Continuing my series measuring puck possession in the offensive zone, I've now compiled the numbers for Toronto's game against the Anaheim [Mighty] Ducks from last night. If you're not familiar with how this works, what I'm doing is measuring how long each team has control of the puck in the offensive zone over the course of the game. I mark the beginning of a possession as the time at which the attacking team first gains clear control of the puck in the offensive zone, and I mark the end of a possession as either the time when the puck leaves the zone, or when a defender gains clear control of the puck and is not under significant forechecking pressure. I call the resulting statistic Time On Attack (TOA). After looking for insights in the numbers themselves, I compare them to other statistics like Corsi to see how well they line up.
First off, here are the Time on Attack numbers broken down by period:
Despite the score, Anaheim was the better team in the first by this metric. Toronto's performance in the 2nd period was actually even better than the numbers make it appear - half of Anaheim's TOA that period came on three shifts from their big line. The numbers in the 3rd favour Anaheim by a wide margin, but Toronto was playing in a defensive shell at the time, something they've been doing more and more lately. I don't remember the Leafs doing this the previous two season's under Ron Wilson, but whether that was a coaching issue or an execution issue I couldn't say.
Now for a look at how the TOA ratio compares to Corsi and Fenwick:
For the second game in a row, the TOA number differs a good deal from the other stats. Like with the game against Tampa, Toronto's TOA numbers look much worse than their Corsi and Fenwick numbers. As I said last time, it's possible we may be seeing some score effects here, which is something I want to look at in more detail once I've collected a larger sample of games.