Wouldn't this also mean the other pairings would look better against this supposed lesser competition too then? How do we know that Ballard and Tanev would look worse with more minutes against better competition? Have the coaches actually tried that to find out? No.
This type of elitist sense of entitlement for Bieksa, hamhuis, and Edler even when they play like crap is why this team will win nothing in the playoffs.........sometimes you have to trust that guys have earned a bigger chance like Ballard and Tanev had rather than somehow suggest they are ONLy taking advantage of weak competition.
Yes, it would, but they don't face the lesser competition as often, Ballard and Tanev do. It's not by accident, there's a reason for that.
As far as how do we know Ballard and Tanev would look worse against better competition, it's not fully provable unless they are tried that way, and we can only reference times when they have been. And that's just it, they have been, since they do see better players occasionally since you can't always control the match ups on the ice at all times (icing, away games, etc.). It's hard to filter out the stats against those match ups though since they aren't tracked at such a granular level. We can rely somewhat on what has been happening with their playing time and who they face based on if that's changed over time:Feb 2nd QoC
Tanev -0.6Today's QoC
Tanev -0.5I've rounded to one decimal point in both cases as I don't have the exact figures from Feb 2
If the coaches felt they were more capable and really playing better than the other pairings, they'd get played more often against all types of players regardless of how good they are, or their time would be more specifically against better players. Their quality of competition wouldn't stay roughly the same or decrease if they were being used as more reliable defenders. Tanev's has improved but Ballard's has actually gone down so overall that pairing has faced similar to lesser competition in the past two weeks.
EDIT: I actually don't remember if I used Corsi Rel QoC for the Feb 2 data or regular Corsi QoC, but I used the Corsi Rel QoC for today's stats. If I had used the regular QoC originally, it would look way worse as a comparison so I think I'd used the relative stats.
Also, since this is a Hamhuis thread, I should have included his results:
Feb 2: +1.0
So he's faced tougher competition than Ballard and Tanev (as you'd expect being a shutdown guy) but that's gotten a little easier in the past two weeks. In fact everyone's QoC has gotten easier as some of the teams we've been facing have been easier overall and we've worked hard to limit chances that factor into Corsi.
Edited by elvis15, 18 February 2013 - 01:46 PM.