5 things: How bad is Zac Rinaldo?

Ryan Lambert
July 27 2015 03:55PM

So just how bad is Zac Rinaldo really?

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Establishing AHL Baselines for Prospect Success

Josh W
July 24 2015 09:37AM

Nearly every hockey fan has the basic understanding that the NHL is the best hockey league in the world and that to become an regular player in the league you need to be the best of the best. Combining this with the piling of recent evidence suggesting that the peak age of players is around the mid-20s, it starts to become apparent that fans in every fan base tend to be over-confident in the success of their AHL (and other) prospects.

It is important when studying prospects, and when wanting to increase the general understanding of the league, to establish a baseline of success for those in development leagues.  

Continue past the jump as we look into AHL success.

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The Roundup

Nation World HQ
July 24 2015 07:00AM

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What has Kyle Dubas done, Canucks not having a very good summer, do the Flames have a core group, who is the Oilers next captain, free agents still out there and more in this weeks Roundup

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The Curious Case of the Unsigned Cody Franson

Cam Lewis
July 22 2015 08:30AM

It’s been three weeks and Cody Franson doesn’t have a contract. If you search his name on Google, you’ll be flooded with reports that the huge, offensive minded defenceman is speaking with teams all around the league. Most recent reports suggest he’s in talks with the Boston Bruins, who recently shipped their best blue-liner, Dougie Hamilton, to the Calgary Flames. And of course, there’s talk that he’s open to come back to the Toronto Maple Leafs, the team he spent the majority of his career with before being dealt back to the Nashville Predators, who drafted him 79th overall in 2005.

Other than Franson, all of the big name defencemen are off the market now. There are a few solid veterans, some potential reclamation projects, but all of the big names – Sekera, Martin, Green, Beauchemin — were locked up on the first day of free agency. So what’s the deal with Franson? Is it him? Are his demands too high for the calibre of player he is? There appears to be interest around the league, but for whatever reason, teams seem to be skeptical of handing out a fat contract for Franson’s services. 

That seems a little bizarre, because he may be the best defenceman of the entire bunch — and he still has room to improve. 

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Predicting Future NHL Scoring Success with NHLe Thresholds & Related Factors

Byron Bader
July 17 2015 12:00PM


NHL Equivalency (NHLe) is a formula used by some in the hockey analytics community to normalize scoring rates in different prospect feeder leagues. The object of finding a similar "score" for players across different leagues is to help project future NHL scoring/performance. It’s a method developed by Gabe Desjardins of behindthenet.ca a number of years ago and has been expanded upon by hockey analytics pioneers like Rob Vollman and Kent Wilson. Here's Gabe's original piece to give you a context if you're not fully versed in NHLe.

Previously, I looked at draft year NHLe and forwards drafted in the first round from 2005 to 2010. In that investigation, I found that of players who had scored a career 0.6 PPG or higher in the NHL (approximately 50 points or more a season) 22 of 32 in total had an NHLe of at least 34 in their draft year.  

In fact, of all the first round forwards who had an NHLe of 34 or more in their draft year, only five hadn’t scored at a rate of 0.6 PPG or higher in the NHL to that point, though all had already made the NHL. While draft year NHLe provides certain insights, I was curious how you could project future impactful point producers (0.6 PPG or higher) overall, beyond the 1st round and beyond a player’s draft year equivalency.  

The following analysis provides insights into the following questions:

  • Are there differences between players who score a high equivalency in their draft year compared to later on? 
  • Do elite scorers tend to hit certain NHLe thresholds (e.g., 30+ or 40+) more often and/or more frequently than average, replacement-level scorers and busts?
  • What impact does age have in hitting an equivalency threshold and future NHL success? 

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