pGPS Numbers For The 2016 Leafs Draft Class

With free agency just a few hours away and the 2016 draft being almost a week old, it seems like its now or never to take one last look back at how the Leafs fared, particularly in rounds two through seven. This article will look specifically at the numbers behind what the Leafs did using pGPS, the best current prospect projection tool hockey has to offer.

You can read about pGPS here.

THE NITTY GRITTY

Below you’ll find the Leafs’ 2016 draft class sorted by pGPS %.

Note that Auston Matthews and Nikolai Chebykin have been excluded because they scored no successful comparables using the tool. In the case of Matthews this is because he was so good that he broke the tool, in the case of Chebykin it’s that he plays in the MHL which we only have numbers for dating back to 2011 (so, not a long enough time or a large enough sample size to gauge prospect success).

Joseph Woll has also been excluded because the tool doesn’t currently project goalies.

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 7.24.59 PM

As we can see, Adam Brooks and Carl Grundstrom look like particularly good statistical gambles. That’s not surprising given Brooks had 120 points in the WHL this year and Grundstrom plays in the SHL as a teenager.

On the other end you have Korshkov and Greenway, selected in the second and third rounds respectively. While Korshkov in particular seems like perhaps the safest bet past Matthews to reach the NHL from a purely qualitative perspective, his numbers don’t look good.

So great, those are the numbers, they’re a little polarizing…but what’s the context?

COMPARED TO HISTORY

Using historic rates for success by position and round, here’s how the 2016 draft class pans out:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 7.33.26 PM

For further reference, here’s the same thing only for the Leafs’ 2015 draft class using our old friend PCS:

Screen Shot 2016-06-29 at 7.33.51 PM

As we can see, in 75% of observed cases the Leafs drafted players who’s projection value exceeds historical draft pick value. That’s pretty good.

And it’s not like there aren’t players with low projection tool numbers, either. For example, 76 draft-eligible CHLers ranked by Central Scouting fit the bill of having a PCS% of 10.0 or lower last season. That’s a lot, especially if you consider that, again, that’s only including CHLers, and only those ranked by Central Scouting.

FURTHER pGPS CONTEXT

Let’s give ourselves even more context. Let’s also look more closely at pGPS R, a number that combines not only probability of reaching the NHL, but the potential a player might hold one they reach it.

Here are a number of highly-touted players for this year’s draft class, with the entire Leafs’ draft class included:

Rank

Player

Pos

pGPS %

pGPS P/GP

pGPS R

1.

Matthew Tkachuk

LW

100

0.7212

72.12

2.

Logan Brown

C

80.0

0.5801

46.41

3.

Kieffer Bellows

LW

50.0

0.8180

40.90

4.

Alex DeBrincat

RW

50.0

0.8034

40.17

5.

Alex Nylander

W/C

67.5

0.5546

37.44

6.

Pierre-Luc Dubois

W/C

100

0.3633

36.33

7.

Jakob Chychrun

LD

81.3

0.4230

34.37

8.

Olli Juolevi

LD

83.3

0.4014

33.45

9.

Taylor Raddysh

RW

58.6

0.5701

33.42

10.

Mikhail Sergachyov

LD

72.7

0.4517

32.85

11.

Vitali Abramov

RW

50.0

0.6231

31.16

12.

Adam Mascherin

RW

43.5

0.7054

30.67

13.

Jake Bean

LD

75.0

0.3944

29.58

14.

Michael McLeod

C

46.8

0.5892

27.58

15.

Cameron Morrison

LW

50.0

0.5229

26.14

16.

Pascal Laberge

RW

42.3

0.5779

24.45

17.

Dillon Dube

C

44.9

0.5370

24.11

18.

Simon Stransky

LW

40.5

0.5557

22.49

19.

Sam Steel

C

40.8

0.5448

22.25

20.

Noah Gregor

C

40.0

0.5527

22.11

21.

Tyler Benson

LW

38.8

0.5292

20.55

22.

Jesse Puljujarvi

RW

33.3

0.6093

20.31

23.

Luke Kunin

C

43.8

0.4624

20.27

24.

Max Jones

LW

38.4

0.5167

19.82

25.

Brett Howden

C

36.4

0.5300

19.27

26.

Carl Grundstrom

LW

36.96

0.51478

19.024

27.

Cam Dineen

LD

50.0

0.3788

18.94

28.

Charlie McAvoy

RD

37.2

0.4159

15.48

29.

Will Bitten

RW

25.8

0.5864

15.13

30.

Lucas Johansen

LD

46.7

0.3161

14.75

31.

Boris Katchouk

LW

31.6

0.4632

14.63

32.

Adam Fox

RD

50.0

0.2893

14.46

33.

Nathan Bastian

RW

32.4

0.4206

13.61

34.

Jordan Kyrou

RW

26.5

0.4678

12.38

35.

Chad Krys

LD

33.3

0.3439

11.46

36.

Markus Niemelainen

LD

45.5

0.2496

11.35

37.

Tage Thompson

RW

37.5

0.2943

11.04

38.

Rasmus Asplund

LW

19.6

0.4541

8.88

39.

Kale Clague

LD

31.1

0.2749

8.55

40.

Logan Stanley

LD

43.3

0.1923

8.33

41.

Frederic Allard

RD

20.0

0.3503

7.01

42.

Maxime Fortier

RW

12.7

0.5040

6.41

43.

Luke Green

RD

22.7

0.2814

6.38

44.

Jacob Cederholm

RD

24.2

0.2434

5.90

45.

Cliff Pu

C

15.0

0.3760

5.64

46.

Libor Hajek

LD

17.0

0.2231

3.79

47.

Riley Tufte

LW

14.3

0.1859

2.66

48.

Ryan Lindgren

LD

9.1

0.2188

1.99

49.

Adam Brooks

C

45.83

0.57703

0.26447

50.

Vladimir Bobylev

 

20.0

0.4545

0.0909

51.

Jack Walker

RW

19.72

0.45646

0.09001

52.

Nicolas Mattinen

LD

19.77

0.22725

0.04494

53.

J.D. Greenway

LD

7.69

0.5346

0.04142

54.

Yegor Korshkov

RW

7.69

0.50781

0.03906

55.

Keaton Middleton

LD

11.39

0.20765

0.02365

56.

Michael Mattson

C

0.0

0.0

0.0

57.

Dennis Cholowski

LD

0.0

0.0

0.0

58.

David Quenneville

RD

0.0

0.0

0.0

59.

Julien Gauthier

RW

0.0

0.0

0.0

So, seven of the Leafs’ picks come out very close to the bottom when combining for likelihood and upside. That’s not good. But hey, Adam Brooks’ 45.83 pGPS% puts him above the likes of Adam Mascherin, Dillon Dube, and Sam Steel. Not bad.

Grundstrom also ranks 26 on our list, pretty solid value for a late second-rounder. Let’s also not forget the players we have to work with here were all ranked in the Nation Network’s top 60 for the 2016 draft, so the Leafs draft class is going up against some pretty good competition.

CONCLUSION

The likes of Adam Brooks and Carl Grundstrom appear to be particularly good draft picks for the Leafs by the numbers, while the likes of Korshkov and Greenway sit at the opposite end. Granted, it’s just a projection tool, and these numbers should be used more as a supplement to the qualitative work that goes into scouting.

Still, it sure looks like the Leafs have done a fairly solid job with Mark Hunter at the helm in terms of drafting at or above expected value.

Also encouraging is the simple fact that the Leafs made 10 day two picks at the 2016 draft. History says if you drafted a forward 10 times in the fifth round you’d probably get one of them to turn into a player. That gives the Leafs good odds at finding an NHL regular out of their most recent draft class, considering they made seven picks before the fifth round.

So what am I saying?

Basically, the Leafs, at least at a fundamental level, appear to be doing fairly well for themselves at the draft under Mark Hunter. At least, that’s what the projection tools say. It’ll be interesting to see if and how that comes to fruition in the coming years.

  • Top Shelf

    Interesting that they seem to follow a similar model to pGPS% for the most part.

    Also interesting that the big deviations appear to be KHL/MHL Russian players, Dzierkals and Korshkov, where there may be insufficient data.

    Maybe some reason for optimism. They might know something we don’t. Maybe I’m just a homer though.