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Point projections and the San Jose Sharks

The good, the bad and the Wookiee

NHL: New York Islanders at San Jose Sharks Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports

Now 21 games into the season, we can take a look back at what #expert #computeroy Dom Luszcyszyn thought the Sharks players point totals would like. We will then compare them to what they currently are and take a look at what Luszcyszyn thinks about the rest of the San Jose season.

Warning: Fancy stats involving math and computers ahead. If this sort of thing scares you, turn back now. Dom is one of the smartest people working in the analytics community today. I highly recommend you check out his work and follow him on Twitter. Okay? Okay.

I know this is a lot to take in. Allow me to break it down piece by piece. On the far left are the goal, assist and point projections made by Dom prior to the regular season. To the right are those same player’s current points. Move one column to the right and you’ll see what Dom currently projects them to finish the season with and go all the way to the right to see how those projections have changed.

It shouldn’t come as a big surprise that those projection differential numbers are ugly. San Jose has struggled to score this season and that has, understandably, lowered the probability that they’ll hit the projections given to them ahead of the season. Here’s Dom explaining how he regresses the numbers:

So let’s take a look at some of the standouts. Only three Sharks have increased their point projections from their original spot: Paul Martin, Brent burns and Joe Pavelski. Martin saw the biggest improvement: two points. Pavelski’s projection increased by 1.3 and Burns moved up half a point. The three biggest drops are uglier.

Tommy Wingels, Joe Thornton and Mikkel Boedker make up the bottom three. Wingels (-7.7) had a nice little goal scoring run, but his well has mostly dried up while Thornton (-9.5) continues to shoot at the lowest rate of his career. As for Boedker (-13.1)? Well, I think I’ve covered that pretty well.

These numbers are mostly a fun way to get a sense for how the Sharks are expected to play the rest of the way. Just remember: these are probabilities, not certainties. So don’t rush Boedker’s house or anything crazy, okay?