Hello brothers and sisters of the Wilderness, and to the visitors, welcome!
This is the first of what I plan to make a weekly thing next season. I will present some cool, strange, and unbelievable stats from within the Wild and within the entire league. This time around, I'll be looking at some stats from the past season, and I will have a playoff edition once the champs are known. For the 10-11 season, I plan to make a weekly or bi-weekly edition. Every year, there are some mind boggling stats, stats that nearly no one thinks about checking and I always find them very interesting, so I feel the need to share them with my friends and family. Let's get it started! (DISCLAIMER: Some of the math was made manually by me, so there could be some mistakes, but I think I'm very accurate!)
Make the jump for some uncanniness (is it a word?)
I'm going to start out with some Wild-related stats. The Wild were rather middle-of-the-pack in most categories this year, but here are a couple of stats that kinda jumped out at me:
Fill in the blanks ...
The Wild ...
- (along with the Avalanche, the Devils and the Panthers) dressed 10 rookies for at least one game this season. This puts them in a tie for 5th highest number of rookies in the league.
- only had one OT goal against this year, tying them with 4 other teams for the least OT goals against.
- were the 5th most disciplined team, along with Chicago and Phoenix with 11.3 PIM/game
- sit 28th (ewww) with -31 in GF/GA... at least they did much better than EDM's -57! YEEOUCH! (By the way, for this stat, PPG for and PPG against don't count...)
- took 4702 faceoffs (10th highest), winning 2455 (3rd highest), losing 2247 ( 8th lowest), winning 52.2% (4th best)
- took only 5 bench minors this year, which is pretty sweet considering the new coaching staff could've brought a bit of confusion! This is the 5th lowest number of bench minors in the league.
- 's Cal Clutterbuck led the league in hits once again with 318, but did you know that those 318 hits made for 18.2% of the team's total hits. The Wild dished out 1746 hits this season
- were better at winning after trailing by two periods than they were trailing after one! When the Wild trailed after one period, they only won 13.3% (3rd lowest percentage in the league) of the time, or points (4-21-5) and after two, they were 7-29-2, for 18.4% (10th highest in the league)...
By the way, anyone else surprised the Wild only trailed after one period 30 times and after two periods 38 times? Felt like A LOT more...But we do have to consider that they weren't always leading or trailing, they also went into those periods tied a couple of times, so they still went into periods trailing a lot more times than they led.
The Wild weren't very good in shootouts this year, but check this out: The Wild scored on 22.9% of their chances at home, but stopped 74.3%of shots. Meanwhile, away from home, the Wild had 37.5% of their chances reach the other side of the goal line, but only stopped 60% of the shots. 27.4% of all Wild shootout attempts went in, while 70% attempts against them were blocked. Harding was a cool 90% (9/10), Dubie was a perfect 2/2... and well Backs...he was 63.2% (24/38), with a horrible 45.5% on the road... this to me is a clear sign that Backs wasn't the same goalie he was last year, because this is a stat you just can't blame on the system. Last year, Backs was 76.2%, with near even stats away and at home (75% and 76.9% respectively)
Andrew Brunette was the most accurate player in the league this year with 19.4% of his shots resulting into goals. It could be argued that he only recorded 129 shots so this stat doesn't have much merit, but NHL.com still put him #1, so WAY TO GO BRUNO! :D... Meanwhile, G-Lat was 14th with 16.9, but he was 18.8% in his 55 games in Wild colors. Robbie Earl was 20.7%, but he only took 29 shots, scoring 6 times. Still very good!
Here's some stuff from around the league:
The Devils took a league-low 4244 faceoffs... which is 222 less than the second lowest and 683 less than the league's highest (WSH)... Considering the rest of the league were around the 4600-4800's, this is a pretty strange stat! We have to consider that NJD had 216 GF, 186 GA, for a total of 402 goals, while WSH had 313 GF, 227 GA, for a total of 540, so that's a difference of 138 faceoffs right there. Then you have to consider that NJD had the 3rd lowest number of penalties... it still doesn't make sense that they had over 250 faceoffs less than pretty much anyone else!
46 defensemen took at least one faceoff this year (Zanon is our only one, he took one and FAILED! Well, I guess he's human after all!) Curiously enough, only 11 took more than one, but Peter Harrold of the LA Kings took 14, succeding only twice! Francois Beauchemin of the Toronto Maple Leafs followed with 4 faceoffs taken, succeding three times. A total of 74 faceoffs were taken by defensemen, only 23 were won, meaning they were 23/74 = 31%...
- Brendan Morrison of the Washington Capitals finished the season +23...but was 0 at home and +23 on the road.... WHAT? This is by FAR the strangest stat of the year IMO! How can this be? Stats like these are what make me so interested by them! In similar strangeness ...
- Travis Zajac of the NJ Devils was +21 at home and +1 away for a total of +22,
- Patrick Marleau of the SJ Sharks was +20 at home and +1 away, +21 total,
- Marc-Edouard Vlasic, also of the Sharks, was +23 at home and -2 away, +21 total
Marco Sturm of the Boston Bruins was 0 at home and +14 away.
There are many more examples of this and it's a phenomenon that's fun to observe. It's also a good way of telling which players are good on the road and which ones are better at home! On the Wild, G-Lat was much better at home than he was on the road as indicated by his +7 at home and -6 on the road. Same goes for Mikko Koivu with his +8 at home and -10 on the road.... Then again, the entire Wild squad was rather horrible on the road...
Brad Lukowich, of the Canucks, played in 13 games and only recorded one shot... and he scored on that shot!... Also, Dwight Helminen of the Sharks is the only other player to have scored on all his shots (1 shot in 4 games)... Georges Laraque of the Habs scored 1 goal on 2 shots in 28 games, giving him 50%. On a similar subject, out of the 879 players that suited up for at least one game, only 29 haven't recorded at least a shot on goal, 4 of which were Wild players (PMB, Irmen, Kalus, Noreau).
"Special" Special Teams
Alexandre Burrows scored more shorthanded points (7) than powerplay points (6)... Of course this could mean he wasn't utillized very much on the powerplay, but he was utilized nonetheless... Not too many other players scored more shorthanded points than powerplay points. (Those who were never on the powerplay don't count)
There were 55 penalty shots this year (none against the Wild!), 17 of which were scored on, which means 17/55 = 31% (the same percentage as d-men faceoffs... SPOOKY) of penalty shots resulted in goals. If we compare this to shootouts: 449 / 1398 = 32%... Yup, that's about right!
Well, I think that's about it for now, if I find some more, I'll include them in the comments section. Again, some of these stats I had to calculate myself, so there could be errors. I think this will be a fun little feature and silly stats will be easier to find if I go week-by-week instead of just a big blob of stats at the end of the season. I hope you enjoyed this and feel free to share some of your own observations! PEACE! (All stats courtesy of nhl.com and thank you Nathan for helping me out with the post!)