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Top Six Expected Shooting Percentage

The Leafs shoot well, but not THAT well.


Several of the Leafs' top-six forwards have career shooting percentages over what might be considered to be average. Our very own birky published this somewhat scary graph on Twitter:

I suppose it's only really scary if you believe that the Leafs' shooting percentage is going to begin regressing in the near future. Maybe you believe that the Leafs' top six is just that good at shooting, and we can expect them to capitalize on more chances per capita than most, if not all teams in the league.

To put this idea to the test, I threw together a quick study. I took the career average 5v5 shooting percentage of every player in every team's top-six set of forwards (ranked by the top six forwards by 5v5 ice time on each team), and simply found the average Sh% for each group:

Team T6 Sh%
Chicago Blackhawks 12.32
Pittsburgh Penguins 11.94
Philadelphia Flyers 11.88
Tampa Bay Lighting 11.43
Boston Bruins 11.38
Edmonton Oilers 10.94
Toronto Maple Leafs 10.93
San Jose Sharks 10.89
Buffalo Sabres 10.85
Colorado Avalanche 10.82
Montreal Canadiens 10.68
New York Islanders 10.65
St. Louis Blues 10.5
Ottawa Senators 10.3
Washington Capitals 10.3
Columbus Blue Jackets 10.29
Calgary Flames 10.17
Dallas Stars 10.17
Vancouver Canucks 9.81
Florida Panthers 9.69
New Jersey Devils 9.61
Detroit Red Wings 9.49
New York Rangers 9.45
Nashville Predators 9.37
Anaheim Ducks 9.33
Phoenix Coyotes 9.25
Los Angeles Kings 9.14
Winnipeg Jets 9.13
Carolina Hurricanes 9.09
Minnesota Wild 8.5

This little exercise is admittedly not without its faults. Perhaps using overall ice time and overall shooting percentage would have been better? Maybe expanding this to the teams' top nine forwards would be more instructive? I rather doubt that, but there are certainly a few different ways Sh% data could be examined. A weighted average could be used on how many shots per 60 minutes of play a player generates, for instance.

As of this moment, the 2013-14 Leafs' top six forwards by 5v5 ice time have 5v5 shooting percentages that look like this:

James van Riemsdyk 15
Phil Kessel 14.29
Joffrey Lupul 12.5
Mason Raymond 10.53
Dave Bolland 8.33
Tyler Bozak 0

So if everyone in this group regresses except Tyler Bozak...