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The first of Tomas Plekanec’s 15 seasons in the NHL came in 2005-06, which coincided with the league’s introduction of a shootout. The shootout was not kind to Plekanec. Among all NHL players with at least 20 attempts, Plekanec’s career shootout percentage of 13% is the lowest league history. A deeper look into Plekanec’s shootout usage reveals an interesting pattern: Seasons # Years Plekanec Shootout Attempts 2005-06 to 2014-15 10 23 2015-16 to 2018-19 5 0 Each of Plekanec’s shootout attempts occured in his first 10 seasons, and his success rate was so bad in that timeframe that he never again got an opportunity.



I taught the following courses at Skidmore College:

  • MS 104: Intro to Statistics
  • MS 204: Statistical Methods (Github)
  • MS 210: Data Visualization and storytelling (Github)
  • MA 204: Probability (Github)
  • MS 276: Statistics and Sports (Github)
  • MS 376: Mathematical Statistics
  • MS 240: Regression

+++ # About/Biography widget. widget = “about” active = true date = “2016-04-20T00:00:00”

Order that this section will appear in.

weight = 5

List your academic interests.

[interests] interests = [ “Causal inference”, “Statistics and sports” ]

List your qualifications (such as academic degrees).

[[]] course = “PhD in Biostatistics” institution = “Brown University” year = 2014

[[]] course = “MS in Statistics” institution = “UMass Amherst” year = 2010

[[]] course = “BA in Mathematics” institution = “Bates College” year = 2004



Michael Lopez is the Director of Football Data and Analytics at the National Football League and a Lecturer of Statistics and Research Associate at Skidmore College.

At the National Football League, his work centers on how to use data to enhance and better understand the game of football. Academically, his research is split between causal inference – with a specific focus on causal inference methods for multiple exposures or multiple exposure doses – and the application of statistics to sports. He is an Associate Editor at the Journal of Quantitative Analysis in Sports, and has written for FiveThirtyEight, Deadspin, Sports Illustrated, and Hockey News.