Monday, January 31, 2011

The Streakiness of Stamkos

I thought this was kind of interesting:

Steven Stamkos, 2010-11:

First 22 games: 21 goals, 4.0 shots per game
Next 6 games: 0 goals, 2.8 shots per game
Next 10 games: 10 goals, 3.7 shots per game
Next 6 games: 0 goals, 3.7 shots per game
Next 7 games: 7 goals, 2.6 shots per game

That makes two goal-less streaks the length of a typical playoff series for Stamkos this season, even in the midst of a truly dominant stretch of goalscoring.

I can imagine the kind of silly things the media would be tempted to write if Stamkos just happened to hit another 0 for 6 streak some time in late April. To the right kind of reactionary, frequentist, narrative-loving mind, that would reflect his flawed inner character, prove he was a perimeter player unsuited to the playoffs, show that he hasn't yet learned what it takes to win, and probably confirm a dozen other meaningless cliches that you've heard many times before. All because the release point on that famous one-timer may have been off by a couple of centimetres for a few games in a row.

This type of thing is why it is so important to compare performances to a baseline. Do you think your hometown scorer is playing poorly because he hasn't scored in two weeks? Maybe he is, but that is not necessarily the case, he might just be on a streak of bad luck. In any event it's far from abnormal, it happens to the elite as well. Just look at Stamkos.


Corey Pronman said...

Had to re-read it several times, but nope not even a single mention of a goalie. Are you feeling okay man? Did someone hijack this blog?!

Anonymous said...

I think the scoreless streaks were because of his teammates.

From November 9th to December 23rd, Martin St. Louis assisted on 14 out of Stamkos' 15 goals. This tells me that while St. Louis kept up his pace, his teammates weren't giving him the puck or couldn't set him up.

The goal scoring drought happened from November 26th to December 7th. I think that maybe St. Louis was off his game or they ran into a good goalie for six games. This streak also happened right when Lecavalier injured himself, causing line shufflings.

Assists on Stamkos goals:
St. Louis - 21
Malone - 8
Downie - 7
Lecavalier - 6

Martin St. Louis is a major part of Stamkos' success. Stamkos only has 17 goals that weren't assisted by St. Louis. St. Louis has assisted on way more of his goals compared to his linemates (Downie, Malone).

I think this same effect is why Ovechkin is having a bad year.

Assists on Ovechkin goals:
Backstrom - 9
Green - 4
Carlson - 4
Schultz - 4
Semin - 3
Chimera - 3
Knuble - 2

(I don't really know who's on Ovechkin line beyond Backstrom so I listed the top players)

These anomalies are just the result of having one playmaker set up all of your goals.

Tek Jansen said...

Interesting enough, Johan Franzen is super streaky too.

Through Thursday, Feb. 3, 2011, Franzen's numbers broken down:

First 7 games: 6 goals, 3.0 shots per game
Next 5 games: 0 goals, 2.6 shots per game
Next 13 games: 7 goals, 2.3 shots per game
Next 5 games: 0 goals, 3.6 shots per game
Next 7 games: 4 goals, 3.4 shots per game
Next 6 games: 1 goal, 3.0 shots per game
Next 6 games: 8 goals, 5.5 shots per game

I'm not sure you can as easily point to the loss of a playmaker...maybe with Datsyuk gone, but Franzen rarely plays on the same line as Datsyuk, and is mixed in between with Zetterberg and Filppula.

Assists on Franzen goals:
Filppula - 9
Zetterberg - 9
Bertuzzi - 7
Rafalski - 7
...Datsyuk - 3

Bruce said...

Outstanding post, CG, and point well taken.

I remember well the 1986 Battle of Alberta where local media were pillorying Jari Kurri for his weak production ("just" 2-10-12 in 10 playoff games that spring)

Kurri was a consistent producer tO say the least but like almost Any sniper had some streakiness where pucks were or weren'tgoing in for him. But the media just crucified him that year. Funny thing was he led playoff goal scorers in 1984, 1985, 1987 AND 1988, you can still find folks remembering him "choking" in '86. Outrageous.

The Contrarian Goaltender said...

Bruce, thanks for that anecdote, that's crazy. Kurri's playoff numbers are fantastic, it boggles the mind that anybody would consider him a choker.

Host PPH said...

that is kind of interesting indeed and thank you so much for sharing it with all of us my friend, keep up the good work!