FanPost

Charting Games 1-23

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Following up a post I did in the summer, sometimes it's interesting to look at Leafs stats in chart form as it changes throughout the season. One rightful criticism of the last post was that it didn't separate Even strength production (5v5, 4v4 and 3v3(BOZAK!!1)) from Special Teams production. After the jump, we'll see just that - as well as how these figures compare to last seasons' charts.

**A quick note that I used 5-game trailing averages (as compared to 10-game in the previous post) as there simply aren't enough data points for a larger average to be useful.

Even Strength:

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  • Leafs seem to continue a trend that came up in my previous post - they're shooting less than league average but getting higher-than-average shooting %. They seem to be facing ~league average ES shots per game, but are getting sub-average goaltending.
  • League average ES goaltending seems to be about .924 right now. Note that this is approximated by Total League Shots - Total League Powerplay Shots, it is proving difficult to collect all short-handed shot data at a league level, but this is a very small # of total shots.

Special Teams:

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  • I'll immediately point out that these charts can be somewhat deceptive when trying to evaluate Leafs special teams - this is looking at it from a PER-GAME perspective, not a PER-POWERPLAY perspective. The fact that Leafs aren't getting as many shots for or against on a PP may be just as much of a result of early goal conversion or simply not taking/drawing as many powerplays.
  • Really the only truly useful of the bunch is the third chart - PP sh% & SH sv% - which highlights just how dramatically improved the special teams have been in the last 5 or 6 games.

Total Production - 10/11 vs. 11/12 (so far)

  • Included below are 3 distinctive "seasons" the Leafs have had recently - the pre-Reimer 10/11, Post-Reimer 10/11 and the 11/12 Season thus far. Here I reverted to the 10game trailing averages to keep it consistent with the previous post.

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So what's really changed?

  • Leafs are shooting less on average, but since the post-Reimer set of games, they're starting to bring down shots against by a fair margin. Does this mean the Leafs defense is improved? Maybe, but to anyone who has actually watched the games, it's nowhere near where it needs to be to be a Cup contender.
  • Goals for are up, but so are goals against. Needs moar Reimer, but it seems unlikely that Leafs can keep up their dominating offensive output all season. OR CAN THEY??
  • Sh% is up and sv% is down. Again, needs moar Reimer and expect a drop in sh% as the season continues. Unless they can keep up the red-hot powerplay!

I'll leave the analysis to a minimum to allow discussion in the comments. What do you see? Are the Leafs better than post-Reimer 10/11? How long can they keep this up?

All data from NHL.com, Hockey-Reference.

Spreadsheet for above charts here.

PensionPlanPuppets.com is a fan community that allows members to post their own thoughts and opinions on the Toronto Maple Leafs and hockey in general. These views and thoughts may not be shared by the editor of PensionPlanPuppets.com.

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