DALLAS, TX - MARCH 09: Center Brad Richards #91 of the Dallas Stars skates in the shootout against the Calgary Flames at American Airlines Center on March 9, 2011 in Dallas, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
In an effort to figure out a way around Scott's comparables list for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, commenters in three different commonly-traveled sites have determined that Brad Richards is, in fact, the best comparable for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins based on the need for a better class of comparable player. They've used era effects and team effects and nailed their man because rather than starting out with a list of parameters, and working through that criteria, they started with a list of targets and worked backwards to get to that target.
So if Brad Richards is such a great comparable for Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, we should probably compare Sean Couturier to Brad Richards and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, given that Couturier posted better per game numbers than Nugent-Hopkins in 2010-11.
First up, let's look at their raw numbers.
Well, of course Nugent-Hopkins' numbers are going to be suppressed; he plays in the always-difficult WHL. We need to normalize these numbers for league effects and then normalize for era effects. Couturier plays in that crazy, wide-open, no-one-cares-about-defense QMJHL and Richards played in the days where goaltenders from the Q were drafted no matter what they did, so scoring was out of control.
|League & Era Effects||League G/G|
Hm, that's odd. That Richards' thing works out in favor of Nugent-Hopkins, but that darned Couturier is still hanging around. Oh! Oh! I know! Red Deer was a defense-first, defense-always team and their offense took a huge hit because of that. If we compare him to those silly QMJHL offense-only kids, this will work out.
|Team Effects||Team G/G|
Hm. You mean Couturier's team wasn't a run-it-up team? Well, this isn't taking into account Nugent-Hopkins' playmaking ability. Figure out the % of offense and we're there.
|% of offense|
See, the problem here is that you need to combine all of this to show exactly how Nugent-Hopkins is comparable to Brad Richards.
|Normalized for League and Team|
Oh. Well, this doesn't take into account Nugent-Hopkins' vision. I'll be right back with a different player that's better suited to what I believe.