockey is done. It was an amazing playoffs, but now the NHL has caught up to the fantasy offseason. Don’t worry though, we have some awesome stuff up our sleeves. Firstly, we are doing a Mock Draft! *ignores collective groan*

 

Seriously though, it is going to be awesome. Every scout here is drafting for their team and analyzing what the pick would mean from a fantasy perspective. It is a golden opportunity to get a preliminary fantasy evaluation for those of us, me included, who haven’t been religiously following the 2014 draft class.

 

We will even have a couple of guests! Steve Laidlaw has eagerly accepted the hellacious task, I mean wonderful privilege, of pulling the Oilers out of a decade-long tailspin. Stay tuned for more details in the coming days!

 

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While I’m not quite heavily into advanced statistics as some *cough* Thomas Drance *cough*, I definitely think that they add value. I’m especially interested in who is at the extremes of things like PDO and possession. Even though PDO has its vehement detractors (http://www.secondcityhockey.com/2014/6/7/5787020/a-thorough-indictment-of-pdo), it does give a decent indicator of who has been massively un/lucky. PDO doesn’t usually mean much with small sample-sizes, or when you are taking about regular fluctuations, but looking at who was on the fringes can tell you about who will rebound/crash next year.

There aren’t a lot of ways I can add value to such a knowledgeable community, especially with no games to watch, so please bear with me through some not-so-fancy stats. If you aren’t interested in this, or think what I’m saying doesn’t add value, please let me know in the comments; I’ll do my best to make to make the discussion accessible to anyone and actually give you actionable information.

 

It does take more than numbers to analyze this, you definitely have to watch the game to make sense of PDO in this way.

 

You have to separate those who are consistently playing with terrible teammates (which depresses the shooting side of PDO), from those who are decent and having a terrible season. That is easy enough with someone like Alex Ovechkin (4th worst with a PDO that is 5.1% worse than his team’s, aka PDO rel) from someone like Zac Rinaldo (worst in PDO rel at -5.6%).

 

Assuming a constant SV%, then having a player like Rinaldo means that his team goes from shooting 10% like Nathan MacKinnon to shooting 5% like Drayson Bowman with him on the ice. Over a year, assuming 400 shots, that means that 20 fewer goals than expected were scored when you were on the ice. He either had to be terrible, or terribly unlucky (or both), to have things go so much worse whenever you are on the ice. In the case of Rinaldo, my guess was a bit of both. He has had significantly negative PDO rels each season, but this was his worst by far. Ovechkin, on the other hand, had a positive PDO rel the two past seasons, so this year is probably just a blip on the radar.

 

Rookies/sophomores are where it actually gets interesting, and difficult. Does Seth Jones’s 10th-worst -4.7 PDO rel mean he was overwhelmed as a rookie, or did he actually play better than his plus-minus might show? How about Yakupov? His PDO rel is the same as Jones’s; is he the first true first-overall bust since Stefan and DiPietro? Or is he due to regress in a big way, rebounding from a sophomore slump?

 

J.T. Brown, Alex Galchenyuk and Alex Chiasson are right on their tails, with unsustainably low PDO rel’s of -4.5, -4.3 and -4.3 respectively.

 

One way to get a better idea is to look at how young players with similar PDO rel’s bounced back in the past.

 

Here are some young players who’s PDO rel’s were at least as bad as Chiasson’s -4.3 in 2011-12 and 2012-13:

 

David Desharnais:

PDO rel: From -5.7 to +3.0

Points per Game: .58 to .66

 

Justin Shultz:

PDO rel: -4.9 to +0.7

Points per Game: .56 to .45.

While his points per game dropped, his primary points per game (which exclude secondary assists as they are less repeatable than primary assists) increased from .25 to .31.

 

Jeff Skinner:

PDO rel: -5.6 to +.08

Points per Game:  .57 to .76

 

Alexei Emelin:

PDO rel: -5.8 to -2.6

Points per