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Thursday’s Thoughts

posted Oct 27, 2017, 8:39 PM by Robert Vollman
Today, we start with a fun video graphic from Cole Anderson (@CrowdScoutSprts) that shows where in the world all of the NHL players have come from, and how that has changed over the years. 

Unfortunately, my limited skills prevent me from properly embedding the tweet or the image, but you should be able to click here to see it:

This week’s poll was about the teams sharing the basement with the Arizona Coyotes in the early going. According to all of you, Edmonton is only there temporarily, but either Montreal or the Rangers could be there for the long haul. 

My NHL piece this week was about the hot start from Kucherov and Stamkos, so it involved looking at all of the NHL’s top two forwards, some of whom play together, and some of whom are split up onto different lines. 

Which two forwards would you like to have from this point forward? I think there’s some recency bias at play, because most people chose the hot hand, Kucherov and Stamkos. Personally, I think Crosby and Malkin will have them beat in terms of both scoring and shot-based metrics. 

Those who prefer scoring might also entertain options like Benn and Seguin in Dallas, Backstrom and Ovechkin in Washington, Tarasenko and Schwartz in St. Louis, or even McDavid and Draisaitl in Edmonton (assuming Draisaitl is ok). Many fans privately suggested Matthews and Marner — but I think that’s premature. Some fans might even go off the board and suggest Giroux and Voracek. Those who favour shot-based metrics might suggest Bergeron and Marchand, or even Pavelski and Thornton. However, it’s hard to seriously argue for most of these options. I really think it boils down to Kucherov and Stamkos vs Crosby and Malkin.

My next poll is going to be about how to fill the inevitable coaching vacancies that will soon start coming our way. If you have suggestions about who to place on the twitter poll, be sure to let me know.

In terms of new updates, one of my favourite sites, Hockey Reference, adds new features all the time. The latest is a “What’s Happening” column on the far right side of their main page. This is a great way to see interesting upcoming dates. Of note, there’s an NHL GM meeting November 17, and the 100th anniversary of the first NHL game is coming up on December 19, 2017.

Finally, I want to make sure that you hold open the weekend of March 3-4, 2018. That’s the tentative date of the next hockey analytics conference, in Vancouver. For details, follow Josh Weissbock (@joshweissbock) on Twitter, or the #VanHAC hashtag, or the Meta Hockey website, which should have the details available once they’re confirmed.