The growing analytics movement is something that is slowly gaining more and more steam around the NHL. The fact that the Toronto Maple Leafs’ crash to earth was something that these analytics were repeatedly insisting would occur – as they were simultaneously being mocked by many factions of the media and Leaf fanbase – has brought many around to the idea that perhaps there is something here worth looking at. This isn’t an article about what form of identifying and gauging hockey is right or wrong, it’s about learning more about the game that so many of us love and appreciate. Identifying a new way to understand hockey isn’t a negative, it’s a positive. When it comes to the Leafs, this is a team that has two all sports radio stations, four newspapers and two all sports television networks pushing constant content into our lives. Despite this, so many of us – that absorb all things Leafs like a sponge – refuse to even acknowledge things like Corsi, Fenwick or PDO for whatever reason. These new methods of looking at hockey – and they’ve actually always been around – aren’t the be all and the end all. If you choose to not believe them then fine. However, avoiding them outright without giving them a chance is just being ignorant and stubborn.
More and more teams around the NHL are embracing these new forms of hockey understanding. Considering how embarrassing it was for the Leafs to have people on twitter being more in tune with the direction the team was headed in then the executives running the team would certainly do that. On Monday MLSE CEO Tim Leiweke admitted that the stats people were right all along about the Leafs this year and new President Brendan Shanahan admitted that it was something he was going to explore moving forward.
If you are looking for any information about these analytics please contact me via twitter @hope_smoke or email me firstname.lastname@example.org. I would be happy to point you in the right direction when it comes to a beginners comprehension of hockey analytics.
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