In recent seasons, I’ve linked to and wrote posts about analyses of the NHL Draft, about which teams are successful, and which are not finding success. We found that time and again, whatever criteria the analyses used, the Canadiens and Trevor Timmins did very well, placing at the top of the league, or the Top 3, etc.
The last couple of seasons the criticism of Trevor Timmins has grown more strident, and I’d try to re-post those articles, to show that while the Canadiens do whiff on a pick once in a while, looking at the big picture, and compared to other teams, we really are doing pretty well. I did allow that the studies were a little stale by now though, and more recent studies might show that the Canadiens have tailed off a little.
Here’s an example of an up-to-date study by Ted Wyman of the National Post, which confirms my suspicion that the more recent drafts haven’t been as successful on average for the Canadiens, and that their standing might have fallen in these rankings.
The Canadiens rank twentieth in terms of their average draft ranking compared to other teams since 2005, the year of the Sidney Crosby draft, yet they rank 15th overall in terms of games played by the players picked with those picks. So we’re doing substantially better than expected.
There’s another gauge of success the study uses, ‘Points by Picks’, which I’m not sure how is measured. For example, how do the Canadiens receive points for Carey Price? What about defencemen? I couldn’t find the methodology, will have to dig deeper, but in this instance also, the Canadiens rank 15th also, despite having the 20th-best picks.
It would also be interesting to try to fold in the cost of picks surrendered through trades, what kind of value you derive from those, are they squandered (Thomas Vanek) or a wise investment (Jeff Petry).
So there’s room for improvement, but compared to teams like the Panthers, who have the 4th-best picks but the 26th-best results, we’re doing really well. And Trevor Timmins needs to be given the benefit of the doubt. He knows what he’s doing.
And he’ll prove that he does, if he drafts Mikhail Sergachev on Friday.