Archive for the ‘Philadelphia Flyers’ Category


That....looks like it would hurt.

The lucky recipient this time was Scott Hartnell, he of the Hartnell Down Foundation, the #1 spot on the Backhand Shelf beerability list, and the 2012 NHL All-Star Game. Hartnell scored 37 times last year while playing with Claude Giroux and Jaromir Jagr, which was a nice addition to his all-around gritty, semi-pest-like game.

The deal will pay Hartnell 28.5 million over that span, leaving the Flyers with an average annual cap hit of $4.75 million, up incrementally from the $4.2 they had him on the books for previously. In terms of actual money, he’ll earn six million in the first year of the deal, with the money dropping off until the final season of it, when he earns three million. The deal comes with a limited no-move clause as well. Read the rest of this entry »

So that’s the punchline Paul Holmgren has created for himself now: if you sign a long-term commitment with the Philadelphia Flyers, you’re going to get traded.

Jeff Carter? 11 years, didn’t make it through one.

Mike Richards? 12 years, stuck around for a little over 25% of the deal.

James van Riemsdyk? Six years, never played a shift under the deal.

So, it’s not as though the punchline is unearned.

Wayne Simmonds is the latest Philadelphia Flyer to sign up for a significant amount of time, signing a six year deal worth 23.875 million according to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, which equals a yearly cap hit of nickels under four million. Read the rest of this entry »

As an aspiring sports journalist and broadcaster, Jessica Ghawi (nom de plume Jessica Redfield) was starting to climb her way up through the ranks when she was tragically killed in the Aurora, Colorado movie theatre shooting on July 20th.

It was a terrible, sickening time, and nobody’s about to get over it any time soon, likely ever. Still, there have been a couple attempts to try to take some good from a devastating loss.

Her brother Jordan has created a scholarship fund in her name, which is explained on the Foundation’s website: Read the rest of this entry »

Over this past season, @BSH_EricT of NHL Numbers and Broad Street Hockey watched every single Flyers game and counted every time the team brought the puck across the offensive blue line, then marked down who gained the zone for the team and how that player did it (dump in, carry in or pass, I presume).

Once you get past how insane that undertaking is, you arrive at the conclusion that he probably compiled some interesting data. Those numbers would allow you to see who’s the most successful at gaining the zone with possession, who’s more inclined to dump it, the success rate of the two strategies and more

While I’ve had a little grin at Fancy Stat-ers having their double rainbow moment over the fresh pile of data they get to mine (not to be condescending, they’re just really excited about this), I thought I’d weigh in on the thought process of players approaching the offensive zone, the strategy, and why Eric’s numbers likely turned out the way they did. Read the rest of this entry »

"They see me dumpin' and chasin', they hatin'" -Zac Rinaldo

The most important zone in hockey is the smallest.

Several studies released this month on numerically-minded hockey blogs have used manually collected information as well as the available data from the play-by-play charts to determine this.

Eric T. of Broad Street Hockey and NHL Numbers wrote a terrific “wow” post that, if you missed, there’s an important takeaway: there is no substitute for moving the puck. Even the best offensive players in the league will do as well in the attacking end once they’ve gained the blue line:

The Flyers’ fourth line (Couturier-Talbot-Rinaldo) averaged 0.29 shots per time they dumped or deflected the puck in, while the top line (Giroux-Jagr-Hartnell) averaged 0.28. The fourth line averaged 0.56 shots per time they carried or passed the puck in, while the top line averaged 0.53.

The reason Giroux has a better shot differential than Rinaldo isn’t that he does more with each entry; it’s that he wins the neutral zone more often (more total entries) and does so more decisively (gaining the zone with possession).

If it’s true that the less-skilled players are being coached to just dump the puck in—and I suspect it is—then the coach might be doing more to limit their offense than their own lack of skill is. This is the kind of inefficiency that can be identified, fixed, and exploited to gain an advantage over the rest of the league.

The major difference, as shown by Eric, was that the elite players like Claude Giroux and Jaromir Jagr would gain the zone with puck possession rather than dumping it in often. There isn’t a number available to use to show a player’s success at doing this, since certain lines and teams are coached differently.

Read the rest of this entry »