April 22, 2007

Calgary @ Detroit

Calgary is simply getting killed by Detroit's offense. 9.7 expected goals is the most I've seen with 3 years of statistics. Kiprusoff is playing well at least.

Game 1:44.493.811.690.9
Game 2:39.992.311.397.0
Game 3:22.188.532.690.5
Game 4:21.690.033.087.5
Game 5:54.192.911.487.8
Game 6:22.694.411.892.3
Series [4-2]1824.791.51011.792.7

The probabilities below are from a very simple model primarily based on goal differential. It works well enough in most cases, but notes should be added if I believe the odds are wrong. This series deserves a few notes:

Detroit has fallen out of the playoffs too early many years in a row. I wouldn't be surprised if they continue this pattern and it's not just because of their Europeans. I've been working with my approxemated worth of players to make actual game predictions. The best way to test a new statistics is to see if it correlates with winning and it has done quite well. Small differences in team worth ($1M) make big differences in terms of wins (a increase of $1M works out to 1-2% increase in winning percentage). So the players Detroit gets to use (injuries) is critical to their success. Even if Detroit uses all their best players they are "only" worth $62M to Calgary's $60M to me this means despite their records and goal differential Calgary has a good chance of success in this series. Zetterberg was out when I did the calculations below and he's back now so $M should b $59M, making this a very close 1-8 series.

That said, I didn't like the way Calgary almost slid out of the playoffs going 6-8-4 (-5) in regulation in the last two months. Generally I ignore momentum variables like this, but I personally felt that one trade deadline aquisition wasn't an improvement and probabaly hurt them in other areas:
Brad Stuart was Bostons worst regular penalty killing defenseman. Ference was Calgary's best. Stuart continued his horrible PK abilities in Calgary (9.2 GA/hr). His even strength numbers are good, but by no means impressive, and in my opinion (based on shot quality against) he's been a bit lucky.

Calgary can proabably compete quite well at even strength and shut down Detroit's fire power, but Detroit's power play is impressive and shouldn't have a hard time having success against Calgary's weak penalty kill.

This image displays the two team's records and goals for (GFA) and goals against (GAA) rates against only teams who made the playoffs. In addition I added my 'trademarked' estimated team value rating (I sum up all my estimated worth[$'s] of the current lineup) to give an idea about how good the lineup is in relation to the performance over the year. You can see the season series below that, and a small number in the bottom right is the number of penalties per game in the season series. The big percentage are the likelihood, based on a simplistic prediction model, of the team to win the series. The percentages are updated after every win or loss. F,D,G represent Forwards, Defense and Goaltending respectively, and are just my best guesses. If you think they're wrong tell my why and I'll likely change them.

Even Strength
Power Play

The winner column displays the dominant team in that category. The more pictures of the team's logo the more dominant the team is in that category

All the non-percentage numbers are scoring rates. For example on the first row, the Detroit Red Wings have an even strength scoring rate of 2.83 goal for per hour. [GF = goals for, GA = goals against Exx = expected xx, SV% = shot quality neutral save percentage].

In the power play section in order to calculate the expected scoring rates I multiplied the goals for rate of one team and the goals against rate of the other and divide by the league average in order to get the expected rate for these two teams combined. So for example, the Detroit Red Wings have a power play goals for rate of 6.66 and the Calgary Flames have a penalty killing goals against rate of 7.46. So 6.66*7.46/6.5=7.64 [league average is 6.5].

Outperforming expected goals for is a sign of a lucky team. Outperforming expected goals against is a sign of either a good goaltender or luck as well.

Each category listed has a different importance to winning, so be careful how you read these. Being able to score short-handed isn't going to win a lot of hockey games.

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