by PuckStopsHere on 08/21/12 at 01:31 AM ET
Goals versus threshold is Tom Awad’s quick and dirty attempt to value all players with a single number. Its biggest weakness is the fact that goaltenders are easier to evaluate than position players and as a result goalies dominate the top and bottom of any goals versus threshold rankings. This overrates goaltenders and downgrades position players. On the worst players by GVT list from 2011/12 18 of the 20 players are goalies. The worst ranked position player is Nino Niederreiter of the New York Islanders who is ranked 13th overall with a -5.8 value in the goals versus threshold system. This likely underrates his inept season.
Niederreiter played 55 games last season. He only scored one point (a goal) in that ice time. He was only played about 10 minutes a game and against weaker competition but he still failed.
Niederreiter is punished in the goals versus threshold system for his offensive failures. He is also punished for poor defence. He posted the second worst +/- rating in the NHL despite limited playing time and +/- is used as a proxy for defence in GVT. Despite failing in everything that GVT rates he was beaten by 12 goalies. This shows how insensitive the system is to position players. It is not possible to be much worse than Niederreiter was in this system and yet that keeps you well back of last place in the system.
Niederreiter was a 19 year old rookie who scored well in the WHL but has not been able to translate that to NHL success. It is possible that he will develop into a legitimate NHL player in the future, but he clearly wasn’t one last year. Last year was a wasted year in terms of his development. It is an example of the Islanders poor player development system.
Nino Niederreiter had a poor season last year. It is possible that he wasn’t the worst position player in the league as other players who flopped had more ice time than he did but he was definitely not a success. His failure is hidden somewhat in the goals versus threshold system because it preferentially selects goalies.
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