Image c/o Amy Irvin

Blocked shots, hits, and fourth liners: Part 2

Two weeks ago I took a look at blocked shots and hits as it may relate to team success. Fans, media, and broadcasters alike frequently cite either statistic as an indication of a player performing well. I wanted to see if those statistics, at the team level, had any correlation with team success. The short answer is that I saw no obvious correlation. This week I wanted to take the topic a bit further and see how teams employ their fourth lines. Blocked shots and hits are statistics many people would typically want to see out of their fourth liners, …

Image c/o Amy Irvin

Blocked shots, hits, and fourth liners: Part 1

For quite some time now I’ve wondered about the usefulness of blocked shots and hits from a hockey perspective. These two particular statistics would seem to quantify your “energy” and “effort” type of players/teams; something I think is as important in sports as it is in life. Nobody likes to be a part of a team (be it in sports or at work) in which everyone is coasting. I decided to write a two-part series in which I first take a look at the success of teams that excel in blocked shots and hits. That leads me into part two …

Image c/o Amy Irvin

Comparing the Flyers’ five-on-five play to past Flyers teams

I’ve always felt that five-on-five play is a good indicator of a team’s true talent. Strip away the special teams and you’re left with a true representation of the team. (Not to take away the importance of special teams. Some teams can ride them deep into the playoffs.) Our Nick D recently suggested I take a look at the Flyers five-on-five play and compare it to the past few Flyers teams to see they stack up. I’ve written about the topic a couple times over the past year or so, so I wanted to take it a bit further now …

Image c/o Amy Irvin

A detailed look at the Couturier, Read, and Downie line

Ask anybody who’s been watching the Philadelphia Flyers over the past two weeks who their best line has been and they’ll reply the Sean Couturier, Matt Read, and Steve Downie line. Since Downie returned from the injury he suffered in his first game back as a Flyer, the line has some impressive numbers; a combined 6 goals, 11 assists, for 17 points in 6 games. And if you’re a fan of +/-, a combined +21. When the Flyers traded for Downie many people weren’t overly enthused. Some viewed it as maintaining the same rough-and-tumble Flyers culture that many people are …

"Advanced Stats" really are not all that advanced. Image c/o sportingcharts.com

Video: How to use advanced statistics

I wanted to do something a bit different this week by recording a quick video that shows how I like to use advanced statistics (at least in one example). As I’ve said many times, I like to use advanced statistics as a tool to support what it is that I see, or that I think I see. When used with observation I think it is very powerful. It can help lend context to my observations, or simply support them. Additionally, it can help bring to light something I may not have noticed which will prompt me to watch more closely …