On Monday, we posted Part 1 of our BSH Over-Under Game, where we took 10 numeric benchmarks and guessed whether the actual number on each one will be over or under the one we gave.
Today, we'll do the same thing. While yesterday's numbers were mostly pertaining to individual stats, these will be for team-level numbers.
Fancystats! Last season, the Flyers' score-adjusted Fenwick (via war-on-ice.com) was 48.6 percent. Will they be over or under that number this year?
Al: OVER. One word: Grossmann.
Allison: OVER. I think the Flyers will be slightly better with puck possession solely because of Evgeny Medvedev. Is that too strong? I don't know, maybe. The guy's good, though.
Brent: OVER. Getting rid of Grossmann was a beautiful, beautiful thing.
Charlie: OVER. This really comes down to how much faith you have in Dave Hakstol and his system. Consider me an optimist.
Kelly: OVER. I'm in the minority (I think?), but I think this team is going to be better overall this year than last. And possession numbers will reflect that.
Kurt: UNDER. Grossmann being gone makes this a tempting over, but I'm still not sure if there's any defenseman on this team that the team can confidently play in tough minutes against good opponents, and it's tough to see this group doing much possession-wise until one of those shows up.
Mary: OVER. The Flyers will trend back up for a higher Fenwick this season, mostly because of the notable absences of Nick Grossmann and Zac Rinaldo -- noted advanced stats killers.
Ryan: OVER. No Grossmann, no Rinaldo, no Berube.
Travis: OVER. I legitimately don't know why I am being optimistic.
Slightly less fancy stats! After tallying the third-best power play in the NHL last year, with a 23.4% conversion rate, will the Flyers' PP this year convert on over or under 23.0% of its chances?
Al: UNDER. I’m not really basing this on personnel or system changes, more on the fact that I think last year the power play over achieved, and getting to that point again will be tough.
Allison: OVER. I think adding Michael Raffl to the power play is only going to help improve their success.
Brent: UNDER. The last 3 years before last one, they've been below 22%. It will still be a very good unit, just not quite THAT good.
Charlie: UNDER. The Flyers are consistently among the league leaders in power play efficiency, but 23% was extremely high even for them. I'll say that they deal with a bit of regression here while still remaining near the top of the league charts.
Kelly: OVER. Like I said, a better team overall.
Kurt: OVER. It's real close, but this team has pretty well proven that its top power play unit is going to be a machine for as long as Claude Giroux and Wayne Simmonds are healthy and good hockey players, and I think the second group improves by just enough to keep them right around this mark.
Mary: UNDER. The Flyers will have a successful power play again this season, but will barely miss the 23 percent they trended to last year. While the power play is one of Philadelphia’s strengths, teams will start to figure out how to bottle up the Flyers’ playmakers this year.
Ryan: OVER. The 2nd unit will be exponentially better than last year.
Travis: UNDER. It'll still be good though.
The penalty kill, meanwhile, was bad (not good) last year. At 77.1%, it was the fourth-worst in the NHL. Last year, the NHL's 15th-best penalty-killing team (in other words, roughly NHL-average) killed off 81.0% of its penalties. Will the Flyers be over or under that mark?
Al: OVER. The Flyers penalty kill has been great in recent years, last year excluded. They still have a roster full of capable penalty killers, and with some new guys on the team that can help in that department, I imagine it will snap back to form.
Allison: OVER. I'm hoping that once the team buys into Hakstol's aggressive style, the PK will start climbing back to average and then back to a team strength, where it belongs.
Brent: OVER. No more Rinaldo as a PKer experiments and some better luck/backup goaltending put it over the top.
Charlie: OVER. They have the personnel to ice a dominant penalty kill, and I'm of the opinion that last year's slip was a bit fluky and will be corrected.
Kelly: UNDER. Hope I'm wrong here but I'm not sure we'll see that great an improvement. I have no doubt it'll be above 77%, though.
Kurt: OVER. The skaters looked the part of a top-half PK unit over the second half of last season, and they had by far the worst PK goaltending in the league last season. That should change, and I think it will by enough to prop this group up into the top half of the league.
Mary: UNDER. Despite being bolstered by a different system and better backup netminding, the Flyers will still trend lower than 81 percent. Expect 79 to 80 percent, a bump up from last season but still in the latter half of the league in terms of the PK.
Ryan: OVER. Have to think they’ll at least be average. Improvement from Coots, Read, coaching and in the crease.
As a team, will the Flyers' save percentage this year be over or under .915? This includes any possible goalies forced into action, not just Steve Mason and Michal Neuvirth. For reference, though, last season Mason [.928] and Neuvirth [.912] would have combined for a .921 on 2,557 total shots against.
Al: UNDER. Not to take away from Mason’s stellar season, but I do think he’ll take a step back next year. I hate to be the guy who still doubts he’s an elite goaltender, but I just do.
Allison: OVER. Even if Steve Mason has a down year (which, judging from his performance in preseason, seems unlikely), I think the Flyers goaltending will be decent. If he has another stellar year, there's no question they'll make it over the .915 mark.
Brent: OVER. It'll be close to this number, as Mason comes back a bit but Neuvirth should be better than Emery/Zepp were last. Eh, I'm an optimist at the beginning of the season anyway :)
Charlie: OVER. Mason's save percentage drops, but Neuvirth delivers solid statistics in relief - far better than Ray Emery did last year.
Kelly: OVER. No reason to expect either of these guys to be worse than they were last year, and I expect Mason will improve. He's looked great in preseason action.
Kurt: UNDER. Not because I don't have confidence in these guys -- they are being considered a strength of this team, and correctly so -- but because goalies are voodoo and we don't get nice things in Philadelphia when it comes to goalies and, like, would anyone really be surprised if one of them fell flat, which may be all it takes for them to end up below that number? Also, 3-on-3 is gonna screw with league-wide save percentages this year.
Mary: OVER. Steve Mason will continue to impress and Neuvirth will figure himself out in net to give the Flyers a one-two punch in net that they haven’t seen in years.
Ryan: OVER. Steve Mason will be elite™.
Travis: OVER. Might drop from .921 but it'll still be over .915.
As we well know by now, the Flyers, despite not being very good for a few years now, are near-incapable of losing to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Last season, the Flyers got eight out of eight possible points in games against their cross-state rivals. This year, will the Flyers pick up over or under 4.5 standings points across their four games against the Penguins?
Al: OVER. The Flyers own the Penguins. If I’m being honest, the only games last year that I actually derived pleasure from were Flyers-Penguins games. For some reason, the Flyers can stink like hell but still beat the Pens.
Allison: OVER. The Flyers are actually going to get 10 points against the Penguins.
Brent: OVER. We're in their heads BAD. Getting another sweep might not be in the cards, but a split with a Bettman point thrown in just doesn't seem hard to get with them. Besides, Pittsburgh is one injury to their top line from being not that good.
Charlie: OVER. The Flyers' recent dominance of the Penguins has been one of the few things to keep Flyers fans happy during these lean years. The Penguins look better than ever, but sure, let's say that the craziness continues.
Kelly: OVER. Because LOL Pens.
Kurt: OVER. They'll get at least three points at home by distracting the Penguins pre-game with dozens of jars of mayonnaise in the visitor's locker room, and they'll certainly pick up at least one win in The Building Where The Flyers Don't Lose Hockey Games.
Mary: OVER. Pittsburgh got better this offseason, so it’s not unreasonable to expect the Penguins to get one win over the Flyers this year. Still, the Flyers will continue to frustrate their cross-state rivals at home and bring out the worst in one of the best teams in the league.
Ryan: OVER. Nine points out of eight possible.
Travis: OVER. Obviously.
Will Flyers players be handed over or under 3.5 games' worth of suspensions by the Department of Player Safety this year? Last year they had eight, all of course belonging to the since-departed Zac Rinaldo. The average NHL team, meanwhile, had 2.7 games' worth of suspensions given to them.
Al: UNDER. Zac Rinaldo is gone. Enough said.
Allison: UNDER. This is going to be a very well-behaved team, because otherwise, Hakstol will make them wash Ed Snider's car with very tiny toothbrushes.
Brent: UNDER. There just doesn't seem to be anyone on this roster currently that gets suspended. It wouldn't surprise me if this number is zero. (Cut scene to me looking at an article saying Luke Schenn got a 4-gamer for charging the first game of the year...)
Charlie: OVER. Someone will step up to fill the heart void that Remaldo left.
Kelly: UNDER. We're free from Rinaldo, remember?
Kurt: OVER, because [/stands on high horse within my stable of tin foil] the NHL hates the Flyers. (They don't, but someone will probably do something stupid at some point right?)
Mary: UNDER. With Rinaldo gone, the Flyers will keep their suspension game time to a new low. Good for the team, bad for the "Flyers are bullies" narrative.
Ryan: UNDER. No Remaldo.
Travis: UNDER. Bye, Zac.
3-on-3 play is new and fun this year! Will the Flyers' winning percentage in games that end in 3-on-3 play (i.e. after regulation but before the shootout) be over or under 48 percent?
Al: OVER? This is a total shot in the dark, but I’m really hoping that the new overtime format will benefit the Flyers for the sole fact that fewer shootouts will take place.
Allison: UNDER. From what I've seen in preseason, the Flyers won't stand to benefit much from 3-on-3. Why on Earth would anything good happen to the Flyers during overtime?
Brent: OVER. Giroux, Voracek and Streit are a pretty good trio. A second unit with some mix of Couturier, Simmonds, Schenn, Raffl and then Medvedev isn't too bad either.
Charlie: UNDER. It wouldn't be a Flyers season without way too many OT/SO losses.
Kelly: This is tough ... I'm going with OVER. I have no good reasoning for this other than "I think that seems right."
Kurt: UNDER. Not by a ton, but there are faster and more skilled teams out there than this one who I can see beating the Flyers at this.
Mary: UNDER. While the 3-on-3 OT will help Philadelphia avoid the dreaded shootout, the Flyers will struggle to find the right personnel with the new system.
Ryan: UNDER. I imagine the team being about .500 this season, but better in normal games than 3-on-3
Travis: OVER. I think they'll be a decent 3-on-3 team and will win more than 50% of OT games, especially when Hakstol realizes they're garbage in the shootout and goes full gas pedal every time they get to OT.
The Flyers began this week with eight defensemen on the NHL roster -- Streit, Schultz, Del Zotto, Medvedev, MacDonald, L. Schenn, Gudas, and Manning. By the time 3:00 p.m. on February 29 -- the trade deadline -- has come and gone, will over or under 1.5 of those eight defensemen have been traded?
Al: OVER. This is tough, because there’s really not many guys on the defense that other teams would want. However, with all the talk about Luke Schenn getting traded, I imagine that will probably happen sooner or later. The other guy I expect to be shipped out is Mark Streit around the trade deadline, as he could be a nice pickup for a contending team (i.e. not the Flyers).
Allison: UNDER. If Ron Hextall can manage to unload anyone other than Mark Streit, he's a wizard.
Brent: OVER. One gets traded early in the year, and another gets traded when one of the kids demands to be promoted with his performance at LV. This or they'll be out of it and Streit and Luke Schenn get traded.
Charlie: OVER. I think Mark Streit and Luke Schenn are both gone by the end of the season.
Kelly: UNDER. Unfortunately, no one wants our trash. Mark Streit might fetch something nice if we're out of the race at the deadline, though.
Kurt: UNDER. One of them goes, but the extra year on one of Streit/Del Zotto/Schultz's contract scares a team away from dealing for them.
Mary: OVER. Work that summertime magic, Hextall.
Ryan: OVER. Streit, Schenn and even Medvedev could all be moved at the deadline.
Travis: Schenn and Streit are both going to be traded. So, OVER.
More trade speculation! As you may or may not know, the Flyers have two players with the last name of "Schenn" on their roster. (Sources tell me that the two of them may actually be related to one another. Wow.) Over or under 1.5 Schenns still being on the roster after the trade deadline has passed?
Al: UNDER. By all accounts, Dave Hakstol does not like the Schenns. I honestly think Brayden’s time in Philadelphia has come to an end, and Luke would have to be shipped out in a package deal as well (you have to package them together in a trade per the CBA). [Ed. note: It's true. You can look it up.]
Allison: OVER. Everyone knows you can't just trade brothers away from the other, and I think it's pretty unlikely that they manage to send both Schenns someplace other than the moon.
Brent: OVER. But wouldn't be surprised if it's the other way either. I've been thinking Brayden will get traded for a few years now, and if he was a UFA instead of an RFA and the team was out of it he'd be gone, but he's not and I'm envisioning this team as a fringe playoff contender this season, more so than last. Same thing for Luke, although his odds of getting traded are higher.
Charlie: UNDER. I actually think Brayden sticks around, but Luke isn't long for this team.
Kelly: UNDER. One of them will go, for sure. Probably B.
Kurt: OVER. Haven't we been talking about trading the Schenns for about as long as we've had them? I guess there's a little more juice to it this time around, but I'll go with my gut here. Maybe Luke gets dealt at the deadline.
Mary: UNDER. Luke Schenn is gone by the deadline, Brayden stays.
Ryan: UNDER. If you trade one, you have to trade both. [Ed. note: Still true.]
Travis: UNDER. I hope you enjoy Ottawa or whatever, Luke.
Finally! Good old fashioned wins and losses. After they won 33 games last year, Vegas' line for Flyers wins this year is 37.5 -- will they end up over or under that number?
Al: UNDER. This team just hasn’t made enough strides in terms of personnel for me to think they are going to be anything more than stunningly mediocre. Pair that with likely growing pains under a new coach, and I’m just not comfortable going with the over here.
Allison: OVER. Do I think the Flyers are going to be good? Nah, not really. Do I think they'll be slightly better than last season? Yeah, probably. In my opinion, Gagner's an upgrade, Medvedev is an upgrade, ditching Andrew MacDonald blindfolded in the woods is an upgrade. I'm reasonably optimistic as far as improvement is concerned.
Brent: OVER. More 3 on 3 wins and better backup goaltending has them pushing 40 wins for the year.
Charlie: OVER. I think that the coaching change, an improvement in the penalty kill and a better backup goalie are worth at least five wins, though the playoffs are probably a stretch.
Kelly: OVER. PLAYOFFS BABY
Kurt: OVER. I don't think this team is great, but I do think their personnel is better than last year's, however slightly that may be by. Also, they lost 18 games in OT last year, including 11 in the shootout. With fewer shootouts, they should win a couple more of those. I think they win fewer than half of their games but they just barely clear this bar.
Mary: OVER. Maybe I’m being optimistic, but we need some hope in this city. The Flyers stay just under .500 in what seems to be a reasonable expectation for Dave Hakstol’s first year with the players currently the system. Philadelphia will miss the playoffs again thanks to the majority of the Metropolitan Division improving their talent while the Flyers mostly got rid of dead weight. While that doesn’t sound optimistic, the looming excitement for the emersion of prospect talent will win out during the team’s final down year.
Ryan: OVER. Slight improvements all around will get the Flyers a few more wins.
Travis: UNDER. Damnit.