Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 08/11/14 at 02:50 PM ET
from Sean McIndoe of Grantland,
Advanced stats are nice, but they don’t tell the whole story
This is inarguably true. As has been well-documented, modern hockey stats are nowhere near the level of complexity and usefulness that we’ve seen in sports like baseball. There have been some significant discoveries, but there’s still a lot of work left to be done, and anyone who thinks you can replace an NHL scouting department with a spreadsheet is an idiot.
Luckily for us, those people do not exist.
That still seems to surprise some people. I’ve had conversations with more analytics folks than I can count over the last year, including most of the biggest names. I’ve followed the stats blogs. I’ve read as many of the reports as I could get my hands on, then read them again until I could start to understand them. I’ve asked questions, many of them hopelessly dumb, in an attempt to get my head around this stuff.
And in all that time, I’ve literally never once encountered anyone who thinks that stats tell the whole story. If anything, these guys tend to bend over backward to make sure you’re aware of how much they still don’t know, and how much work is left to do.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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