In Hall We Trust

Source: EdmontonOilers.com

Source: EdmontonOilers.com

I can’t believe I have to write this.

Taylor Hall is one of the top players in the game today. Despite playing for one of the worst franchises in recent history, Hall has been a very productive player. He’s about to complete his fifth year in the NHL, playing for his fourth coach, and there appears to be some question about his value.

To judge a player, we can supplement what we see on the ice with both traditional stats as well as some of the more modern metrics (i.e., posession, scoring chances, etc).

From what I’ve seen, Hall is an absolute beast when it comes to attacking the opposing net. He’s very good along the boards, excellent at gaining the zone, not afraid to take a hit, and he can finish. Now for the numbers.

Overall

GP G A PTS PPG PPA SHG SHA GWG PIM SHOTS
2010-11
65
22
20
42
8
3
0
0
4
27
186
2011-12
61
27
26
53
13
8
0
0
7
36
207
2012-13
45
16
34
50
4
10
0
0
4
33
154
2013-14
75
27
53
80
7
10
0
1
1
44
250
2014-15
50
13
23
36
3
3
0
0
0
40
146
Total
296
105
156
261
35
0
16
180
943

Not bad right? 261 points is second only to Tyler Seguin (279 points) of the 2010 draft class, but keep in mind, Seguin has played 56 more games (Source: HockeyDB). In 2012/2013, he was ninth overall in scoring. In 2013/2014, he was sixth in total points, behind Crosby, Getzlaf, Giroux, Seguin and Perry.

Even Strength

The true value of a player is how well they do at even strength. Here’s a look at how he’s done, as well as the number of points per 60 minutes at 5-on-5.

Season
Games
Goals
Assists
Points
G/60
A/60
P/60 
TOI/Gm
2010-11
65 10 15 25 0.6 0.9 1.6 14.8
2011-12
61 13 18 31 0.9 1.2 2.1 14.4
2012-13
45 12 21 33 1.1 1.9 3.0 14.5
2013-14
75 16 37 53 0.8 1.9 2.8 15.2
2014-15
50 6 18 24 0.4 1.4 1.8 15.9
Total
296 57 109 166

In 2012-12, Hall was sixth in the league in points-per-60  (at even strength) behind guys like Crosby, Toews and Staal. In 2013-14, he was sixth again, behind guys like Getzlaf, Perry, Seguin and Benn. In terms of productivity at even strength, Hall is one of the best in the NHL.

You can also average his assists per 60 & points per 60 over 4 years (2011-15) to see that he’s the 4th best playmaker & 8th overall points producer in the NHL (thanks to Walter for finding that).

Advanced Stats

Since entering the league, Hall has been given a lot of offensive zone starts and has delivered. He regularly sees the top competition, but has managed to produce at a very decent clip. What we can also glean from his advanced stats is how vital Hall is to the Oilers success. For instance, the Oilers are more likely to have possession of the puck when Hall is on the ice. The team typically gets their decent share of shots and scoring chances when Hall is on the ice, and the team doesn’t do nearly as well when he’s on the bench. It should also be noted that Hall’s shooting percentage is usually pretty consistent, and its drop may be the reason why he has struggled this season. I think it’s safe to assume that shooting percentage will get back to normal very soon. I’ve included a full table of his stats in the Appendix.

Here’s a visual of Hall’s deployment and performance last season. You can see here, and in his other four seasons (Appendix below), that he gets a decent amount of offensive zone starts,faces tougher competition, and still manages to produce. (Source: Hockey Abstract’s Player Usage Charts)

Oilers 2013-2014

Trade Hall?

If the right player becomes available, every single player on this roster should be made available. The Oilers are clearly in need of a few defensemen, so it shouldn’t surprise us to hear trade rumors involving Hall. However, if there is any thought of moving Hall for any other reason (i.e., “character” issues, “winning culture”), then a few things need to be considered.

To move Hall, the Oilers would need a player that would take over the minutes from Hall AND produce at that clip. Unless a player coming back is someone that can crack the top 10 in points-per-60 at even strength, you’d be nuts suggesting Hall be moved. Benoit Pouliot has been a fantastic addition, but he would not be able to match any of Hall’s point totals. This roster is weak enough as it is, so moving away a legitimate NHL player, at a very cap friendly salary, is completely absurd.

I read a couple comments on Twitter questioning Hall’s ability to stay healthy. First of all, this is professional hockey. Crazy shit can happen in a split second when you’re cruising around the ice on sharp blades and taking regular contact. And we knew before the Oilers drafted Hall what kind of player he was going to be: hard skating, drives to the net, a bit wreckless, but effective at carrying the play in the right direction. If playing a little on the edge is what will keep Hall productive, then we have to live with it.

Final Thoughts

I will say that my perception of Hall changed this season, not because of his performance, but because of the emergence of RNH. Going into the season, I saw Hall as the face of the franchise; someone that would be captain in the next few years. Now, I still see Hall as a vital part of the club, but not nearly the same captain/franchise material as RNH. This might be a reason why others see Hall as expendable. Just a thought.

Also, the Edmonton Journal needs to stop with their ridiculous polls. It’s bad enough that a recent one found that people would trade Hall, but then they had to mention Hall’s twitter account when they tweeted their findings, just to make sure he knew how fans felt about him. Classy.

Being a top player, Hall will always have misinformation about him being published and spread. It’s always important to question the content, who is saying it, and the timing, Really, as long as the Oilers keep losing, the rumours will continue,..that’s just how it works. And let’s not twist Hall’s placement on the second line with Lander and MIller as some sort of demotion. That to me is a sign of depth, done in large part by the signing and performance of Pouliot.

Recommended Links

RE 14-15 Taylor Hall: Midnight Rider – Lowetide

Appendix

Below are his stats using the Hockey Abstract’s Player Usage Charts.

Oilers 2010-2011

Oilers 2011-2012

Oilers 2012-2013

Oilers 2013-2014

Advanced Stats Summary for Taylor Hall

Source: War on Ice

2010-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14

2014-15

Gm

65 61 45 75 50
G 10 13 12 16 6
A 15 18 21 37 18

P

25 31 33 53 24
TOI/Gm 14.8 14.4 14.5 15.2 15.9
PRODUCTIVITY

G/60

0.6 0.9 1.1 0.8 0.4

A/60

0.9 1.2 1.9 1.9 1.4
P/60 1.6 2.1 3 2.8 1.8
Penalties Drawn (Diff) 21 6 10 8 -4

PDO

99.5 100.6 100.7 100.7 100.4

PSh%

6.8 9 10.2 9.6 6.4
ZSO% 51.2 56.7 54 56.6 55.9
ZSO%Rel 2.1 9.4 9.2 17.4 9.1
POSSESSION, CHANCES, SHOTS

Scoring Chances For %

48.1 51.3 49.7 46.1 49.4

SCF% Rel

5.5 5.4 7.8 1.6 6.2
Corsi For % 48.8 52.3 50.4 44.4 51.1
CF% Rel 4.7 6.5 8.6 0.4 4.2
Shots For % 47.1 51.1 51.8 45.9 48.1
SF% Rel 2.5 5.4 10 2.2 1
Goals For % 45.7 52.6 53.8 47.8 49.2
GF% Rel 1.7 9.7 10.5 8.8 13.7

.

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3 thoughts on “In Hall We Trust

  1. Pingback: Eberle, RNH and “Star” Status | The SuperFan

  2. Pingback: Comparing the Oilers by Position to the Rest of the League | The SuperFan

  3. Pingback: Thoughts on the Hall Trade | The SuperFan

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