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  1. Past hour
  2. So I have been watching replays of a few games last season. Here's what I have to say. 1. We have 3 elite players in Svech, Aho, and Turbo. Any one of these guys can be our all star for the next 10 years or so. 2. Our D as a collective is elite. Slavin is the only elite player but as a group they are elite and deep. Losing 2 of the top six did not hurt as much as it would any other team. 3. The goalies are solid but not great. Both Mragic and Riems had moments this year where they were great but also really bad. 4. This team has what it takes to bring home a cup in The next 5 years and contend for one every year ut doesnt
  3. Yesterday
  4. That is typical of any draft. At the same time guys from 18-40 are all over the place for rankings. Then 40-70 gets even wilder. Teams are going to have their favorite that they are willing to move up for. In typical cases when a team in front of them wants them too. I can easily see us sliding back in the 2nd round to get another one or more next season. Picks are going to be our bartering chip with Francis and Seattle next season. Neighbors I have seen as high as 21 but as low as 37. Lapierre is anywhere from 13th to 33rd. Granted his is injury related.
  5. That raises an issue which I've been pondering, for all sports really, not just ours. But what happens if these playoffs get rolling, everyone is swimmingly certified as "virus free", then 1 of the daily tests we're told they will be performing comes back positive? Wonder what contingencies they have for that? Shut that player, his contacts or the entire team down, both teams competing, all teams in that one venue or what? Then, what if it's one of the support staff, or alternately one of the coaches? This could get real interesting?
  6. Interesting, though if he's recovered it seems like a non-issue
  7. Rem, I'm actually pretty familiar with the principles relating to good clinical trials. I worked for Glaxo (before all the mergers) and was one of the primary statisticians for the first ondansetron NDA. Part of my job was reviewing study protocols for exactly the type of flaws you're pointing out. I've been out of the field for quite a while now, and it's a bit surprising and very disconcerting that the science has apparently ended up where it's at. Aren't reputable publications supposed to be peer reviewed? Don't protocols for new drug studies still need to go through an IRB (institutional review board for those unfamiliar)? At the places I worked, part of the role of the statistician was to serve as a "check" on the clinicians, who often were so invested in a drug (emotionally, not financially) that subconscious bias could be viewed as understandable. When I first started in the field (early '80s) the FDA had a huge presence. It was significantly reduced in, what, maybe the early 90s? I wonder if the apparent degradation in standards might be linked to that? Over regulation can be a big problem. But regulation can serve a valuable purpose. Like many things, I wonder if the proper balance might have been lost? As an aside, the regulation thing could be viewed as one example of what I perceive as perhaps the biggest challenge our society now faces, and that's extreme polarization. Black or white, all or nothing. Only in an environment like that could a phrase like "alternative facts" could be viewed with anything but complete ridicule.
  8. I've heard that the pool goes at least into the early second round. In my own research there are likely to be high upside picks available all the way down into the early twenties, and high upside higher risk into the upper second round. It really does come down to scouting and frankly luck. I stopped posting potential first round picks here since the draft ended up not being now, and because, given the way they are doing the draft order we could literally pick just about anywhere or not at all, and we no longer "know" we're picking #19. I will say that I'm happy with the way they are doing it. If we get bounced in the first round, it will be arguably unfair since we had a better than 50-50 chance of making the playoffs pre covid. At least our pick has a good chance of going higher. If both we and Toronto go deep (if I have it right, we could face off in the ECF, which would push our pick to down to the bottom around #28-29). But also, we have a chance at a rare, but beautiful thing in drafting: both going deep and picking "high". OK, we can't get a lottery pick this year, but we can pick as high as #12 and win the cup. Yes, that would require Pittsburgh, NYI, Edmonton, and Toronto to all lose, oh, and we would need to win the cup. So, yeah, not likely. But you're saying there's a chance! Really, IMO the most important thing that could happen would be for Toronto to lose in the play in round. True, if Toronto wins the lottery we'd be without a pick this year, and their pick next year not likely to be great, but it's a long shot at a top 3 pick, with a much bigger chance that we'd pick from #12 to #15, which is substantially higher than where we were likely to pick before this system. Yes, theoretically we could lose and win the lottery, which would be the best thing short of winning the cup, but the odds are slim.
  9. Oh yes. As I pointed out above science studies are a messy business. My arm's length relationship with just accepting a thing because an expert said it, is borne of 30 years of watching them fail over and over. One boiled down description of science is a method of attempting to remove all bias from observing the world. But there are so many types of bias it's astounding. There are studies on just different types of bias. Listening to Jerry Hoffman and others for years has been pretty eye-opening. It is very common for especially drug companies to set things up in their favor. Hoffman was surprised since this was apparently a government study, but the government has bias too (like finding a treatment fast). EM Rap is an outstanding product. It actually grew out of a product called Emergency Medical Abstracts where for years Jerry Hoffman and his partner reviewed about 20+ articles per month from a huge spread of journals and answered letters. Not only informing of what seemed promising or even "proven" but what we were likely to be sold as proven that at best needed better studies. EM Rap was initially a separate product started by Mel Herbert, (the Australian guy that leads these updates). He had his own product that provided deep dives into important areas. When Jerry and his partner retired, they sold their business to Mel and he put it all together along with some other products into one hugely deep data base of EM continuing education. Anyways, EM Rap (which includes EMA) costs about $500/year, but they've made the covid stuff free. Way back at the start of this thread I included one or two of their earliest updates. They continue to put these out free, just search EM RAP Covid on You tube. I get notifications of new ones coming up, I'll try to put it on here if I do.
  10. RCT is Randomized Clinical Trial. It's a stand in for prospective double blind, placebo controlled trial in most cases. The rest of this if for those who want to read some of my take on aspects of medical research that aren't necessarily in the field: One of the problems with many many medical studies is the use of "surrogate markers" in place of clinically significant outcomes. The more ineffective the treatment the more these surrogate markers are used. For those not familiar, say that the most important thing that a treatment could do is prevent death. Then say disability. But if a treatment can't affect those at all, maybe it can affect length of stay, or admissions to the hospital. If not that, maybe a pain scale or lowering the white blood cell count. It can be a slippery slope to rather insignificant things being measured. Another major related problem is studying many different possible outcomes. Statistics are applied in large part a way to predict how likely an effect is random rather than due to the treatment. Generally we accept about a 5% chance of a thing being random as the lowest bar. That's 1/20. If I study 15 different outcomes there's a pretty good chance that one or two will look positive just due to randomness. I can then pick those two after the study is completed, and focus my written article on that positive effect. I can stress it in title and the abstract. Especially if I'm a drug company. I've read many studies where the title and abstract and conclusion (the part most people skip to) say one thing, but the body of the study says the opposite. An example of surrogate marker use is a study for a drug called Atrovent. It is cheap and safe and added to some albuterol treatments for asthma or COPD. Studies showed that it increased a person's ability to forcefully exhale after treatment, called peak flow. Most experts used peak flows a lot because, well because we love numbers and that gives you a number. Never mind that it's pretty unreliable since patient effort varies. Anyways, experts mostly recommended adding it, and a company even came up with a treatment that had both albuterol and atrovent in it. But that same study showed that adding atrovent to the treatment did not improve any meaningful outcomes: no change in death, no change in admission rates, no change in length of symptoms, no change in needing intubation, etc etc. And further, if you looked closer at the study (the way Jerry Hoffman looks at that table in the remdesivir study) you'd see that the authors of the atrovent study used substandard doses of the albuterol they were adding to, which is an unfair comparison (and another common study flaw, or trick depending on your point of view). That study is years old, but Atrovent, and the combined treatment with albuterol are still in wide spread use. It's cheap, its safe, it maybe adds a touch, so why not? But it's only been "proven" for that surrogate marker of peak flow, if that. So if a study picks a bunch of surrogate markers and then goes in and picks one or two that seemed to work after the fact, that's bad science. What's supposed to happen is that they use those seemingly effective markers as the basis for a new prospective study and try to actually prove the concept. But there's little motivation for a drug company to go out and disprove their own drug now touted by experts (often on their payroll). Medical and other science is so messy already, with all kinds of bias baked in. And that's before the turbo charger of bias that is politics gets in there.
  11. Thanks for the kind words 2ndSacker. Lake, I know you have a stats background, so such things are not really shocking to you, but I think that very few non science people are really aware of how imperfect even "good" science is. I had an academic upbringing in EM, and as such have both reviewed and listened to reviews of close to 10,000 articles combined (the vast majority listened to Jerry Hoffman and others). After a while one gets a pretty good foundation for the shortcomings of much of science. It's an enlightened place to be, but it's also a very frustrating place to be as the vast majority of providers, let alone the general public understandably rely on a combination of certain experts and the media to get their sense of what is most true. It is wrong as often as it's right. This is a study that I mention to medical students I teach pretty frequently. It is so elegantly simple. A group of researchers went back 10 years in the New England Journal of Medicine and identified all of the studies in cardiology that claimed to have proven that a specific treatment was effective. Once they were all identified by specific criteria, they went forward up to the the present to determine how many of those claimed treatments had been thoroughly disproven. It was around 44%. Nearly all of those treatments had experts touting them. But the reality is worse than that since the NEJM is one of the most prestigious journals in the world getting to pick only the best studies. There are hundreds of lesser journals publishing studies that are laughable at the outset. But it's even worse than that overall because of publication bias: the big journals want to publish the new breakthroughs far more than publishing a negative study that shows a thing doesn't work. But even the NEJM is easily corrupted by drug company studies, and even increasingly political biases. The famous line delivered to incoming medical students by the dean of the Harvard medial school is apt: "Half of what we are about to teach you is wrong. We just don't know which half". Beware of people claiming "settled science". That phrase and others have become a political tool. It's tricky out there.
  12. rem, what is this? I don't recognize the anacronym? 1st let me be upfront and state that I've not taken the time to listen thru that video as have been swamped with my own mess, and now a law firm wants to depose me on a private autopsy I performed on a sickle cell patient several years ago??? Don't they know there's more urgent things afoot? A comment on these several drugs that were hurriedly thrown into the breach so to speak, particularly remdesivir. I never read them as being curative, and perhaps I was incorrect as I AM NOT A CLINICIAN, but at the most, I understood that they could shorten the length of hospital stay, as well as possibly shorten the length of viral shedding? That to my limited mind never said they were life sparing at the height of the illness(? cytokine storm), thus not the magic bullet we anxiously await? Was this wrong? Most recently, I have been reading on several much more SARS COV-2 virocentric (not sure thats a word) approaches to an effective treatment, including a monoclonal antibody aimed a specific regions on the virion's capsid, and specifically at the now infamous "spike protein" and others, LY-CoV555. Other groups are working on "diverse antibodies", anticipating the possibility of this virus mutating like influenza. But these are being greatly rushed thru trials as I thought it was possible they might? Finally Lake, regarding your comment on this link to "thrombosis", since the COVID virus appears to hone in on ACE-2 receptor sites, and they are globally found in many organs/sites throughout the human body, the coagulopathy(namely hypercoagulation=thrombosis) being observed is predictable as endothelial cells, those lining blood vessels, are one such cell with ACE-2 receptors. Ergo the source of microthrombi (clots) in vessels.
  13. Depending on where the canes are picking Everything pass the 20th overall is not eye catching in terms of normal progression . The very best seems to me to be all in the top 15 and after that it's a huge drop off in talent . So 2nd round , 3rd rounds , and going forward will most likely make up for sphl or euro or aussie league potential . It's how im measuring it . I'd hoped there would be a deep pool but it's not . It happens some times , where some years are better in talent than others . That's what im saying here guys .
  14. As gocanes points out, and mindful of many postings on eligible players several of you have taken time to research which I've appreciated, I nevertheless believe that aside from the apparent consensus #1-#3, I think this year will be the biggest "crap shoot" ever due to the interruption of the normal methods utilized in the lead up to the draft to evaluate these players, secondary to COVID-19 restraints? Further, to me, I'd not bet on anything being off the table with about 28 of the teams. A corollary to this thought, THIS DRAFT is where scouts of every team will more than earn their money.
  15. What does this mean? There is a very good chance we trade down
  16. This is not going to be a strong year for the canes in the draft . It's a safe bet they wont be trading down like last year .
  17. Good stuff rem. Is it really possible that they didn't prospectively specify the primary efficacy endpoints for the remdesivir study that was reviewed in the video? Isn't there an IRB that would have had to review and approve the study protocol? I wonder if maybe in a rush to get the study started there were shortcuts taken. As far as the reviewer's other big point, they should have been able to adjust for differences in baseline severity in the analysis. Although, "should have been able to" doesn't necessarily mean that they did. It would be interesting to see the actual full study report. I ended up listening to the whole video; some pretty interesting stuff in there. I hadn't been aware of the covid-19 link to thrombosis. And I find it a bit discouraging that even in NYC they estimate infections at only 14-20%. That leaves a long way to go to get to herd immunity. How often to they put out updates like that? Maybe you could give us a heads up next time one comes out?
  18. Last week
  19. I can just forthrightly and honestly say this without the slightest hesitation. This board, complete with so many different forms of access, exposure, circumstantial to all our lives and what we've personally dealt with, and opinion from the whole spectrum concerning Covid, has been the most educational, reliable in many ways, and bare knuckles information that I have encountered in any other place where such discussions take place. ALL should be commended, thanked and given out prayers for, especially the front line people,(we have been shown who they are) who have personally had experience in what happened, how it happened and what the ramifications of the politics, business and personal involvement have shown to be in real time, real lives and communities spanning the state. I personally thank the MD personnel for sharing so much of your experience, expertise, and frankly, well informed opinions. My personal opinions have no place in the context of this enlightening, frank and better guided discussion than any I've seen and for that reason, as a man of humble intent concerning such matters when far more qualified "experts" IMO present theirs, have declined to offer any. I have followed and respectfully been impressed with the amount of knowledge, willingness to share, and overall the best example of a high IQ discussion that has been brought to my attention. Beyond that, I think it speaks volumes about the general intelligence level of hockey fans in this market, in particular those who have found a home in following the exploits of a small market, delicately balanced franchise between league stardom, popularity and being able to pay the bills through all the years of down for the previous decade. Thanks all who contribute here, who share a passion that we all have, and who rightfully and righteously respect the forum, even when we get a little chippy with attitudes and outlooks. It's a real pleasure and humbling hobby to be at least somewhat accepted here as well. I'm for hockey. As so well explained by several, the risk is minimal and some parts of life offer far more risks to the athletes in the sports of aggression in particular, as well as fans. I'd sit in PNC saturday night, beside anyone of you.
  20. The study is interesting in that there were 8 groups and 3 of the worst groups were declared the bad outcomes. Why not 2 he asks? That has a huge relevance to me. I was once involved in a survey I had to pay attention to. The responses were the usual 1 to 5. 1 being strongly like, 5 being strongly dislike and 3 being neutral. The survey came out something like this: 1 - 10 2 - 40 3 - 5 4 - 5 5 - 40 So, the 1 and 2's were 50% of the responses, so the powers that be declared: VICTORY, you like it! Thank you! Meanwhile, the massive number of 5's were ignored. The 4 and 5's together were 45, which is less than 50 for the like. But the likes were all "sort of like" and the dislikes were all "strongly dislike." It was purposefully ignored. It was not a mistake. What they were saying was true (more likes than dislikes), but the underlying numbers told a different story. A simple average of the numbers could have been taken and a different result would emerge. Anyway, as they say, there are lies, and then there are statistics.
  21. Thanks for posting rem, I'll have to listen to it later. Even ignoring the problem with well controlled RCTs for the moment. When the medical experts first reported positive results with remdesivir, didn't they say it was more likely a "foot in the door" towards an "acceptably effective" treatment than the answer? Similar to the early development of AIDs drugs? That first study showed a decrease in length of hospital stays for remidesivir patients, and if I'm not mistaken the death rates for the two groups in that first positive study were 11% for placebo and 8% for remdesivir. A 25% reduction in death rate would be great if it held up, but an 8% death rate in hospitalized covid patients never seemed like enough of an effect to "manage" the covid-19 problem. I guess that never really registered to many?
  22. I love this dude ! Andrei showing some leadership in the community !
  23. Just listened to most of the latest update from the EM Rap group. Most telling is how little new there is. Cases seem to be moving to South America globally. But most of the rest of it is fine tuning things we were at least previously onto. How to treat ICU patients, etc. Unfortunately the news on the treatment front is not as great as it seemed earlier. First, yet another negative hydroxychloroquine study. Not an RCT, so the final nail is not been hammered yet, but the trends are not positive. Since that drug had already been trending pretty poorly, I'd say that for me the most disappointing news was actually a deep analysis of the remdesivir study. This is a pretty good example of part of what I've been on about. The establishment has jumped on board with the recently touted positive study on this drug. If you listen to some experts and most of the media, this is the first "proven" treatment. In fact, it says that very thing in an article right now on Yahoo life. So there it is right? Maybe, maybe not so fast. I mentioned a while ago that over my career I've found several scientific experts with a brilliant ability to break down the quality of studies. Maybe none has been as universally impressive as a guy named Jerome Hoffman in California. He is an academic ED doc with statistics background who has been breaking down 30 scientific articles/month for 30 years. He's retired now, but EM Rap brought him out of retirement to have a look at the latest remdesivir study. His opening line was, "It's even worse than I thought". Below is the entire hour and a half update, can't say it's worth watching the whole thing, but I include it here for the part that introduces Jerry Hoffman and his critique of the study, its worth a look, at around 27:00 to about 35:00. 7 minutes. It shows just some of the difficulties in "proving" something scientifically. Bottom line, this latest remdesivir study is far from the proof it touts. About the only thing one can say with a study that is poorly done as this, is that the effect can't be monumental, because that would have shown up far far bigger. If this drug works, it will be a small effect, and there is still a strong chance this will end up being ineffective. But watch the experts, even the government ones, who will all have to respond to this seemingly positive study with a massive expansion of the use of this drug. Once that becomes standard care, it will be very very hard to stop it, even if it is increasingly proven ineffective, both because of how huge this whole Covid thing is, and the lack of alternative treatments. The only thing that would stop it, is a huge RCT proving no benefit or harm, or a clearly superior alternative. I still hope for it to work, but it is far from proven. Really, listen to Jerry Hoffman's explanation if this issue interests you. It's 7 minutes of insight into how real scientists practice peer review, and why that is such a critical step in the scientific proof process.
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