Historical Review of Draft Results
Results by Age of Player when Drafted
Please reserve comment for a future post wherein I will request commentary on the review as a whole.
At issue here is the ability to isolate 'age' as a factor in evaluating the ability of an organization to draft players. To do that it is important to: 1) modify the player-grade scores such that a single 'Hall of Fame' player does not skew the results of a single age category entirely, and 2) modify the calculation to recognize that projecting the capability of an 18 year old player is harder than projecting the capability of a 22 year old player.
There is no issue with the fact that trying to gauge the long-term ability of an 18 year old kid is a difficult task. A 30 year old man, however, should be more of a known quantity and a player like that should only be drafted if the team has a reasonable assurance that the player in question can fill the role required. After all, anyone over the age of 24 that gets drafted by an NHL team is already playing pro-level hockey.
I will not go into detail on the math. Suffice to say that first the player-grade scores were flattened out and then, as a second step, a modifier was put in that added to the global score for each category of players younger than 23 and subtracted from the global score for each category of players older than 23. The modifier increases the further away from 23 you go. The grades are organized and summarized below:
Please note the percentile score in the second column on the left side of the main chart. It is derived from the sum of all players who have a player-grade D or higher AND all prospects that are ranked (star / solid / borderline).
Four things we can draw from this part of the study: a) drafting 18 year old kids is a crapshoot no matter the team, b) the team has had some success drafting 19 year olds, c) that success does not carry forward to the 20 year old category and d) the scouts seem to have an aversion to drafting overagers.
While the sample set is small, and the overall scoring value is a negative (-75), the team's results when drafting 19 year olds are pretty good. That percentile score of 34% is not a mirage. The future play of Enstrom and Little should serve to increase the scoring in this category and if any of Bourret, Lewis or Machacek turn out it only gets better.
Of interest is the lack of overage draftees. Given the team's drive to be competitive quickly** I would have expected to see far more players, age 22 or older, drafted with late round picks. Like the Lehtonen draft pick, this piece of information stands out as an indicator of a mistake having been made in the build of the team via the draft.
** Editor's premise: Heatley and Kovalchuk developed into impact players very, very quickly. The moment that happened the slow build should have been off the table as a viable team building strategy. The team did not draft a single overage player (and only four 20 year olds) after 2002 - that points to a disconnect between the team's draft build strategy and real time requirements.
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Introduction
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results Summation
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Yrs 1999 to 2003
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Yrs 2004 to 2008
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Year
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Round
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Pick
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Age
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Position
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By League
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Draft Results By Country of Birth
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Player Grading System
Atlanta Thrashers 2008 HRDR - Graded Players Summary
Have a great evening everyone.