Friday, February 20, 2009

Intelligence borrows, Genius steals...The "Bobby Gould Trophy"

Our esteemed fellow wizard, “Hooks Orpik,” has devised what he calls the “black and blue trophy” for that player which records the most hits plus blocked shots in the season. We think it is a fine idea…good enough to steal in broad daylight, in fact.

In the race for the Capitals’ version of this, which (in the tradition of naming trophies after people) we are tempted to designate the “Bobby Gould Trophy,”* here are the standings:

If you're looking for a frame of reference here, the league leader in this painful measure is defenseman Brooks Orpik (Pittsburgh), with 324 combined hits and blocked shots.

Ouch.

* We put Gould's name on it since he was a gritty third liner who could hit, check, defend, score, and make life difficult for Penguins...pretty much all you'd want in a Capital. Although, we're guessing we're going to have to pay royalties to the originator of the concept.

11 comments:

JP said...

Good stuff.

Part of me says this should really be expressed as a rate (hits per game plus blocks per game) so as not to disadvantage those players who've missed games due to injury, but then again, taking the punishment without breaking down is part of what makes these efforts all the more special, no?

The Peerless said...

As a rate -- minutes per incident -- the leaders (expressed as the lowest number) are the guys you'd expect:

Donald Brashear (4.4)
Milan Jurcina (4.5)
John Erskine (4.5)

Matt Bradley and Ovechkin are in a virtual tie (6.3 to 6.1).

Brooks Laich and Tom Poti have similar numbers (9.9 to 10.4) for entirely different reasons.

Michael Nylander doesn't have much of anything going on (41.6 minutes of ice time per block/hit).

DMG said...

Nylander with seven hits on the season? Really? Damn, that's even weaker than I would have guessed.

Hooks Orpik said...

JP-- Yeah my idea was to use raw numbers and not a rate to reward durability (and perhaps luck). Also by not using a rate you get the more skilled guys to the top. A guy like Carcillo or Ott can go around running people and racking up the hits, but are they skilled enough to be out there enough to rank near the top?

It is, I admit, obviously an imperfect measure. The subjectivity of some cities where statisticians consider a bump a "hit", while in other cities you practically have to commit assault to impress the scorekeeper.

But for the most part, I think it reflects pretty well on a combination of toughness, selfless play and physicality.

BTW, you just HAD to name this for Bobby Gould, huh? That does it, the next invented trophy I dream up is going to be for 5'8 Czech players that have playoff series clinching breakaways. :)

The Peerless said...

Martin St. Louisdina?

JP said...

Dave Staples had a similar idea back at the end of January, btw, which is not surprising considering how few "good" stats there are to track things other than offensive production in the game right now.

The Peerless said...

I can see getting to a critical mass for such a measure. It has a similar appeal as +/-, but isn't as weighted as that stat in terms of the statistical noise from it being related to how the team does (the five guys on the ice all sharing in a plus or a minus).

Flying Cloud said...

On the other hand, there should also be an award for the most-Clutterbucked player who is still actively playing at the end of the season.

Flying Cloud said...

By 'clutterbucked' I mean in the generic sense, not necessarily by the Wild guy himself. I suppose Ovie is hit the most, or perhaps the opponents prefer a softer target?

Hooks Orpik said...

@JP-- I wouldn't pretend to claim to be the first to throw these two categories together, but I spitballed this idea in early January if you were alluding that Staples beat me to the punch. (Not that he went to my site or anything)

The Peerless said...

It's collaboration of genius.