Analysis of seasons past- results surprise

This is an essay.

Whilst becoming tired of the “impression”-based comments on the forum, I decided to do an analysis of exactly how the team / coach has performed over the seasons, with an emphasis on comparing 2015 to previous years.

The results surprised in many ways.

Rather than being the defensive disaster that is often suggested (including by me), 2015 is actually:

  • 6th best season as measured by points conceded per game
  • 5th best season as measured by average loss margin
  • 3rd best season as measured by points conceded per loss
  • Best season as measured by points conceded per win

In 2015, it is the attack figures that are not so good:

  • 3rd worst season as measured by points scored per game
  • 7th worst season as measured by for/against margin per game and by points scored per loss
  • 5th worst season as measured by points scored per win

But there is a strange up-side to the attack in 2015:

  • 3rd best season for average win margin
  • best ever season for points conceded (lowest) during a win.

Specifically for JT, we are definitely improving when it comes to scoring points and keeping the opposition out. There are no doubts the attack and defence are both improved over anything experienced during the Potter years.

For example, JT is:

  • 2nd best coach as measured by points conceded per game
  • 2nd as measured by for/against margin per game
  • best as measured by 4 other metrics: average win margin, average loss margin, average points conceded during wins, average points condeded during losses.

Which raises the question - if the attack and defence aren’t the worst ever, and the coach is comparably well-placed, how is it that 2015 is a strong chance of being our first ever wooden spoon? 2015 is the 4th-worst for win percentage of all seasons, and also 4th-worst for average placing on the table. We have only ever fallen to last place once before: season 2013 (5 weeks at 16th).

It appears that the answer is quite subtle.

Firstly: coming last may be a measure of how even a competition is. In other words, if there are no easy-beats, there might not be an obvious candidate to save you from coming last, and the bottom-placed teams may share a decent amount of wins. Parra saved us from coming last in 2013.

But specifically for Tigers in 2015, our issue appears to be with the Jekyll/Hyde nature of our performances. When we win, our defence goes to another level, and the winning margin is very strong (even taking into account that we had a 1-point win in Rd 1). In other words, our winning scores aren’t special, but our winning defence is easily the best we’ve ever had – only 9.6 points conceded per win and an average win margin if 17.4.

In contrast, when we lose, we aren’t conceding lots of points and we aren’t copping many hidings (losing margins are modest). Instead, we are losing because we are not scoring enough points – 14.5 points scored per loss, whilst conceding 27.92

It seems that for some reason, our performances are either really good (i.e. both attack and defence click) or they are poor without being dreadful. There does not appear much in-between, such as many hard-ground wins or absolute floggings. If the game is close, we invariably lose, which is not surprising, given the age and inexperience of our side.

This speaks to me as being two issues. Firstly: mental; we can be flat-track bullies or easy-beats in consecutive weeks. Secondly, we probably have a few key weaknesses, such as lack of centres depth, that hamstring our attack and stop us making the most of a decent defensive record.

What the results don’t tell you is whether our wins occur because good defence sets a platform for improved attack, or because good defence is irrelevant if you can’t score points. Should we attack more and hope the defence comes on, or work more on defence to make up for attacking deficiencies?

To answer this, you’d need to review the tapes to see the flow of games – whether good attack results in best defence, or whether best defence permits good attack. We’ve certainly had games where we both blew the opposition away early (Dragons) and late in the match (Eels). It’s a bit too chicken-egg for me at this stage.

Now don’t go off half-cocked and say “I told you JT was spending too much time on defensive structures”, because there is no specific evidence in the results that says we can’t attack and defend at the same time. Our wins are almost exclusively made up of our best defence and bestattack.

It may simply be true that our attack is not mature enough or sophisticated enough to trouble the good sides, and our defence is still not good enough to cover that deficiency.

Also bear in mind that all this analysis is being done against previous seasons, which for the most part are losing seasons. These are comparisons against previous Tigers sides, so saying defence is better, is not necessarily saying the defence is good enough to trouble the best sides. Similarly, attack may only be down compared to the very flamboyant Tigers sides of the mid 2000s.

I don’t need a damn spreadsheet to tell me why we are coming dead last even though stats indicate our defence may be better.

We haven’t won enough games!

Nuff said

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There is still a few games t go as well, and the way we are playing it doesn’t bode well at all for our statistics

Thanks for the analysis…Good effort and interesting read.

Some people on here surprise me, I can’t believe the ordinary/ thoughtless post made next

A couple of times each season, wests-tigers lose games they shouldn’t, and come back to bite them on the bum. This year already two glaring ones, bulldogs & raiders.
Would like to eliminate this from wests-tigers game from ever repeating.
Also somehow instil the " killer instinct", so when ahead they don’t back off, or put the cue in the rack.

Looks to be a lot of work gone into this well done.

Stats from a club that has been crap in 13 seasons out of 16 means very little. You can put any amount of spin you like on it but it doesn’t take away the fact that they are going to ‘win’ the wooden spoon this season and more than likely the next.

@jirskyr:

This is an essay.

Whilst becoming tired of the “impression”-based comments on the forum, I decided to do an analysis of exactly how the team / coach has performed over the seasons, with an emphasis on comparing 2015 to previous years.

The results surprised in many ways.

Rather than being the defensive disaster that is often suggested (including by me), 2015 is actually:

  • 6th best season as measured by points conceded per game
  • 5th best season as measured by average loss margin
  • 3rd best season as measured by points conceded per loss
  • Best season as measured by points conceded per win

In 2015, it is the attack figures that are not so good:

  • 3rd worst season as measured by points scored per game
  • 7th worst season as measured by for/against margin per game and by points scored per loss
  • 5th worst season as measured by points scored per win

But there is a strange up-side to the attack in 2015:

  • 3rd best season for average win margin
  • best ever season for points conceded (lowest) during a win.

Specifically for JT, we are definitely improving when it comes to scoring points and keeping the opposition out. There are no doubts the attack and defence are both improved over anything experienced during the Potter years.

For example, JT is:

  • 2nd best coach as measured by points conceded per game
  • 2nd as measured by for/against margin per game
  • best as measured by 4 other metrics: average win margin, average loss margin, average points conceded during wins, average points condeded during losses.

Which raises the question - if the attack and defence aren’t the worst ever, and the coach is comparably well-placed, how is it that 2015 is a strong chance of being our first ever wooden spoon? 2015 is the 4th-worst for win percentage of all seasons, and also 4th-worst for average placing on the table. We have only ever fallen to last place once before: season 2013 (5 weeks at 16th).

It appears that the answer is quite subtle.

Firstly: coming last may be a measure of how even a competition is. In other words, if there are no easy-beats, there might not be an obvious candidate to save you from coming last, and the bottom-placed teams may share a decent amount of wins. Parra saved us from coming last in 2013.

But specifically for Tigers in 2015, our issue appears to be with the Jekyll/Hyde nature of our performances. When we win, our defence goes to another level, and the winning margin is very strong (even taking into account that we had a 1-point win in Rd 1). In other words, our winning scores aren’t special, but our winning defence is easily the best we’ve ever had – only 9.6 points conceded per win and an average win margin if 17.4.

In contrast, when we lose, we aren’t conceding lots of points and we aren’t copping many hidings (losing margins are modest). Instead, we are losing because we are not scoring enough points – 14.5 points scored per loss, whilst conceding 27.92

It seems that for some reason, our performances are either really good (i.e. both attack and defence click) or they are poor without being dreadful. There does not appear much in-between, such as many hard-ground wins or absolute floggings. If the game is close, we invariably lose, which is not surprising, given the age and inexperience of our side.

This speaks to me as being two issues. Firstly: mental; we can be flat-track bullies or easy-beats in consecutive weeks. Secondly, we probably have a few key weaknesses, such as lack of centres depth, that hamstring our attack and stop us making the most of a decent defensive record.

What the results don’t tell you is whether our wins occur because good defence sets a platform for improved attack, or because good defence is irrelevant if you can’t score points. Should we attack more and hope the defence comes on, or work more on defence to make up for attacking deficiencies?

To answer this, you’d need to review the tapes to see the flow of games – whether good attack results in best defence, or whether best defence permits good attack. We’ve certainly had games where we both blew the opposition away early (Dragons) and late in the match (Eels). It’s a bit too chicken-egg for me at this stage.

Now don’t go off half-cocked and say “I told you JT was spending too much time on defensive structures”, because there is no specific evidence in the results that says we can’t attack and defend at the same time. Our wins are almost exclusively made up of our best defence and bestattack.

It may simply be true that our attack is not mature enough or sophisticated enough to trouble the good sides, and our defence is still not good enough to cover that deficiency.

Also bear in mind that all this analysis is being done against previous seasons, which for the most part are losing seasons. These are comparisons against previous Tigers sides, so saying defence is better, is not necessarily saying the defence is good enough to trouble the best sides. Similarly, attack may only be down compared to the very flamboyant Tigers sides of the mid 2000s.

While I can understand the reason for a comparison , I went through in a previous post , the number of variables that are present in such a comparison,
Just a few were: did we play more or less night games.
We’re there a lot of wet weather games.
What injuries did we have in comparison, or what injuries did the opposition have
were the opposition better or worse in those years
Were rep players out Of our team or theirs
What suspensions did we or the opposition have
That’s just a few things that can and do effect how a team plays on any specific day
It’s not scientific , but shows how hard it is to compare even two seasons and be any where accurate in any findings
I’m not knocking your comparison.
Just pointing out the difficulty in getting answers

Good analysis, much appreciated.

That said - I wouldn’t mind seeing a rolling average of our average points against. My concern is that this trend is going the wrong way, after a pretty decent start.

Also, comparing a 2015 team to previous years is somewhat useless, and we should be comparing ourselves to the NRL in general in 2015 only. I say this for two reasons:

  • WT have traditionally been, well, shit.
  • The NRL changes significantly from year to year, let alone over a 15 year period. Rules are interpreted differently, teams copy successful teams strategies - on the cycle goes.
    End result - the game today is paddocks away from, say, the 2004 equivalent, and thus comparing statistics in isolation between the two is somewhat irrelevant.

The NRL has become more and more defensive year by year, and thus 2015 is arguably the most defence-first season we’ve ever had. In this environment, we have the 5th worst defensive record in the competition (on points conceded), so we’re still miles away from where JT wants us to be, and where we need to be.

Yes we are the 12th best / worst in attack and 12th best / worst in defence ,yet are running last

Thank you for the massive effort Jirskyr, very interesting read

While the stats do show some over all improvement to our defense it does suggest that this has come at the expense of other equally important issues. Most notably winning.

The stats also show.

Taylor needs at least 2 more wins to avoid being the coach who has won the least games in a season.

Taylor also has the clear worst winning percentage of all coaches. A mighty achievement at a football club that has been consistently bog average.

Stats are very subjective, id prefer to judge a coach based on how his players respond to his style of coaching and if players improve their game under his coaching.

@ricksen:

Good analysis, much appreciated.

That said - I wouldn’t mind seeing a rolling average of our average points against. My concern is that this trend is going the wrong way, after a pretty decent start.
.

Id like to see this also Ricksen.

Even just a direct comparison Taylor v Potter rounds 1 to 19 2014 v 2015.

Can you do my tax jirskyr? Should be a six figure return if we send in a similar spreadsheet to the ATO!

Jirskyr. Great read. Thanks for the effort

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@goldcoast tiger:

@jirskyr:

This is an essay.

Whilst becoming tired of the “impression”-based comments on the forum, I decided to do an analysis of exactly how the team / coach has performed over the seasons, with an emphasis on comparing 2015 to previous years.

The results surprised in many ways.

Rather than being the defensive disaster that is often suggested (including by me), 2015 is actually:

  • 6th best season as measured by points conceded per game
  • 5th best season as measured by average loss margin
  • 3rd best season as measured by points conceded per loss
  • Best season as measured by points conceded per win

In 2015, it is the attack figures that are not so good:

  • 3rd worst season as measured by points scored per game
  • 7th worst season as measured by for/against margin per game and by points scored per loss
  • 5th worst season as measured by points scored per win

But there is a strange up-side to the attack in 2015:

  • 3rd best season for average win margin
  • best ever season for points conceded (lowest) during a win.

Specifically for JT, we are definitely improving when it comes to scoring points and keeping the opposition out. There are no doubts the attack and defence are both improved over anything experienced during the Potter years.

For example, JT is:

  • 2nd best coach as measured by points conceded per game
  • 2nd as measured by for/against margin per game
  • best as measured by 4 other metrics: average win margin, average loss margin, average points conceded during wins, average points condeded during losses.

Which raises the question - if the attack and defence aren’t the worst ever, and the coach is comparably well-placed, how is it that 2015 is a strong chance of being our first ever wooden spoon? 2015 is the 4th-worst for win percentage of all seasons, and also 4th-worst for average placing on the table. We have only ever fallen to last place once before: season 2013 (5 weeks at 16th).

It appears that the answer is quite subtle.

Firstly: coming last may be a measure of how even a competition is. In other words, if there are no easy-beats, there might not be an obvious candidate to save you from coming last, and the bottom-placed teams may share a decent amount of wins. Parra saved us from coming last in 2013.

But specifically for Tigers in 2015, our issue appears to be with the Jekyll/Hyde nature of our performances. When we win, our defence goes to another level, and the winning margin is very strong (even taking into account that we had a 1-point win in Rd 1). In other words, our winning scores aren’t special, but our winning defence is easily the best we’ve ever had – only 9.6 points conceded per win and an average win margin if 17.4.

In contrast, when we lose, we aren’t conceding lots of points and we aren’t copping many hidings (losing margins are modest). Instead, we are losing because we are not scoring enough points – 14.5 points scored per loss, whilst conceding 27.92

It seems that for some reason, our performances are either really good (i.e. both attack and defence click) or they are poor without being dreadful. There does not appear much in-between, such as many hard-ground wins or absolute floggings. If the game is close, we invariably lose, which is not surprising, given the age and inexperience of our side.

This speaks to me as being two issues. Firstly: mental; we can be flat-track bullies or easy-beats in consecutive weeks. Secondly, we probably have a few key weaknesses, such as lack of centres depth, that hamstring our attack and stop us making the most of a decent defensive record.

What the results don’t tell you is whether our wins occur because good defence sets a platform for improved attack, or because good defence is irrelevant if you can’t score points. Should we attack more and hope the defence comes on, or work more on defence to make up for attacking deficiencies?

To answer this, you’d need to review the tapes to see the flow of games – whether good attack results in best defence, or whether best defence permits good attack. We’ve certainly had games where we both blew the opposition away early (Dragons) and late in the match (Eels). It’s a bit too chicken-egg for me at this stage.

Now don’t go off half-cocked and say “I told you JT was spending too much time on defensive structures”, because there is no specific evidence in the results that says we can’t attack and defend at the same time. Our wins are almost exclusively made up of our best defence and bestattack.

It may simply be true that our attack is not mature enough or sophisticated enough to trouble the good sides, and our defence is still not good enough to cover that deficiency.

Also bear in mind that all this analysis is being done against previous seasons, which for the most part are losing seasons. These are comparisons against previous Tigers sides, so saying defence is better, is not necessarily saying the defence is good enough to trouble the best sides. Similarly, attack may only be down compared to the very flamboyant Tigers sides of the mid 2000s.

While I can understand the reason for a comparison , I went through in a previous post , the number of variables that are present in such a comparison,
Just a few were: did we play more or less night games.
We’re there a lot of wet weather games.
What injuries did we have in comparison, or what injuries did the opposition have
were the opposition better or worse in those years
Were rep players out Of our team or theirs
What suspensions did we or the opposition have
That’s just a few things that can and do effect how a team plays on any specific day
It’s not scientific , but shows how hard it is to compare even two seasons and be any where accurate in any findings
I’m not knocking your comparison.
Just pointing out the difficulty in getting answers

Two good posts with interesting points in each.

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