Oct 242005

My predictions were 0 for 3 yesterday which is a little dissapointing but overall I am fairly satisfied with my prediction results so far. Since I began making predictions here is my success rates for each confidence rating:

Strong Confidence: 19 of 24 – 79% success rate
Good Confidence: 10 of 15 – 66% success rate
Some Confidence: 6 of 15 – 40% success rate

I am happy with Strong and Good success rates since this is so early in the season and they would be better if you ignore the first few days of predictions, but I really hope the some confidence success rate increases. It should become more reliable as the year goes on but I am going digg into the numbers some more and see if I can tweak the formula some to improve it’s success rate. In any event, here are today’s game predictions.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Carolina Ottawa Ottawa Strong
Columbus Detroit Detroit Strong
Toronto Boston Toronto Strong
 Posted by at 8:20 am
Oct 232005

Yesterdays game predictions were 7 for 9 missing out on Philadelphia’s win over Toronto and Atlanta’s win over New Jersey. Here are today’s game predictions.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Anaheim Phoenix Phoenix Some
Chicago Minnesota Minnesota Some
Los Angeles Calgary Los Angeles Strong
 Posted by at 9:58 am
Oct 222005

I don’t want to make too many sports media bashing posts here (and I could make a lot) but I figured I’d post one now and again to try and show why the mainstream hockey media is something to be read for amusement only, and not for any real informative information.

Howard Berger is the Fan590 reporter who covers the Maple Leafs on a daily basis and he also writes a hockey blog at HockeyBuzz.com. In his current post he tries to take credit for making a lot of intelligent predictions prior to the season beginning.

I had a strong suspicion heading into the season that Darcy Tucker might enjoy a breakout year – going so far as to suggest he could hit the 35-goal mark if healthy through the bulk of the schedule. That would represent an 11-goal increase over his season-best total of 24. Many people, including my colleague and good friend at The Fan-590, Bill Hayes, said they’d have to see that happen before they’d believe it, but I’m not backing off one bit.

This is funny because in August he was complaining about how little the Leafs had done to add scoring and that they would be severly offensively challenged. Here was his comments on Tucker on August 15th.

The No. 1 troika had Sundin centering Jeff O’Neill and Darcy Tucker. No argument with the Big Swede, or a healthy O’Neill. But, Tucker has hardly ever been used as a front-line winger in the NHL, even though he was a prolific scorer in Junior for the great Kamloops teams that won the Memorial Cup in 1992, ’94 and ’95; Tucker compiling 379 points in 223 regular-season games. His grit, and willingness to compete against bigger players in the NHL has made him an effective performer in most situations, but Tucker has not scored at the pace required of a first-line winger on a contending team.

In another post (which I cannot seem to locate) he went on to say that Tucker would likley be a first line winger but Tucker had only twice scored 20+ goals. I know he made this comment because I sent him an e-mail telling him that Tucker had in fact scored 20+ goals 4 times, not twice. Furthermore I told him that given the chance I thought that Tucker could score 30 goals.

Here is the actual e-mail I wrote him on August 30th.

Actually, Tucker has broken the 20 goal mark 4 times in his career, not twice as you wrote.

1998-99 – 21 with Tampa
1999-00 – 21 combined with Tamps (14) and Toronto(7)
2001-02 – 24 with Toronto
2003-04 – 21 with Toronto (in just 64 games)

I have confidence that Tucker can at least be a 30 goal scorer because if you recall at the beginning of last year (or when they last played) he played with Sundin and Mogilny and that trio was dynamite, especially on the PP. Because of that, despite only playing 64 games he had his most productive year on the PP with 8 goals and 12 points. Playing with Sundin will be a lot better for him than playing with Reichel.

I wonder if he will give my any credit for changing his mind on Tucker when Tucker does score 30+ goals. I suspect he won’t, but then I don’t really care. What I care about is that everyone out there reading this learns to take what people in the mainstream media say with a grain of salt and not as fact. Think for yourselves and come up with your own thoughts. That is what this blog, and most other blogs, is all about. The truth is out there, find it for yourself.

 Posted by at 11:21 am

Game Predictions 10/22/2005

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Oct 222005

Here are today’s game predictions. There are 11 games being played (Ottawa-Florida has been postponed until December) of which 9 games can be predicted and 2 others are two close to call. Six correct predictions would be good, but lets go for seven.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Boston Pittsburgh Boston Strong
Toronto Philadelphia Toronto Strong
Montreal NY Islanders Montreal Good
Washington Carolina Pick N/A
Atlanta New Jersey New Jersey Some
Columbus Detroit Detroit Strong
Buffalo NY Rangers Buffalo Good
St. Louis Minnesota Pick N/A
Nashville San Jose Nashville Strong
Dallas Calgary Dallas Strong
Vancouver Colorado Vancouver Strong
 Posted by at 9:43 am
Oct 212005

Sergei Gonchar – Say what you will about his defensive abilities (or lack there of) but he has to be considered among the best offensive defenseman in the NHL. In his last 5 NHL seasons he has posted 54, 57, 59, 67, and 58 points and among the lead leaders for defensemen, if not leading the league himself. Although he is off to a bit of a slow this year but once again I think we should expect 55 or so points.

Bryan McCabe – I am not sure I would have put him second on the list 3 weeks ago but he has shown his 2003-04 season wasn’t a fluke. Not only is he the league leader in points by a defensemen, he is tied for second in the league for points overall and the guy ahead of him (Jagr) has played 2 more games. This after being 4th in points by a defenseman in 2003-04.

Scott Niedermayer – Like Gonchar, Niedermayer is also off to a slow start this year but he also has a long track record of being among the league leaders in points by a defenseman. He skates well, has a good shot, and is one of the best in quarterbacking a power play.

Chris Pronger – For many years Chris Pronger has been a regular Norris trophy candidate for best defenseman and won the Norris trophy and Hart Trophy (league MVP) in 1999-2000. Not only is he an imposing figure defending his own zone he contributes significantly offensively posting 45 or more points every year since 1998-99 except for the year he missed all but 5 games and in the last NHL season he tied for second in points by a defenseman with 54.

Bryan Berard – Once one of the best young defensemen in the NHL, a serious eye injury almost cost him his career, but despite having limited vision in one eye he is proving he still has the offensive flair he had before the injury. In 2003-04 he totalled 47 points in just 58 games and so far this year he has 4 points in 6 games for a weak Columbus team. A 50+ point season is a definite possibility for Berard.

Mathieu Schneider – I think Schneider has had a very under rated NHL career. He’s never really been considered one of the top few point producing defensemen but he frequently has been in the top 10 and seems to be getting even better at this late stage in his career. In his last 2 NHL seasons he has had 50 and 46 points and is off to a good start this year with 6 points in 7 games and has seemingly passed Nicklas Lidstrom as the Red Wings top offensive defenseman.

Kimmo Timonen – He has put up 40+ point seasons and has 5 points in his first 6 games this year but playing in Nashville, few people know him and how good he is. He is quick, has a good shot, and is a good power play quarterback. He is a major reason for Nashville’s success this year and last.

Brian Leetch – For most of his career he was considered one of the top 3 offensive defenseman and although he is now in his late 30’s, he still has the touch. He finished 2003-04 seventh in scoring by defensemen and with 4 points in 8 games to start this season he is showing that he isn’t done yet. Still an excellent skater and passer, Leetch should benefit greatly by the new rules.

Paul Mara – I wanted to get a couple young, up and comers on this list and Paul Mara is is the guy. He had 42 points in 2003-04 and has 6 points in 9 games so far this season. Unfortunately since he plays in Phoenix not many people have heard about him but he is pretty good and probably going to get better.

Rob Blake – There are a number of defensemen in their late 30’s who have made this list and Blake is another of those guys. He finished 9th in scoring among defenseman in 2003-04 and his good start this year shows he still has it (4 points in 6 games). Although I personally think he has been overrated as a defenseman, he has produced offensively and that is why he makes this list.

Honorable Mentions: Marek Zidlicky, Brian Rafalski, Wade Redden, Kim Johnsson, Zdeno Chara, Ed Jovanovski, Tomas Kaberle, Brent Sopel, Lubomir Visnovsky, John-Michael Liles Dick Tarnstrom and I am sure others I have missed.

 Posted by at 10:55 pm

Game Predictions 10/21/2005

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Oct 212005

Last night was a very good night getting 6 of 7 games correct missing out only on the Atlanta game which was a prediction of only some confidence. That is 9 of 11 games the past 2 nights. Let’s hope the hot streak continues into the weekend starting with tonights games. I think we are aproaching enough games played to start getting fairly reliable predictions.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Columbus San Jose San Jose Good
Tampa Bay Ottawa Ottawa Strong
Detroit Anaheim Detroit Strong
Edmonton Colorado Pick N/A
 Posted by at 10:52 am

Game Predictions 10/20/2005

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Oct 202005

My predictions were 3 of 4 yesterday only missing out on the Rangers-Islanders game in which the Islanders won in a shoot-out. We’ve got 10 games tonight, and 7 predictions. I’m hoping for 5 correct.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Boston Buffalo Pick N/A
NY Islanders NY Rangers NY Islanders Some
Atlanta Tampa Bay Atlanta Some
Florida Washington Florida Good
Toronto Carolina Toronto Strong
Pittsburgh New Jersey New Jersey Strong
Nashville St. Louis Nashville Strong
Dallas Los Angeles Pick N/A
Calgary Edmonton Pick N/A
Vancouver Phoenix Vancouver Strong

In the Pick’em games identified by my predictions algorithm I’ll personsonally predict Buffalo, Dallas and Calgary.

 Posted by at 7:06 pm
Oct 192005
Rank Team Win-Loss Power Rank
1 Ottawa 5- 0 15.9
2 Nashville 5- 0 13.5
3 Detroit 6- 1 13.1
4 Los Angeles 4- 2 12.4
5 Montreal 5- 2 12.2
6 Toronto 3- 3 12.1
7 Vancouver 5- 2 12.1
8 Dallas 4- 2 11.4
9 Buffalo 4- 2 11.1
10 NY Rangers 4- 3 11.0
11 Philadelphia 3- 2 10.6
12 Minnesota 3- 3 10.6
13 New Jersey 3- 3 10.1
14 Phoenix 3- 5 9.8
15 Florida 4- 4 9.7
16 Edmonton 3- 4 9.4
17 St. Louis 1- 4 9.4
18 Carolina 3- 2 9.4
19 NY Islanders 2- 3 9.3
20 San Jose 3- 3 9.3
21 Boston 3- 4 9.2
22 Colorado 2- 3 9.2
23 Tampa Bay 3- 4 8.9
24 Washington 3- 4 8.7
25 Atlanta 2- 4 8.6
26 Anaheim 2- 3 8.3
27 Calgary 2- 5 7.6
28 Chicago 2- 5 7.0
29 Columbus 1- 5 5.5
30 Pittsburgh 0- 6 5.1

HockeyAnalysis.com Power Rankings are based purely on a statistical analysis of a teams on-ice performance and adjusted for strength, or weakness, of schedule. In short, defeating a good team will help your ranking more than defeating a weak team. Similarly, losing to a weak team will hurt your team ranking more than losing to a good team.

The “Power Rank” column is the teams ‘score’ produced by the team ranking formula. A general rule of thumb is that teams scoring above 10 are above average and those below 10 are below average.

Click here to see past power rankings.

 Posted by at 7:59 pm

Game Predictions 10/19/2005

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Oct 192005

Went 2 for 3 again last night missing out on Phoenix’s overtime win over the Edmonton Oilers. Here are the predictions for tonights games.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
NY Rangers NY Islanders NY Rangers Good
St. Louis Anaheim St. Louis Some
Minnesota San Jose Minnesota Good
Colorado Los Angeles Los Angeles Good
 Posted by at 6:05 pm

Game Predictions 10/18/2005

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Oct 182005

Predictions were two for three last night only missing out on the Calgary Flames who were shut out by the Phoenix Coyote’s. What’s up with the Flames so far this year? They need to string together a couple of wins to get back on track. Ok, here are predictions for tonights game.

Home Team Road Team Predicted Winner Confidence
Montreal Boston Montreal Good
New Jersey Florida Pick N/A
Edmonton Phoenix Edmonton Good
Vancouver Chicago Vancouver Strong
 Posted by at 6:44 pm