GDB 45: Vincent Lecavalier

As we wait for the game against the Coyotes to begin, let’s consider two players over the past two seasons. Both are gritty, have good size, and are well-known and often mentioned as Top-10 players. Here are the numbers:

Player A

2008-09: 45GP – 28G – 21A – 59 PTS, +10

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2007-08: 82GP – 40G – 66A – 106 PTS, -8

2006-07: 82GP – 56G – 54A – 100 PTS, +23

Player B

2008-09: 45GP – 15G – 22A – 37 PTS, +4

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2007-08: 82GP – 41G – 44A – 85 PTS, -23

2006-07: 82GP – 49G – 57A – 106 PTS, -11

Player A is clearly superior to Player B. Outside of a slight difference in one season, he’s been a far better offensive performer, and his +/- totals are well ahead of Player B. Yet everybody, bizarrely enough, thinks that these two players are identical in ability, despite the fact that the statistics don’t support it at all.

The reason that everybody regards these two players as identical talents is because they are one player. Player A is Vincent Lecavalier, specifically his point totals against his own division, pro-rated over full seasons. Player B is Vincent Lecavalier against the rest of the NHL, pro-rated over an entire season.

I haven’t gotten into the effect of the various divisions on player performance, but it is something that we as Oilers fans should be wise to. We’ve seen the effect on Erik Cole, and it isn’t an illusion. The Southeast is the worst division in the NHL, by far, and it isn’t surprising that some of the league’s top goal- and point- scorers can be found there. It’s something that GM’s should keep in mind before making trades, at any rate.

It’s something Oilers fans should keep in the back of their mind as they watch their team play the Coyotes and fantasize about what a new addition to the lineup could do to help the cause.

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  • Hippy

    deep oil wrote:

    Hockey Gods – 0 – 0 – 82 and we would be .500 but Mact ends up there anyway – jonathon what is coach mact’s lifetime regular season record

    You mean, what is GM Kevin Lowe's lifetime GM-ing record, don't you?

    I don't think MacT's been what's kept this team mired in mediocrity (although this season, he bloody well hasn't helped). Lowe, outside of 2005-06, has been a disaster since the lockout.

    Have fun watching the game, guys – I've got a dinner to go to.

  • Hippy

    Jonathan Willis wrote:

    As for your “ask 30 NHL GM’s comment” – I can’t do it, but if you asked Ken Holland, or for that matter any GM in charge of a contending team if he’d rather acquire Hemsky or Lecavalier via trade, I’d wager good money he’d say Hemsky.

    Jason Gregor wrote:

    We all agree Lecavalier is a better player and Hemsky has a better contract, but as head-to-head player Lecavalier is more dominant to this point in their careers.

    The bottom line to this debate in both blogs, however, always came down to the question 'If Tambo had the opportunity to trade Lecavlier for Hemsky straight up, should he do it?'

    JW makes the case that it would be a poor trade for the Oil. CurtisS thinks it's a no-brainer that the Oil do the trade in a second. I'm not sure what Gregor thinks; his answer is a bit ambiguous, but maybe he wasn't aware there was a question.

    For the record, I'm with JW on this. Hemsky is the better player for the Oil. If Vinnie comes to Edmonton, then his offensive numbers drop, our goals against goes up, and his salary eats up any chance of bringing in any significant other support. And I don't think the Oil are the only team who don't make that trade, either.

  • Hippy

    @ Jonathan Willis:
    Jon I read your stats and thought about Reddox on the first, couple with the fact Reddox didn't frist line mins you made a very valid point.

    And again I agree Reddox over Poltuny in a true offensive role is extremely questionable.

    I guess time will tell, maybe the wheel o lines will kick in and Brule will get 2nd line minutes tonight. Until that happens people will continue to question Mact's ability to coach an offensive team, me being one them. I would love to hear how the MacT supporters are justifing this decision?

  • Hippy

    @ Ender the Dragon:
    Well stated ender. Totally agree.

    If you're playing soft minutes against bad teams you should be lighting the lamp. How many points do you think a player like Kovalchuck is going to get when he faces Minnesota 8 times a year. Or playes against Luongo 8 times a year.

    Goals against in the southeast so far this year

    WSH – 134
    FLA – 124
    CAR – 141
    TAM -140
    ATL – 165

    total – 704

    Goals against in NW

    CAL – 128
    VAN – 129
    MIN -101
    EDM -132
    COL – 132

    total -622

    It's more than a 11% difference.

    logic would say your offensive stats would be inflated.

    Meanwhile the goals for is far more comparable. SE- 641 NW -623. Or a differential slightly below 3%.

    So again this says you're offensive stats would be inflated playing in the SW. (Glad Samsonov found a home for himself there).

    This would also explain why Ollie Jokinen's numbers are substantially down this year. After scoring 89 -91 -and 71 points with florida in the previous years he is on pace for 58pts. with Phoenix WHY? he is in a stronger division.

  • Hippy

    there used to be tvu link for pirating the nhl network but is gone due to nhl infringement – i am sure if you have dishnetwork instead of bell or shaw the game is free on FSN WEST – but you have to think outside the CRTC rules on this one

  • Hippy

    Jonathan Willis wrote:

    deep oil wrote:
    Hockey Gods – 0 – 0 – 82 and we would be .500 but Mact ends up there anyway – jonathon what is coach mact’s lifetime regular season record
    You mean, what is GM Kevin Lowe’s lifetime GM-ing record, don’t you?
    I don’t think MacT’s been what’s kept this team mired in mediocrity (although this season, he bloody well hasn’t helped). Lowe, outside of 2005-06, has been a disaster since the lockout.
    Have fun watching the game, guys – I’ve got a dinner to go to.

    good point – lowe likes to overpay and over extend leaving little cap room for future opprtunity – what does mom have on the stove tonight

  • Hippy

    I don't think anybody "likes" to overpay. In our case, the guys we want to attract weigh in factors like brutal travel schedules, quality of living, quality of team mates and chances to win a cup – all of which make us pay more versus teams that have those things we don't. The overpay is just the equalizer.

  • Hippy

    @ David S:
    yup. How much would you have to pay to haul your wife out here to spend 8 months of the year in sub zero temperatures?

    Thats why we have to get and Cogs, Gagner married off to nice Edmonton Girls. Incentive to stay put.

    Of course if we won a few championships in a row it wouldn't hurt attracting players…have you ever been to detroit? Ewwww.

  • Hippy

    The other thing is that in a lot of those cities, you can have a bad game, and afterwards go out for dinner or to a movie and nobody would know who you are. Now, that's not to say that players don't compete, but sometimes they just have a lousy knight (SEE: MOREAU, E. 01/15/09) and want to be anonymous. That just isn't an option in this town. On the other hand, if you have a great night here you are GOD.

  • Hippy

    What up JLers.

    I am reading this dude's take on the game. Apparently Phoenix is putting their payroll on VISA, the front office is laying off staff and the team is in big trouble.

    Oh and apparently:

    Solve Roloson: Roloson has been Kyptonite to the Coyotes no matter where he's played the last few years. He's somehow just had our number both in Edmonton and in Minnesota. Hopefully the young guys can show him some new tricks and we can get to him early.

    http://www.fiveforhowling.com/2009/1/18/727502/phoenix-coyotes-edmonton-o

    Poor Wayne.

  • Hippy

    No one is going to rip Moreau in public about his perforance the night before. I know I wouldn't, when you see these guys in public you are still a little awstruck, I would always be complimentry. For one reason even Tom Gilbert could likely kick my a$$, but why would a fan want to make it uncomfortable for a player to play in his city. I think most people are polite no matter what.

  • Hippy

    Wanye Gretz wrote:

    I am reading this dude’s take on the game. Apparently Phoenix is putting their payroll on VISA, the front office is laying off staff and the team is in big trouble.

    Hey Wanye I couldn't find the part about Phoenix's finacial problems, did I miss a link or were playing tricks with my heart?

  • Hippy

    Hockey Gods wrote:

    Hey Wanye I couldn’t find the part about Phoenix’s finacial problems, did I miss a link or were playing tricks with my heart?

    It wasn't linked to that article? I had been surfing all around. Let me see what I can find.

    Please hold

    *Plays elevator music*

  • Hippy

    @ R-DAWG:
    Sorry buddy, I am trying to lose the love handles but refuse to give up beer. I like this stuff better than Coors Light.

    Not to worry, I have bottle of Gin ready to go if the game gets stressfull.

    That may have been a camera shot the oilers would like to take back, Andy signing sticks with a can of Coors light in front of him. As if the old Boys on Bus aren't hung over as fvck today. Good for them though.

  • Hippy

    Here we go

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2009/01/16/nhl-coyotes-gretzky.html

    Phoenix Coyotes head coach Wayne Gretzky confirmed Thursday that the troubled franchise requires financial assistance, and is seeking an investor who could help keep the team in Arizona.

    The Coyotes could lose as much as $45 million US this season, including interest payments, and majority owner Jerry Moyes is looking for a partner.

    http://sports.aol.ca/article/coyotes-in-financial-trouble-gretzky/488121/