The Washington Capitals made a splash in 2014 by hiring analytics pioneer Tim Barnes. Now they’ve taken the next step by adding the firm of one of hockey’s brightest minds, Hockey Graph’s Garret Hohl. According to Daily Hive, Hohl’s company, HockeyData, Inc., will be providing quantitative and video analysis to the team.
It seems HockeyData will be doing analysis primarily on the AHL level, where good data is scarcer. From the story:
They have the ability to track any league they have video for, although the Capitals are most interested in AHL analysis for now.
HockeyData has twenty people on staff, presumably coding video, crunching numbers, and providing advice to team decision makers. Leading them is Hohl, who has been a prominent writer at Jets Nation and the creator of Hockey Graphs.
Hohl has long been a thought leader in the hockey geek community. He’s written about the maturation of data, the struggle between volume and quality, and some of the cultural issues among number geeks.
This is the tweet pinned to his twitter account:
As the Daily Hive story notes, an effective loop from quantitative analysis to decision making can give teams a significant advantage, which is why many of them keep their data proprietary and their vendors a secret. The announcement of the Caps/HockeyData deal is a bit of a rarity, but it sounds like a good move to us.
Russian Machine Never Breaks is not associated with the Washington Capitals; Monumental Sports, the NHL, or its properties. Not even a little bit.
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