Thomas, demonstrating his typical "form"

As you may have guessed, I’m not exactly hip to advanced stats yet. We have guys like Cam Charron and Daniel Wagner for that stuff.

I appreciate their value and consider them important and all that good stuff, but siphoning information from mounds of data isn’t exactly my forte.

That said, there’s a new one that I just love: it’s fairly easy to understand, and one of the more helpful things I’ve seen to date: DIGR – defensive independant goalie rating.

In a nutshell, it’s an adjusted save percentage created by Michael Shuckers, a statistics professor from St. Lawrenece University. As it was explained by Jared Diamond in the Wall Street Journal:

Schuckers mapped every shot each goalie faced last season, allowing him to isolate a goalie’s save percentage against shots from every location on the ice. He put those findings against a plot of every shot taken in the NHL in order to estimate how each goalie would fare not just against the shots he faced, but against the shots all the goalies faced—therefore putting them all up against the same shots. (Empty-net, penalty and shootout shots were eliminated.)

Save percentage doesn’t account for difficulty of shots faced, so this eliminates that flaw. Not only does this make great sense to me, look at the data it pulled for us – sounds about right, no?

 Among goalies who faced at least 1,000 shots last season, the Oilers’ Nikolai Khabibulin, who had a .900 DIGR, ranked as the worst. Not surprisingly Edmonton had the league’s worst record last season and the worst goal differential.

The Bruins’ Tim Thomas finished atop the list, although he faced the eighth-easiest set of shots. While Thomas had a save percentage of .938, his DIGR was only .931.

The Canucks’ Roberto Luongo finished second (.927 DIGR), percentage points ahead of the Ducks’ Jonas Hiller (also .927). The Blues’ Jaroslav Halak faced the hardest shots and finished 12th (.918), while the Kings’ Jonathan Quick faced the easiest shots and ranked No. 24 (.909).

Once again, Tim Thomas is the best and Roberto Luongo is still a HORRIBLE CHOKER, or whatever. Either way, very interesting information.

Check out the article to see the top and bottom five here. And hey, breaking: Dan Ellis, still not doin’ so hot.