The following stats were tracked during manually during the game. The raw totals for the tracking stats and the glossary are at the end.
At some point I’ll write up a detailed description of each category and my specific rules for each. You can find more information on Zone Exits here. I’m working on writing up the other stats and will a link to them once they’re up. (Really, I’m working on them! It’s just hard to find the time! The rough draft of the post is written!) Feel free to leave any questions in the comments or on Twitter (@wheatnoil).
I’ve highlighted some of the better (blue) and worse (red) performances in each category. All time on ice stats are from www.naturalstattrick.com . I’ve provided some commentary after each section and at the end. Feel free to fire me a question or comment if you have one about the numbers.
Opponent: New Jersey Devils
Score: 2-1 Good Guys (OT)
Well THAT was a lot better. I mean, the Devils are not a good hockey team but credit to the Oilers. They often play terrible against teams they should beat. This game should not have been as close as the score indicated. The Oilers completely dominated this game. As expected, it shows in the tracking numbers. Team exits above 50% for the first time in the last few games. Only Sekera had a strangely off game by this metric. Larsson was moving the puck often and greater than 50% controlled… that’s not something he’s done in awhile either. Perhaps most importantly, I only recorded two uncontrolled zone exits with no clear target in sight (dump-outs). The Oilers were trying to make those passes, not just punting it out.
A solid game by this metric too. Larsson and Gryba uncharacteristically struggled (and the latter was exposed on the lone Devil goal). However, let’s take a moment to look at who leads here. Benning being at the top isn’t unheard of, but right there with him is one Kris Russell! Zone defence is usually his Achilles heel. Credit to him for playing aggressively at the line today. That, along with his zone exits, may have contributed to his defence leading shot attempt numbers.
Defensive Zone Passing
I feel like these numbers a little bit skewed as the Oilers used a huge number of D-to-D passes this game. Russell and Larsson particularly buoyed their numbers by playing pitch-and-catch for long stretches. Overall, the Oilers managed the puck reasonably in the defensive zone. Sekera struggled a bit with turnovers for the second game in a row and Klefbom had more than usual as well. Benning, though… 19 minutes of 5×5 time and I didn’t catch one defensive zone turnover!
Raw Total Tracking Stats
(click to enlarge)
I was happy to see this game after the terrible one against the Bruins. Mind you, the Devils are also a much worse team and were playing the 2nd of a back-to-back, but the Oilers really dominated them and New Jersey was lucky to come away with a point. The Edmonton defence rarely dumped the puck out, were aggressive at the blue line and generally managed the puck well. Kris Russell had a particularly strong game playing the left hand side with Adam Larsson. Larsson had a good puck moving game, though struggled a bit with zone defence. Klefbom was pretty solid aside from a couple too many turnovers. Gryba played a reasonable safe game. Sekera had an off night (the second in a row for him) while Benning was solid.
Controlled Zone Exit: Getting the puck out of the zone maintaining possession
Carry: Skating the puck out of the zone, the defenceman keeps possession himself
Pass: Passing the puck out of the zone, the team maintains possession
Uncontrolled Zone Exit: Getting the puck out of the zone but losing possession to the other team
Dump: No clear target when getting the puck out
Missed Pass: Appears to have a clear target but pass is not complete
Times Targeted: Number of times a defenceman was specifically targeted by the opposing player on a zone entry against
Denied Entry: Defenceman prevents the opposing team from entering the zone, forcing them to regroup or causing them to lose possession in the neutral zone
Controlled Entry Against: Opposing team is able to enter the zone with possession of the puck (maintained for at least one second)
Dump In Against: Opposing team is gets the puck into the zone but without possession of the puck
Untargeted: Controlled and Uncontrolled Entries against where either a defenceman was not the primary player targeted on entry OR an odd man rush not directly caused by one of the defencemen
Defensive Zone Passing
Total Touches: Number of the times the defenceman clearly has the puck on his stick in the defensive zone
To D-Partner: Successful defensive zone pass to another defenceman within the defensive zone
To Forward: Successful defensive zone pass to a forward within the defensive zone
Turnover: Other team gains possession of the puck after the defenceman clearly had possession of it
Total: Number of times the defenceman is the closest to the puck off of an uncontrolled entry to the zone
Successful: Defenceman retrieves the puck and successfully either gets it out of the zone or passes it a teammate, retaining possession
Failed: Defenceman either turns the puck over after retrieving it or the other team gets possession off the uncontrolled entry