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#1 DirtyDeeds

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 08:53 PM

Well about time. They finally got a deal done.... I reserve the right to be pissed and promise to keep a long memory on this escapade.

So it appears Cervenka won't make it back in time to start our shortened season. Hudlers status is unknown with a big gash on his face.

Who do you think we will start the season with ?

Goaltenders:
Kipper
Karlsson
Irving

I think Irving lost his shot this fall when he showed up out of form for Abbotsford camp. They may bring up Brust or Taylor but expect the above duo to start this shortened season.

Defensemen
Mark Giordano
Jay Bouwmeester
Dennis Wideman
Chris Butler
Cory Sarich
T.J. Brodie
Derek Smith
Anton Babchuk
Brett Carson
Chris Breen

Left Wing:

Alex Tanguay
Sven Baertschi
Curtis Glencross
Blake Comeau
Lance Bouma **
Paul Byron

I thought I read Bouma was hurt. *done for the season*-thx C_W

Center

Michael Cammalleri
Roman Cervenka **
Mikael Backlund
Blair Jones
Matt Stajan
Roman Horak
Max Reinhart

I don't expect Reinhart to make the team but I do expect he will be in camp, maybe only briefly. With Horak putting in his time last year and playing well this year I expect they may bring him up at least until Cervenka is here and ready to go.

Right Wing

Jarome Iginla
Jiri Hudler **
Lee Stempniak
Tim Jackman
Greg Nemisz
Akim Aliu
Krys Kolanos

I won't expect Hudler until I hear he is ready and able. I don't see Aliu or Kalonos getting much time up here but they both may be in camp.

You can put your predictions in lineup form if you like.

Alex Tanguay - Michael Cammalleri - Jarome Iginla
Curtis Glencross - Mikael Backlund - Lee Stempniak
Sven Baertschi - Matt Stajan - Roman Horak
Blake Comeau - Blair Jones - Tim Jackman


Hudler - If Hudler is ready then take out Horak in my lineup and move Stemps down 1 line.
Cervenka on injured reserve.



Jay Bouwmeester - Chris Butler
Mark Giordano - Dennis Wideman
T.J. Brodie - Cory Sarich


Derek Smith
Chris Breen
Anton Babchuk
Brett Carson

Breen may be a sleeper here as he has been playing well and is huge(6' 7" 225lb)


Miikka Kiprusoff
Henrik Karlsson


Leland Irving

Sorry Leland but you need to show us again being here is important.


Edit: I just noticed that there is a very similar thread over in Flames trades section. You are welcome to move this one there ot that one here or l;eave both running, no big deal here.

#2 C_worthy

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 09:25 PM

Bouma is done for the season

Hudler will be ready for the season I believe

#3 Cubicon

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 12:32 PM

I really hope that Cervenka heals quickly (and works out for us) because otherwise our lineup at centre will be our downfall (again!)

#4 DarthHenning

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 09:06 PM

My bets for once things get healthy would be:

FORWARDS
Alex Tanguay ($3.500m) / Mike Cammalleri ($6.000m) / Jarome Iginla ($7.000m)
Jiri Hudler ($4.000m) / Roman Cervenka ($3.775m) / Curtis Glencross ($2.550m)
Sven Baertschi ($1.425m) / Mikael Backlund ($0.725m) / Lee Stempniak ($2.500m)
Blair Jones ($0.650m) / Matt Stajan ($3.500m) / Tim Jackman ($0.613m)

DEFENSEMEN
Jay Bouwmeester ($6.680m)) / Dennis Wideman ($5.250m)
Mark Giordano ($4.020m / Chris Butler ($1.250m)
Cory Sarich ($2.000m) / T.J. Brodie ($0.742m)

GOALTENDERS
Miikka Kiprusoff ($5.833m)
Henrik Karlsson ($0.863m)

Until people are healthy I expect Stajan to get a shot in Roman's slot, and Horak to fill in for him temporarily.

#5 Wreckening

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:33 PM

My bets for once things get healthy would be:

FORWARDS
Alex Tanguay ($3.500m) / Mike Cammalleri ($6.000m) / Jarome Iginla ($7.000m)
Jiri Hudler ($4.000m) / Roman Cervenka ($3.775m) / Curtis Glencross ($2.550m)
Sven Baertschi ($1.425m) / Mikael Backlund ($0.725m) / Lee Stempniak ($2.500m)
Blair Jones ($0.650m) / Matt Stajan ($3.500m) / Tim Jackman ($0.613m)

DEFENSEMEN
Jay Bouwmeester ($6.680m)) / Dennis Wideman ($5.250m)
Mark Giordano ($4.020m / Chris Butler ($1.250m)
Cory Sarich ($2.000m) / T.J. Brodie ($0.742m)

GOALTENDERS
Miikka Kiprusoff ($5.833m)
Henrik Karlsson ($0.863m)

Until people are healthy I expect Stajan to get a shot in Roman's slot, and Horak to fill in for him temporarily.

Agreed. That's a decent skill line up. We are sadly lacking in the toughness category though. Here's hoping that's addressed fairly soon. Man I miss Prust.

#6 conundrumed

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 10:40 AM

The person I'm cheering for most is Hartley.
He's got a tough, tough job.
Cammy at center seems like a foregone conclusion...
I REALLY don't like the idea of a 40 goal potential winger moving to center.
A good, hard-working 4th line shuts our 1st line down imho. Because Tanguay and Cammalleri are good and creative, but neither are physical. It can't be all Iggy on the half-boards winning battles, he's supposed to be waiting for the feed.
Whether I'm right or misguided, that worries me a lot.
When I think of guys like Versteeg, Bolland, Kesler, Laich, Stoll, Carter, J. Staal etc, they aren't 1st line C's. But they will own Cammy at the dot imo, and that's where every teams success lies: intimidation at the dot.
You look at Thornton, Kopitar, Getzlaf, Toews, Datsyuk, Sedin, Backes et. al.
Is Cammy very intimidating to step to the dot with??
Give me a comparable please, I'm a little lost on this one.
It's hard to even discuss options, because there aren't any good ones.

Another big worry for me, is one of Stempniak/Hudler have to bury their chances, and I hope they do.

As for Cervenka, we've seen this "best player not in the NHL" play out a few times.
I definitely don't like the odds, but I like the contract.
My hopes aren't high. If he's a great 4C that stays with us I'm happy. I certainly ain't relying on him to save the team!!!
Kris Draper was a great NHLer that centered the 4th line, there's no shame in that.
Stephane Yelle was a huge part of almost getting us cup #2.
We don't emphasize 3rd and 4th line enough imho.
Lombardi, Bourque and Glencross are shining examples of why you need a line 3. I'd love to have them right now, in that role. Best PK in the league, and hardest 3rd line to play against.
We've gone too long promoting players out of the roles that helped us in real ways because our top 6 was so lean/disappointing.
Even Prust, Nystrom. We've severely underrated the bottom 6 in the past.
EVERYONE wins a cup due to the bottom 6 not being the weak link.

*edit
Imagine if lombo, glenny and bork had stayed in their 3rd line and pk roles.
Dang I'm getting angry again...to watch lombo and bourque fail at elevated roles pains me a lot. They were great in their proper roles.

#7 DirtyDeeds

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 11:32 AM

The person I'm cheering for most is Hartley.
He's got a tough, tough job.
Cammy at center seems like a foregone conclusion...
I REALLY don't like the idea of a 40 goal potential winger moving to center.
A good, hard-working 4th line shuts our 1st line down imho. Because Tanguay and Cammalleri are good and creative, but neither are physical. It can't be all Iggy on the half-boards winning battles, he's supposed to be waiting for the feed.
Whether I'm right or misguided, that worries me a lot.
When I think of guys like Versteeg, Bolland, Kesler, Laich, Stoll, Carter, J. Staal etc, they aren't 1st line C's. But they will own Cammy at the dot imo, and that's where every teams success lies: intimidation at the dot.
You look at Thornton, Kopitar, Getzlaf, Toews, Datsyuk, Sedin, Backes et. al.
Is Cammy very intimidating to step to the dot with??
Give me a comparable please, I'm a little lost on this one.
It's hard to even discuss options, because there aren't any good ones.

Another big worry for me, is one of Stempniak/Hudler have to bury their chances, and I hope they do.

As for Cervenka, we've seen this "best player not in the NHL" play out a few times.
I definitely don't like the odds, but I like the contract.
My hopes aren't high. If he's a great 4C that stays with us I'm happy. I certainly ain't relying on him to save the team!!!
Kris Draper was a great NHLer that centered the 4th line, there's no shame in that.
Stephane Yelle was a huge part of almost getting us cup #2.
We don't emphasize 3rd and 4th line enough imho.
Lombardi, Bourque and Glencross are shining examples of why you need a line 3. I'd love to have them right now, in that role. Best PK in the league, and hardest 3rd line to play against.
We've gone too long promoting players out of the roles that helped us in real ways because our top 6 was so lean/disappointing.
Even Prust, Nystrom. We've severely underrated the bottom 6 in the past.
EVERYONE wins a cup due to the bottom 6 not being the weak link.

*edit
Imagine if lombo, glenny and bork had stayed in their 3rd line and pk roles.
Dang I'm getting angry again...to watch lombo and bourque fail at elevated roles pains me a lot. They were great in their proper roles.


I thought Cammy was going to be center too. Lately you hear that Tangs has been asked to work on his centering skills and one has to wonder. Hasn't Cervenka been playing wing overseas too? Aren't we taking another winger and trying to convert him to center?

I am not fond of playing good wingers out of position. It works okay to fill an injury hole short term but usually you don't see that working well long term. ie: they tried Kessel at center for the good portion of a year in TO with poor results.

Ive been happy with most of the 3-4 line combos the Flames have put on the ice the last few years. They have been good enough to allow roatating all 4 lines often enough. I would also say the 3-4 lines have been a strength for us.

If you heard the Mike Babchuk Interview a month+ back it would have settled your concerns somewhat. He said Hudler is a clutch player who brings it when you really need it. He also mentioned he is a stud on shootouts which is another area we deteriorated last season. I expect Hudler to perform up to or close to high expectations for us but not at center position.

Faceoffs with or without Cammy have been our Achilles Heal for years now. Faceoffs never seem to get addressed around here with the exception of token lip service once per year. When Big Chief kept daily(game) stats on faceoffs it pointed out how weak we were/are.

Last year I asked the question "where's the beef?" and I got a bunch of "we will be fine" answers. Seems I was right in asking and this year Feaster acknowledges we lack some grit. My comment there is we lack size and grit Mr Feaster so "where's the beef?"

#8 conundrumed

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 12:10 PM

I think we need 2 lines. Cammy, Tangs and Iggy on line 1 will negate that.
All of our forward, team guys and hopeful leaders are on one line.
The 2nd line being passable was part of the role Olli played, and he's not here anymore.
He and Glencross had some chemistry, that starts, all over again.
The Jets are going to be really happy with that signing. Solid NHL centers with longevity aren't exactly easy to find.
And I'll reiterate, Olli never looked intimidated at the dot. Like, oh I don't know, Stajan, Backlund and Moss can.

#9 conundrumed

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 12:24 PM

Well about time. They finally got a deal done.... I reserve the right to be pissed and promise to keep a long memory on this escapade.


I actually only came here to quote this.
Well said...

#10 mateopelon

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 06:11 PM

From what Tanguay said on the Fan 960, it sounds to me like they're gonna try him at Center and maybe move Cammy over to Left wing. Makes sense to me to have your playmaker at Center and your shooters on the wings.

#11 lordxan

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 07:12 PM

OK just a few quick points of concern:

1. Yes, this team is weak on the FO dot, but cant much be done about that for now...

2. Yes, this team is not as beefy as we are use to having and could be an issue in the west...

Now for the ups sides:

1. More skill

2. More speed

3. An actual shoot out threat

4. More youth (and energy that comes with)

5. More flexibility, Hartley is not like Sutter and thinks out side the box, here in many, flames fans included, are missing the bigger picture. Hartley likes to roll 4 lines, not a top 2 and bottom 2, therefore playing Cammy on the 3rd line and moving Glen X up to the first for grit if needed, can be done. Likewise, if they need the energy they can move Sven up to the 1st line...what ever, the lines get a more balanced distribution of the Mins, that is hard for any team to contain and play against. Point being the talent is there and can be spread to have decent scoring threat over 4 lines, vice containing it all in 2 lines. This is the way to go for this team and Hartley, unlike Sutter, has a broader vision and knows this.

At the end of the day, this is a much better team than last year, though there are some areas that are of major concern because we simply do not have players to address the issue(s). However, as mentioned, there are some tools we do have that we didn't have before. I'm a huge fan of rolling 4 lines keeps everyone fresh and with balanced lines this makes for a hard team to try an match lines, sure you shut down the top 2 lines bit what then if the bottom 2 are just as lethal in scoring how do you contain it?

#12 Canada15

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:27 PM

I disagree with the lack of physical forwards. Yes, our alleged top 9 is all skill. Guys like Aliu, Jackman, maybe Begin, and Especially Jones can be cycled through the line up in key roles. Blair Jones was one of my favourite Flame coming down the stretch last year before he broke his ankle on that PK. Remember, he played a real good, annoying game against SJ and he was a 2nd/3rd line energy centre.
Don't discount our physical play. If we need physical play, cycle Jones, Jackman, etc through the line up a bit.

#13 C_worthy

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:30 PM

I think a lack of size and grit is definitely an issue

#14 Canada15

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:35 PM

I will agree though, our top 9 forwards are very small on paper. This is scary for Flames fans as we are used to big, rugged, western canadian boys. This could be a good change. When Cammy played center last year in the stretch, the iggy cammy tangs line was very threatening. I'd expect even more moving Tanguay to C but I'm concerned about face offs of course.

Don't under value Cervenka this early. This guy wants to succeed. He's here for a reason. He has looked very good in the World Champ. games I have seen from memory. Also, I do not have a stat, but in his 5 games in the KHL with Lev, he was effective at the dot. He played big minutes as well. I have hopes he can secure our second line this year.

#15 conundrumed

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:35 PM

Now for the ups sides:

1. More skill

2. More speed

3. An actual shoot out threat

4. More youth (and energy that comes with)

5. More flexibility


I agree about rolling 4 lines, but we definitely lack in the bonafide talent dept, imho.
We have a potential better mix of top 6 this year, but the top 6 still needs parts. Bartschi and Hudler would be a great start.

#16 Canada15

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:39 PM

Who would you guys like to see in a shoot out for the Flames? I feel losing a lot of single points was the reason we didn't sneak in last year. Of course, there were many other reasons though.. Lol

I would like to see Cammy, tanguay, Cervenka, Baertschi, and Glencross get the majority of shootout attempts.

#17 DarthHenning

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:42 PM

The person I'm cheering for most is Hartley.
He's got a tough, tough job.
Cammy at center seems like a foregone conclusion...
I REALLY don't like the idea of a 40 goal potential winger moving to center.
A good, hard-working 4th line shuts our 1st line down imho. Because Tanguay and Cammalleri are good and creative, but neither are physical. It can't be all Iggy on the half-boards winning battles, he's supposed to be waiting for the feed.
Whether I'm right or misguided, that worries me a lot.



A lot of people worry about this I've seen on here. However, Kehatch did an analysis of point production vs. time on ice for the major lines at the end of last season, and that was actually our best line combination! To quote from his blog (link: http://fans.flames.n...es-line-review/)


Tanguay-Cammalleri-Iginla: TP (2.05%) P (3.95%) D (192.68%)
Tanguay-Stajan-Iginla: TP (3.18%) P (5.59%) D (175.79%)
Tanguay-Jokinen-Iginla: TP (3.74%) P (6.25%) D (167.11%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Stempniak: TP (2.02%) P (2.96%) D (146.53%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Iginla: TP (9.35%) P (13.49%) D (144.28%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Bourque: TP (2.15%) P (2.30%) D (106.98%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Moss: TP (3.58%) P (3.29%) D (91.90%)
Tanguay-Backlund-Iginla: TP (2.01%) P (1.32%) D (60.20%)
Cammalleri-Backlund-Iginla: TP (1.26%) P (0.00%) D (NA)

That means that per minute on ice, they produced almost twice as many points as the "average" line. Other lines with Tanguay and Iginla also produced over 1.5x the points.

But what should be noted is that the OMG line which many people remember fondly actually produced significantly fewer of our points during the season (3.29% vs. 3.95%) compared to the Tanguay-Cammalleri-Iginla line even though they were on the ice for 75% more time.

I don't think having Camilleri centering Tanguay and Iginla will be a problem in the slightest based on that.







Also, to borrow from a post I made back before the lockout, here's a realistic view of what goals would be produced during a full 82 game season (I haven't done the math to calculate for the reduced number of games):

Projecting the goals per player based on the average of the last 5 seasons (or project for Cervenka and Baertchi based on either KHL performance, or likely opening production respectively, not including this year) looks something like the following. Note that this doesn't take into account any possible chemistry within the lines, or this year's improvement by both Baertchi and Backlund which could easily increase their production, not to speak of others.


Tanguay (20) - Cammalleri(25) - Iginla (35)---------------80
Glencross (22) - Cervenka (20*) - Hudler (15)-------------57
Baertchi (15*) - Backlund (10) - Stempniak (15)-----------40
Comeau (14) - Jones (5) - Jackman (5)---------------------25

Bouwmeester (10) - Wideman (10)---------------------------20
Giordano (10) - Butler (3) -------------------------------13
Brodie (3) - Sarich (2)-----------------------------------05

Kipper
Irving

Total Goals ----------------------------------------------240


Based on last years goals per team that would put us 8 in the league for goals for (PIT, BOS, PHI, VAN, OTT(??), DET, CHI, CAL). Ahead of most of the teams who made the playoffs.

Of course not every player will hit average but for every player who has a bad year, its likely that another will have a better than average year, and HOPEFULLY that should balance things out. Especially with Hartly's new system. Of course there are more factors involved than that in winning and production, but assuming an average production year for everyone, we're actually in really good shape.

Yes, its possible that we don't get that from everyone, but there's no reason to think that yet.

I haven't included peripheral players who won't be on the opening roster, or potential callups, but presumably that wouldn't significantly affect overall production on the 4th or 3rd line where they're likely to be slotted in.



Looking at goals against

Feaster (or Hartly? Can't remember which) has said that he wants to see Irving (or Karlsson) play for about 20 games of the season next year.

Multiplying their average GAA by expected games played

Kipper - 2.60 * 62 = 161
Irving - 3.20 * 20 = 64
GA ------------------225

That would be 14th best in the league based on last year's standings. And most playoff teams do better than that.

Not exactly great, but hopefully Irving or Karlsson will see an improvement on a 3.2 average or be replaced.

Our differential therefore works out to +15. That's good enough for 11th in the league based on last year's stats. Clustered right in with New Jersey and LA.




So, if you just look at average stats (which should correct for anyone having a breakout year while others slump) we are a playoff team. No, we're not going to challenge for the division (or at the very least it is exceedingly unlikely), but anywhere for 4-8 is a reasonable expectation, based only on average stats of the players we have.

#18 C_worthy

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:51 PM

I will agree though, our top 9 forwards are very small on paper. This is scary for Flames fans as we are used to big, rugged, western canadian boys. This could be a good change. When Cammy played center last year in the stretch, the iggy cammy tangs line was very threatening. I'd expect even more moving Tanguay to C but I'm concerned about face offs of course.

There is another potential factor on this front:

Remember after the last lockout that the league cracked down on obstruction and it really helped bring fans back to the game. There is some rumbling that they might do a similar thing this time. If so, it would be good news for the type of team the Flames have.

#19 conundrumed

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 08:52 PM

A lot of people worry about this I've seen on here. However, Kehatch did an analysis of point production vs. time on ice for the major lines at the end of last season, and that was actually our best line combination! To quote from his blog (link: http://fans.flames.n...es-line-review/)


Tanguay-Cammalleri-Iginla: TP (2.05%) P (3.95%) D (192.68%)
Tanguay-Stajan-Iginla: TP (3.18%) P (5.59%) D (175.79%)
Tanguay-Jokinen-Iginla: TP (3.74%) P (6.25%) D (167.11%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Stempniak: TP (2.02%) P (2.96%) D (146.53%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Iginla: TP (9.35%) P (13.49%) D (144.28%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Bourque: TP (2.15%) P (2.30%) D (106.98%)
Glencross-Jokinen-Moss: TP (3.58%) P (3.29%) D (91.90%)
Tanguay-Backlund-Iginla: TP (2.01%) P (1.32%) D (60.20%)
Cammalleri-Backlund-Iginla: TP (1.26%) P (0.00%) D (NA)

That means that per minute on ice, they produced almost twice as many points as the "average" line. Other lines with Tanguay and Iginla also produced over 1.5x the points.

But what should be noted is that the OMG line which many people remember fondly actually produced significantly fewer of our points during the season (3.29% vs. 3.95%) compared to the Tanguay-Cammalleri-Iginla line even though they were on the ice for 75% more time.

I don't think having Camilleri centering Tanguay and Iginla will be a problem in the slightest based on that.







Also, to borrow from a post I made back before the lockout, here's a realistic view of what goals would be produced during a full 82 game season (I haven't done the math to calculate for the reduced number of games):

Projecting the goals per player based on the average of the last 5 seasons (or project for Cervenka and Baertchi based on either KHL performance, or likely opening production respectively, not including this year) looks something like the following. Note that this doesn't take into account any possible chemistry within the lines, or this year's improvement by both Baertchi and Backlund which could easily increase their production, not to speak of others.


Tanguay (20) - Cammalleri(25) - Iginla (35)---------------80
Glencross (22) - Cervenka (20*) - Hudler (15)-------------57
Baertchi (15*) - Backlund (10) - Stempniak (15)-----------40
Comeau (14) - Jones (5) - Jackman (5)---------------------25

Bouwmeester (10) - Wideman (10)---------------------------20
Giordano (10) - Butler (3) -------------------------------13
Brodie (3) - Sarich (2)-----------------------------------05

Kipper
Irving

Total Goals ----------------------------------------------240


Based on last years goals per team that would put us 8 in the league for goals for (PIT, BOS, PHI, VAN, OTT(??), DET, CHI, CAL). Ahead of most of the teams who made the playoffs.

Of course not every player will hit average but for every player who has a bad year, its likely that another will have a better than average year, and HOPEFULLY that should balance things out. Especially with Hartly's new system. Of course there are more factors involved than that in winning and production, but assuming an average production year for everyone, we're actually in really good shape.

Yes, its possible that we don't get that from everyone, but there's no reason to think that yet.

I haven't included peripheral players who won't be on the opening roster, or potential callups, but presumably that wouldn't significantly affect overall production on the 4th or 3rd line where they're likely to be slotted in.



Looking at goals against

Feaster (or Hartly? Can't remember which) has said that he wants to see Irving (or Karlsson) play for about 20 games of the season next year.

Multiplying their average GAA by expected games played

Kipper - 2.60 * 62 = 161
Irving - 3.20 * 20 = 64
GA ------------------225

That would be 14th best in the league based on last year's standings. And most playoff teams do better than that.

Not exactly great, but hopefully Irving or Karlsson will see an improvement on a 3.2 average or be replaced.

Our differential therefore works out to +15. That's good enough for 11th in the league based on last year's stats. Clustered right in with New Jersey and LA.




So, if you just look at average stats (which should correct for anyone having a breakout year while others slump) we are a playoff team. No, we're not going to challenge for the division (or at the very least it is exceedingly unlikely), but anywhere for 4-8 is a reasonable expectation, based only on average stats of the players we have.


Did you know that 67% of statisticians absolutely hate their job.
Offense stats are meaningless without +/-.
40G, 40A's and a -10 rating speaks volumes, for example.

#20 DirtyDeeds

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Posted 08 January 2013 - 09:16 PM

Did you know that 67% of statisticians absolutely hate their job.
Offense stats are meaningless without +/-.
40G, 40A's and a -10 rating speaks volumes, for example.


Chuckles at the hate their job comment.

I would mention while pts to TOI stats have a place you can't make the judgement that Darth was making when he said the OMG line was substantially poorer.
The OMG line was a specific setup line to defend against the other teams top lines. They were not expected to produce points but rather get or keep the puck from the opp's and take it to the other end. Add to that playing the other teams top lines would pile up the TOI stat. This also freed up Butter from having to play our top line against their top line. In away games when you don't have the luxury of last change this can make a big difference.

Also the Iggy Tangs line did not start off well at all. Iggy started slow again and it was only when he was paired with Joker and Glenx did he finally break out and start to score. In fact Joker was leading the team in points followed next by Tangs and Joker kept the team scoring lead until late in the season.

Anyway I don't want to rehash Joker here just pointing out that those stats have a place but making some of those deductions is out of place. Your best players should get the most points and get the most ice time. If a line is given checking role there is no reason to assume or expect they should be producing at similar rates.