Saturday, March 18, 2006

AHL Performance As A Predictor (Updated)

Last season oilswell sent me a CSV file with every goal scored in the AHL. Listing who has on the ice for very goal, for both teams as well. The other day he sent me the stuff for this AHL season so far. And on this snowy afternoon I've been farting around with it, in lieu of shovelling the driveway.

Anyhow, just kicking at tires right now, but it really lloks like even strength results are the best predictor. And even moreso the old Ron Wilson thing: even-strength-points minus even-strength-goals-against.

IF this works, then the top all -around forward from last year in the AHL, by a mile:

Staal: 41 points ---> EV- 23
(Kobasew and Forbes, an AHL journeyman, put up nearly identical numbers, they played almost exclusively with Staal, common sense and past histories tells us who was driving the bus here)

Others in the plus category here:
Spezza: 57 ---> -51
Stoll: 22 ---> -22
Torres: 28 ---> -26

Some notables that came close:
Boyes: 30 ---> -33
Salmelainen 31 ---> -34
P. Bergeron: 24 ---> -28


This year, some good guys, because this seems to be a very difficult thing to accomplish:

O'Sullivan: 36 ---> -35
Perry: 19 ---> -17
Getzlaf: 19 ---> -16

And Oiler funfacts:
The Good ... and the ONLY Oiler prospect in the black at this: Stastny 18---> -15
The Terrible ... and on a very good team: Rem Murray 21 ---> -28


As Marge Simpson would say ... hrrrmm. :-(

Updated to add:

Okay, thought I'd come back to this. Took the top 60 rookies from the AHL website and wrote a script to run their numbers. Now I assume that these guys are all 20 year olds, but any input from people who follow the prospects would be appreciated. Here ya go:

This year's Eric Staal, in a class by himself:
Jeff Tabellini: 39 ---> -24
Damn good. And the closer you look the better it gets. His team is +22 at 5on5 when he is on the ice and -1 when he isn't. He's had a mix of linemates and appears to have made a lot of others on that team look good on the stats page. Anyone seen him play or know anything about him? Is this Steve Tambellini's boy?

Other notables:
Ryan Shannon: 38 ---> -31
Played with some good linemates by the looks of things. And the team is +13 when he isn't on the ice, the same as when he's on it. So he's the beneficiary of a good team I'd guess. Still, results be results.

And a few guys who managed to register as many or more points than EV-. And who clearly make their team better when they are on the ice.
T.Redenbach: +15 when he's on the ice, -1 when he isn't

Some guys around the breakeven point or a shade better, but appear to be benefitting from good teams:

And the guys who have somehow managed good results at this in spite of terrible teams:


This is missing a lot of detail (linemates, quality of goaltending behind them, physical size, etc) but it's saying something I think. Alfredsson's line, Forsberg, Modano and Selanne (of all people!) are currently leading the NHL by this metric right now.

A starting point at least I hope.


Anonymous lowetide said...

This is good. I'd be interesting in knowing if this is a predictor (for one organization over another but no one in particular) of what player is going to be called up or get a longer look the next fall?

I love this stuff.

3/18/2006 7:14 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

Is there any chance the B's knew these things about Stastny before they re-acquired him from the Oil? Or was it just a thing where they were figuring out the comings and goings and when given a list of who the Oilers would peddle just selected Yan because they had prior knowledge of him? I was shocked last summer when they dealt him for Isbister...not because Yan had a great track record or anything but more because I'd heard he had chance to be useful which is something Isbister has long since passed, at least IMO. Speaking of guys who'll always get a chance because they're big and can shoot...don't look now but Kilger's actually playing pretty well for the Leaves this season. last thought on Yan...I was sorta surprised they gave him up because I'm thinking he would've had the inside track on the 4th line pivot job next year. I think someone here or over on OF said they saw more from him in two games than they did from Winchester in over 20 and I thought that was a great assessment. It's not like he was out there killing people but he plays bigger than he is, has a lot of jump and he's smart to boot.

Back to the AHL numbers...I think this O'Sullivan guy has a chance to be a player and I thougth that before I saw these figures. And as much as the Spacek deal was an absolute steal you'll never convince me that Salmo couldn't have done a better job this season than Harvey. In any case it's certainly working out for us right now:)

Two last things to close...I guess Rob Daum doesn't know about these numbers or he neglected them when he most likely gave the Oilers thumbs up on Rem Murray;) Or else he's just trying to get back at us for not hiring him:D

And what are MAP, JFJ and Syvret's numbers in this regard?

3/18/2006 7:37 pm  
Blogger speeds said...

I know you're a McDonald fan LT, but geez, that's one EDM probably wishes they had a mulligan on? Passing on O'Sullivan at 51 OV.

I can remember being shocked he slid as far as he did. I seem to recall you were hoping for O'Sullivan in the 2nd as well, right? Or am I remembering incorrectly?

3/19/2006 2:27 am  
Anonymous lowetide said...

speeds said....

I know you're a McDonald fan LT, but geez, that's one EDM probably wishes they had a mulligan on? Passing on O'Sullivan at 51 OV.

I can remember being shock he slid as far as he did. I seem to recall you were hoping for O'Sullivan in the 2nd as well, right? Or am I remembering incorrectly?

I wanted the Oilers to take him in the 1st round, he was my guy much the way Schremp was in the second round.

I somehow have those two together in my mind as players don't know why. But the guy had supreme talent and all those other issues seem to have gone away.

Do the Oilers pass on more skill types than anyone or does it just seem like it?

That's why the 2005 draft for Edmonton was pretty encouraging imo. They went for skill big time.

3/19/2006 7:17 am  
Blogger speeds said...

A lot of people passed on O'Sullivan because of "character" issues, which is probably why you lump him with Schremp.

The Oilers did go more towards skill last draft, which was encouraging, but looking back I again got the impression that they weren't drafting BPA, they were kinda drafting by BPA among players going to college, so we don't have to do anything with them for awhile.

I think they missed a chance to have an unreal draft last year, even though I hope it'll be pretty good anyways (even a year after the draft this yar looks still not bad, wtih Trukhno surprising, but all the "draft and follow" types as you describe them look like we'll be following them for a long time, lol)

3/19/2006 10:58 am  
Anonymous lowetide said...

I think this year (2006) the Oilers may actually have to pick a more traditional version of BPA. Lots of skill will be gone before they step to the podium (or turn on the Mr. Microphone, I'm not sure how they handle the 2nd round).

3/19/2006 12:12 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

Yes it seems like the Oilers really got away from drafting skill players for awhile...I believe it was LT who tagged these guys as "Coke Machines" and it referred to the Oilers drafting guys like Paukovich, McDonald and of course the infamous Ed Caron who either ate or studied his way out of the NHL depending on who you'd believe. I remember over at HF reading an article about how interested he was in school and that's obviously the right decision because how many guys really make the NHL. Of course by doing the interviews and the background NHL teams should be drafting guys who's #1 goal is to be a player. And the Oilers failed in that regard with Caron.

Finally...doesn't the McDonald pick look like a bust at this point...Paukovich too for that matter

3/19/2006 1:17 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

I'd say the McDonald pick is on soome poor footing. He really hasn't displayed much as a scorer and although the organization has made noise about him still having that kind of upside there's no real evidence.

Kirk Luedeke is a writer for the New England Hockey Journal and has told me right down the line the kid can play (and he gets this from scouts).

So not a bust yet, but not an power forward either. Paukovich it might be too soon to tell on, we'll see (he is I believe the player selected with the pick acquired for Jason Chimera).

Honestly I think Lacouture's career is probably best case scenario for all of these mountain men.

3/19/2006 2:55 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

Wow...I just threw up in my mouth. Well at least it seems like the Oilers have gotten away from this philosphy...granted it took drafting nearly every American over 6-3 but they look to have eventually smartened up.

Postscript: Is anyone else surprised they didn't somehow pick up Hugh Jessiman;)

3/19/2006 4:55 pm  
Blogger Brian said...

Yes, Tambellini is Steve's kid, and he's a player. Wicked fast, wicked wrister, defensively responsible. The kind of guy to shoot from anywhere and everywhere and make that seem like a pretty good idea. Kills me not to have him at Michigan for a senior year, and killed the team.

-HF's ex-Michigan/Oiler's partisan poster (and current lurker) Funkymoses

3/20/2006 10:57 am  
Blogger RiversQ said...

Interesting stuff about Tambellini especially since he was just dealt from LA to NYI in probably the weirdest deadline deal out there. All of a sudden, Milbury gets wise and Taylor loses his mind? That one was a headscratcher.

3/20/2006 3:23 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

Tambellini is 21, Ryan Shannon is 22, Redenbach is 21.

That's as of Sept. 1, as Shannon I believe just turned 23.

3/20/2006 4:36 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

brian (funkymoses):

Cool, thanks for the info. Glad to see you over here.

Sounds like a player. Personally, I like the shooters that don't get their chances by floating to open space like Hull, Lupul, etc.

He's 21 though, that takes some of the shine off of it. Staal turned in similarly great results as a 19 year old. Still, looks damn good on the surface for sure. The mind boggles as to why L.A hadn't called him up after their injuries, or why they traded him for the rental of Parrish.

These results are so far ahead of his teammates that it's stunning, and the gap would be even wider if he hadn't been towing a few of them along (by the numbers anyways) I mean surely nobody is just this lucky, are they?

3/20/2006 8:32 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...


Thanks. I could have just checked one by one. But I thought some of you guys that follow the prospects more closely would know this stuff off of the top of their heads anyways, and other bits too.

Ryan Shannon would be a golden prospect if he was a young 20 coming and getting these results this season. But since he's entering the 'Winchester years' of his career ... not so much.

Obviously most top offensive players make the NHL squad at 20 years or before, so don't play in the AHL. But some damn good players have toiled there. Usually smallish forwards. Demitra, Fleury and Palffy spring to mind, but there are several others of similar stature and effectiveness as NHLers.

Nigel Dawes maybe fits the mould. (I think he's a 20+ rookie too, no? I remember him from the WJCs when they were in Europe at least 3 years ago). The knock against small forwards is usually that they give too much back the other way (SEE St Pierre, and rightly judged). But Dawes is scoring AND outscoring in a tough professional league.

3/20/2006 8:39 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

Yeah Dawes is 20. He was an amazing junior scored 47, 47 and 50 goals in his three full seasons in the WHL (191 games, 144 goals).

3/20/2006 8:50 pm  
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