November 26 2016 01:47PM
Earlier this week I wrote a piece about improvements that can be made at the margins of a hockey team. The basic premise was that fourth lines and third pairs move the needle much more than most think and based on my model, a switch from Ben Smith, Roman Polak, and Matt Hunwick to Peter Holland, Martin Marincin, and Frank Corrado is the difference between 89 and 93 points, at least by my model.
Today, David Johnson aka @hockeyanalysis on Twitter offered a different perspective to the piece, citing the Leafs defensive issues as the team's biggest problem and showing that removing the three players I pointed out as issues would be a further detriment to the team's defensive woes. That is 100 percent an argument I can get behind, after all, the role of those three is to play defence so they should be better at it.
Watch The Game Podcast
November 26 2016 08:17AM
Sam, Cam and Jeff record a special edition of the podcast where they breakdown each team and what they should be thankful for this holiday season. All thirty teams and even a little bit of Vegas Golden Knights talk as well. Some teams are just a little more thankful than others.
November 25 2016 11:00AM
Though the "sophomore slump" plagues many second-year players in the NHL, the opposite can be said for Winnipeg Jets winger Nikolaj Ehlers.
The 20-year-old had an impressive rookie debut last season, posting 15 goals and 38 points in 72 games. This time around, he looks even stronger. In 21 games played this season, Ehlers has 18 points (four goals, 14 assists) and is proving to be one of the Jets' top forwards this season.
Nation World HQ
November 25 2016 05:00AM
NHL power rankings, stop comparing Austin Matthews to Patrik Laine, Canucks and Anthony Duclair, Flames special teams costing them, Oilers are deep, Black Friday deals, Brent Burns, the Expansion Draft, a reason for every team in the league to be thankful, and more in this week's Nation Roundup brought to you by Violent Gentlemen.
November 24 2016 01:14PM
Photo Credit: Tom Szczerbowski/USA TODAY SPORTS
Back in the summer of 2013, before hockey analytics really became a part of the mainstream lexicon, there was an article posted on Yahoo on Kyle Dubas. I'll never forget the lead to that article:
"One of the first things Kyle Dubas did when he became the general manager of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds was buy everybody in the office a copy of Jonah Keri's The Extra 2%, a book that chronicles the overhaul by two Wall Street analysts of the Tampa Bay Rays, turning them from a laughingstock of baseball to a perennial contender in the American League East Division."
As it turns out, the guy who wrote the piece on the "not-so-secret" use of analytics by the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds was a former TLN Managing Editor, a guy who's now employed by the Leafs: Cam Charron. Funny how that ends up working out.