Monday, March 18, 2013

Video Games

I was watching a few interviews with Paul MacLean on YouTube after I did those two posts involving Babcock and came across something interesting. (The two worked together in both Anaheim and Detroit for years, and with Ottawa's success I wanted to see if Babcock had any influence on MacLean's philosophy in listening to some interviews.) MacLean's son David is a pro scout with the Phoenix Coyotes (his older son A.J. plays hockey in Dundee, Scotland) and the team there, the Dundee Stars, posted interviews with both Paul and David from this past summer. I thought it was interesting to hear what David had to say on his ascendency to his job as a professional scout at a relatively young age. He went to film school and got his start at TSN, and then got hired by the Coyotes to spearhead their video scouting database.

Here is the rest of the interview:

I dug up an article talking about when David and Paul faced off against each other in 2010 when the Red Wings and Coyotes met in the playoffs, which also talked a bit more about David's path.

I also read another article today talking about Predators video coordinator, Lawrence Feloney, and the increased focus on video by Nashville in this shortened season. The interesting parts of this article were the mentions of a system called XOS Thunder and a user interface called Hudl.
The Predators use a video system called XOS Thunder, something that many football teams and about half of NHL teams use to break down film and data. XOS Thunder has partnered with another program called Hudl, a fantastic user-friendly tool for organizing video and making it available to players and coaches anytime, anywhere.
“Hudl has made it easier on us video guys, and XOS has made it easier on us with stats,” Feloney said. “Three or four years we’d have to go back and physically cut all that data. Now those stats have made our job easier and it’s allowed to do more in other areas. It’s not like we’re doing less, we’re just focusing more on other stuff.”
When they’re not at the rink, players can easily watch game film on their iPad or computer through Hudl, which is a lot easier than before when the video staff used Dropbox to share footage with players and coaches.
Hudl is used by football teams of all levels, too, and has the same advantages of not having to be in a team facility to view film.
“After every game we push out all the player shifts,” Feloney said. “We can adjust the stats in the video, so all the time-on-ice stuff gets labeled on our video and all the players can come in in the morning and sit in the lounge at Centennial or here at the arena and look at their shifts because it’s all generated automatically. They can also watch it through Hudl on their iPads or PCs or Macs [at home]. A lot of guys use iPads because the user interface Hudl has created is real easy.”
On game days, Feloney will download specific pre-scouted film for certain players. For example: Feloney will deliver an iPad to Paul Gaustad hours before puck-drop so he can watch film on the opposition’s centers and their faceoff techniques on Hudl. Feloney will then do the same for goaltenders and any others who want one last view of that night’s opponent.
Interesting stuff, to me anyways. Just thought I'd share the random stuff I found.