The PDO measures the luck factor of each team versus their overall performance (standings). A team with a PDO greater than 102 will be considered very lucky, a team with a PDO less than 98 will be considered unlucky while a team with a PDO around 100 will perform as we can judge to be "fair". Given that it is impossible to predict the number of power play that a team will have during a season (and by default their power play performance), only the full strength situations are considered for the PDO .
The following graph shows the relationship between the 2018-2019 performance of the teams and their PDO. The PDO axis crosses the point axis at 92.6 points, which is the average number of points, based on the past 5 years, that a team must have to make the final season playoffs. Also, the blue area indicates the teams for which luck played a less important role in their performance. These being with a PDO between 99 and 101. Let us now focus on the teams at the ends of the graph.
PDO - PRODUCTION INCREASE
Teams with a PDO below 98 were marked by extreme bad luck in 2018-2019, which for the most part was detrimental to their annual results. Fortunately for them, the luck factor fluctuates from year to year, even between the regular season and the playoffs for those who managed to qualify for it. For our analysis, we consider that teams with a PDO of less than 99 should have an increase in their production this year.
(PDO : 98,4 – Points : 83)
The Wild won the prize for the least fortunate team of the year with its PDO of 98.4. When we look at the PDO average of their top five pointers in full strength, we get a PDO of 97.7, which is lower than the average for the entire team. With the exception of Jared Spurgeon, who is nearing average, they should all be luckier this year. Thereby, Wild's point should also increase.
(PDO : 98,5 – Points : 86)
The Panthers had another difficult year, despite a threatening first line, without being the luckiest with their PDO of 98.5. The PDO average of their top 5 full strength scorers reaches 98.4, just slightly less than the team as a whole. Having little depth, the effect of the low PDO of the main players has a direct impact on the team's performance. With the exception of Aleksander Barkov, who is expected to maintain his performance, the others should be a little luckier and, by default, improve the performance of the Panthers.
(PDO : 98,7 – Points : 76)
The Sabres have shown some good signs of progress this year, but they would need a little more help to aspire to better results. Like the rest of the team, the PDO average of their top 5 tied scorers was 98.7. With the exception of Jeff Skinner, for whom the luck factor did not really play a role in his success, the others should see their production increase as well as the whole team.
NEW JERSEY DEVILS
(PDO : 98,7 – Points : 72)
After having a superb year in 2017-2018, the aspirations for 2018-2019 were high. On the other hand, with a PDO of 98.7, we can confirm that luck was not with them. The PDO average of their top 5 full strength scorers was 97.8, less than the whole team. With the exception of Kyle Palmieri, which is expected to continue, the others are expected to see their production increase. If the PDO of the best players increases, the team performance will increase!
SAN JOSE SHARKS
(PDO : 98,7 – Points : 101)
The Sharks' analysis is interesting because of their low PDO and the number of points accumulated during the year. They have an outstanding year and I don’t even dare think the number of points if they had been just a little luckier, would they have exceeded the Lightning mark? When we analyze their team PDO of 98.7 versus the PDO of their top 5 full strength scorers of 99.4, we can say that the most productive players were not affected by the luck factor. In short, the Sharks should improve their cumulative points this year.
COYOTES DE L’ARIZONA
(PDO : 98,8 – Points : 86)
(PDO : 98,8 – Points : 86)
The Coyotes went short from a playoff run by 4 points , despite their 98.8 PDO. With a little bit of luck, the results could have been different. With the PDO of their top 5 full strength scorers of 98.8 being equal to the rest of the team, we presume the Coyotes should perform better with a bit more luck. They will do better this year than the last.
PDO - PRODUCTION DECREASE
Teams with a PDO greater than 102 get an extremely hight luck factor in 2018-2019, which was beneficial for them in terms of point. Unfortunately for them, the luck factor fluctuates from year to year, even between the regular season and the end-of-season playoffs. For our analysis, we consider that the teams with a PDO of more than 101 should experience a production decrease this year.
(PDO : 102,2 – Points : 104)
The Caps is one of two teams to maintain the highest PDO of the past season. When we look a little further, we understand more easily what made them successful. If we look at the PDO average of their top five full strength pointers, we get a PDO of 102.5, which is very high. With the exception of Nicklas Backstrom, who is expected to maintain the pace with a PDO of 100.6, the other four are expected to have a production decrease. As a result, the Caps' point harvest should also decrease.
(PDO : 102,2 – Points : 103)
The Surprising Islanders is the other team who benefit from the highest PDO of the season. While everyone thought they were good for last place in the league following the departure of John Tavares, they surprised the world of hockey ... but greatly benefited from their luck! The PDO average of their top 5 full strength scorers peaks at 102.9. With the exception of Mathew Barzal who should see his luck a little more on his side next year, the other four should see their production decrease and therefore, decrease the general performance of the team.
What happened in the playoffs? The Islanders regained a normal PDO of 99.6. In the first round, they eliminated the Pittsburgh Penguins who had a PDO of 92.3, meaning they were extremely unlucky (Our lowest metric for the season is a PDO of 96!). The Islanders took advantage of it, but in the second round, when they were eliminated by the Hurricanes (PDO of 101.1), they did not make the weight.
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING
(PDO : 102 – Points : 128)
The Lightning's dream season is certainly related to the raw talent of the team, but the 128 points are more so with their high PDO of 102. While everyone agreed on the power of this team, no one could predict as much victory. The PDO average of their top 5 full strength pointers was 102.6, which is very high. With the exception of Steven Stamkos who has maintained a normal PDO of 100.9, the other 4 main point producers of the team should see their production decrease. This will have a definite impact on the overall performance of the team, which will see its number of points decrease this year.
What happened in the playoffs? The Lightning experienced a complete turnaround from a 102 PDO to a low 96.7 PDO in the playoffs. Luck really turned their backs on them as they faced the Columbus Blue Jackets who maintained a neutral PDO of 99.3.
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS
(PDO : 101,9 – Points : 100)
We were all excited to see what the Maple Leafs would do with the addition of John Tavares. This young team had a good point production and benefited from a favorable PDO to help them keep up the pace throughout the year. The PDO average of their top 5 full strength scorers was 102.2, which suggests that their performance will decline next year. With the exception of Auston Matthews, whose production is expected to increase, the other four are expected to experience the opposite. So the Maple Leafs will see their number of wins drop next year as their PDO get closer to normal.
What happened in playoffs? The Maple Leafs maintained a PDO of 100.8 during the playoffs, which is normal. That's why their series against the Boston Bruins ended in seven games. The Bruins just got a little bit more luck with a PDO of 101.6.
PENGUINS DE PITTSBURGH
(PDO : 101,4 – Points : 100)
The Penguins have been an example of consistency for the past few years. When we analyze their team PDO of 101.4 versus the PDO of their 5 best full strength pointers of 100.3, we can assume that the luck factor was predominant among support players much more than for them. (excepted of Crosby and Guentzel). That said, the Penguins should still see their overall points decrease next year, unless their star players loose their chance this year.
What happened in playoffs? The Penguins were the team with the lowest PDO in the series with a score of 92.3. For example, the team with the least luck in the regular season posted a PDO of 98.4 (Wild Minnesota). Nothing to add...luck was really not with them!