2015 Stanley Cup playoffs: New York Rangers vs. Pittsburgh Penguins - Round 1 Preview

Thomas Drance
April 13 2015 01:00PM

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Weighed down by a mess of injuries along their blue line, the Pittsburgh Penguins, who were eliminated by the New York Rangers a year ago, sagged down the stretch and are limping into the Stanley Cup playoffs in a wild card spot. The Rangers meanwhile won the Presidents' Trophy despite injuries to key contributors like Derek Stepan and Henrik Lundqvist, and have been as resilient and polished as anyone in the league all year. 

Who will win when they face-off this week in an all-Metropolitan division first-round Stanley Cup playoff series over the next two weeks?

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The triumph of a standard bearer: RIP Matthew Wuest

Thomas Drance
March 20 2015 11:49AM

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Screencap courtesy CBS Sports

I've occasionally been asked if NHLNumbers.com plans to position itself as a "replacement" for capgeek.com. 

The short answer is admittedly yes, but the truer answer is that we can only aspire to improve our database and site design to the point where it is half as clean, accurate and thorough as what Capgeek founder Matthew Wuest built and meticulously maintained over the years at capgeek.com. 

The truer answer is that there's no replacing capgeek.com. It was perfect, brilliant and dynamic. 

Much more importantly, there's no replacing capgeek.com founder and sports journalist Matthew Wuest. Wuest died this week after a two-and-a-half year battle with colon cancer and his loss has been poignantly felt across the hockey world. Dignified, humble, hard working, revolutionary - Wuest was and is irreplaceable. 

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Enhanced Evaluation Techniques: NHL.com introduces advanced stats site, renames Corsi

Thomas Drance
February 20 2015 09:52AM

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Image via Wikimedia Commons

Corsi, Fenwick, PDO and rate stats have come to the NHL's official website. Sort of.

On Friday morning, the NHL rolled out a new page of advanced team and player stats with their "Enhanced Stats" resource page. The page itself is clean and well designed, and the stats we've been discussing for the past seven years are now officially recognized. Although the metrics have been renamed, the NHL is now officially onboard. That matters. 

It's also the big picture takeaway here, and it's a significant shift, an important moment in the history of hockey analytics. Blogging is all about optimism and overreaction though, so in that spirit, let's look into what NHL.com's enhanced statistic site is offering - let's discuss what it does well, what it could do better - and give our initial reaction.

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Stars acquire goaltender Jhonas Enroth from the Buffalo Sabres

Thomas Drance
February 11 2015 02:49PM

The Dallas Stars have belatedly upgraded their goaltending by acquiring legitimately good if undersized netminder Jhonas Enroth from the busy Buffalo Sabres. The deal has been confirmed by both clubs, and the Sabres will receive a conditional third-round pick in return for their most frequent starting netminder.

The Stars have received the second worst overall goaltending in hockey this season and were desperate to add some help in net. Adding Enroth, a pending unrestricted free agent, is a quality move, though it's possible that the move will prove to be too little, too late for the Stars. 

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Nation Network NHL Power Rankings: Blackhawks reclaim top spot

Thomas Drance
February 09 2015 11:33AM

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They've been called "the Glenn Healy" of NHL Power Rankings, they've been furiously annotated and derided as useless. And now they're here. Available across the Nation Network: it's NHL Power Rankings!

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