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PLL By the Numbers – Week 5

What players are really productive, who hurts their team and how everything in the PLL relates to average for Week 5 in Atlanta.

Editor’s Note: Sports analytics pioneer Wayne Winston and his lacrosse-minded son Greg put their heads together to create advanced metrics for the field game. Their first full-season test subject: the PLL. Because, well, to them, standard stats are boring. Welcome to ‘PLL By The Numbers’.

We’ve had a lot to say about the action this week, so let’s dive straight into some numbers.


PLL Week 5 Results – Atlanta

  • Atlas 13, Archers 12
  • Redwoods 14, Whipsnakes 11
  • Chaos 15, Chrome  14

PLL Week 6 Schedule – DC

  • Redwoods vs Archers – Saturday, 5:00 P.M. on NBCSN
  • Atlas vs Whipsnakes – Saturday, 7:30 P.M. 2:30 P.M. on NBCSN
  • Chaos vs Chrome – Sunday, 3 P.M. on NBCSN

PLL By The Numbers: Week 5

Goals Added 

A shooting analytic, originally designed by Patrick McEwen, that counts shots on goal that didn’t go in as a loss of possession and assumes league average on the probability you retain possession from off-cage shots. We have been tracking all off-cage shots, but I generally mark it as a save when the goalie catches it even if it looks off cage because it has the value of a save from a functional standpoint. Still, our league average checked out to be pretty similar to the one used originally by McEwen, so it shouldn’t alter the numbers.

Here are the top ten in goals added. These shooters add the most to their team while using the least possessions.

  1. J. Byrne, Chaos | 5.15 
  2. J. Neumann | 4.19
  3. E. Law, Atlas | 3.25
  4. D. Class, Chaos | 3.17
  5. M. Thompson, Chaos | 3.15
  6. T. Schreiber, Archers | 2.89
  7. R. Drenner, Whipsnakes | 2.81
  8. J. Ranagan, Chrome | 2.77
  9. M. Holman, Archers | 2.66
  10. C. Peterson, Redwoods | 2.41

Here are the least efficient players in the league. These players use the most possessions and get the least output 

  1. K. Harrison, Redwoods | -5.20
  2. J. Sankey, Redwoods | -5.13
  3. K. Rice, Archers | -4.20
  4. J. Wolf, Chrome | -3.72
  5. J. Locasio, Whipsnakes | -2.96
  6. D. Snider, Whipsnakes | -2.53
  7. C. Buczek, Atlas | -2.08 
  8. D. Maltz, Whipsnakes | -1.95
  9. M. Jones, Chaos | -1.87
  10. J. Nardella, Whipsnakes | -1.73 

Points Created 

On each goal we tracked the person who dodged to create it. These are the players who created the most points based on their dodges; if your dodge created a two-pointer you get two points for the dodge.

  • 1. J. Guterding, Chrome- 13
  • 2. M. Rambo, Whipsnakes- 12
  • 3. C. Fields, Chaos- 9
  • 4. S. Perkovic, Redwoods- 8
  • T4. N. Crotty, Chrome- 8
  • T4. J. Wolf, Chrome- 8
  • 6. J. Byrne, Chaos- 7
  • T6. J. Ranagan, Chrome – 7
  • T6. B. Reeves, Whipsnakes- 7
  • T6. T. Schreiber, Archers- 7
  • T6. M. Jones, Chaos- 7
  • T6. M. Kavanagh, Redwoods- 7
  • T6. C. Kelly, Whipsnakes- 7
  • T6 S. Salcido, Redwoods- 7 

Face-off Rankings 

We estimated the amount of goals each teams primary face-off guy generated, or lost, for his team based on win/loss record. (Estimating a possession is worth .3 goals.)

  1. T. Baptiste, Atlas +8.47 Goals
  2. J. Nardella, Whipsnakes +3.71 Goals
  3. C. Farrell, Chrome +1.06 Goals
  4. T. Kelly, Chaos +.88 Goals
  5. G. Gurenlian, Redwoods -.35 Goals 
  6. S. Kelly, Archers -4.41 Goals 

What we look for

On each shot we also tracked:

  1. The region where shot was taken.
  2. Result of the shot.
  3. Whether a short stick or a long stick is guarding the dodger.
  4. The type of dodge (if any) that created the space (last dodge that happened).

Outputs

Each metric reflects the points above, or below, average scored on the type of shot. 

  • For example, a score of +.05 means that type of shot nets 5% more goals than the shot average.
  •  A -.05 means that type of shot nets 5% fewer goals.
  • We base our numbers on an assumption that a team scores on 30% of all possessions, an average.
  • Remember a negative number is bad on offense, but good on defense.

Archers

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.02
Crease .09
Two Point .07

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .03
Topside -.08
Wing- Alley 0
Wing- Top .04
X .08

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS 0
SS .02

Defense 

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.03
Crease .09
Two Point -.10

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.02
Topside -.02
Wing- Alley .27
Wing- Top -.04
X -.01

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.09
SS .10
  • The Archers are your definition of an average PLL team.
  • That doesn’t mean they’re average lacrosse players, but their production is pretty much par for the course across the board.
  • If only Stephen Kelly had won 50% of his faceoffs, the Archers would have roughly 4.47 more goals. That stings when you’ve lost three games by a goal 

Key Player vs. Redwoods: T. Schreiber 

We believe Schreiber is top five in the MVP race. He is the only midfielder to be in the top ten in goals created and goals added, and our stats don’t fully capture his passing and decision making abilities. 

Atlas

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.08
Crease .07
Two Point .-.03

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.11
Topside -.02
Wing- Alley .07
Wing- Top -.02
X .05

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.10
SS ..02

Defense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.04
Crease .05
Two Point .37

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.07
Topside 0
Wing- Alley .17
Wing- Top .03
X -.14

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.07
SS -.01
  • The Atlas are getting ROASTED behind the two point arc.
  • In the PLL, defense is about more than defending the crease, allowing .64 points per shot.
  • Fun side note: Paul Rabil is currently shooting below average in our Goals Added metric. 

Key Player vs. Whipsnakes: T. Baptiste

 This week the most efficient face off guy takes on the least efficient one. The Atlas are arguably the weakest team outside of their FOGO, and will need the extra possessions to remain competitive. We believe Baptiste is the current MVP of the league, because the quantity of possessions he gains outweighs the amount of goals added by any shooter by a very large amount.

Chaos

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other .02
Crease .14
Two Point .18

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .11
Topside .03
Wing- Alley .25
Wing- Top .14
X -.11

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS .08
SS ..07

Defense 

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained Per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.05
Crease .07
Two Point -.08

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.01
Topside -.21
Wing- Alley -.01
Wing- Top .-.11
X 0

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS 0
SS .09
  • The Chaos have the most dominant offense, and they are making great use of the most valuable shots in the game (2’s and crease)
  • The Chaos have such talented attackmen that they are doing better dodging against poles than short sticks
  • The talent on this offense extends beyond their attack and even beyond their short sticks as a whole. Jarrod Neumann is currently adding the second most goals to his team in our Goals Added stat.

Key Player vs. Chrome: Josh Byrne  

Byrne, is an overlooked MVP candidate. He is first in Goals Added, sixth in Goals Created, and he already has 11 goals.

Chrome

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.03
Crease .03
Two Point .10

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .02
Topside -.04
Wing- Alley .14
Wing- Top -.14
X .01

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.09
SS .06

Defense 

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.01
Crease .03
Two Point .13

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .11
Topside -.05
Wing- Alley -.13
Wing- Top 0
X 0

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.07
SS .04
  • I have no statistical way to prove this but Chrome must be the best team to go winless through the first half of a season in any professional sport. They are not far behind the other five teams in the league, but the record doesn’t back that up. 
  • Ranagan, Manley and Guterding are the only three shooters at least a goal above average for Chrome in our Goals Added stat. Wolf is the only player on Chrome to be shooting greater than a goal below average

Key Player vs. Chaos: Justin Guterding 

Guterding is one of the best dodgers in the league and the points he creates show that. Someone has to match Connor Fields and the Chaos offense on the other side. 

Redwoods

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained Per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.08
Crease .12
Two Point -.17

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .14
Topside .01
Wing- Alley -.11
Wing- Top -.15
X -.19

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.11
SS .-.01

Defense 

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.08
Crease .06
Two Point .-.01

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.07
Topside -.20
Wing- Alley .04
Wing- Top .14
X -.02

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.09
SS .10
  • The Redwoods offense has looked in sync the past two weeks. Jules Henningburg is the missing piece they needed.
  • Kyle Harrison is the most inefficient player in the league, taking 5.2 goals from the team. The second most inefficient is Joey Sankey at 5.13.

Key Player vs. Archers: Garrett Epple

With 14 CT’s and 25 GB’s already, Epple is the driving force behind the best defense in the league. Holman and Manny are putting up numbers and it is up to Epple to stop that.

Whipsnakes

Offense

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.06
Crease -.01
Two Point .06

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley -.05
Topside -.17
Wing- Alley .04
Wing- Top .13
X -.07

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS -.04
SS -.05

Defense 

Shot Results by Region

Region Points gained per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
Other -.06
Crease .13
Two Point -.01

Dodging Results 

Dodge Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession) 
Alley .21
Topside .03
Wing- Alley -.04
Wing- Top -.06
X -.06

Results Based on Dodging Short Stick or Pole 

LS or SS Points gained Per Shot (Factoring in Possession)
LS .01
SS .02
  • In the same sense that the Chrome aren’t that much worse than the other teams, the Whipsnakes aren’t that much better than average. The parity in this league is nuts.
  • That being said, the Whipsnakes are doing a great job on Wing-Top dodges.

Key Player vs. Atlas: M. Rambo

Rambo ranks second in goals created and the entire offense runs through him. It’s no surprise he’s leading the league in points.

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