• Scoring chances — defencemen on special teams

    by Bruce • January 25, 2009 • Uncategorized • 6 Comments

     [Part 2 of 4]

       So far this year the Oilers have relied on their Big 4 defencemen to drive the powerplay, with no forwards called into point duty and so little time for the likes of Staios and Smid that I have omitted their tiny numbers from the following. Here are the PP results year to date:

    Player PP TOI SCF SCA F/60 A/60 +-/60
    71 206.8 115 15 33.4 4.4 +29.0
    44 202.7 118 13 34.9 3.8 +31.1
    77 100.9 52 10 30.9 5.9 +25.0
    37 81.0 39 8 i 5.9 +23.0
    Team 596.4 327 46 32.9 4.6 +28.3

       The big-money guys are carrying the mail in ice time (~70%), and have a substantially higher rate of SC/60. They are also the best at +/- ON/60 as per Behind the Net (Souray +6.40, Visnovsky +5.16, Gilbert +4.19, Grebsehkov +3.93). Some of this would be due to the top two playing on Hemsky’s unit, no doubt.  Overall Souray has posted the best numbers, however in the segment of games Dec 5-Jan 20 Visnovsky has been slightly the better of the two by the scoring chance metric:

    Player PP TOI SCF SCA F/60 A/60 +-/60
    71 87.6 59 5 40.4 3.4 +37.0
    44 86.7 57 7 39.4 4.8 +34.6
    37 35.5 21 3 35.5 5.1 +30.4
    77 35.2 22 5 37.5 8.5 +29.0
    Team 245.8 161 20 39.3 4.9 +34.4

       Grebeshkov was clearly the fourth option in the first segment, but has received equal ice to Gilbert in recent weeks. It’s interesting to note that the pairings on the PP were the regular EV pairings for the first several weeks of the season; the subsequent reshuffling at EV has not carried over to the PP. Those early-season pairings are likely paying a dividend on the PP due to familiarity and on-ice communication.

        Turning to the PK, here are the year-to-date results:

    Player SH TOI SCF SCA F/60 A/60 +-/60
    24 150.4 8 114 3.2 45.5 -42.3
    44 148.1 13 90 5.3 36.5 -31.2
    77 105.7 9 72 5.1 40.9 -35.8
    37 73.9 7 39 5.7 31.7 -26.0
    43 51.2 4 37 4.7 43.4 -38.7
    71 23.4 3 12 7.7 30.8 -23.1
    5 22.9 3 13 7.9 34.1 -26.2
    Team 576.9 47 378 4.9 39.3 -34.4

       Staios has been the #1 D-man for SH TOI, a puzzling choice considering his terrible record of SCA. When measured on actual minus/60 at BehindtheNet, he is the second worst on the club at -8.71. By far the worst, however, is Visnovsky at -12.06, suggesting that while he has been successful in limiting the number of scoring chances, a high percentage of the ones that he has allowed have wound up in the back of the net. So the situation vis-a-vis Vis is not near as rosy as the above suggests. MacT responded to this in the second segment:

    Player SH TOI SCF SCA F/60 A/60 +-/60
    24 58.9 6 37 6.1 37.7 -31.6
    44 53.8 7 38 7.8 42.4 -34.6
    37 40.6 7 20 10.3 29.6 -19.2
    77 36.8 6 25 9.8 40.8 -31.0
    5 16.3 3 11 11.0 40.5 -29.4
    71 3.4 1 1 17.6 17.6 +-0.0
    Team 209.8 30 132 8.6 37.8 -29.4

       Visnovsky was used sparingly on the PK, and saved for EV and PP where he excels. Staios, who seemed to spend the first two months in full chase mode on the PK, showed great improvement in this segment, reducing his personal chances allowed rate by about 25% (from 50.5 to 37.7) and his net results by 35% (from -49.2 to -31.6). Presumably the change of partner from Strudwick to Souray had an impact here. Meanwhile, Denis Grebeshkov responded to a greater workload by posting outstanding numbers across the board, including at the good end of the ice. This is reflected in BtN results, where on the season Grebs has the best minus/60 of the six, at -6.06. Mostly generated against the opposition’s second unit, but noteworthy nonetheless. Those who may want to credit Grebeshkov’s partner for driving his EV results take note that Visnovsky has nothing to do with Grebs’ success on the PK. His rate of scoring chances generated is pretty darn decent, slightly lower than Smid which presumably is a fluke of small-number statistics.           

    6 Responses to Scoring chances — defencemen on special teams

    1. January 25, 2009 at

      This is great stuff Bruce! I’m actually a little bit surprised that Strudwick’s results on the PK aren’t even worse. Your comments on Visnovsky are really good too because it explains why he’s not being used even though his chance rates are quite low. Hopefully he wasn’t just getting bad luck. He was only -4.82/60 last year in L.A., albeit in limited time (about 100 minutes). Given how poor the PK has been, I’m surprised they haven’t given it a try, although I suppose you need to rest him sometime and he’s winning the battle at EV and on the PP.

      Also, I’ve updated the data with the Dec 17 game included, as well as fixing up some data entry errors on my part. It should look mostly familiar :) (Grebs does actually take a bit of a knock on his PK)

      Thanks again for the work! You too Dennis! You too Vic!

    2. January 26, 2009 at

      If Lowe/Tambellini isn’t spending some serious time on the phone with Grebeshkov’s agent these days, there’s something wrong. That one year deal looked silly to me at the time, and it looks worse now.

    3. Bank Shot
      January 27, 2009 at

      If you can’t seperate 5 on 3s, it makes a huge difference on special teams performance.

      Grebeshkov doesn’t get a tonne of shorthanded minutes per game and he likely doesn’t get the lion’s share of the 3 man unit minutes which are probably big killers of the numbers.

      Likewise, Souray and Visnovsky probably get helped on PP numbers by 5 on 3s.

    4. Bank Shot
      January 27, 2009 at

      Unless you can compare 4X4 to 3X5 and see the difference it makes on rates then it might not be fair to compare players with different special teams roles.

    5. January 27, 2009 at

      Bank Shot: Agreed that would skew the numbers. I believe Behind the Net uses just 4v5 and 5v4 powerplays and 5v5 at evens, which leaves out the outlying stuff. Dennis otoh includes everything, which is fine, one just needs to account for it. This is not an exact science as yet, but I suspect that given the new template that Vic has set up, the different manpower situations might possibly be segregated in the future. Dennis, any thoughts on this?

    6. January 27, 2009 at

      Bruce: that info’s available with Vic’s new template so come the 2010 all that info will be easier to sift.

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