Eastern Edge: Expected and Actual Goals in the Metro

by Cam Metz on April 3, 2018
  • Eastern Edge
  • Eastern Edge: Expected and Actual Goals in the Metro

Well here we go – after reading DobberHockey articles daily for countless years, I am going to attempt to shed some light using the advice I’ve gathered here and adding some risk-adverse statistical spin to what has, is, and will be happening in the Eastern Conference.  

If you’re like me, you’re still stewing over the fractured foot of Patrice Bergeron and what would have been a memorable fantasy year.  The league that captures most of my attention includes Faceoff Wins, needless to say losing FW in the semi-finals was not the anticipated demise at the beginning of the season.  I guess the time is ripe to harness that energy and start figuring out the plan for next year.

Using value above replacement, I tend to be fairly well prepared heading into each draft season.  Over the next few months as we let the last fantasy season soak in for better or for worse I am going to attempt to find some key pieces of information that may let us avoid or target specific players in the Eastern Conference.

This week I’d like to take a look at Expected Individual Goals For (source: Corsica) and compare to Actual Individual Goals For Left Wingers in the Metro Division.  Using 1-year shooting percentage vs a 3-year average SH% of the player I think we can find players from a goal scoring proposition that can be flagged as Buy, Sell, and Hold.

My hope is that by looking at specific advanced stats we might be able to limit our risk at next year’s draft table.  

Hopefully by the end of this summer’s Eastern Edge look at what happened last year we’ll be able to incorporate the sage advice of other Dobber columnists with some advanced stats, positional value, and man-games/scheduling thoughts.

The below does not reflect the entire value of these players in your league, it is meant to only focus on the amount of goals we can possibly expect from these players. Here are some of the initial goal scoring thoughts for Metro LWs.



I am a sucker for shot volume – Jeff Skinner fits that mold. With a rather large +6 in expected goal totals coupled with a low shooting percentage relative to his career. This looks like a potential steal somewhere around the middle rounds for those willing to bet on shot volume and 30-goal seasons.  BUY Skinner for next year.



Taylor Hall will be drafted early next year but I’d rather have someone else take the risk on his goal scoring prowess.  With an inflated shooting percentage and an expected goal count 7 goals lower than actual – Hall seems likely to let us down in the goal department next year.  SELL mainly due to an unwillingness to assume this level of risk.



Anders Lee is the net front presence so many teams covet – with so much up in the air on the Island this summer let’s assume the status quo for this take.  Lee’s shooting percentage was around 20% this compared to a career average of 13% – his skill set creates more high danger shots that are more likely to be converted.  Even still this is a big gap and something that is worth considering in draft rooms next year.  Lee has value – it’ll just depend on what is the cost in ADP.  SELL



Chris Kreider is drafted in most leagues and has become the almost 20-goal scorer with a fair amount of shot volume. His numbers this year fall in line for both shooting percentage (~11%) and actual (15) vs expected (17) goal comparison.  Picks like Kreider late when you’re looking to fill LW spots make your team formidable.  Kreider is a HOLD provided his body of work has value in your league.



Claude Giroux successfully reincarnated himself from the LW this year.  Given the previous down years and the 6% increase on his career shooting percentage I am going to let whomever wants to draft him in the 2nd round next year gladly accept that risk.  Understanding that goal scoring isn’t the only category we try to win – it is one of the hardest to find mid-season. It’s worth making a bet that he regresses to his career shooting percentage and that -6 expected goals from actual is likely to disappoint anyone who drafts him next year. That silky fake between the legs shot makes me wonder if I’ll regret this statement next year.  SELL



With Patric Hornqvist freshly inked the likelihood of Jake Guentzel taking a larger step forward seems unlikely.  Guentzel’s actual vs expected is fairly close at 22 goals scored vs 20 goals expected.  His shooting percentage indicates a quality shooter that was consistent with last year’s small sample size.  Without the larger role he’ll likely produce a similar year next season and have an ADP that falls back some spots from last year’s draft – unless he scores like he did last year in the playoffs and the Pens 3-Peat. HOLD



Artemi Panerin has proven he can drive a line without being the sidekick.  His numbers have held steady and actual goals vs expected and his shooting percentage falls in line with previous seasons.  At the draft table last year, the Breadman was on my do not draft list simply because it was too much risk to have such a high pick turn sour.  Now that we can see he can drive success himself – he is a HOLD for goal scoring.



As I stated earlier Alexander Ovechkin had a large discrepancy in actual goals vs expected.  You’ll remember Ovie started the season with 7 goals in 2 games – I reaped the benefit of these goals in my league this year.  I drafted Ovie later in the first round than his ADP – even as I clicked draft there was a moment of doubt considering the previous season he had only scored 33 goals.  His shooting percentage is up this year compared to his career as well – all told if you’re sitting at say pick 4 -6 and Ovie’s there waiting for you without a 40+ goal total is he worth the risk?  HOLD only out of respect for the greatest shooter in our generation. Makes you wonder though…


Not too much love for Metro LW’s – I think I’ve already got Skinner pegged to my draft board for next year though.

Next week we’ll do the same for the LW in the Atlantic.  Please follow me on twitter and remember that draft season is right around the corner.  Are there any advanced stats you’re going to be using to set up next year’s rankings?  Questions or comments? You can follow me on Twitter @DH_jcameronmetz.