Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Zone Entries: Caps 3, Panthers 0

Direct link. Some observations:

60 minute effort, more or less.

This was the type of game you'd expect from a good team against a bad team. The Capitals were never on their heels for more than a minute or two and dominated significant stretches of the game. The only effective line for Florida was the Weiss line, but Weiss is one of two or three solid top-six forwards Florida has (Versteeg and Booth), so it's not like losing to him is embarrassing in any form.

Ovechkin is getting better each game. I think Brouwer has been getting better as well. As for the "Ovechkin needs to let Backstrom carry the puck more" crowd, Ovechkin only carried the puck into the offensive zone three times. What I find very worrisome is that he really wasn't all that involved in entries, period. It's as if "he just doesn't care" in the neutral zone. I have him as carrying the puck in thrice, receiving a pass five times, and dumping the puck in once. Compare to fifteen total for Backstrom. It's only a one game sample, but it's the impression I've gotten from the other games as well. I don't want Ovechkin turning into Kovalchuk, Kessel or Gaborik, being a finisher and not much more. Anyway...

I think Laich brings the meat, so Ward and Chimera bring potatoes.

I can't believe people thought Vokoun was being sheltered in Nashville and Florida and would collapse in Washington. Seriously. At this rate he won't need 60 starts to win the Vezina.

Knuble, Semin, Carlson, and Schultz were the only Caps with a negative Corsi. Green and Hamrlik were each +12 (Green was particularly good), Ovechkin-Backstrom-Brouwer +9. The goals will start coming in torrents soon enough with more performances like this.

I don't think Hamrlik has been playing all that poorly, but maybe that's just me. He's been asked to handle the puck an awful lot and maybe more than he's comfortable with in the offensive zone. It's certainly easier to make the short breakout pass to the deep backchecking forward than to your winger fleeing the zone at full speed. Regardless, he's been able to make those small short plays that are crucial to keep possession in the offensive zone. At least my lying eyes tell me so. It's not like the alternative--Mike Green making his partner look good--is plausible at all.

Weiss, Fleischmann (?! even with 7 more defensive zone draws than offensive zone draws?!), Versteeg, and Campbell were the only Florida players in the black in Corsi. Weiss: want.

155 entries total, 135 at 5-on-5. Caps had 71 at ES (53%, not bad considering they had the lead almost the entire game and a two-goal lead for nearly 20 minutes), 78 overall (50%). Not bad at all. CSN had a giant scoring chances disparity (something like a 3:1 ratio).


  1. C = Carry across blue line, D = dump in, p = pass, x = takeaway?, what does T stand for?


  2. Tip-in. Those are a little tough to judge...most of the time it's deflecting a long pass (so there's no icing).

    X is "other" which could be an offensive zone takeaway, a long clear and the Caps player wins the race to the loose puck, a long shot from center ice like Semin loves to do, a pass back to the point by the other team with their point man missing the puck and the Cap winning the race, and probably other things but I think those are the only ones I've noted so far.