Okay, no team is signing five European free agents in one offseason. There are still at least five forwards worthy of signing in my opinion, defence is a story for another day. I follow six European leagues, the Russian KHL, Swedish SHL, Finnish Liiga, Swiss NLA, German DEL, and Czech Extraliga. I look at u27 players, because the ELC system goes up to age 26 for (some) Europeans.
Since points are the most reliable and repeatable indicator of skill across leagues, I take players points per game and compare it to every FA who has signed out of that league since 2000. This allows me to quantify their point production in comparison to a group of players NHL teams have deemed worthy of a contract. This inherently builds in some of the biases of NHL teams, for example players 6’3″ or taller tend to drag down the average p/g because teams prefer to sign a depth player with size. Therefore I cannot hold the same expectation that an excellent winger like 5’8″ Kristian Tanus will sign as his teammate 6’3″ Joona Luoto did, despite being on pace to triple his point production at age 21.
Those leagues are in their 2nd Euro …
Author: Earl Schwartz / The Leafs Nation