There were two games in the NHL last night.
In both matchups, the trailing team evened their series, pushing to game sevens. The Stars were absolutely pummeled by the Blues but escaped with a victory. The Sharks and Predators skated to another overtime before the Preds snatched a victory (before midnight, mercifully).
Before we dig into the game charts, here’s the usual on how to read them:
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 all-situations Corsi battle here was mind-boggling. The Blues bested the Stars 75-25.
The Stars entered full shell mode after chasing Elliott and all Corsi differential totals are a little wild because of it.
Gunnarsson, Bortuzzo, Pietrangelo, and Steen were the game’s best. Tarasenko was strong. And every Blues skater finished as a plus.
At the other end of the game chart, Kris Russell was demolished. He finished with a Corsi differential of worse than -20. Demers wasn’t much better and Eakin, Sharp, and Benn struggled too.
The Blues deserved a better fate but this series goes to game 7 anyway. The Stars will hope for a better, more aggressive effort the next time out.
Series tied 3-3.
The Predators chased the Sharks all over the ice in this one.
Bitetto was the game’s best. Weber and Forsberg led all skaters with 7 iCF, which is particularly good news for Weber who has struggled to take shots of late. Arvidsson was good, especially when it counted most. Johansen posted another positive Corsi differential.
At the other end of the chart was a very surprising site. Joe Thornton, the highly reliable supreme puck manager, was the game’s worst. He finished in the neighbourhood of -20. Hertl and Pavelski were next worst and Vlasic/Braun rounded out the bottom-five.
That’s an extremely strange group. Don’t expect to see any of the five in this spot on the game chart again.
Series tied 3-3.