Objectively projecting Darnell Nurse

Jonathan Willis
August 05 2016 07:15PM

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Darnell Nurse is a fascinating player, and his long-term career arc is of extreme importance to the Edmonton Oilers.

The most common method of projecting that sort of career arc is the old-fashioned one: Assessing the player’s physical skills and then imagining what he’ll look like in his prime. The one we’re going to use today is a newer method, which involves looking at what happened to players with comparable underlying statistics.

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Comparing Keith Gretzky’s scouting work to that of the Edmonton Oilers

Jonathan Willis
August 03 2016 01:00PM

Keith Gretzky is the new assistant general manager of the Edmonton Oilers. Prior to signing on in Edmonton, Gretzky was the scouting director of the Boston Bruins and the Arizona Coyotes. It’s far too early to judge his work with Boston, but in his time in Arizona he was a contemporary of Kevin Prendergast and Stu MacGregor of the Edmonton Oilers.

How does Gretzky’s work compare to that of MacGregor/Prendergast over the same period?

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How well did Adam Larsson play against top opponents last year?

Jonathan Willis
July 24 2016 07:00AM

On Friday, I looked at how Edmonton’s defencemen fared when played against the best opponents in the NHL last year. Immediately and repeatedly I was asked to show how newcomer Adam Larsson did in the same role.

The answer is that it’s complicated.

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How Well Did Edmonton's Defencemen Play Against Top Opponents?

Jonathan Willis
July 22 2016 09:00AM

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The obvious answer is "not well enough," but the reality is a little more complicated. 

When we look only at how Edmonton Oilers defencemen performed against top opponents in 2015-16, we see some patterns, and a wide array of on-ice results. The Oilers' best defenceman against top lines actually finished in the positives, but by shot and goal totals, despite playing in Edmonton. The worst saw his team surrender 20 shots more per hour than it attempted. 

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Defining Success for Jesse Puljujarvi

Jonathan Willis
July 15 2016 09:00AM

Jesse Puljujarvi may or may not be NHL-ready next season. If he is capable of playing in the majors, he may not score right away. It’s important to say these things now so that he’s not branded a disappointment if he fails to meet some of the sky-high expectations out there.

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