by PuckStopsHere on 09/01/09 at 01:34 PM ET
This summer, in a series of sabermetrics and hockey posts, I have began to look at the Fenwick Number as an alternative to +/- ratings. It is an attempt to capture puck possession numbers by counting shots on goal and missed shots while a player is on the ice in 5 on 5 situations. It will count more events than +/- and will thus have a better signal to noise (the question is whether the events it counts are as meaningful). I have listed the top 20 and worst 20 player Fenwick Numbers. Much like Corsi Numbers (which include blocked shots), these results have a strong team bias. The top 20 list has players on good teams and the bottom 20 list has players on weak teams. In an effort to see team effects, the total Fenwick Number for each team is listed here and compared to the team Corsi Numbers.
Here are the team Fenwick Numbers for 2008/09:
Rank in team Corsis
|1||Detroit Red Wings||+599|
|4||San Jose Sharks||+426|
|6||New York Rangers||+245|
|8||New Jersey Devils||+218|
|9||Columbus Blue Jackets||+196|
|10||Los Angeles Kings||+96|
|11||Toronto Maple Leafs||+79|
|16||St Louis Blues||-89|
|23||Tampa Bay Lightning||-203|
|28||New York Islanders||-346|
This list is quite similar to the team Corsi Numbers list with teams shuffled a little bit. Teams that block a lot of shots will appear better on this list and teams that take a lot of outside shots (that are more likely to be blocked) will appear worse. The biggest change is position is the Colorado Avalanche, who were one of the top shot blocking teams last year and rise from 26th to 19th when blocked shots are removed.
Teams that did well in the regular season, but had poor Corsis and Fenwicks include the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks (who had strong goaltending with is not included in these numbers) and the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins (who had special teams success not included in these numbers). These numbers do a good job of showing the reasons behind the success of some teams and lead to some obvious questions. For example, if things stay the same as last year in Boston except that Tim Thomas cannot repeat his Vezina Trophy season in net, can the Bruins remain a top team?
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