Brule vs. Schremp

Among the various Oilers’ callups last season were a pair of players who were highly regarded as scorers in their respective draft years: Gilbert Brule and Rob Schremp.

The two players both scored three points: Schremp did it in just four games, Brule in eleven. Clearly than, Schremp played better, yes?

The short answer is no. I watched every game Schremp played, and the majority of Brule’s games as well, so I’d feel comfortable saying that without looking at any of the underlying numbers. That said, there are two good reasons to look at the numbers:

  1. This article would be really short if I just described what I watched (Brule was better than Schremp – The End).
  2. They highlight rather radically how a player can benefit or suffer at the hands of on-ice save/shooting percentage.

With regard to that second point, on one end of the scale we have Gilbert Brule.

Gilbert Brule

  • Shots For/Against: 41/50 (-9)
  • Goals For/Againt: 3/6 (-3)
  • On-Ice Even-strength Shooting %: 7.3%
  • On-Ice Even-strength Save %: .880

Like virtually every young bubble player in the history of young, bubble players, the shot clock is tilted against Brule (although not atrociously; Liam Reddox, for example was a much worse +152/-232). So Brule – again, like virtually every developing player – wasn’t driving possession (if you haven’t taken the hint yet, I’m very ‘meh’ about this; players like Gagner and Cogliano have the same problem while they develop).

Anyways, moving on the save percentage behind him was abysmal (remember – this is even-strength SV% only). By way of contrast, the (occasionally) re-animated remains of Curtis Joseph put up the worst numbers of any goalie in the league in this category with a .892 SV%. Patrick Lalime put up .897. Andrew Raycroft put up .905. These are the lousiest numbers in the league. Dwayne Roloson managed .926, and the team average was just below that at .925. The key thing worth noting here is that an increase to the team average would have seen Brule on the ice for only 4 goals against; that may not sound like much, but it represents a 33% reduction in goals scored against him.

While we’re on the topic, Brule’s on-ice shooting percentage was also well below the team average of 8.8%. Long story short – Brule’s better than his GF/GA numbers last season. I’d even feel comfortable saying that based on this he likely deserved a roster spot ahead of Liam Reddox (although Reddox did kill penalties, and Brule had a nasty habit of taking stupid ones).

Rob Schremp

  • Shots For/Against: 21/27 (-6)
  • Goals For/Againt: 4/2 (+2)
  • On-Ice Even-strength Shooting %: 19.0%
  • On-Ice Even-strength Save %: .926

Schremp bled shots against at a higher rate than Brule (a little over 20% in this admittedly small sample). Much like Brule, this is to be expected – players fighting for a roster spot very rarely help their teams win games.

Still, there were a chorus of “did you see how many points he put up and they sent him down!!!!!” cries from the fanbase when Schremp was demoted. Schremp’s good results were largely based on that ridiculous on-ice shooting percentage number – a number which, had it been sustained, would have marked Schremp as the greatest offensive talent in the history of the game. Gretzky in his prime, shooting against worse goaltenders couldn’t manage that number. That’s an even-strength save percentage for opposing goaltenders of .810. Ales Hemsky only managed 8.4%. Moving to bigger fish, Alexander Ovechkin recorded 9.0%, while Sidney Crosby put up 10.4%. Reducng it to Crosby’s number (which assumes that Schremp creates goal-scoring plays as well as Crosby) reduces his goals for total to 2. In other words: Schremp got very, very lucky.

  • Hippy

    @ DanMan:

    The question you have to ask yourself is if Schremp can play on one of the top two lines. If he cant then you are better off having a guy like Brule, who can play on the 3rd or 4th line here. No doubt Schremp has offensive abilities but I cant see him on the top two lines yet.

  • Hippy

    How in the heck can you say Schremp got lucky?

    Schremp was the best player on the ice in the Vancouver game. In his 4th NHL game, playing a little over 10 minutes.

    We don't need stats to show us that the guy creates offense. The question is: Can Schremp give you more offensively than he is liable for defensively. Seeing that he is a forward, to me, the answer is clearly yes.

    The behind-the-back pass was pure skill and vision displayed by not many in the NHL nowadays.

  • Hippy

    myteammytown wrote:

    oilitsinyoutogive wrote:

    all i know is, if we have the kids, why not give them a chance? i would rather watch us lose with the kids learning then keep loosing with the same old same old.
    to late for that now.
    another year of no playoffs wont be good at all

    and somehow weve become a playoff team in the off season? did i miss something that made us better? besides the exit of rolo and the addition of the wall.

  • Hippy

    oilitsinyoutogive wrote:

    all i know is, if we have the kids, why not give them a chance? i would rather watch us lose with the kids learning then keep loosing with the same old same old.

    to late for that now.

    another year of no playoffs wont be good at all

  • Hippy

    all i know is, if we have the kids, why not give them a chance? i would rather watch us lose with the kids learning then keep loosing with the same old same old.

  • Hippy

    While I'm not Schremp-niac, I will at least give him this:

    Pouliot was never better for the Oilers than the 2 or 3 games he spent with Schremp.

    I still hope Schremp can improve enough to make this team, I think he can add at least what Nilsson adds, especially if he can keep his feet moving through an entire shift. If he can, we will have one more 2nd line forward on the expendable list to get us some picks/3rd liners.

  • Hippy

    @ Jasmine:

    Maybe someone who knows more about it can answer the question. You have an interesting point and I dont understand how that works either. I remember someone trying to explain what the situation was with Brule too. I think they said if he plays 4 more NHL games then he would have to clear waivers – but I dont remember for sure.

  • Hippy

    @ Curious:

    What I don't understand is why Schremp has to clear waivers and Dubnyk doesn't. I know Dubnyk is a goalile but both players were drafted in the same year. It makes no sense that Schremp has to clear waivers to be sent down. None.

  • Hippy

    @ Anthony Ta
    Shremp should get bigger sample when earned in minors. No, he's not nhl ready.
    (God Tambo, please put Shremp in package for anybody so this stops coming up.)

  • Hippy

    That makes things a little more interesting. I didnt know he had to clear waivers, I thought he could just go down again. You are probably correct, he is getting to that age where you either give him a chance or you part ways.

  • Hippy

    @ Curious:
    I don't believe he has resigned yet but from what I've heard, via radio from Gregor and Tencer, is that he'll have to clear waivers if the Oilers send him back down to Springfield.

  • Hippy

    Interesting stuff again Willis. But this still screams to me one important point: we need a bigger sample from Schremp. What do you think? I think he's NHL ready.

  • Hippy

    From what I remember, Brule seems to be a better all around player then Schremp. Brule could play 3rd or 4th line but Schremp cant. Thats why Brule will be favoured based on the current roster to stick around this year.