If you have never heard the name Dawson Sprigings, you're not alone. Going by the Twitter handle @DTMAboutHeart, Sprigings, a native of Mississauga, Ontario, has mostly Tweeted about hockey analytics in his young, 23-year-old life. He played as a goalie at Wesleyan University, a Division III school.
But, his life is more about hockey now. In recent days, Kroenke Sports Entertainment has hired Sprigings to be their "Analytics Modeler" for all of their pro sports properties. That includes the Colorado Avalanche, Denver Nuggets,, Los Angeles Rams, Arsenal of the English Premier League, the Colorado Rapids and the Colorado Mammoth.
What is an "Analytics Modeler?" That part remains shrouded in secrecy. But word around the KSE offices is: They think they have hired the next Billy Beane or Theo Epstein here, the next boy wonder of sports analytics.
Sprigings' Twitter account had thousands of tweets prior to this week. After being hired by KSE, however, he deleted them all, and as of Wednesday night had just six to his name. Here is one from Wednesday:
Sprigings has had mostly a hockey analytics background. He worked at hockey-graphs.com and contributed to the most recent "Hockey Abstract", by Rob Vollman. And yet, the Avalanche says he is not one of their official hires. The team actually has an analytics person already - Arik Parnass.
Nonetheless, people around the Avs say Sprigings will be a complement to Parnass. The Avalanche had previously been a team, especially when Patrick Roy was the coach, that looked down its nose toward analytics. That mindset, clearly, has changed.
How much his time is split between the Avs and the rest of the KSE properties? To be determined.