Frozen Tools Forensics: Useful features on our Frozen Tools
In this column we have used a lot of the Frozen Tool reports to gather league wide data and spot players who are excelling in various categories. This week I would like to go back to basics, to one area we have not yet addressed, the Player Profile. It houses a wealth of information about an individual player. This week the goal is to highlight some of the useful features using a few players as examples.
Player Profiles: Who Do You Highlight?
Over the course of this column we have highlighted players for playoff performance, game-winning-goal numbers, shot rates, and all-around fantasy performance. We have talked about players who were better value to their actual teams than to fantasy teams, and today we are going to highlight a few players who are as valuable for their voices as they are for the fantasy performance.
First a quick overview of the Player Profile. We won't hit all of the functions because there are just too many but will try to review the ones I use the most frequently.
Once you load up a player you get a chance to see that player's bio at the top as well as their performance in the current season. There are a number of tabs (Career Stats, Game Log, Line Combinations, Advanced Stats, Info Analysis, and Player Calculator).
Career Stats: Great for comparing a player's performance over time, it is really helpful for looking how things like ice time and point paces have changed between years.
Line Combinations: Really useful to see who a player usually plays with, and what their last line combination was.
Advanced Stats: Displays things like five-on-five shooting percentage and IPP, which can be really helpful in figuring out if a player's performance is sustainable.
Player Calculator: Possibly my favorite section. It allows you to gather much of the above data in a specific date range. Want to know who a player's most common line mate was from 10/15/2020 to 11/11/2020? Well you can do that. Want to know what a player's shooting percentage has been over the last two weeks? You can do that too. How about time on the power-play since X other player was injured? Yup that is there too.
And now on to the players. We will get a bit of analysis of each player as well as where the data came from that helped make that analysis.
Evander Kane's last two seasons with the Sharks have been the most productive seasons since 2011-12. What is a little surprising is it isn't because he is seeing the most ice time. His total time on ice per game in 2018-19 was 18:25, which actually marks the lowest since 2011-12. It also isn't necessarily because of power-play time. 2019-20 saw his highest power-play totals, and his highest portion of the team's total time, but 2018-19 he had one of his smallest ever roles on the power-play. It isn't like he is shooting more either, if anything his shot rates have been declining slightly over the last several years (though he is still average over three per game). His shooting percentage has gone up a bit, but that correlates with slight drop in shot totals so one explanation could be that he is being slightly more effective in his overall shot selection. (All of the above data was from the Career Stats page).
So what gives? Well it actually looks like 2018-19 was something of an outlier. Low time on ice, low power-play time, low-ish IPP, but higher than average five-on-five shooting percentage (Advanced Stats). If we remember that year his most common linemate was Tomas Hertl (Player Calculator), who was putting up a 75 point pace, a thing that most Evander Kane linemates do not achieve. We can guess then that during 2018-19 he was scoring a bit more often than he otherwise would have been likely due to his linemates. All things being equal it may not have been sustainable in 19-20.The thing that is great about 2019-20 though is that the shakeup with the Sharks' lineup changed Kane's deployment. His improvement is almost solely on the back of increased power-play production, which coincides nicely with his increase in power-play time and percentage. All of his other numbers actually look really solid, so if he can keep up his deployment, I am excited for what a 2020-21 season might look like.
Unfortunately J.T. Brown's 2019-20 was much less successful than Kane's. Brown spent it in Minnesota's farm system playing for the Iowa Wild. Prior to that he had five seasons with Tampa Bay before a split season with Anaheim and Tampa. Brown's value has always been more of a hits and PIMs guy, as he has never broken 22 points, but averaged 1.77 hits per game in his 2018-19 season with Minnesota. (Data from Career Stats)
As far as 2020 goes, it is very unlikely that Brown will be a helpful fantasy asset in the scoring columns. If he is called up and gets his usual ten minutes of time, he can provide some decent hit numbers.
Matt Dumba had a very disappointing 2019-20. Mostly because of the incredible start he had to 2018-19. In the 32 games he played in 18-19 he put up a 56-point pace. He got hurt so we didn't get to see how he would end the season, but there was a lot of reason for optimism heading into 2019-20. Unfortunately his 29 point pace over 69 games was a resounding thud. (Data from Career Stats).
Some of that could be that he lost a bit of overall ice time, but there is some reason for optimism. In 18-19 his shooting percentage was 12.9, but in 19-20 it was 3.6. Give him his usual shooting percentage (of around eight percent and he would have been at a 45 point pace). Add to that that his IPP was down at a five year low and we should see a bounce back for Dumba in 2010-21. (Data from Career Stats and Advanced Stats)
Wayne Simmonds' 2019-20 went just a little better than Brown's. He saw a pretty full 68-game season, but saw his lowest time on ice since 2010-11, and his lowest point pace since his rookie year. Simmonds is 31, and age is never kind to power forwards. He did still get a reasonable amount of power-play time, which if that continues could provide some peripheral value, but it seems a bit like the writing is on the wall here. He has been declining over the last several years, and unless a new home provides him some unforeseen bump in deployment he likely isn't going to be worth any investment in 2020-21. (Data from Career Stats)
Like with Simmonds, age is definitely catching up with Daley. At 36 he saw his lowest point pace, and the lowest average time on ice of his career. He also saw a pretty dramatic drop in time on ice between 2018-19 and 2019-20, which might imply he lost faith of the coaching staff fairly quickly. Detroit needs the help too, so that also doesn't bode well for the future. (Data from Career Stats)
Chris Stewart is also aging, though given it has been five seasons since he broke a 40 point pace the decline hasn't been noticed by many. In fact his more recent season in Philadelphia had him suited up for only 16 games. Like with Daley and Simmonds, his days as a useful fantasy asset are definitely behind him. (Data from Career Stats)
That is all for this week. Thanks for reading.
Stay safe out there.
Want more tool talk? Check out these recent Frozen Tool Forensics Posts.
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