Arik Parnass is a Montreal native and graduate of Georgetown University, where he majored in government and minored in journalism while also completing coursework in statistics and programming. Passionate about hockey from a very young age, Arik has spent the majority of his life playing, following, watching, and analyzing the game. Over the past few years, that has led him to the field of analytics, and he has developed a refined statistical skill set and embarked upon finding answers to some of the game’s most critical questions.
In the mold of baseball’s well-known Sabermetrics pioneer Bill James, Arik considers himself a hockey person first and a statistical researcher second. In the abstract, statistics are noise, but when applied correctly and scrutinized heavily, they can make a mountain of difference in a billion dollar industry.
Arik was a sports editor for both his high school and college newspapers, eventually earning the role of editor at SB Nation’s most popular hockey blog, Eyes On the Prize. His sophomore year, he assisted the Washington Capitals with game-night operations while collecting and transcribing quotes from players and coaches at the Verizon Center. That summer, he interned at TSN 690 radio in Montreal, where he became the station’s lead reporter for the city’s Just For Laughs festival, and a go-to on-air expert about numerous subjects including advanced statistics in hockey and professional tennis. The next winter, he served as an assistant and correspondent with the Washington Capitals Radio team, where his responsibilities included interviewing players, writing weekly stats-based columns, and providing specialized on-air content. He spent the summer of 2014 completing an advanced program at Stanford University’s renowned business school, while also debuting his own hockey analytics blog, AP Hockey.
The fall of his senior year, Arik was hired to write at Hockey Prospectus, further carving him out a place in the analytics hierarchy, receiving positive feedback from fans, journalists, and league executives. He also wrote a special feature on the league’s adoption of analytics for NHL.com. He created metrics like Possession-Independent Hitting and Shot Blocking, and combined video and data to zero in on specific shot differential successes and struggles on a micro level, with far more to come.
Following experiences working in PR and radio for the Washington Capitals, as well as interning and consulting for multiple NHL teams, Arik was hired as a full-time hockey analyst by the Colorado Avalanche prior to the 2016-2017 NHL season. He currently lives in Denver.