Predators vs Blues Jackets: The Advanced Stats

Frederick Breedon

The Nashville Predators and Columbus Blue Jackets battled to a draw before a shootout gave victory to the visitors Saturday night, but how did the Preds fare in the puck-possession battle, which dogged them last year?

One of our best indicators of how the overall flow of play proceeds is the Corsi Rating, which reflects the total number of shots fired by a player's team while he's on the ice, minus the number fired by the opposing team. We limit this review to even-strength situations, so it's a fair comparison (if you work the power play, of course you should be on-ice for plenty of shots).

By Total Shots, we mean the Shots on Goal that you see tallied on the scoreboard during a game, as well as those shots which are blocked by an opponent, or miss the net. It's meant to describe which team spent more time in the offensive zone applying pressure when an individual on the ice, as close as we can guess. This value can be heavily influenced by how a player gets deployed (taking more faceoffs in the offensive zone than the defensive one will boost a guy's numbers), so I have included Net Zone Starts (positive number = that guy got extra faceoffs in the offensive end), then Adjusted Corsi results based on that usage.

For each of the tables below, I list the forwards followed by the defense, in descending order of ice time. Hopefully I can provide these after each Preds game. Please let me know in the comments how this format works for you. I want to convey the meat of the thing, without getting bogged down with too much information.

Nashville Predators

Player Pos ES TOI Total Shots For Total Shots Against Corsi Net Zone Starts Adjusted Corsi
Mike Fisher C 18:44 17 13 +4 +3 +1
Colin Wilson C 18:21 19 13 +6 +1 +5
Sergei Kostitsyn L 18:06 14 13 +1 +3 -2
Martin Erat R 17:30 15 14 +1 +5 -5
Matt Halischuk R 15:52 16 8 +8 -5 +14
David Legwand C 15:50 12 12 0 0 0
Nick Spaling C 14:20 15 7 +8 0 +8
Patric Hornqvist R 14:10 12 13 -1 0 -1
Paul Gaustad C 13:17 12 7 +5 -6 +12
Brandon Yip R 12:29 12 5 +7 -1 +8
Craig Smith C 09:46 7 11 -4 0 -4
Brian McGrattan R 06:14 7 1 +6 +1 +5
Roman Josi D 25:04 31 14 +17 +1 +16
Shea Weber D 23:28 28 12 +16 +1 +15
Kevin Klein D 21:02 22 12 +10 -2 +12
Scott Hannan D 19:46 15 16 -1 0 -1
Hal Gill D 16:35 9 17 -8 -2 -6
Ryan Ellis D 15:11 7 13 -6 0 -6

Yeah, I think that Roman Josi/Shea Weber pairing looks pretty good so far, eh? Up front, Craig Smith does stick out like a sore thumb.

Columbus Blue Jackets

Player Pos ES TOI Total Shots For Total Shots Against Corsi Net Zone Starts Adjusted Corsi
John Moore D 15:43 13 11 +2 +4 -2
Nikita Nikitin D 20:24 14 17 -3 -5 +3
Jack Johnson D 24:20 15 27 -12 +2 -14
Matt Calvert L 10:22 4 10 -6 -1 -5
Cam Atkinson R 16:07 11 22 -11 -2 -9
Derek Dorsett R 15:33 13 9 +4 -1 +5
Derick Brassard C 17:50 10 25 -15 0 -15
Brandon Dubinsky C 16:51 13 11 +2 +1 +1
R.J. Umberger C 16:57 11 20 -9 +1 -10
Ryan Johansen C 14:23 13 11 +2 +1 +1
James Wisniewski D 22:31 13 26 -13 +1 -14
Vinny Prospal L 16:04 15 16 -1 +2 -3
Derek MacKenzie C 09:51 4 9 -5 -3 -2
Adrian Aucoin D 16:01 12 12 0 +5 -6
Jared Boll R 07:47 3 5 -2 0 -2
Artem Anisimov C 17:04 12 9 +3 0 +3
Fedor Tyutin D 22:07 17 19 -2 -5 +4
Nick Foligno L 15:50 11 14 -3 +3 -6

By contrast, the top defense pair for Columbus spent a lot of time scrambling in their own end.

For more on the Corsi Rating and its utility in hockey stats analysis, head over to Arctic Ice Hockey's tutorial.

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