Monday, July 2, 2012

Welcome to Detroit: Jonas Gustavsson

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The first of four Detroit signings on the opening day of free agency, Jonas "The Monster" Gustavsson escaped the villainous reign of Toronto's Francois Allaire, and in the process left the "center of the hockey universe" for Hockeytown. Jim Bedard and company will have an opportunity to work with a goaltender who wanted to "keep [his] development going in the right direction."

Numbers? Numbers!
  • Let's start with the basics. Gustavsson was 17-17-4 in 2011-12 with a 2.92 GAA and .902 save %.He allowed 112 goals on 1,147 shots faced.
  • Time for the heavy duty mumbo jumbo. At even strength, Gustavsson allowed 2.83 goals/60 while facing 26.8 shots against/60.
  • When he was off the ice, Toronto allowed 5.58 even strength goals/60 on 17.9 shots against/60.
  • Gustavsson was supported by 24.6 shots for/60 while on-ice, though Toronto put 33.2 shots for/60 on net when the Monster was on the bench.
  • What's the point of all of this? Essentially, the Maple Leafs played worse in front of Gustavsson at even strength than they did when someone else was between the pipes. This means that his numbers may be a bit skewed. 
  • The next set of numbers comes from, a site which I commonly use when looking at skaters. Honestly, I've never used it for goalies and won't pretend to be an expert here. The one thing I do know is that the more years we group together the more reliable the information, and that 1.0 is an average rating for HARD+. Someone has a HARD+ of 1.136? They perform 13.6% better than an average player. HARD+ of 0.89? They're performing 11% below average.
  • From 2009-12, Gustavsson's HARD+ at even strength (zone start adjusted) is 0.850. Everything listed below will be from the same period of time.
  • In tied games, his 5v5 zone start adjusted HARD+ is 0.876. When up 1 goal, his 5v5 zone start adjusted HARD+ is 0.888. Up 2 goals, and his 5v5 zone start adjusted HARD+ falls to 0.742.
  • Down 1 goal at even strength, his HARD+ is 0.706. Ouch. Down 2 goals he's a little better, with a HARD+ of 0.769.
  • On the powerplay, Gustavsson's HARD+ is 1.316. Woot no shorties! I guess. Short handed, his HARD+ drops to 0.796. 

So what's the verdict?
Looks like we've got ourselves a backup goaltender who could be anywhere between "good" and "serviceable." I see two differences between Gustavsson and former backup Ty Conklin. First, Gustavsson is young and generally considered to have a great deal of potential that can still be extracted under the watchful eyes of Jim Bedard and Chris Osgood. Conklin came back for his second tour of duty in Detroit on his last legs and in the twilight of his career. Second, Gustavsson's HARD+ numbers are fairly consistent across situations, especially when compared against Conklin's numbers. Check out Conklin's stats here, and you'll see that he's either good or absolutely abysmal. I'll take the younger player with potential and consistency over the inconsistent veteran any day. No disrespect intended to Conklin, as I liked him in his first stint with the Wings and rooted for him in his second. At this time, however, a change had to be made, and I think that Ken Holland went in the right direction.

You'll probably want to watch this on mute

Weird begining, but a lot of good SEL film

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  1. Thank you! I've been waiting so long for this ever since you teased these on twitter. All the content you have put out thus far has made this Red Wings blog one of my favorites for all eternity!

    1. Thank you! Stay tuned, I'm working on the Samuelsson and Tootoo posts. They should be up sometime this weekend.