Why are fancy stats so controversial?- Since the announcement by the Oilers that they hired stats guru Tyler Dellow last week, the reaction to the hiring has hit a boiling point. On Saturday Jason Strudwick wrote a post on the topic at Oilers Nation. Yesterday, Derek Van Diest made a now infamous appearance on the morning show on TSN1260 which spawned reaction from Johnathan Willis at the Cult of Hockey and Ryan Batty at the Copper & Blue. This morning Dustin Nielsen focussed on the topic on the morning show on TSN1260. It could be due to the lack of Oilers related news in the middle of August, but the amount of anger flowing through the City of Champions between the fancy stats crowd and the traditionalists is almost overwhelming. Since all the new stats track (from the point of view of the average hockey fan) is puck possession, why are fancy stats so controversial?
Once again, is Mactavish adding to make a deal? With today’s news that the Edmonton Oilers have once again acquired Denis Grebeshkov, fans are left to wonder why? Prior to today’s announcement, the Oilers already had eight NHL calibre defensemen under contract and by anyone’s count, you can only play six in any given game. If nothing changes, the Oilers will start camp with 9 NHL defensemen and a very decent pipeline of prospect blueliners knocking on the door from OKC. What makes this move even more strange is that the Oilers currently only have 2 proven NHL centremen (RNH & Gordon) under contract (until Gagner is signed or dealt) and will possibly start the season with an unproven (an so far underwhelming) Anton Lander as their fourth line centre. In addition, other than Joensu (sort of), the Oilers haven’t addressed their need for size and grit amongst their forward ranks. When there are so many holes upfront, why the continued focus on adding rearguards? One could easily speculate that it is because defence is a position of extreme importance and depth in this area is a good thing; however, couldn’t the same be said of centre ice?
There may be more to the Grebeshkov signing than is initially obvious.