In my last article, which challenged Kopitar’s Selke level defensive prowess, I received a lot of heat for using real-time stats, and not advanced stats like Fenwick and Corsi. Though I feel these stats have some flaws, I went ahead and a did a break down of them anyway to see where Kopitar would compare based on these metrics. The results again are not in his favor.
Be Aware: All stats are current as of April 2nd and are based on 5v5 play only. As well, only players with 750+ minutes these season were considered.
2014 Selke Front Runners Puck Possession
FF% - TMFF%
FF% - TMFF% + OppFF%
|Patrice Bergeron||0.606|| 0.504||0.499||0.102||0.601|
|Kyle Brodziak||0.437||0.479||0.501||- 0.042||0.459|
TMFF% = The average FF% of the players teammates he plays with. (Basically quality of teammates)
OppFF% = The average FF% of the opponents the player typically faces (Basically quality of competition)
So by subtracting TMFF% (QOT) and adding OppFF% (QOC) we get a more accurate representation of the players overall puck possession abilities.
You can see that based on FF% alone, Kopitar is second only to Bergeron. But when the other metrics are accounted for his puck possession rank falls to #12 in the league. Meanwhile, Bergeron is still on top.
But I didn’t stop there. I decided to the same thing for Fenwick HARD, which is Fenwick’s complex player defensive rankings. An explanation of how the stat is calculated can be found here.
I took Fenwick HARD and subtracted HARD quality of teammates and added Hard quality of competition, for a more accurate representation of the players HARD defensive abilities.
Here are the results:
2014 Selke Front Runner Fenwick Defense
Fenwick HARD QOT
Fenwick HARD QOC
HARD - HARD QOT
HARD - HARD QOT + HARD QOC
|Kyle Brodziak||6.60||- 10.5||- 2.77||17.1||14.33|
|Joe Colborne||4.80||- 6.50||- 0.43||11.3||10.87|
|Mikko Koivu||23.6||11.1||- 2.19||12.5||10.31|
|Daniel Sedin||15.3||5.00||- 0.34||10.3||9.96|
|Dustin Penner||7.10||- 2.10||3.58||5.00||8.58|
|Mikael Backlund||13.3||4.20||- 0.91||9.10||8.19|
|Corey Perry||6.60||- 1.20||- 0.49||7.80||7.31|
|Mats Zuccarello||12.3||4.60||- 0.73||7.70||6.97|
|Benoit Pouliot||14.0||5.70||- 1.70||8.30||6.60|
|Derick Brassard||12.5||5.70||- 1.28||6.80||5.52|
|Mike Cammalleri||12.8||4.10||- 3.28||8.70||5.42|
|Patrice Bergeron||27.0||17.0||- 5.39||10.0||4.61|
|Zach Parise||19.2||13.5||- 1.34||5.70||4.36|
|Jason Pominville||18.0||12.0||- 1.86||6.00||4.14|
|Jussi Jokinen||9.10||2.40||- 2.80||6.70||3.90|
|Jaromir Jagr||39.6||32.8||- 4.27||6.80||2.53|
|Anze Kopitar||24.2||19.8||- 2.46||4.40||1.94|
|Brad Marchand||24.0||17.1||- 5.80||6.90||1.10|
|Joe Thornton||14.4||11.7||- 2.12||2.70||0.58|
In this table we see guys like Kyle Brodziak at the front. This is mostly due to the poor quality of the teammates he plays with, which boosts his numbers. Never the less, he’s one of those lesser known players who’s superior defensive abilities typically fly under the radar. Not surprised to find him so highly ranked here.
Bergeron falls to #14 in this table and Kopitar falls to #19.
But let’s combine the two stats to get a more accurate reading of a players overall defensive abilities. How I did this will be explained in the table description.
2014 Selke Front Runner Possession and Defense Average
(FF% - (TMFF% + OppFF%) x 100
Hard - HARD QOT + Hard QOC
(((FF% - TMFF% + OppFF%) x 100) + (Hard - Hard QOT + Hard QOC)) /2
Mikko Koivu tops this list, making him, by these metrics, Selke front-runner.
The interesting results are where Mikael Backlund (#4) and Joe Colborne (#8) fall on this list. Perhaps if they were more established players, on better teams, they would get more Selke attention for their superb defensive play.
Patrice Bergeron falls to #6 on this list, while Kopitar plummets to #19.
Other suggested Selke candidates like Backes, Pavelski, Toews, Plekanec, and Kesler, we’re not included in any of the lists because they did not finish high on the final average of possession and HARD. Players like Crosby, who would have finished high on the puck possession list, were also not included for the same reason. Although Bergeron was indeed the number one in adjusted puck possession and Brodziak indeed the number one in adjusted Fenwick HARD, regardless of players excluded.
If we consider only rumored Selke candidates, Bergeron is clearly the front runner over Kopitar for the Selke when looking at these metrics.
These stats and metrics aren’t perfect, and don’t account for all the intangibles in hockey’s defensive game. However they are a good place to start. Any thoughts, suggestions, or critiques, you may have on my statistical analysis would be very welcome, and perhaps we can develop an even more improved formula.
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