by PuckStopsHere on 07/06/10 at 11:20 AM ET
I am continuing looking at sabermetrics and hockey, by looking at Corsi Numbers. I will not spend as long on them this summer as i did last year, but I want to look at the league’s best and worst while looking at them a few different ways.
A Corsi Number is a total of all shots directed at the net (whether on goal, blocked or missing the net) for minus those taken against while a player is on the ice in 5 on 5 situations. The best source for Corsi Ratings online is behind the net, but it tends to look at things on a rate (per minute) basis and I find it is often more useful to look at counting totals over the full season. They tend to better show who had a good season, as opposed to who played well in a more limited situation.
Here are the top 20 raw Corsi Numbers for the 2009/10 season:
These players led the league in puck possession. Of course there is a strong team element to puck possession and thus Corsi, which is why so few teams appear on this list. Chicago, Detroit, Washington, Boston, Vancouver, Ottawa and Toronto are effectively the only teams that appear. Both Alexei Ponikarovsky and Ian white spent the majority of their season in Toronto before late season trades. Toronto might seem like a surprise team to have good puck possession numbers, as they finished second last, but they did that with a horrible goaltending performance from Vesa Toskala. Merely replacing him with Jean-Sebastien Giguere is likely to lift Toronto significantly in the standings.
These players on this list are largely the stars of the teams with good puck possession ability. Peter Regin is probably the biggest surprise player on the list. As a rookie in Ottawa he did very well, but against weaker competition. He is ready to play a more significant role in the Ottawa offence in the future.
Duncan Keith leads the way by a significant margin. This shows both his puck possession ability and that of his Chicago teammates. This stat makes a strong case that he deserved his Norris Trophy.
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