Four playoff games were stretched across Saturday. The Rangers roared back to even their series with the Pens, the Flyers fell to the Capitals despite dominating play, the Stars survived the Wild, and the Sharks took another bite out of LA’s hopes and dreams.
Before the game charts, here’s the usual words on reading the graphs:
A couple of notes on reading the charts:
- the Corsi differential is based on 5v5 play and is score-adjusted, as per war-on-ice.
- players at the top (with bars extending to the right) posted positive differentials (good)
- players at the bottom (and to the left) posted negative differentials (bad)
- the colour of each bar represents the player’s time on ice (see legend at the bottom)
- each players individual Corsi For attempts are included in parentheses
- a player with a strong C +/- but a (0) for iCF didn’t directly contribute to his strong showing.
- a player with a weak C +/- but a strong iCF score (i.e. greater than 5) may have been hindered by linemates. Maybe.
- like any reasonable person, I don’t believe that Corsi is everything. But it’s a very important part of the everything.
Let’s get at the graphs.
Henrik Lundqvist kept his consecutive playoffs games streak alive. He’s now played all 112 Rangers playoff games dating back to 2006. Incredible.
Brassard led the way in this one and NYR dominated the positive side of the game chart in non-NYR fashion. Klein, Staal, and Miller were all solid pluses too. And Yandle posted 6 iCF (re-sign him, Gorton), while McIlrath and Skjei were very solid (keep them in the lineup, Vigneault).
For the Penguins, only Kessel (6 iCF), Crosby, and Bonino salvaged positive Corsi differentials. Fehr, Daley, and Kuhnackl were the game’s worst.
And no Dan Girardi anywhere. Sigh.
Series tied 1-1.
The Flyers bombed the Capitals. At all-strengths, the Flyers pelted 81 Corsi for on goal while the Capitals managed only 48 CF. The Corsi battle was 61-37 in Philly’s favour at even-strength and 53-37 if you score-adjust.
Gudas was a beast (again). He led the way and blasted 8 iCF on goal. The lopsided Coburn for Gudas deal with the Lightning (TB included a 1st and a 3rd round pick with Gudas to acquire Coburn) looks like a big win for the Flyers now.
Kuznetsov was a plus with 6 iCF – he’s always steady to great – but most Caps sunk to the bottom of the game chart. Orpik, Winnik, and Wilson were worst but they weren’t alone.
In the end, Corsi domination didn’t matter as the Flyers were stymied by Holtby and the Caps’ elite.
Caps lead 2-0.
Valeri Nichushkin led the way and Spezza was dominant, mustering 8 iCF. He’s been excellent, especially of late. Sharp, Klingberg, and Goligoski found their way to the top of the game chart as well. And hey there Dumba.
At the other end, Jonas Brodin was awful and Porter wasn’t much better. Both were in the neighborhood of -20 Corsi +/-. Mercifully for the Wild, don’t expect this series to last much longer.
Stars lead 2-0.
Tanner Pearson was the game’s best and Jeff Carter was an animal, registering 9 iCF. Ward and Hertl finished in strong spots too. Gaborik posted 7 iCF (good) but finished near break-even (unusual). He was mixed up in some high-event play.
In the negatives, Karlsson was worst and Nieto, Polak, and Marleau joined him at the bottom of the game chart. No one was beyond -10, so there’s nothing to get very worried about here.
The Sharks head home up two and are making at least one prognosticator feel hopeful.
Sharks lead 2-0.