Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Getting Results Against Modano

I think Scotty Bowman is right. More often than not you win or lose with your best players.

Anyhow, this just for the helluvit, a completely nonscientific thing, the even strength results of players against Modano and his peers in the Western Conference. I arbitrarily added Thornton, Naslund, Selanne, Zetterburg, Iginla, Sakic and Demitra to the list as well.

Almost everybody in the West is in the red at this for obvious reasons. (Exception being Calgary who were a whopping +7 against this crew. Granted they have Kipper behind them and two of the best guys in the league at outscoring quality players on the roster (Langkow and Iginla) at least one of them seemed to be on the ice for the events against the big 8. Hell, even the CGY backups managed to be + guys at this. Strange that Andrew Ference would peg in a shade ahead of Regehr and Leopold, 2nd year in a row that he's lead at this as well. Anamoly? (Personally I'd rather chew tinfoil than watch Flames games, so I dunno)

Some cool stuff in here I think. The Oiler list is pretty obvious I think. And of course a goalpost or good/bad bounce here and there are going to matter too, a lot of room for coincidence. By total number of events and +/- against the Big 8.

About right, I haven't checked the head2head icetimes, but I imagine it shakes down similar to that, though there is obviously a lot of noise in that. I would guess that Horcoff probably had about twice as manydefensive zone faceoffs against these guys than Peca too.

The Torres thing is hard to explain. The huge drop from Horcoff to Hemsky makes perfect sense. And I can see Ulanov's tragic results, in ove his head when he had tough minutes with Smith early in the year and Bergy/Pronger were taking the rollover minutes ... but how the hell did Cross end up with so much stuff against the big kids when he barely even saw them? Damn! Almost seems intentional.

Now, since I KNOW that you all love quizzes, a few bits and pieces from around the league in the "Who Am !?" format:

Q1. Although I'm a multiple Green Jacket winner and have always gotten reamed vs quality, this season I outdid myself. Without all that much icetime head to head I managed to be EV+3 / EV-18 against the Big 8. And I did it all without actually taking shots on my own goalie! Who am I?

Q2. I played a ridiculous amount against good players this season. 33 events and a pretty impressive EV+/- -3 against the Big 8. Who am I? (Hint: Don't spend too much time trying to guess, even I don't know who the hell I am).

Q3. I was on the ice for more events vs the Big 8 than anyone else on my L.A. Kings team. Who am I?

Q4. I was more likely to be on the ice for my Minnesota team for a Big 8 goal (for or against) than anyone else on my team. And got the best results doing it. Who am I. (hint: It sure as hell isn't Brian Rolston)

Q5. I'm Jason Arnott, and I was on the ice for a whopping 56 Dallas goals at even strength in 05/06. How may of those came against the Big 8? (Hint: When it came to playing against star players ... I wasn't really into it last year).

Q6. I'm a Shark, and I was on the ice for more Big 8 goals than anyone else. Who am I?


Good luck and thanks for playing!


Anonymous PDO said...

1. Mike Ricci scored on his own net once didn't he? I'll go with him.

2. There's a lot of names I'd have thrown out if not for the clue. Huselius is the only name I can think of that fits with the clue - but that doesn't make any sense... so I'll go way off the mark and say Beauchemin.

3. Frolov? I know the kid played some pretty tough minutes... and you have a bit of a man crush on him ;)

4. Gaborik.

5. 13

6. Well, would these include the goals scored by Thornton? I'd say it's Cheechoo because he was tied to Thornton's hip and probably played some decent competition at the start of the season.

9/06/2006 11:25 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...


Some good guesses. One correct answer.

BTW: Mike Ricci was only on the ice for 9 events against the big 8, and was -5 against them. I really expected Gretzky to run poor Mike into the ground down there and have him end up -30 or some such. But he didn't. And in any case Ricci is finished. He's never won a Green Jacket either AFAIK, a solid player throughout his career I think.

9/06/2006 11:37 am  
Blogger RiversQ said...

1. Nash.
2. Kostopoulos
3. Avery
4. Todd White
5. 35
6. Thornton

Some wild guesses there.

9/06/2006 11:41 am  
Blogger dawgbone said...

1. Nash
2. Niko Kapanen (wild guess)
3. Conroy
4. PM Bouchard
5. 9
6. Scott Hannan (though Thornton being on for his own goals would skew this)

9/06/2006 11:51 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

Well, PDO got Q4 right - Gaborik. Buddy is growin' up, just edging out Walz this past year.

RiversQ got Q3. - Avery.
Conroy, Demitra, Miller, Norstrom and Frolov are all better answers ... they're just wrong. Avery with (24) and a respectable -4 against the big 8. And Belanger came close with fewer games. What on earth was Andy Murray thinking?

Dawgbone got Q.6 - Hannan.
I thought that everyone would guess Thornton here, bit of a trick one. Cheechoo was a good guess too. But even after the trade, Hannan edges out Big Joe and his linemates. And McLaren is way up there too. A big drop to Preissing and a bigger drop to the rest of the young D a mile back. I think that's probably the model that Huddy will follow with this equally suspect Oiler D.

BTW: Hannan lead the Sharks at this, not the whole conference.


Anyone else going to take a crack at Questions 1, 2 and 5?

9/06/2006 4:55 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

1. Scott Young.

2. Rene Bourque.

5. 6

9/06/2006 6:06 pm  
Blogger speeds said...

1. Berard
2. Tjarnquist - Just cause I want good news, lol.
5. 17

9/06/2006 6:20 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

Since nobody is ever going to guess #2, the answer is Zbynek Michalek, a young defenseman for the Coyotes. Some mad stuff went on down in the desert last season.

A whopping 33 events and a damn impressive +15 and -18 against the big 8. A mile ahead of every other Coyote. Leader of everyone in the Western conference by this measuring stick. Dude also lead the entire league by the simple "tough minutes" thing on a post about a month ago. And by a mile over a bunch of the usual suspects (Hatcher, Ohlund, Chara, Modano, etc).

I can't even remember the guy, but somebody down there was hell bent on throwing him out there for some nasty icetime.


I'm surprised nobody has guessed Q1. Some damn good guesses, but all of the guys suggested so far were kept away from this arbritrary 'big 8' pretty successfully. All in single digits in total events.

Clue: Name the guy least likely to ever win the Selke now that Hull has retired. ;)


The answer to Q5, the number of Arnott's 56 EV plusses that were gained against the big 8: One (1). Against Demitra, and 44 still finished as a minus against him during the season.

Think Arnie is going to miss playing behind Modano? I do.

And my guess is that Lindros is going to put up some huge point and +/- numbers in 06/07 if both him and Modano can stay healthy. He picked a good spot there.

9/06/2006 7:07 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9/07/2006 8:14 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

Anonymous is correct. The answer to Q1 is Bertuzzi.

The guy has always bled goals and penalties against the top players. But he outdid himself this year. Probably a large chunk of bad luck too, couldn't happen to a nicer guy, :D By my eye Crawford jumps through hoops to keep Naslund-Bertuzzi away from these types of players, so it's not like he's run out there against them on purpose, unless it's late in the game and VAN really need a goal or some such.

9/07/2006 9:54 am  
Anonymous namflashback said...

vic, the better clue would have been "least likely to win the Lady Byng trophy."

9/07/2006 12:25 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

namflashback said...

vic, the better clue would have been "least likely to win the Lady Byng trophy."

Fair enough. But after seeing Dany Heatley get nominated for the Masterton, I'm ruling nothing out completely. :D

9/07/2006 7:40 pm  
Blogger Doogie said...

Honestly, I'd have guessed Avery for "least likely to win the Byng," but the point is well-taken.

9/08/2006 1:15 am  
Anonymous namflashback said...

Hey Vic, it looks like you had done this for all west conference players and teams.

Where did our new guy Shaggy Tjarnquist land on his events?

9/08/2006 11:26 am  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...


Well, it looks like Minny had horseshoes when it came to injuries on the other squads, because as a team they only logged 371 minutes against this arbitrary 'Big 8'. Crazy low number. So the totals for all the players are lower too.

Kuba 17
Mitchell 14
Tjarnqvist 10

Schultz close behind (though probably not deservedly) and Zyuzin.

By icetime it shakes out about the same. By minutes played when the other team has pulled it's goalie, again no surprises. He is what he is, a good veteran NHL defender. Or at least that's the way Lemaire played him.

The curious thing:
The team that he played the toughest minutes against seems to be the Oilers. Though I don't remember the reasons or the context. And since 8 games isn't a large enough number of games to use goals ... we're stuck with icetime. EV icetime against Horcoff/Smyth he leads the pack with 37 minutes, granted just edging out about four D guys. And roughly one country mile behind Gaborik (55 minutes. Yowza!) and Walz.

Curious stuff is that, now I regret not watching more of those games live.

9/08/2006 2:10 pm  
Anonymous namflashback said...

Thanks Vic. On those ten goal events did Tjarni stay on the + side of the ledger?

9/08/2006 8:56 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

Curious stuff is that, now I regret not watching more of those games live.

Easy to say in the summer when there hasn't been an Oiler game in two and a half months and you're jonesing for a game. Keep in mind - it's the Minnesota Wild.

On the Flames, and only because you seem to have it handy, I can look this up myself if need be - where does Phaneuf fall in terms of usage and results against the Big 8? There's something of a bloody thread at CalPuck right now over the guy and how he's used - even guys who claim to be actual hockey people are chiming in. I assume he played big minutes against them - he's a GENERATIONAL TALENT don't you know.

9/09/2006 4:01 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

I ended up crunching it myself. Interesting stuff. I wonder if Ference doesn't get tougher matchups than we'd think. Here are the Flames D ESGA/60:

Regehr: 1.50
Hamrlik: 1.75
Leopold: 1.53
Marchment: 1.62
Warrener: 1.64
Ference: 2.30

One of these things is not like the other.

9/10/2006 12:43 am  
Anonymous Bank Shot said...

Maybe Ference just sucks. That would certainly fit in with my impressions from watching him play.

9/11/2006 2:32 am  

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