FanPost

Team PDO at the 3/4ths Mark



As of Sunday night, all teams in the league had played at least 60 of their 82 regular season games. I felt it was time to give an update on the Team PDO situation that I have been tracking throughout the season.

Once again, here are the raw numbers with the teams ordered from highest All-Strength Team PDO to lowest:

Team Name All Strength
PDO
Z-Score Current
Standings Pts
Adjusted
Standings Pts
Expected
Standings Pts
Actual minus
Expected
Expected
After 82GP
Shots
For
Shots
Against
# Games Goals
For
Goals
Against
Shooting
Ratio
Save
Ratio
ST LOUIS 1.024 2.4424 86 84 80.3 3.7 109.7 1766 1596 60 193 136 0.1093 0.9148
BOSTON 1.022 2.3283 81 81 79.1 1.9 108.1 1910 1764 60 187 134 0.0979 0.9240
COLORADO 1.021 2.3048 83 81 80.1 0.9 107.7 1800 1979 61 185 161 0.1028 0.9186
ANAHEIM 1.021 2.2406 91 90 81.3 8.7 107.5 1928 1766 62 200 146 0.1037 0.9173
TORONTO 1.019 2.0966 72 70.5 80.2 -9.7 106.1 1714 2240 62 176 187 0.1027 0.9165
PITTSBURGH 1.015 1.5521 84 82.5 75.3 7.2 102.9 1845 1690 60 188 147 0.1019 0.9130
COLUMBUS 1.010 1.0346 65 65 72.6 -7.6 99.2 1721 1842 60 174 168 0.1011 0.9088
MONTREAL 1.009 0.9920 75 74 74.7 -0.7 98.8 1757 1890 62 155 149 0.0882 0.9212
TAMPA BAY 1.009 0.9543 73 70 73.3 -3.3 98.6 1820 1802 61 171 153 0.0940 0.9151
CHICAGO 1.008 0.8500 86 90.5 73.9 16.6 97.7 2071 1708 62 208 158 0.1004 0.9075
WASHINGTON 1.007 0.8004 68 67 73.5 -6.5 97.2 1879 2072 62 176 179 0.0937 0.9136
MINNESOTA 1.003 0.3146 73 72 70.0 2.0 94.1 1634 1706 61 143 144 0.0875 0.9156
PHILADELPHIA 1.000 0.0426 70 70.5 69.7 0.8 92.1 1835 1886 62 171 175 0.0932 0.9072
SAN JOSE 0.998 0.2458 84 80.5 68.2 12.3 90.2 2150 1707 62 179 146 0.0833 0.9145
DALLAS 0.998 0.2467 66 69 65.9 3.1 90.1 1905 1834 60 167 165 0.0877 0.9100
NEW JERSEY 0.998 0.2346 65 67.5 68.1 -0.6 90.1 1635 1561 62 148 145 0.0905 0.9071
DETROIT 0.998 0.2591 68 70.5 65.9 4.6 90.0 1810 1782 60 155 157 0.0856 0.9119
LOS ANGELES 0.997 0.2842 74 72 67.9 4.1 89.8 1919 1659 62 144 129 0.0750 0.9222
WINNIPEG 0.997 0.3717 66 64 67.5 -3.5 89.3 1903 1886 62 168 173 0.0883 0.9083
PHOENIX 0.996 0.4832 65 67 65.9 1.1 88.6 1938 1954 61 165 175 0.0851 0.9104
OTTAWA 0.994 0.6529 65 67.5 65.1 2.4 87.5 1973 2086 61 171 193 0.0867 0.9075
NY RANGERS 0.993 0.7888 69 68 65.4 2.6 86.5 2040 1830 62 158 155 0.0775 0.9153
EDMONTON 0.990 1.0597 48 49.5 63.8 -14.3 84.4 1669 1998 62 152 202 0.0911 0.8989
VANCOUVER 0.988 1.2953 66 66.5 63.7 2.8 82.9 1961 1828 63 147 159 0.0750 0.9130
BUFFALO 0.987 1.3421 44 43.5 60.3 -16.8 82.4 1593 2056 60 116 176 0.0728 0.9144
CAROLINA 0.987 1.4446 61 63.5 60.9 2.6 81.9 1911 1849 61 150 170 0.0785 0.9081
NASHVILLE 0.982 1.8676 62 65.5 58.5 7.0 78.6 1800 1769 61 149 178 0.0828 0.8994
CALGARY 0.980 1.9794 53 51 56.6 -5.6 77.3 1609 1730 60 135 179 0.0839 0.8965
FLORIDA 0.977 2.4998 53 53 55.4 -2.4 74.4 1822 1873 61 144 192 0.0790 0.8975
NY ISLANDERS 0.976 2.6276 54 53.5 56.8 -3.3 73.9 1932 1907 63 167 211 0.0864 0.8894

The Washington Capitals have appeared to stabilize at the mediocre level of 1.007. This is only the slightest tick higher than their nominal range over the last several seasons (last year's shortened season not withstanding). We also see that compared to previous posts about Team PDO, the Caps have failed to make up any ground in terms of standings points that they should have earned with their PDO. They are still basically 3 wins short of where they should be with a PDO of 1.007.

As the following plot, which shows the Caps standings points after each game compared to where they should be based on their Team PDO, indicates:

Wsh_standingpts_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

the points were lost in the first 20-25 games of the season and they haven't been recouped since. I won't flood this fan post with similar plots of all the other teams in similar situations but I can assure everyone that this is not uncommon.

There are teams, such as the New York Rangers, who, as shown here:

Nyr_standingpts_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

tracked their expected standings points quite closely. However, at the halfway point in the season, they have started to out perform their Team PDO. As another point of comparison, there are teams such as the Anaheim Ducks:

Ana_standingpts_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

who have managed to outperform their expected standings points all season.

So, the correlation between a team PDO and their win-loss record is very strong, as shown by how closely the lines track each other, but it is definitely not absolute. There are definitely some teams who are able to achieve wins despite what their team PDO implies.

Does outperforming/uderperforming the Team PDO predict post season success?

I went back and collected the following data on those teams who made it to the Stanley Cup Final since 2006. The following table shows the results:

Stanley Cup Finalists PDO Actual minus Expected Standings Pts STD AVG SCF Wins
2006 Carolina W 1.009 12.6 10.69 0.4 4
Edmonton L 0.986 13.9 3
2007 Anaheim W 1.010 13.9 9.95 0.3 4
Ottawa L 1.021 1.3 1
2008 Detroit W 0.997 26.5 9.73 0 4
Pittsburgh L 1.022 -5 2
2009 Pittsburgh W 0.992 -4.2 11.00 0.4 4
Detroit L 1.015 27.4 3
2010 Chicago W 0.995 21.2 9.01 1.1 4
Philadelphia L 0.995 0.7 2
2011 Boston W 1.020 1.3 8.39 0.9 4
Vancouver L 1.025 7.8 3
2012 Los Angeles W 0.999 7.5 7.73 0.9 4
New Jersey L 1.003 4 2
2013 Chicago W 1.023 10.4 7.00 -0.4 4
Boston L 1.004 6.8 2

I through in the Average difference between actual minus expected as well as the Standard Deviation from that average to give folks an idea of how much variation there is in the standings points from the expected.

As one can see, while it is true that the majority of the Stanley Cup Winners exceeded their expected standings points, only a couple did so well outside of two standard deviations from the average (2008 Detroit Red Wings and 2010 Chicago Blackhawks). And there was one significant upset (2009 Pittsburgh Penguins over Detroit Red Wings).

Without going back through all of the playoff contenders (which I may do if time allows), I don't think the sample size shows any definitive proof but it does seem to hint that a team that is capable of outperforming the expected results for their Team PDO is likely to do better in the playoffs.

Does this mean anything for the Washington Capitals?

I think it all points to what we have already suspected. The Caps are a mediocre team that is unlikely to go very far in the playoffs. Of course, they still have to make the playoffs and their current Team PDO indicates that they should only end the season with about 90-91 pts (Expected after 82 games = 97.2 minus their under performance of 6.5) which very likely is not enough to make it.


In addition, breaking PDO down into its component parts as the following Save vs Shot plot shows:

Savevsshot_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

all of the teams in the league have now regressed into the two standard deviations from the league average for both shooting % and save % with the exceptions of the St. Louis Blues and the New York Islanders. The Blues are still beyond 2 SD in shooting % while the Islanders have a uniquely bad save %.

This plot also shows just how slightly above mediocre the Washington Capitals shot and save % are. Clearly, a team would prefer to be in the upper-right quadrant (i.e. - better than average shot AND save %) of this plot and the Capitals are at least one of the 8 teams who has managed it.

What about trends? What teams are getting better which are getting worse?

I have plotted the Team PDO season trend for each of the 30 NHL teams, broken into divisions. Starting with the Eastern Conference divisions, first we have the Metro Division:

Metro_boc_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

In the Metro, the only team who seems to be showing a statistically significant good PDO is the Pittsburgh Penguins. However, the Columbus Blue Jackets have made significant strides as the season has progressed. The New York Islanders, however, have managed to lose the modest gains from earlier in the season and are now showing serious problems.

In the other half of the Eastern Conference, the Atlantic Division, we have:

Atlantic_boc_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

Here we see Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins hovering at the two standard deviation line which indicates that their high Team PDO is probably not due to chance. The Tampa Bay Lightning and the Montreal Canadiens finish out the upper half at one standard deviation from the norm. The Florida Panthers have tanked and their Team PDO is now so bad that it too, is not likely due to chance.

Moving over to the Western Conference, we first take a look at the Central Division:

Central_boc_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

Here we see how incredible the performance of the St. Louis Blues has been all season. Their Team PDO even exceeded the three standard deviations briefly around the mid point of the season and they have now regressed a little back into the fold. However, their Team PDO is still exceptional. Similarly, the Colorado Avalanche has managed to stay above or near the two Standard Deviations line showing their relative skill level as well. The Nashville Predators have the worst PDO but even they are still within two standard deviations of the norm. The Central Division looks to be the strongest of the league.

Finally, the second half of the Western Conference, the Pacific Division:

Pacific_boc_03-03-14_medium

via nhlplots.com

The Anaheim Ducks are the ONLY team that is showing a decent Team PDO. The rest of the teams are below average. However, only the Calgary Flames are hovering around the two standard deviation line.

In Conclusion:

I wish I could give Washington Capitals fans some hope for the post season based on PDO data but the current situation does not seem to indicate anything that we didn't already suspect. It looks to be a nail-biter in terms of getting into the playoffs. The team will need to find a way to win games despite their relatively mediocre Team PDO.

If this FanPost is written by someone other than one of the blog's editors, the opinions expressed in it do not necessarily reflect those of this blog or SB Nation.

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