Thursday, September 29, 2005


NHL teams up with STATS

I've been grousing plenty about the NHLs lack of statistical coverage during this preseason. Why couldn't the New NHL get with the 21st century and give us some statistical satisfaction?

I am actually quite thrilled that the NHL has really been picking up the ball lately, with some drastic improvements to their website over the past week or so.

They didn't even have preseason boxscores available for a time, but now you can get the boxscores, Superstats, Shift Charts, and a bunch of other stuff that makes us Stat Geeks all googly moogly. They still don't have any preseason stats in their database or on a separate page like CBS Sportsline, but the NHL seems to be making genuine steps in improving its online product.

Now, The NHL and STATS LLC have teamed up and it could mean even more good news for those who like their numbers.

The National Hockey League and STATS LLC, the world's leading sports information provider, today announced an in-depth partnership involving the NHL's statistical data and video highlights.

In this new alliance, STATS will operate as the exclusive third-party licensor of the league's real-time data feed as well as a licensor of the NHL's video highlights. STATS will provide data and player statistics for use on the website as both parties work to explore fan-friendly complements to the site. In addition, STATS will provide its flexible XML data feed to each NHL arena for scoreboard and press box use.
Plans also exist for STATS to create, in conjunction with the NHL, an expanded, state-of-the art, in-game graphics solution for use during television broadcasts of NHL games.
Alright! I'm not usually optimistic when it comes to the NHL, but I really hope/believe such a partnership could be just the tonic to fixing it's outdated stats displays.

What we really need to see...

1. A true database that shows complete stats for each player, team, etc... want a perfect example? Check out's database and see the magic. You can go to any player and any year and get complete and very detailed stats. The NHL website just has a basic text/table setup with very basic stats available. It's very hard to navigate and it’s a poor place to do any stat research.

2. Bring back the Superstats. I want HITS, GIVEAWAYS, TAKEAWAYS, and a partridge in a pear tree. With STATS running the show in each arena, those employees can be trained to take down these stats with a greater level of consistency than in the past where each arena just hired whomever off of the street. Include these Superstats in the database and give some depth to the overall statistical coverage.

During games, I'd expect to see some more in-depth stats used by the colour commentators and PBP dudes. Prove to me why Karlis Skrastins is such a valuable defensive force by showing us his ATOI for PK situations and his HITS and TAKEAWAYS. (Yes I realize that those numbers don't necessarily mean he's a great defensive defenseman, but it does help to strengthen a point to the mainstream masses)

(Assist to Kukla's Korner for the story link)

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