If you're a regular reader of the site you probably will have noticed chance tables posted after every game…well they've now been totalled for your enjoyment! Somehow twelve games means a quarter of the schedule is done, and while twelve games isn't an ideal sample, I thought it'd still be interesting to take stock of Ottawa's season thus far.
For those unfamiliar, this is the scoring chance definition I adhere to when I'm tracking games:
"A scoring chance is defined as a clear play directed toward the opposing net from a dangerous scoring area – loosely defined as the top of the circle in and inside the faceoff dots (nicknamed the Home Plate), though sometimes slightly more generous than that depending on the amount of immediately-preceding puck movement or screens in front of the net. Blocked shots are generally not included but missed shots are. A player is awarded a scoring chance anytime he is on the ice and someone from either team has a chance to score. He is awarded a "chance for" if someone on his team has a chance to score and a "chance against" if the opposing team has a chance to score."
The "home plate" scoring chance area can be seen below.
If you have any questions, or need clarification on anything just stop by in the comments. But without further ado, here's the season to date, along with a few notes.
Team totals by period:
|PERIOD||CF||CA||C%||EV CF||EV CA||EV C%||PP CF||PP CA||PK CF||PK CA|
– The Senators have been a great possession team thus far, although it should be said they've been outshot in 5/12 games, and 4/7 since Spezza went down.
– All that said the Sens have had 52.2% of the shots vs. their opponents, and 52.1% of the scoring chances. At even-strength they're doing even better taking 52.4% of the shots and 53.1% of the chances.
– Much has been made of the team's inability to score the first goal, something they've done only 4 times. This tendency to start slow is mirrored in the chance data, as they're -9 in scoring chances in the first period, but making up for it in the second and third at +11 and +14 respectively.
– Despite being shorthanded 21:40 more than they've had the man advantage, the Senators are only -2 on special teams chances.
Forwards at even-strength:
– While in the long-run scoring chances correlate strongly with corsi/fenwick, twelve games isn't the long-run. The players with small TOI totals are going to have the most suspect numbers here. One great or bad game can make a player look outstanding ie. Da Costa or totally horrible ie. Lundin below.
– Far be it from me to knock Alfie down a peg, but I'd be very surprised if he maintained that C/20+/- through the season. Seems likely his CORSI% might rise a little while his C% falls somewhat.
– The real positive here is every forward save Latendresse is in positive territory possession wise. Not sure that will last though, as the schedule to this point hasn't exactly been filled with world-beaters.
– MacLean is doing his best to shelter Silfverberg, starting him upwards of 70% of the time in the offensive zone. And while his CORSI% is fine, his chance CA/20 rate is the worst among the forwards. Could be bad luck or a rookie blowing a few assignments here and there.
Defence at even-strength:
– Karlsson and Methot are killing it. I had some concerns prior to the season that Methot-Karlsson wouldn't take as a pairing, but that all seems silly right now. They're playing about half the even-strength minutes and winning the chance and possession battle handily. Shudder to think what the team would look like if Karlsson goes down.
– Phillips will be one to watch here, as he's just recently sprung into positive possession territory, and I have my doubts he'll stay there. Phillips is still an asset shorthanded, but it's getting hard to hide him at even-strength, especially on the road.
– Gonchar on the surface looks pretty bad here, but it's important to remember he's starting in the defensive zone more than any other d-man, and facing the highest quality of competition. It'd probably also help to have a consistent partner to play with. Time will well if Lundin is that guy.
– Still kind of amazed how far Wiercioch has come in a year.
I'll be doing this again at the 24 and 36 game mark, as well as season's end.