Empirical Sports Blog

Laurentian Webinar: Modern Hockey Statistics

Laurentian Webinar:  Modern Hockey Statistics

  Last night I did a webinar on Statistical Methods for the Analysis of Hockey for St. Lawrence University Alumni and friends.  I had a blast.  There were lots of good questions and lots of interest.  Exactly what I would expect from a bunch of Laurentians. Below is a link to the slides for the talk. SLUAlumniWebinar2015v3 Tweet

Dealing with the NHL’s RTSS recording of Events

Dealing with the NHL’s RTSS recording of Events

One of the aspects of the statistical analysis of hockey that has been cited as a reason not to trust the results that have been generated is the quality of the data produced by the NHL’s Real Time Scoring System (RTSS).  Here is an article with some NHL GM’s talking about the quality of the data.  Also there have been several studies that have found that there are inconsistencies in the recording of these events from rink to rink.   These studies include work by Boyle, Zona,  […]

Schuckers Talk at Carleton University

So last Friday, I gave a talk at Carleton University.  Here is the abstract: Recently there has been a good deal of interest in the use of statistical methods and statistical thinking in sports. Work of this kind has been going on for many many years though often behind the scenes. With the publication of Michael Lewis’ Moneyball and the subsequent movie of the same name, the interest in this kind of work has grown extensively. Further evidence of this can be found in the  […]

Joint Statistical Meetings 2014 Hockey Panel

Joint Statistical Meetings 2014 Hockey Panel

A week ago (on August 6th), I appeared on a panel on the Joint Statistical Meetings in Boston along with Brian Macdonald, Andrew Thomas, Sam Ventura and Kevin Mongeon.  The panel was a good one on some of the advanced statistical methods that are being used in hockey.  Fluto Shinzawa of the Boston Globe attended the panel and wrote up a piece on the panel that can be found at this link.  A rough audio of this can be found at Andrew Thomas’ website:  www.acthomas.ca/?p=62.  […]

2013-14 Total Hockey Ratings

2013-14 Total Hockey Ratings

  I’ve updated the Total Hockey Ratings (THoR) for the 2013-14 season.  Both the Even Strength and the All Events can be found on the THoR Page.  Recall that THoR evaluates each play from the NHL’s RTSS system for it’s likelihood to lead to a goal in the subsequent 20 seconds.  We then get a rating for players by accounting for their impact after adjusting for quality of teammates, quality of competition, zone starts, score effects, etc.  The outcome metric here is Wins above replacement  […]

Estimating the Lower Bound for the Return on Investment for Hockey Analytics

Last week it was announced that the New Jersey Devils had hired Sunny Mehta to be their Director of Hockey Analytics.  Just over a month ago, Craig Custace wrote a piece($) for ESPN Insider on the New Jersey Devils search for a Director of Hockey Analytics.  In that article, there was an underlying tone that hockey analytics was expensive.  Ryan Lambert of Puck Daddy nailed a part of this a couple days after when he wrote (under #3): I love this idea that more NHL  […]

NHL Referee Analytics from 2012

So last week during the Hockey Analytics panel at the MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, Eric Tulsky referenced a study that Michael Schuckers and his student Lauren Brozowski did on referees in the NHL.  While this work has been available publicly on the conference website, due to some unknown oversight we did not post it here.  So here it is.  The paper is based upon two NHL seasons worth of data.  The data don’t let us know who among the referees made the call just  […]

Out of the Ice Age: Some Hockey Analytics Highlights since #SSAC2012

This week is the 2014 MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference.   While the conference has not always had a panel on hockey, there is one this year. To that end, I took a look at some of the innovative pieces of hockey analytics work since the last conference panel in 2012. I’ve made a list below,  in no particular order, along with links and a quick summary of the contribution. Giving the growth of analytics and the growth of hockey analytics, this list is surely incomplete.     Player Usage  […]

Impact of changing teams on THoR and CorsiRel

We’re coming up on the trade deadline for the NHL.  Lots of names are going to be floated and some players will be traded.  Raphael Diaz and Dale Weise were traded today as I was finalizing this post.  According to THoR (all events) Diaz is a player who has been worth 2 or 3 wins per year over a replacement defensemen but will he be worth roughly that for Vancouver?  Certainly the Canucks hope so.  In that vein, I recently got a question about what would  […]

A look at the US Olympic Squad for Sochi from Analytics perspective

So I’ve been in Helsinki this Autumn and as a result haven’t gotten to see much live NHL hockey.  (I’ve seen plenty of pee wee and bantam hockey as well as a couple of SM Liiga matches.)  We’re headed home just after the end of the year and one of the highlights once we get back to the states will be watching the Olympic hockey tournament.  Should be a blast.  To that end, I thought I would take a look at the candidates for the  […]