Best of the Nation – 11.4.12

Jonathan Willis
November 04 2012 09:15AM

Photo: S.Yume/CC BY 2.0/Wikimedia

After the jump: 20-ish articles covering a range of subjects. Which player overseas has had the most impressive performance so far? Why is the CHLPA imploding? Who were the best free agent signings of the last CBA? Zack Kassian or Cody Hodgson? Perhaps most importantly: who is Roberto Luongo mocking with his new Twitter avater?

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Reference library: Goalies

Eric T.
November 02 2012 04:12PM

This article is part of the NHL Numbers reference library, which seeks to collect articles from around the web that have contributed to our understanding of the game.

This page is devoted to articles that touch on goaltending. This will include save percentage, team effects, aging profiles, and other things that relate to evaluating goalies.

We need your help to keep the library complete and up to date -- contact me on Twitter (@BSH_EricT) or via email (bsh.erict -at- gmail) with suggestions of articles you think we should consider adding.

Return to the library main index.

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Number Chains - November 2, 2012 Links

Josh L.
November 02 2012 01:01PM

This new, regular feature on NHLNumbers will share interesting stats-related posts from around the web almost every day.

Welcome to edition number seven of the rebooted Number Chains. In this space you will be able to find the best analytical hockey writing from around the internet on a close-to-daily basis. Subject matter will include statistical evaluation, financial analysis, contractual issues, and (sometimes) closely-related tangential works. If you have something you would like to submit for a future edition (your writing or that of someone else) feel free to send it to me via Twitter @JoshL1220 or leave a comment.

Yesterday Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy fame asked if NHL fans would cancel their season tickets even if the league played games this year. He points out one big difference between this lockout and the lost year of 2004-05:

But there will (sic) some, like these Hurricanes fans, that don't come back. The deeper the lockout goes, the more fans will leave. It's not going to be through some petition or pledge drive or Twitter hash-tagged boycott. It's going to be dedicated fans who evaluate their finances, think about how this League had punched them in the stomach and spit in their hair twice in seven years, and then reallocate their entertainment expenditures to cover life's more pertinent costs.

The biggest difference between 2005 and 2012, to that end: One glance at Facebook, one search on Twitter, and they'll know they're not alone. That's comforting and empowering to fans, and should scare the feces out of the National Hockey League.

I know that one way or the other I will still be around, but I would have a hard time being critical of anyone chosing to spend their money elsewhere. The NHL Lockout is obviously not on par with the civil unrest in the Middle East or the Occupy protests, but we've seen the power of social media in organizing and documenting those protests. Protests springing up via Facebook or Twitter in response to the NHL once they finally get back to work wouldn't be the most shocking response to the lockout.

After the jump more national writing about hockey in Houston, more lockout news, some statistical work from around The Nation, and Carolina Hurricanes point projections.

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Building a NHL Fantasy Predictor: What's in a Line?

Ben Wendorf
November 02 2012 08:04AM


I've been pretty determined to figure out how to build my own fantasy hockey predictor for a while, and it's led me to bounce a few ideas off fellow NHLN writers and friends. What seemed to hold was my assertion of starting with players sorted into "line" thinking, with forwards considered 1st/2nd/3rd liners and defensemen as 1st/2nd pair defenders. You're not rostering players beyond that unless you are anticipating their involvement in those lines/pairings down the road.

But before I would even move into thinking about lines that a player might play in, I have to think about the statistical composition of the lines themselves, as a player's production has a talent component but, more importantly, a situational component. It's hard for the talent to be productive without the time to make it happen. So what's in a line?

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Number Chains - November 1, 2012 Links

Josh L.
November 01 2012 01:27PM

This new, regular feature on NHLNumbers will share interesting stats-related posts from around the web almost every day.

Welcome to edition number six of the rebooted Number Chains. In this space you will be able to find the best analytical hockey writing from around the internet on a close-to-daily basis. Subject matter will include statistical evaluation, financial analysis, contractual issues, and (sometimes) closely-related tangential works. If you have something you would like to submit for a future edition (your writing or that of someone else) feel free to send it to me via Twitter @JoshL1220 or leave a comment.

The Hockey News is singing the praises of a pair of Detroit Red Wings. Henrik Zetterberg and Damien Brunner are playing together for EV Zug in the Swiss league.To put it mildly, they're working out well together:

"Detroit said they were going to put (Brunner) on a line with Zetterberg, so I got to do it first," Zug coach Doug Shedden said Wednesday in an interview. "I texted (Red Wings GM) Kenny Holland and said: `It works."'

Has it ever.

Zetterberg is playing like a man possessed with seven goals and 11 points in just five league games—four of them victories for Zug to go along with a shootout loss—while Brunner sits on top of the Swiss scoring table. The third member of the line, former Edmonton Oilers forward Linus Omark, is also among the league leaders in points.

It's only a matter of time before Omark is a Red Wing and leading the league in scoring.

All the analytical writing you can handle to begin November can be found after the jump. Rob Vollman, Timo Seppa, Justin Bourne, Slava Malamud, and Gabe Desjardins all await your readership.

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