The forwards generated 28 shot attempts, only 5 off of the season high of 33. Adam Henrique had a very strong night in the passing game, completing all of his passes in the neutral and offensive zones, generating 5 shot attempts, and only missing on 2 passes in the defensive zone. Also helping to generate shot attempts were Dainius Zubrus (10 of 13 passing in the offensive zone, 5 SAG) and Andrei Loktionov (also 10 of 13 and 6 SAG). Patrik Elias was a bit wasteful, completing only half of his 8 attempts in the offensive zone, generating 4 shot attempts though. I imagine he’ll work himself back into form. Also off night? Jaromir Jag: he was 5 of 5 in the defensive zone, but missed 4 passes in the neutral zone and didn’t get much going in the offensive zone tonight, only generating 2 shot attempts. Not what we’ve come to expect from Jagr, but he can’t be a beast every night.
Who has been a bit of a beast lately has been Steve Bernier. He was 7 of 7 in the defensive zone, 8 of 13 in the offensive zone, and generated two shot attempts. He’s been playing really well as of late. Travis Zajac was efficient, completing most of his passes and generating two shot attempts. Damien Brunner didn’t do a whole lot and he’s starting to really fade from his early season success. The fourth line has been less productive since Bernier jumped up. Cam Janssen did complete 2 more passes (it must be his quota) and even generated a shot attempt, but the bottom line is you’re playing one of the best teams in hockey over the last two season…why on Earth is Janssen in the lineup when you have Jacob Josefson and Mattias Tedenby in the press box? Both can offer significantly more than Janssen ever will.
Very quiet from the defensemen in terms of SAG. Overall, a good, but not great game in their own end as everyone finished between 81 – 88% completion percentage. Peter Harrold got involved the most in the offensive zone, completing 3 of 4 passes.
Passing Data Explained:
Pass: A reasonable and deliberate attempt to get the puck to a teammate which maintains possession or results in a shot attempt. This excludes zone clears, dump-ins, and anything that is akin to a desperate swipe at a loose puck. If a player passes a puck into space or off the boards, it finds a teammate, and it appears it was done deliberately, that shall be a pass. When in doubt, common sense will prevail.
What you see below is a chart illustrating pass completions, pass attempts, and pass percentages for each player in all three zones. A pass that goes across a zone or two will be marked as occurring in the zone it originates from.
Each completed pass that results in a shot taken by a teammate counts as one “shot attempt generated” or “SAG” in the chart below. This is tracked to attempt to determine which teammates are better at generating opportunities to shoot.
Zone Exit Stats:
Bernier was the main man tonight of the forwards. All 7 of his exits were possession exits, which is impressive. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, he’s really played well recently. Zubrus (64%), Michal Ryder (67%), Zajac (67%), and Loktionov (50%) were the Devils with at least 5 attempts that finished above the threshold. Elias and Jagr had successful nights, but there had fewer attempts. Stephen Gionta, Zajac, and Henrique all committed 2 turnovers, so that wasn’t a positive. Janssen had 2 more chips.
Adam Larsson and Andy Greene were the Devils most efficient defensemen tonight. They finished close in terms of overall success and possession rate (46%). They had more successful passing exits than the other 4 defensemen combined. Peter Harrold recorded 1 of each category, which is a first, as he attempted 18 exits. If Harrold is attempting to exit the zone more than anyone else, it’s generally not a good thing. He finished at 39% possession. Marek Zidlicky, Mark Fayne, and Eric Gelinas all finished lower, however, so Harrold wasn’t terrible by comparison.
Zone Exits Explained: Any attempt made by a player to advance the puck from their defensive zone. These actions fall into the below categories (as illustrated on the below chart).
(P) Pass: When a player passes the puck out of the zone and it successfully finds a teammate.
(C) Carry: When a player skates with the puck out of the zone, maintaining possession.
Successful Zone Exits without Possession:
(FP) Failed Pass: When a player passes the puck out of the zone, but it fails to find its target.
(FC) Failed Carry: When a player skates with the puck out of the zone, but loses possession shortly thereafter.
(CH) Chip: When the player lifts the puck out of the zone or throws it off the boards and out.
(X) Other: Any action that results in a successful zone exit not already covered.
Unsuccessful Zone Exit:
(PT) Pass Turnover: When a player fails to clear the zone with a pass and it results in a turnover to the opposition.
(CT) Carry Turnover: When a player fails to skate out of the zone with the puck and loses possession.
(I) Icing: An attempt to clear results in icing the puck.
(T) Turnover: Any action that results in a turnover not already covered.
Every 10 games or so, I’ll post a separate article looking at overall play up to that point.
Have any questions? Comments? Suggestions? Hit me up on Twitter at @RK_Stimp.