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Razor With an Edge: Beer League Analytics

by Daryl "Razor" Reaugh / Dallas Stars

Analytics are infiltrating the sport of hockey at the highest level; the NHL. Got me thinking what if the trickle-down effect were applied to the slowest and lowest level. What if analytics hit, 'Beer Leagues’?

So first off we need substitutes for the twin pillars of the analytics foundation, Corsi and Fenwick.

How about 'OfCourseHe' and 'Bailiwick'?

Corsi is shots for vs shots against and is the adopted name of its creator, Jim Corsi (currently goalie coach for the St Louis Blues). OfCourseHe would measure shots that were taken when a teammate was obviously wide open in a better scoring spot vs shots allowed because all five guys on the ice played defense like the opposing team had just returned from a West African Ebola camp. As in; OfCourseHe didn't see me, or OfCourseHe scored...again. Lots of sarcasm in this stat.

Fenwick is Corsi without blocked shots in the equation.
For big time Beer League purposes this'll be 'Bailiwick'.
Seeing as blocked shots for beer leaguers only come to be when a player of Irish decent passes away and a Mormon teammate shows up at the wake, we'll just go with shots that the goalies were forced to deal with - their area of 'expertise'.

Next up, ZSP (Zone Start Percentage). This is more a measurement of fatigue and attendance in men's league hockey than anything else. Was the game reffed? Did the guys just dig the puck out after goals and play on? Were there any substitutes? Or was it merely organized awfulness. Anyway, if there are officials, the common ratio of face-offs is seven at center ice (following goals) to every one conducted to the left or right of that nights rented goalie. If not, it's the percentage of times you come off the bench for 'Furnace Face Phil' after a goal against, or replace 'Peter Puckhog' after his latest end to end rush.

PDO - Team shooting% and save% when a certain player is on the ice.
This is the stat that is dominated by the one guy on every team that 'had a cup of coffee' in pro, played Major Junior or NCAA, eats healthy, and owns an operable treadmill. When he takes a shift it's akin to Crosby joining a midget house-league game. For almost all others it is instead a body fat% tracking algorithm/contest similar to The Biggest Loser. Call it 'TBL' instead of PDO and hope nobody gets announced DOA.

QualComp - Quality of competition.
Every beer league has a handful of dolts who, at age 45-50, are still 'chasing the dream' or 'reliving their rep team youth' with their full-tilt approach to casual competition. Known as "Game 7 Gary's", they provide annoying, eye-roll inducing shifts that are both over the line physical and not as good as the player thinks they are in his delusionally narcissistic mind. If you are out against him or others similar, then your QualComp becomes 'Level of Douchebaggery' or LevBag.

Other advanced stats for the gut and groin-soreness set:

- TIOZ (Time in Own Zone) A tabulation of each player's true 'give a sh*t' regarding playing anything resembling defense. The measurements are in tenths of seconds and rarely reach double-digits.

- LOPS (Look-Offs Per Shift) This is an accounting of the number of times a shift that a player with the puck surveys his options to pass but instead views the alliance as too inferior or a 'play killer' and merely carries on selfishly as the Mayor of Dangletown.

- ASP (Accidental Save Percentage) Percentage of saves made when it was obvious that the puck just hit the goalie after he was completely undressed by the original move or shot.

- PSB (Post Game Beers) This is kept by the case number. The more cases consumed, the better the individual player's performances that night becomes in his own now buzzed mind, and the less soul-crushing the return to domestic life is.

- Arborists Quotient (AQ) Number of players on team that still use sticks made of wood.

- NGG (No Goalie Game) Biggest buzzkill in beer hockey. Tracks the number of games that were played in which hitting a pipe replaced beating a goalie.

- Cosmetic Differential (CosDif) Tracks accidental cuts and abrasions to the face vs 'I think Charlie had some work done'.

- HMB (Hold My Beer) Tabulates the number of times a player tries to duplicate something he saw an $8 million dollar NHLer do on TV the night before.

Naysayers will argue that 'fancy stats' have no place in beer league hockey where success is better measured by the size of a man's overtaxed heart, his caricature, and his family-time sacrifice.

To them, and to all, I just say cheers you overweight, hockey-loving, balding bastards.

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