Young Stars Fancy Stats: the Finale

Main training camp announcements are just around the corner, so we’re going to quickly put the final lid on the 2016 Young Stars tournament with the overall fancy stat recap of the weekend.

Note: remember that three games in a tournament mostly comprised of kids still in junior is not a sturdy base for further projections. We’re just analyzing what these players did in the tournament, and what they need to improve when main camp opens.

The tables are here, but today, I have something even better for you folks!

Low-Rent Usage Charts

If you forgot which number was whose, Pat Steinberg is here to help.

Simple usage charts: OZS% along the X axis, CF% on the Y. The dots are sized by games played.

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My Three Stars of the tournament

1. Ryan Lomberg

I think I speak for all of us when I say that Lomberg was, without a doubt, the best the Flames had to offer. Armed with a big mouth and a small body, the feisty forward scored three times in the tournament, the highest among Flames forwards. As a whole, he was on the ice for five 5v5 Flames goals for and none against. He’s probably earned an invite to Flames main camp (unreleased at the time of this writing) based on his growth from last year, but a good showing in this tournament probably helps his case.

2. Roman Dyukov

This is my bold pick, but allow me to explain. Like Lomberg, Dyukov was also on the ice for five 5v5 goals for with none against. Oliver Kylington and his flashy style of play probably overshadowed Dyukov’s sturdy yet boring style of play, but when you focused on him, he really was one of the best defenders the Flames had.

3. Eetu Tuulola

He loves to score goals, and his defensive game isn’t all that bad either. He was on the Flames’ best production line with Andrew Mangiapane and Lomberg, but he was an equal parts contributor. He is still a bit far away from the pros right now (his skating looked off to me), but there was a lot of raw talent on display at Young Stars that can only get you excited.

Stray Thoughts

  • I was always very underwhelmed by the Flames’ first line. Featuring two of the team’s bluechippers (and Austin Carroll), this was the line that was supposed to bring the noise and make other teams tremble. That didn’t happen so much. It’s true that Matthew Tkachuk and Carroll were almost always in the box, but looking at the data together, they just weren’t what you expect from a first line. They put up numbers similar to other forwards with 40% easier zone starts (see charts above). When Ryan Huska finally broke up the line – albeit, for the third period in the final game – it didn’t make me feel more assured. Mangiapane moved up with Jankowski and Carroll and saw his possession numbers immediately drop (game three recap here) while Tkachuk remained around the same on line two. If Jankowski and Tkachuk are aiming for an opening day roster spot, they are going to have to make major improvements in the next week.
  • Mangiapane impressed, but I feel his overall game still needs work. At 5v5, he was on for four goals for and no goals against. In other situations? One goal for, four goals against. He did get tasked with penalty kill and 4v4 time, but Huska also trusted him with heavy defensive zone starts so, theoretically, those should be no problem. For whatever reason, they were. He has time to iron out those wrinkles in Stockton, so I don’t think his main camp visit lasts very long.
  • Dillon Dube was my favourite player from the tournament, and it was a tough internal debate not to give him a star. Considering his zone starts (20% OZS), he produced the second highest CF% at 5v5. I’ve talked about him enough in other articles, so I think I’ll stop here.
  • The overall corsi leader was the diminutive Matt Phillips, who also excelled with terrible zone starts. It’s hard not to get excited for the kid, who looked very adept despite also looking like a 12-year-old.
  • Hunter Smith wasn’t as offensive a player as I thought. Absolutely still not worth the second round pick, but I felt that he at least had a handle on the game, and didn’t look as lost as his pugilist peers.
  • Of the invite forwards, I feel that Mikkel Aagaard, Dennis Kravchenko, and Brayden Burke should get contracts. They were pretty formidable on the fourth line, and looked eager to prove that they still had more to offer. I hope they stick.
  • With regards to defencemen, I think the stats speak for themselves. There is a lot of talent on that blueline, especially from unlikely sources. Perhaps Ryan Culkin can rise from the bottom a la Brett Kulak. Even Keegan Kanzig didn’t look that bad (but still not worth that third round pick).
  • I didn’t track any actual stats on them, but the gap between Tyler Parsons and Mason McDonald and Nick Schneider is bigger than I thought it would be.

And that’s all for the Young Starts tournament. Main camp announcements are just a few hours away, meaning we’re, once again, inching closer and closer to actual hockey.

  • Baalzamon

    I think Kylington deserves some credit for posting such good results against tough sledding. His CA and FA were both much better than Andersson’s with much harsher zone starts.

    Which leads me to another point… why do the Flames always give Kylington mostly defensive starts? It happened in his one NHL game last season too.

  • beloch

    Man, the tools (edit: By tools, I mean authoring software) on this site have got to stop shrinking every damned image you put into it. The numbers on those graphs are nearly illegible.

  • Derzie

    Overall, a disappointing tourney based on my expectations. No one is ready and some have regressed.Some did better by comparison but the bar is low. The Oilers have been slayed for their ability to draft and they had a better showing than us. Also, not sure if Huska was told to avoid the blender but he did not respond to what was happening on the ice and I feel that the players were not able to find the right chemistry to put their best foot forward. Also, glad this piece called out the value of solid D (Dyukov) over pond-hockey (Oscar.) Again, Huska did nothing to curb that style.

  • The Last Big Bear

    Totally disagree about Jankowski.

    I thought he was the best Flame, and one of the best players in the tournament.

    I am also now much more confident that Kylington will be an NHLer someday. It might be a long time, but he’ll do it.

  • Re: Kylington. He was every bit as good as Dyukov was. Difference of style did not lead to a major difference of results at 5v5. The problem was that Kylington had problems at situations other than 5v5, an area where he theoretically should’ve succeeded (amazing skating + open ice), so I left him off the three stars. Very close though, far and away the best pairing at camp.