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The David Clarkson Conundrum


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#1 Triumph

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:19 AM

David Clarkson is a really hard player to value accurately.  The last 2 years are the only years in which he has averaged more than 15 minutes a game of ice time.  His individual shots/60 5v5 rate ranks 21st in the league among forwards who've played 2000 minutes or more over the last 6 years, his goal rate 112th.  Only in one year has his on-ice SF/60 been substantially better than his teammates (this past year)

 

But we have to consider that David Clarkson has been saddled with some pretty awful linemates over the years with the Devils.  Let's go through his hockeyanalysis and see his most common forward linemates each year:

 

2007-08:  John Madden, Sergei Brylin

2008-09:  Brian Rolston, John Madden

2009-10:  Rob Niedermayer, Brian Rolston

2010-11:  Rod Pelley, Dainius Zubrus (with Tim Sestito not far behind)

2011-12:  Mattias Tedenby, Petr Sykora

2012-13:  Patrik Elias, Travis Zajac

 

And indeed, his shot rate per 60 minutes seems to reflect that:

 

2007-08:  9.49

2008-09:  9.38

2009-10:  9.06

2010-11:  10.75

2011-12:  10.36

2012-13:  11.86

 

The question I have about Clarkson is - do his linemates at least get more shots when he's on the ice?  Because if he's the reason why the Devils had so many shots while he was on the ice last year, and his shots go in less often than a regular forward's (he ranks 284th in individual 5v5 shooting percentage out of a qualifying 386 forwards), it's not all that great - the benefit of another Clarkson shot isn't really that high.

 

So thanks to the wonder of hockeyanalysis, I'm going to look at the top 4 forwards he played with the last year to see how their shot rate is affected -

 

2012/13:

 

Patrik Elias S/60 w/ Clarkson:  7.81

Patrik Elias S/60 w/o Clarkson:  8.22

 

Travis Zajac S/60 w/ Clarkson:  6.56

Travis Zajac S/60 w/o Clarkson:  4.43

 

Adam Henrique S/60 w/ Clarkson:  7.17

Adam Henrique S/60 w/o Clarkson:  4.77

 

Dainius Zubrus S/60 w/ Clarkson:  4.85

Dainius Zubrus S/60 w/o Clarkson:  2.94

 

One of the problems here is that most of these guys played with either Kovalchuk or Clarkson - Kovalchuk does not get you more shots on goal.

 

2011/12:

 

Mattias Tedenby S/60 w/ Clarkson:  6.47

Mattias Tedenby S/60 w/o Clarkson:  5.44

 

Petr Sykora S/60 w/ Clarkson:  6.27

Petr Sykora S/60 w/o Clarkson:  7.82

 

Ryan Carter S/60 w/ Clarkson:  2.68

Ryan Carter S/60 w/o Clarkson:  5.10

 

Jacob Josefson S/60 w/ Clarkson:  4.88

Jacob Josefson S/60 w/o Clarkson:  4.60

 

Okay, I'm giving up here - I think we see that Clarkson doesn't affect how many shots the other forwards get in a significant way (if anything he makes them slightly better), and there's not enough data to see if he makes players shooting percentages worse.  We'll see how he does if he goes to a new team...


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#2 SMantzas

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:22 AM

Good stuff, Tri. I thought for sure he would bring his linemates down but that's not really the case. There's definitely a noticeable difference in his ability to use his teammates than say 3 years ago. Of course, playing with Pelley and Niedernayer didn't help.
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#3 Colin226

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:40 AM

Makes you wonder if Lou has a statistician that gets this in-depth. The real headache comes when you have to take that and assign a value to it over a number of years based on how you expect it to go in the future. I don't envy having to make the call on Clarkson
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#4 gardenstatepkwy

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:45 AM

While I agree that numbers are the most important factor in deciding how long/much to offer Clarkson I think there are some non-statistical items to weigh as well; his influence in the locker room and what impact he has on his teammates, what he brings to the community and local area, etc all need to be factored in.

 

I think this board has beat the Clarkson horse to death but it's on the forefront of everyones mind so that's to be expected.  :dizzy:


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#5 Beck27

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 11:46 AM

Can anyone put together an analysis of how many rushes Clarkson kills by going offside?  

 

Halfway tongue in cheek...but he seems to do it more than any player I've seen, based purely on the eye test. 


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#6 Triumph

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 12:18 PM

Can anyone put together an analysis of how many rushes Clarkson kills by going offside?  

 

Halfway tongue in cheek...but he seems to do it more than any player I've seen, based purely on the eye test. 

 

If you went through the play-by-play data, then went to find the video, yeah, I think you could (assuming the play by play data list offside as a thing).


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#7 Devilsfan118

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 12:22 PM

He's a goner boys.  Thankfully so at the salary he'll be commanding - Clarkson, while he brought shots and physicality, was always a cycle-killer in my mind.  


Edited by Devilsfan118, 24 June 2013 - 12:22 PM.

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#8 Zubie#8

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 12:59 PM

Half of Clarksons shots are useless, they either come from the blue line on a rush or a horrible bad angle shot. He is not worth it for the money he is going to get. I would love to keep him at a reasonable price for the third line though, but he is nothing more than that IMO. There are plenty of better UFA options to replace him with.


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#9 DH26

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 01:14 PM

not worth the $5m+ the Leafs are gonna give him. It might hurt to have him gone next year, but in the long run he's not worth it


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#10 Zubie#8

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 01:59 PM

Plenty of other options out there. http://www.capgeek.c...=F&fa_type_id=2

 

The thing I would miss most about David is he is a great guy, teammate, and he absolutely loves the fans and the community. But I am more concerned about Elias getting re-signed.


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#11 DH26

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 02:04 PM

Plenty of other options out there. http://www.capgeek.c...=F&fa_type_id=2

 

The thing I would miss most about David is he is a great guy, teammate, and he absolutely loves the fans and the community. But I am more concerned about Elias getting re-signed.

 

I'd go after MacArthur who's only gonna hit the market because of the Leafs' stupidity and Carlyle being the worst coach in the league. The fans there love him and he could probably play bt the 2nd and 3rd line a la Clarkson for a fraction of the price

 

Mason Raymond could be good. Ryder would probably be cheaper and on a shorter term deal than Clarkson. Weiss would probably only cost a little more and he'd allow Henrique to go over to the wing and you could try to shelter Loktionov on the 3rd line (tho he'd have nobody good to play with there so that's probably a step too far). PM Bouchard or Latendresse you could take a chance on. None of these guys save Weiss are probably as good as Clarkson but all is far from lost if he leaves.

 

Elias on the other hand, we have a problem if he's gone


Edited by DH26, 24 June 2013 - 02:08 PM.

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#12 capo

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 03:13 PM

The trouble with this analysis is that it only focuses on one part of the game and doesn't take into account Clarkson's other attributes.  And when you look at the stats of linemates playing with other players you don't factor in what may make that other players numbers.  For instance, Ryan Carter's chemistry with his line.


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#13 Devs1965

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 05:21 PM

I have to agree, Clarkson brings some things to the table but not worth 5 mil + Elias is a player who we need, he is that veteran blood that knows this team. He is not what he was 5 yrs ago but he is safe defensively and knows how to help younger players not to mention he is good for 25+ season and bleeds Red and Black, c'mon Lou sign em!
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#14 Satans Hockey

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 06:56 PM

Not gonna lie, I want Clarkson gone. He is the type of player I can't stand. Always whining at the refs and he's a diver.
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#15 SterioDesign

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 07:35 PM

Not gonna lie, I want Clarkson gone. He is the type of player I can't stand. Always whining at the refs and he's a diver.


Thats the reason i dont and never liked him. Cant stand his diving and staring at the refs.
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#16 CarpathianForest

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Posted 24 June 2013 - 07:47 PM

Despite his diving and ref gazing, I've always liked Clarkson because he's not afraid to get into the weeds. We need that.


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#17 newjerseydamo

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 03:50 AM

admittedly the last 2 seasons have been the best for Clarkson, but honestly, the guy cant stand on skates, the amount of times i watched him fall for no reason is a joke.


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#18 DevilNurn

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 08:33 AM

I really wish we wouldn't lose another "heart" player like Clarkson. That's what was most disappointing about losing Parise, not just because of stats, but he is just harder working than his talent. I hope he stays for that reason. Also because we're pretty thin at RW.
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#19 SterioDesign

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 08:50 AM

i never liked the guy but if he somehow stays im gonna make an effort to like him more.


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#20 jim777

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Posted 25 June 2013 - 12:11 PM

I don't have the stats, but I would be surprised if Clarkson wan't 1 or 2 on the team in hits. He scores, he's an annoyance to the opposition, and he hits people hard and often. He also seems like a decent guy. I don't think you let a guy like that walk away for nothing, especially if you've got no one with that combination of skills.


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