The season has been laid to rest.
Fans have completed their lamenting of the Anaheim Ducks sweeping the Winnipeg Jets. The healing process has begun.
But, before full closure can be completed, an autopsy of the Jets season must be initiated.
We turn our evidence-based breakdown of the Jets newest big minute cruncher, Tyler Myers.
Numbers include all situations including non 5v5 TOI.
Tyler Myers made a lot of people happy with his production. He scored an impressive fifteen points in twenty-four games. This production was impressive, but –as we here all know– production over small samples can be highly inflated or deflated by natural shooting percentage variance.
Myers scored one goal and one assist on the power play, which was actually a bit low for him. Generally one would expect Myers to pace one goal and two assists, given the scoring chances the Jets created with him on the ice and his career norm impact on percentages.
On even strength we get a similar but opposite situation. Again his goal scoring was well within the normal expected ranges for Myers. However, we find his assist rate was inflated by favourable percentages. Myers experienced the Jets highest on-ice shooting percentage and the highest of his career.
The Jets scored 22 goals on 191 shots while Myers was on the ice, while normally we’d expect an offensive player like Myers to experience about 16 goals. Myers also assisted on 36 per cent of the Jets on-ice goals, while normally we’d expect an offensively gifted player like Myers to assist on 25 per cent.
Overall this means that Myers 3 goals and 12 assists production for the Jets was inflated. In the future a pace like 3 goals and 7 assists, or 10 points, over 24 games is a production we should expect from him.
Graph courtesy of WAR-on-Ice.
Rankings are out of the Jets 11 defenders with 50+ 5v5 minutes, except special team minutes are 4 players for power play and 7 players for penalty kill.
Myers was chosen by Paul Maurice for the defensive zone often, but due to the Jets playing some of their best hockey at the time (with Dustin Byfuglien moved back to defense, and the addition of quality depth players like Lee Stempniak and Jiri Tlusty) Myers actually started a lot of his shifts in the offensive zone.
Myers ate up even strength minutes less than any defensemen other than Zach Bogosian. Unlike Bogo though, Myers played a lot of power play and not much in short handed ice time.
Myers faced the other teams best often, but played with the Jets best even more often. As we mentioned with our Jacob Trouba post, this is an example of how many often over value quality of competition.
What is tougher? Facing the top lines 27% of the time instead of 24% or playing 80% of your time with Mark Stuart instead of Tobias Enstrom.
We had to expand the y-axis to twice the norm since his time as a Sabre was well outside of what is norm for a top-pairing defender.
This helps show the impact team effects can have on a player. On the worst 5v5 team in the league, Myers performed outside of what is normal. On one of the 5 strongest 5v5 teams in the league, Myers performed about average for what is normal.
Visual courtesy of Micah McCurdy.
Myers consistently outscored his opponents as a Jet –and we can even see which areas his inflated percentages came from– but his out shooting fluctuated from time-to-time.
All numbers are for minutes as a Jet only, with the exception of GAR.
We already have discussed Myers inflated scoring. Now, while 1.41 points per sixty minutes is definitely an inflationary pace, regressing it still puts him as a decent offensive defenseman. We should still expect him as one of the Jets stronger producers.
The difficulty comes with all the stats thereafter. Myers falls in the bottom three in every other category. This is not something that you want from the defender taking the bulk of your minutes.
Relative statistics like Corsi and Fenwick are tough on him, as comparing him to Jacob Trouba and Dustin Byfuglien –who take the bulk of the non-Myers minutes– is pretty tough; they are legit top-pairing defenders.
The issue is that Myers played more minutes than those other two right-handed shots, despite those two far out performing the former Sabre.
dCorsi, an usage adjusted measure, suggests that Myers played too many and/or too tough of minutes. While Goals Above Replacement suggest that Myers had a negative impact on the Jets and Sabres goal differential.
Myers is a decent defensemen.
He has offensive skill and should be one of the Jets top producers. He is also a strong option on the power play, tending to produce less than Paul Postma or Dustin Byfuglien, but around the same as Tobias Enstrom.
The issue is that his two-way numbers are not the strongest, and that’s putting it lightly. I would not be surprised if he improves next year. Heck, he even had a strong shot metric year once in his sophomore season. Still, it is unlikely that he performs superior to the Jets two other top right-handed defenders. If the Jets do not move one of the three to the left side, hopefully they distribute the ice time more optimally.
I should also mention, it is probably better if one of Trouba or Byfuglien play with Toby Enstrom instead of Myers. Enstrom’s greatest strength is his ability to repress shots against, which is also Buff’s and Trouba’s weakest area. Myers meanwhile is not overly efficient in either, but does a bit better in repression.