by PuckStopsHere on 08/20/13 at 12:08 AM ET
In my summer sabermetrics and hockey posts, I am looking at making sense of individual Corsi ratings. These are the difference between a team's attempted shots and their opponents while a player is on the ice in five on five situations. I posted the top 20 players (due to a tie it's actually a 21 player list) last season and observed that this group of players come from only seven teams and all of them are good puck possession teams. The top raw Corsi players play on good puck possession teams. That probably isn't a surprise. In order to make it more of an individual rating we must adjust for the team in which a player plays. That will not be the final step in making Corsi a meaningful individual rating because not all players play under the same circumstances. Even on the same team some players play in more offensive roles and some play in more defensive roles and that should affect puck possession while they are on the ice.
In order to make a team adjustment, we first must know team Corsi ratings. These can be used to find a baseline for a player on a given team. The baseline is the team Corsi divided by five (since five position players are on the ice at a given time). This baseline is subtracted from each player. In order to ensure that the adjustment is meaningful only players who played at least 30 games in the lockout shortened 48 game season are included.
Here are the top 20 players by team adjusted Corsi in 2013:
Top 20 Players In 2013 By Team Adjusted Corsi
1 Daniel Sedin Vancouver +258.8
2 Henrik Sedin Vancouver +248.8
3 Justin Williams Los Angeles +240.0
4 Jake Muzzin Los Angeles +214.0
5 Anze Kopitar Los Angeles +209.0
6 Tyler Seguin Boston +204.6
7 Max Pacioretty Montreal +188.8
8 Patrice Bergeron Boston +185.6
9 Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh +167.6
10 David Clarkson New Jersey +166.6
11 Mikko Koivu Minnesota +162.8
12 Alexandre Burrows Vancouver +156.8
13 Brad Marchand Boston +156.6
14 Chris Kunitz Pittsburgh +155.6
15 Dustin Brown Los Angeles +155.0
15 Lubomir Visnovsky NY Islanders +155.0
17 Anton Stralman NY Rangers +152.2
18 Zach Parise Minnesota +147.8
19 Dan Boyle San Jose +147.0
20 Drew Shore Florida +142.2
This list of 20 players comes from 11 teams. This is more inclusive than the 7 teams for 21 players in the top 20 raw Corsis list. It isn't reasonable to ever expect a list with 20 teams represented in 20 players because maybe groups of teammates on this list were often linemates and thus if one makes the list then the other likely will too. The players on this list and not on the raw Corsi list include Sidney Crosby, Mikko Koivu, Zach Parise and Chris Kunitz. Those dropped include Marek Zidlicky, David Desharnais, Patrik Elias and Nathan Horton. I think it is clear that this group of players is a stronger group - although not necessarily by a huge margin. This is a step in the right direction but not a final step.
At the top of the list we have Daniel and Henrik Sedin. These are two players who base their game around cycling the puck deep in the opponent's offensive zone and play on a team that maximizes their offensive zone starts. They probably are not surprising players to be at the top of the list. It is evidence that they are good players, but it is not reasonable to suggest they are the best players in the league because of their offensive roles - this will increase their Corsi.
Adjusting individual Corsi ratings for the team the player plays is the first step toward making this rating an individual value.
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