Projecting the 2012/13 Ottawa Senators’ Production

With the advancement of hockey statistics over the past few years, one of the leaders at the forefront of this movement has been Rob Vollman. 

He may be the founder of HockeyAbstract.com, but he is also a founding writer of Hockey Prospectu and a regular contributor to ESPN Insider, NHLnumbers.com and Arctic Ice Hockey. You may remember us having him one our podcast, or you may recall us publishing the Ottawa Senators' Player Usage Charts in a blog article earlier in the year. 

Even if you only have a passing interest in the advancement of stats in hockey, at some point, you have invariably come across some of his work. 

One of his inventions is the Snepts System that is used to make statistical projections for current NHL players based upon similar historical players.

Borrowing from HockeyAbstract.com, Vollman explains the Snepts System in detail: 

The system of searching NHL's history to find statistically similar players for a variety of purposes, most notably future scoring projections, began in 2009.  In the grand tradition of naming such systems after rugged former NHLers, it is informally known as the Snepsts system, but is unaffiliated with Harold Snepsts (who nonetheless finds it amusing that the system is named after someone whose scoring was so modest).
 
Throughout the 2011-12 season the system was further refined with the assistance of several people, most notably Neil Greenberg, and among other improvements, it most notably includes only players from the post-expansion era (1967), and looks at shots, power play scoring and GVT in addition to the goals and assists it did previously.  It is therefore informally known as Snepsts67.
 
The method is reasonably simple: it searches post-expansion NHL history for players of a similar position and age whose era-adjusted statistics most closely match the target player, both for the current season, preceding season and previous career totals, in a 4:2:1 ratio.
 
The ten most similar players are used to set low-water, high-water and average scoring expectations for today's players, and also to initiate interesting conversations about a player's role and who he should be used.  Attached is a simple spreadsheet with this data for every NHL player who played at least a single game in each of the preceding two seasons.

From Rob's site, you can actually download the Snepts System data (note: it's in a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet) and take a look at most of the players in the NHL. For the purpose of this blog, I've pulled the Senators players who were included in his data and have posted their comparables and projected 2012/13 point totals below. 

At the very least, it gives us something to discuss during these mundane days. Which players for you have the most intriguing comps and projected numbers? 

39   Daniel Alfredsson 75 27 32            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
41 1976 John Bucyk 49 16.0 19.4   82 26.8 32.5 59.2 8.7
38 2008 Robert Lang 50 16.8 19.4   82 27.6 31.8 59.4 9.1
40 1980 Jean Ratelle 47 7.6 18.9   82 13.3 33.0 46.2 9.1
39 2007 Mark Recchi 72 13.7 32.9   82 15.6 37.5 53.1 9.3
38 2010 Mike Knuble 79 23.4 15.6   82 24.3 16.2 40.5 9.5
39 2009 Robert Lang 64 8.7 19.1   82 11.1 24.5 35.6 9.7
38 1995 Joe Mullen 37 6.8 6.1   82 15.1 13.5 28.6 10.0
41 2009 Mark Recchi 81 17.3 23.9   82 17.5 24.2 41.7 10.5
38 2008 Mike Modano 80 14.0 28.6   82 14.4 29.3 43.7 10.8
39 1974 Norm Ullman 80 7.0 21.2   82 7.2 21.7 28.9 11.0
    Average           17.3 26.4 43.7  
 
25   Erik Condra 81 8 17            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
25 1986 Doug Wickenheiser 80 9.4 11.2   82 9.6 11.5 21.1 2.9
28 2002 Mike Grier 82 15.0 17.1   82 15.0 17.1 32.1 2.9
26 1974 Rey Comeau 75 10.9 16.3   82 11.9 17.8 29.7 3.2
28 1985 Bobby Gould 79 12.7 13.2   82 13.2 13.7 26.9 3.3
24 2001 Trevor Letowski 75 9.1 16.5   82 9.9 18.0 28.0 3.4
26 1991 Todd Krygier 67 9.9 13.2   82 12.1 16.2 28.3 3.4
27 1989 Gaetan Duchesne 72 8.7 5.9   82 9.9 6.7 16.6 3.4
27 1984 Ric Seiling 73 11.0 10.5   82 12.4 11.8 24.2 3.5
25 1985 Ron Flockhart 79 14.7 31.2   82 15.3 32.4 47.6 3.6
26 2007 Andy Hilbert 70 7.8 7.7   82 9.1 9.0 18.2 3.6
    Average           11.8 15.4 27.3  
 
37   Sergei Gonchar 74 5 32            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
36 1984 Brad Park 67 8.9 21.1   82 10.9 25.8 36.7 7.7
37 2011 Roman Hamrlik 68 2.0 11.0   82 2.4 13.3 15.7 8.7
36 2011 Kimmo Timonen 76 4.0 39.0   82 4.3 42.1 46.4 9.3
37 2001 Phil Housley 80 15.2 24.7   82 15.6 25.3 40.9 9.7
36 1987 Borje Salming 66 1.4 17.7   82 1.7 22.0 23.7 10.7
39 1990 Larry Robinson 62 0.8 17.3   82 1.1 22.9 23.9 10.8
38 1993 Mark Howe 44 3.3 16.8   82 6.2 31.3 37.5 10.9
36 2010 Roman Hamrlik 79 4.9 28.3   82 5.1 29.4 34.5 11.0
36 1997 Dave Babych 53 0.0 9.3   82 0.0 14.4 14.4 11.2
39 1971 Harry Howell 77 0.9 15.6   82 1.0 16.6 17.6 11.5
    Average           4.8 24.3 29.1  
 
25   Colin Greening 82 17 20            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
24 2010 Blake Wheeler 81 17.5 25.3   82 17.7 25.6 43.3 3.0
24 1984 Walt Poddubny 32 3.4 10.5   82 8.7 26.9 35.6 3.1
25 2010 Drew Stafford 62 30.2 20.5   82 39.9 27.1 67.1 3.1
28 1975 Inge Hammarstrom 76 14.8 17.2   82 16.0 18.6 34.5 3.1
28 1986 Tony McKegney 75 22.5 15.0   82 24.6 16.4 41.0 3.3
26 1984 Darryl Sutter 49 13.7 12.7   82 22.9 21.3 44.2 3.4
24 1982 Tony McKegney 78 24.8 26.5   82 26.1 27.9 53.9 3.6
25 1997 Pat Falloon 58 8.1 10.4   82 11.5 14.7 26.2 3.7
24 1976 Bob Nystrom 80 23.2 22.7   82 23.8 23.3 47.0 3.8
26 2003 Brad Isbister 51 10.4 8.3   82 16.7 13.3 30.1 3.8
    Average           20.8 21.5 42.3  
 
21   Erik Karlsson 81 19 59            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
24 1988 Gary Suter 63 9.2 35.7   82 12.0 46.5 58.4 9.8
24 1977 Ian Turnbull 77 11.3 39.8   82 12.0 42.4 54.4 10.5
24 1989 Steve Duchesne 79 14.4 31.0   82 14.9 32.2 47.1 11.2
22 1975 Denis Potvin 78 24.2 54.7   82 25.4 57.5 82.9 11.6
24 1978 Ron Greschner 60 12.9 28.5   82 17.6 39.0 56.6 12.6
22 1983 Paul Coffey 80 27.0 60.4   82 27.7 61.9 89.6 13.2
22 1994 Sandis Ozolinsh 48 8.0 14.7   82 13.7 25.1 38.8 13.7
23 1991 Brian Leetch 80 16.8 62.2   82 17.2 63.8 81.0 14.2
24 1992 Brian Leetch 36 4.4 22.4   82 10.0 51.0 61.0 14.4
23 1983 Raymond Bourque 78 20.9 45.6   82 22.0 47.9 69.9 15.1
    Average           17.3 46.7 64.0  
 
24   Guillaume Latendresse 16 5 4            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
24 1989 Randy Burridge 63 12.3 11.1   82 16.0 14.4 30.5 3.4
25 2007 Scott Hartnell 80 23.5 18.4   82 24.1 18.9 42.9 3.4
25 2003 Marco Sturm 64 21.8 20.8   82 27.9 26.7 54.6 3.5
24 1977 Bob Murdoch 71 11.3 22.0   82 13.1 25.4 38.5 3.6
24 1977 Bob Murdoch 71 11.3 22.0   82 13.1 25.4 38.5 3.6
26 1984 Mike Foligno 77 18.5 20.4   82 19.7 21.7 41.4 3.8
27 1973 Cliff Koroll 78 17.5 21.9   82 18.4 23.0 41.4 3.8
24 1988 Petr Klima 51 17.8 11.6   82 28.6 18.7 47.3 3.9
24 1989 Claude Lemieux 39 5.8 7.4   82 12.2 15.6 27.8 3.9
25 1997 Mariusz Czerkawski 68 12.1 13.5   82 14.6 16.3 30.9 3.9
    Average           18.8 20.6 39.4  
 
27   Mike Lundin 17 0 2            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
30 1982 Colin Campbell 53 0.7 5.0   82 1.1 7.7 8.8 1.4
27 1973 Gary Doak 69 0.0 3.5   82 0.0 4.2 4.2 1.8
28 1986 Brad Marsh 77 1.4 6.7   82 1.5 7.1 8.6 1.9
26 2000 Steven Halko 48 0.0 1.0   82 0.0 1.7 1.7 2.0
29 2007 Cory Sarich 80 2.0 4.8   82 2.1 4.9 7.0 2.0
30 2007 Colin White 57 2.0 7.7   82 2.9 11.1 14.0 2.5
30 1983 Greg Fox 73 1.3 7.0   82 1.5 7.9 9.3 2.5
29 2009 Douglas Murray 79 3.8 12.4   82 3.9 12.9 16.8 2.6
30 1968 Wayne Hillman 50 0.0 7.4   82 0.0 12.1 12.1 2.6
28 1998 Paul Laus 75 1.0 9.2   82 1.1 10.1 11.2 2.7
    Average           1.4 8.0 9.4  
 
26   Marc Methot 46 1 6            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
28 1980 Colin Campbell 42 0.7 5.8   82 1.4 11.3 12.7 2.5
25 1971 Gary Doak 55 0.9 10.1   82 1.3 15.1 16.4 2.8
27 1999 Brad Bombardir 32 2.9 1.0   82 7.4 2.6 10.0 2.8
26 2010 Davis Drewiske 38 0.0 4.9   82 0.0 10.6 10.6 2.9
29 2000 Sean O'Donnell 80 3.9 12.6   82 4.0 12.9 16.9 2.9
26 1984 Tom Laidlaw 61 0.7 7.7   82 0.9 10.4 11.3 3.0
27 1989 Jim Johnson 75 2.2 9.6   82 2.4 10.5 12.9 3.0
27 2009 Anton Volchenkov 64 3.8 9.6   82 4.9 12.3 17.2 3.0
27 2001 Mattias Timander 78 4.1 7.2   82 4.3 7.6 11.9 3.0
28 1993 Jeff Beukeboom 68 6.6 6.7   82 8.0 8.1 16.0 3.1
    Average           3.5 10.1 13.6  
 
27   Milan Michalek 77 35 25            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
29 2000 Brian Savage 62 20.3 23.3   82 26.8 30.8 57.7 3.4
29 1974 Jean Pronovost 78 33.4 26.1   82 35.1 27.4 62.6 4.8
27 1992 Claude Lemieux 77 22.0 38.0   82 23.4 40.5 63.9 5.2
27 2001 Fredrik Modin 54 14.2 17.5   82 21.6 26.6 48.1 5.3
29 2001 Geoff Sanderson 42 11.2 5.2   82 21.9 10.2 32.0 5.4
30 1994 John MacLean 46 15.1 11.0   82 26.9 19.6 46.5 5.4
29 2009 Michael Ryder 82 17.3 14.3   82 17.3 14.3 31.6 5.6
29 2000 Alex Selivanov 59 7.7 10.7   82 10.7 14.9 25.6 5.6
30 1981 Rick Kehoe 71 21.9 35.6   82 25.3 41.1 66.4 5.8
28 2000 Mariusz Czerkawski 82 28.9 31.0   82 28.9 31.0 59.9 5.9
    Average           23.8 25.6 49.4  
 
32   Chris Neil 72 13 15            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
34 1975 Bryan Hextall 79 6.2 19.6   82 6.4 20.3 26.8 3.0
34 2008 Jamal Mayers 71 6.5 8.3   82 7.5 9.6 17.1 3.2
32 1975 Billy MacMillan 64 7.0 5.7   82 9.0 7.3 16.3 3.4
32 1990 Lou Franceschetti 51 1.5 6.3   82 2.4 10.1 12.5 3.5
32 1989 Jim Korn 46 1.4 3.7   82 2.5 6.6 9.1 3.6
34 1986 Rich Preston 73 5.8 6.7   82 6.5 7.5 14.0 3.6
35 1996 Randy Cunneyworth 76 10.9 22.6   82 11.8 24.4 36.1 3.6
34 2003 Tie Domi 80 7.3 13.5   82 7.5 13.8 21.3 3.7
32 1997 Dave Lowry 57 4.0 4.2   82 5.8 6.0 11.8 3.8
32 2010 Arron Asham 44 4.9 5.8   82 9.1 10.8 19.9 3.9
    Average           6.8 11.7 18.5  
 
23   Jim O'Brien 28 3 3            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
26 1994 Patrik Carnback 41 5.3 13.7   82 10.6 27.4 38.0 3.0
25 2009 Colin Fraser 70 6.7 11.5   82 7.8 13.5 21.3 3.1
26 1998 Peter Ferraro 46 6.1 8.2   82 10.9 14.6 25.5 3.1
23 1985 Geoff Courtnall 64 14.1 11.1   82 18.1 14.2 32.3 3.2
23 2003 Rico Fata 73 16.6 18.7   82 18.6 21.0 39.7 3.2
24 1993 Jesse Belanger 70 13.9 27.8   82 16.3 32.6 48.8 3.2
25 2000 Tyson Nash 57 7.7 6.8   82 11.1 9.8 20.9 3.2
23 1987 David Bruce 28 5.0 2.2   82 14.6 6.4 21.1 3.3
22 2000 Matt Cooke 81 13.5 12.6   82 13.7 12.8 26.4 3.4
26 1997 Craig Conroy 81 14.1 30.1   82 14.3 30.5 44.7 3.4
    Average           13.6 18.3 31.9  
 
33   Chris Phillips 80 5 14            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
32 2007 Hal Gill 81 2.9 20.3   82 2.9 20.6 23.5 3.8
34 1986 Mike Milbury 68 4.3 12.0   82 5.2 14.5 19.7 4.6
35 1995 Doug Lidster 59 4.2 7.8   82 5.8 10.8 16.7 4.8
36 2000 Bobby Dollas 21 1.0 1.0   82 3.9 3.9 7.8 4.8
33 2011 Cory Sarich 62 1.0 6.0   82 1.3 7.9 9.3 5.2
33 2011 Jan Hejda 81 5.0 14.0   82 5.1 14.2 19.2 5.2
34 1993 Kevin Lowe 71 4.1 11.8   82 4.7 13.6 18.4 5.2
32 1987 Tim Bothwell 78 4.3 9.6   82 4.5 10.1 14.6 5.3
34 2010 Brett Clark 82 8.8 21.4   82 8.8 21.4 30.2 5.3
32 2010 Henrik Tallinder 82 4.9 10.7   82 4.9 10.7 15.6 5.5
    Average           4.7 12.8 17.5  
 
25   Peter Regin 10 2 2            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
24 2008 Daniel Paille 73 11.2 13.8   82 12.6 15.5 28.1 2.8
24 1999 Radek Bonk 80 22.3 36.3   82 22.9 37.2 60.1 2.9
25 1973 Guy Charron 76 20.8 26.3   82 22.4 28.4 50.8 3.5
26 1983 Rob McClanahan 41 4.0 5.6   82 8.0 11.2 19.2 3.5
28 1985 Dwight Foster 68 4.0 8.3   82 4.8 10.0 14.8 3.6
24 1974 Bill Clement 68 16.3 13.1   82 19.7 15.8 35.5 3.7
26 1989 Kelly Miller 80 13.0 16.3   82 13.3 16.7 30.0 3.7
27 1979 George Ferguson 73 15.9 22.3   82 17.9 25.0 42.9 3.7
27 1984 Alain Cote 80 8.9 15.5   82 9.1 15.9 25.0 3.8
28 1994 John Druce 43 13.4 4.6   82 25.6 8.8 34.3 3.8
    Average           15.6 18.5 34.1  
 
23   Zack Smith 81 14 12            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
24 1994 Gino Odjick 23 3.6 4.6   82 12.8 16.4 29.2 1.8
22 1984 Troy Murray 80 17.8 28.1   82 18.2 28.8 47.0 2.2
23 1971 Bobby Sheehan 78 17.4 23.9   82 18.3 25.1 43.4 2.3
25 2008 Fredrik Sjostrom 79 6.5 5.5   82 6.7 5.7 12.5 2.3
23 2001 Matt Cooke 82 13.2 20.6   82 13.2 20.6 33.8 2.4
22 1994 Glen Murray 35 4.5 1.8   82 10.5 4.2 14.8 2.8
25 1988 Paul MacDermid 74 12.1 19.7   82 13.4 21.8 35.2 2.8
22 1975 Bob Gainey 78 11.7 10.6   82 12.3 11.1 23.4 2.9
26 2010 Jeff Tambellini 62 8.8 7.8   82 11.6 10.3 22.0 3.0
23 2007 Maxime Talbot 63 11.7 13.6   82 15.2 17.7 32.9 3.1
    Average           13.2 16.2 29.4  
 
28   Jason Spezza 80 34 50            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
31 2000 Jeremy Roenick 80 28.9 44.6   82 29.6 45.7 75.3 4.4
30 1980 Darryl Sittler 80 29.8 38.5   82 30.5 39.5 70.0 4.6
30 1980 Gilbert Perreault 56 13.8 28.3   82 20.2 41.4 61.6 4.8
31 1983 Marian Stastny 68 13.5 22.5   82 16.3 27.1 43.4 5.3
30 1998 Mark Recchi 71 16.2 38.0   82 18.7 43.9 62.6 5.4
28 1999 Mats Sundin 73 31.0 40.2   82 34.8 45.2 80.0 5.6
30 2001 Petr Nedved 78 21.3 25.8   82 22.4 27.1 49.5 5.6
29 2000 Mats Sundin 82 27.0 44.6   82 27.0 44.6 71.6 5.7
29 1989 Jari Kurri 78 23.8 44.3   82 25.0 46.6 71.6 6.2
31 2002 Mats Sundin 75 37.1 35.1   82 40.6 38.4 78.9 6.2
    Average           26.5 39.9 66.5  
 
22   Kyle Turris 55 12 17            
Age Year Historical Match GP G A   GP G A PTS Sim
22 1975 Lanny McDonald 75 28.8 45.7   82 31.5 50.0 81.5 2.3
23 1987 Rick Tocchet 65 22.2 24.3   82 28.0 30.7 58.7 2.3
23 2011 Artem Anisimov 79 16.0 20.0   82 16.6 20.8 37.4 2.5
23 2009 Tyler Kennedy 64 12.5 11.5   82 16.0 14.7 30.8 2.8
24 1997 Matthew Barnaby 72 5.0 20.8   82 5.7 23.7 29.4 2.9
24 1990 Shawn Burr 80 15.4 23.5   82 15.8 24.1 39.9 3.0
21 2002 Justin Williams 41 8.0 16.1   82 16.0 32.2 48.2 3.2
22 1987 Brian Lawton 74 12.2 17.7   82 13.5 19.6 33.1 3.2
23 1980 John Anderson 75 11.8 18.9   82 12.9 20.7 33.6 3.2
22 1980 Tony McKegney 80 25.6 23.2   82 26.2 23.8 50.0 3.3
    Average           18.2 26.0 44.2  

 

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