There were 4 games in the NHL last night and each seemed crazier than the last. The Isles took the lead in their battle with the Panthers, the Wild stayed alive, the Flyers won despite being absolutely demolished, and the Sharks eliminated the Kings.
Before we look deeper, here’s how to read the game charts for anyone who’s new to the site:
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.
On to the games…
The Flyers are alive. Sort of.
The Capitals won the all-situations Corsi battle 82-27, which is an astronomical spread. Neuvirth was incredible and somehow the Flyers shut out one of the NHL’s deepest offenses.
In terms of puck possession, Kuznetsov was best and every Capitals skater was a plus. Ovechkin led all with 9 iCF. And none of this is any consolation.
Somehow, Raffl, Gagner, and Voracek survived the onslaught and came out of this one with plus Corsi differentials. Every other Flyers skater was a negative, including worse than -15 marks for Streit and Giroux.
This series lives on.
Caps lead 3-2.
Thanks to overtime, we have some inflated marks to enjoy here.
Aaron Ekblad led all skaters and put up 13 iCF. He’s fantastic. Jagr, Huberdeau, and Matheson joined him at the top of the game chart. As is standard in this series, the Panthers dominated the puck.
At the opposite end, Josh Bailey managed to accumulate the worst single-game Corsi differential mark for a forward that I’ve seen since I began making these charts. He finished at ~-29, an absolutely, unbelievably awful showing. Kulemin, Nielsen, Leddy, and Hamonic weren’t much better.
Still, it hardly matters much to the Islanders who’ve taken the lead in this series again.
Isles lead 3-2.
On one hand, kudos to the Wild for making a series out of this matchup that looked to be a blowout early on. On the other hand, the Wild lost the all-situations Corsi battle 93-47, so there’s a lot of luck, fluke, and chance at work here.
Eakin, Hemsky, and Klingberg led the way. Faksa was strong again. Benn led all with 9 iCF.
At the other end of the game chart, Scandella was demolished. He registered a ~-22 Corsi differential. Brodin and Coyle struggled as well.
The Stars are going to win this series but the Wild have defied the odds and kept this first round matchup interesting.
Stars lead 3-2.
Drew Doughty did all that he could. He led all skaters in Corsi differential. He played the most 5v5 minutes. He hitched Scuderi to his side and dragged perhaps the NHL’s worst defenseman (just kidding. We all know the worst defenseman is Girardi) to a very positive Corsi +/-.
And it didn’t matter.
In the end, the Sharks had too much offense for the Kings to handle. San Jose bounced the Kings and looked in control throughout the series. They’re a terrifying round 2 opponent.
Sharks win series 4-1.
Here’s how the Sharks-Kings series looked in the aggregate:
For the larger view, check here.
Pearson and Martin were the best in this series. Hertl, Burns, and Doughty were excellent as well. Dillon and Polak struggled and Marleau and Versteeg had unproductive possession stats for the series as well.