Prospect Ramblings: Second-half paces

by Hayden Soboleski on December 30, 2018

image courtesy of NESN

 

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Around this time last year, I wrote a Ramblings looking at whether players from different leagues dropped off at different rates in the 2nd half of the NHL season (click anywhere here to read it). The conclusions weren’t definitive, but:

  • Prospects coming from the AHL more consistently improved in the second half,
  • Players coming straight from the CHL or NCAA were a mixed bag,
  • The small sample of WHL players both improved in the second half,
  • Most European league jumpers stayed at the same pace all year long

 

A year later, I’m ready to add another season of data to the investigation, and make some predictions for the top players this year:

 

Does this change my previous conclusions?

  • The WHL player once again improved in the second half.
  • 2 of 3 AHL players improved notably in the second half, but one dropped off significantly. Similar as seen in my older data.
  • As a whole, the CHL crowd fared much better in 2017-18 than the years previous. WHL, OHL, and QMJHL players managed equal or improved second-halves. 
  • The NCAA players still did not see jumps in their second halves – Keller stayed steady and Boeser was hurt, but the end result was still 3/4 players having lower totals post-All Star Break.
  • Unfortunately no European jumpers on the list to provide more data.

 

What does this mean for the rest of 2018-19?

  • Based on the league he jumped from, there is no precedent for Pettersson to start slumping. His shot rate suggests otherwise, but that’s not the point of this piece. 
  • Same for Dahlin and Heiskanen. No drop expected.
  • The mixed bag of  CHL (and OHL specifically) data so far means I cannot make predictions for Svechnikov.
  • AHL graduates Johnsson, Cirelli, and White seem to be favored in the second half. Let’s hope the trend continues.
  • NCAA graduate Tkachuk on the other hand has mixed results from those who preceded him.

 

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FIRST NHL GOALS TIME!

 

Going hard to the net will make everyone like you – Mason Appleton gets some brownie points along with his first ever:

 

Jayce Hawryluk gets an A+ for hustle on his first ever NHL tally:

 

Connor Garland had to out-race his own teammate to get this puck, but when you make it count then its ok:

 

Christoffer Ehn will be remembering this sweet backhand for a long time:

 

This is why you pay attention as soon as the puck drops – Josh Mahura sneaks one through the crowd from the point:

 

Also, looks like NHL has taken note of my favorite weekly activity and made their own compilation video of first goals. I’ll share because I’m nice:

 

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Thank you for readings, and best of luck in the New Year as we enter the second half of the fantasy campaign!

Hayden Soboleski

@soboleskih