For those of you looking for some serious statistical analysis leading up to fantasy hockey draft time, let me point you over to Hockey Analytics today, where Alan Ryder has posted his recap of the 2006-7 season in terms of Player Contribution, which is his method for translating player performance into wins and losses for a given team. He also provides a spreadsheet with the detailed results of his analysis.
Granted, it's not a direct tool that will lead you to predict which players will lead the league in goals, assists, penalty minutes, etc. this upcoming season, but Ryder does some yeoman's work to answer the question of which individual achievements actually lead to team success.
As is probably obvious to most of you, goaltenders come out as having the greatest impact on team performance, and in another duh! moment, I'll tip you off that Roberto Luongo and Martin Brodeur came in 1st and 2nd in the Player Contribution rankings. But take a look who came in 3rd! The answer will surprise you...
A few other tidbits to entice you over to Alan's study? For Predators fans, there's this quote: "I think one could make the case that Mason was actually the best goaltender in the NHL." That was based on Mason's Shot Quality Neutral Save Percentage of .928, which bested Luongo's .920. There's also a wonderful discussion on the Sheldon Souray phenomenon, which puts his defensive liabilities in perspective along with his (I'm calling fluke) offensive production to put him as the 12th-most productive blueliner in the NHL last year.
So head on over to Hockey Analytics, print out Alan's report, and spend some quality time soaking in the numbers.