FanPost

STR Analysis: 2013-2014 NHL Regularly Season

I posted an STR analysis about half way through the season which can be found here. STR, or Special Team Rank, is a stat that tries to capture how good a team plays when on the power play or the penalty kill. It is calculated by simply adding the penalty kill and power play percentages together. An average team should add up to 100%. At the midway point in the season, the Devils ranked 6th in the league in STR. Now here is how the season ended.

Team Raw PP% Raw PK% STR%
1 PIT 23.4 85 108.4
2 NJD 19.5 86.4 105.9
3 STL 19.8 85.7 105.5
4 WSH 23.4 82 105.4
5 BOS 21.7 83.6 105.3
6 PHI 19.7 84.8 104.5
7 NYR 18.2 85.3 103.5
8 MTL 17.2 85.1 102.3
9 SJS 17.2 84.9 102.1
10 CBJ 19.3 82.1 101.4
11 CHI 19.5 81.4 100.9
12 DET 17.7 83 100.7
13 COL 19.8 80.7 100.5
14 NSH 19.2 80.2 99.4
15 OTT 18.4 80.9 99.3
16 TBL 18.5 80.7 99.2
17 EDM 17 82.1 99.1
18 PHX 19.9 79 98.9
19 WPG 15.4 83.2 98.6
20 VAN 15.2 83.2 98.4
21 ANA 16 82.2 98.2
22 TOR 19.8 78.4 98.2
23 LAK 15.1 83.1 98.2
24 CGY 15.7 81.7 97.4
25 DAL 15.9 81.4 97.3
26 MIN 17.9 78.8 96.7
27 CAR 14.6 81.7 96.3
28 NYI 17.8 78.1 95.9
29 BUF 14.1 81.4 95.5
30 FLA 10 76 86

That's right. The Devils ranked 2nd in the entire league. Though some called our power play a paper tiger, it ended the year at a very respectable 19.5%. When I posted my STR review earlier this year, FrankG929 suggested that I also account for short handed goals against and short handed goals for. I did this by subtracting SHGA from PPG and subtracting SHG from PPGA (Power Play Goals Against). The adjusted STR rankings are below.

Team Raw PP% Raw PK% Adj. PP% Adj. PK% Adj. STR
1 PIT 23.4 85 21.2 86.6 107.8
2 NJD 19.5 86.4 17.8 89.8 107.6
3 BOS 21.7 83.6 19.1 87.1 106.2
4 STL 19.8 85.7 17.7 87.7 105.4
5 NYR 18.2 85.3 15.5 89.7 105.2
6 SJS 17.2 84.9 15.1 88.6 103.7
7 WSH 23.4 82 19.9 83.8 103.7
8 PHI 19.7 84.8 16 87.3 103.3
9 CHI 19.5 81.4 17.1 85.1 102.2
10 CBJ 19.3 82.1 16.4 85.4 101.8
11 MTL 17.2 85.1 14.3 87.2 101.5
12 COL 19.8 80.7 19.4 81.9 101.3
13 NSH 19.2 80.2 19.2 81.1 100.3
14 DET 17.7 83 16 84.1 100.1
15 TBL 18.5 80.7 15.6 84.4 100
16 CGY 15.7 81.7 12.9 86.8 99.7
17 ANA 16 82.2 13.1 85.9 99
18 VAN 15.2 83.2 13.6 85.4 99
19 DAL 15.9 81.4 14.1 84.4 98.5
20 PHX 19.9 79 18.1 80.1 98.2
21 CAR 14.6 81.7 11.7 86.3 98
22 WPG 15.4 83.2 13.1 84.9 98
23 LAK 15.1 83.1 13 84.8 97.8
24 OTT 18.4 80.9 14.8 82.5 97.3
25 NYI 17.8 78.1 15.2 81.1 96.3
26 TOR 19.8 78.4 15.1 81 96.1
27 EDM 17 82.1 12.2 83.6 95.8
28 BUF 14.1 81.4 12.1 83.2 95.3
29 MIN 17.9 78.8 14.7 80.4 95.1
30 FLA 10 76 7.8 79 86.8

The Devils remain in second place, but are a lot closer to Pittsburg. Below is a chart of how teams were affected by adjusting the STR SHGs. The numbers are the charge for the team in the before column. Look at the STL example if it is confusing. They had the third best, but after the adjustment they are in fourth: a change of minus 1 spot.

Before After Change
PIT PIT N/A
NJD NJD N/A
STL BOS -1
WSH STL -3
BOS NYR 2
PHI SJS -2
NYR WSH 2
MTL PHI -3
SJS CHI 4
CBJ CBJ N/A
CHI MTL 2
DET COL -2
COL NSH 1
NSH DET 1
OTT TBL -9
TBL CGY 1
EDM ANA -10
PHX VAN -2
WPG DAL -3
VAN PHX 2
ANA CAR 4
TOR WPG -4
LAK LAK N/A
CGY OTT 8
DAL NYI 6
MIN TOR -3
CAR EDM 6
NYI BUF 3
BUF MIN 1
FLA FLA N/A

Ottawa and Edmonton stand out here as the pretenders in STR. Their ability to give up short handed goals is a lot stronger than their ability to score them. Calgary, Dallas, and Carolina are the most improved. Their SHG +/- are 5, 3, and 3 respectively. Now what does STR imply about winning games? When I did this analysis at the midway point of the season, a weak correlation said that the Devils should be doing a lot better than they were doing based on their special team performance. In this analysis, a stronger correlation agrees even more.

Team Adj. STR Points %
1 PIT 107.8 66.5
2 NJD 107.6 53.7
3 BOS 106.2 71.3
4 STL 105.4 67.7
5 NYR 105.2 58.5
6 SJS 103.7 67.7
7 WSH 103.7 54.9
8 PHI 103.3 57.3
9 CHI 102.2 65.2
10 CBJ 101.8 56.7
11 MTL 101.5 61
12 COL 101.3 68.3
13 NSH 100.3 53.7
14 DET 100.1 56.7
15 TBL 100 61.6
16 CGY 99.7 47
17 ANA 99 70.7
18 VAN 99 50.6
19 DAL 98.5 55.5
20 PHX 98.2 54.3
21 CAR 98 50.6
22 WPG 98 51.2
23 LAK 97.8 61
24 OTT 97.3 53.7
25 NYI 96.3 48.2
26 TOR 96.1 51.2
27 EDM 95.8 40.9
28 BUF 95.3 31.7
29 MIN 95.1 59.8
30 FLA 86.8 40.2




Mmym8n_medium

via i62.tinypic.com

Point % = 1.3455 (adj. STR%) - 78.352

When comparing STR% to Point %, it is clear the Devils underperform. Being to the right of the line is bad, while being to the left of the line is good. Can you spot the Devils? With this linear fit, we would expect the Devils to end the season with 109 points. That is just slightly higher than the 88 points they finished with. Also, the correlation is 40.3%. As we would expect, STR% would not be a perfectly correlation with Point% as special teams is just one part of hockey, but statistically it does account for 40.3% of the variance, so it is clearly significant.

How much do the Devil's underperform compared to their STR? By a lot. The chart below shows how teams Point% compared to what the adj. STR% fit would predict. I call it the 'Who needs Special Teams?' chart.

Team Δ
1 ANA 11.78
2 COL 7.69
3 MIN 7.58
4 LAK 5.77
5 BOS 5.02
6 SJS 4.85
7 CHI 4.49
8 TBL 4.01
9 STL 3.15
10 MTL 2.07
11 FLA 1.31
12 DAL 0.98
13 OTT 0.84
14 PHX 0.39
15 DET 0.27
16 TOR 0.19
17 PIT -0.14
18 CBJ -1.43
19 WPG -1.71
20 NSH -2.16
21 CAR -2.16
22 NYI -2.24
23 PHI -2.48
24 VAN -3.16
25 NYR -3.49
26 WSH -4.66
27 CGY -6.54
28 EDM -7.17
29 NJD -9.46
30 BUF -13.51

Clearly Anaheim doesn't need them to win while The Devils most certainly do. That's right. The Devils finished second to last. The differential is huge! Interestingly, Buffalo blows us out of the water, but their lack of success is not at all surprising to me. Anaheim has never struck me as a special teams dynamo, which my data confirms, but clearly they don't care. Their 5v5 hockey is more than good enough to compensate for lackluster special teams.

I want to end on the tone of my last comment. Anaheim shows how a team doesn't need special teams success when they have such great 5v5 play. The Devils have the opposite problem. Besides truly having stellar PK and PP abilities, their 5v5 play just hurts them too much. The only team with fewer 5v5 goals this season? You guessed it: Buffalo. Now some of the negative variance is caused by the Devil's horrendous shootout record, but 5v5 hockey is clearly something the Devils need to work on. Hopefully my analyses of STR in the future show an improvement in 'Who needs Special Teams?' graph...as long as it comes through a higher Point% and not a lower adj. STR%.

Feedback would be much appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to read.

-Brogamesh

All FanPosts and FanShots are the respective work of the author and not representative of the writers or other users of In Lou We Trust.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join In Lou We Trust

You must be a member of In Lou We Trust to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at In Lou We Trust. You should read them.

Join In Lou We Trust

You must be a member of In Lou We Trust to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at In Lou We Trust. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker