Must Read
Clearing the Defensive Zone: The Dangers of Dumping the Puck Out
May 19, 2015
Over the course of the season, I and others have often talked about the importance of defensive zone exits. On numerous occasions, we have debated (on Twitter) the pros and cons of simply getting the puck out of the zone to relieve offensive pressure versus starting a proper breakout play. People often argue that...
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Must Read
Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Special Teams
June 2, 2015
The Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning are getting ready to face each other in the Stanley Cup Final. You can bet that the coaches are reviewing game film to find out what to expect from their opponent and make some adjustments to how they approach certain aspects of...
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Must Read
Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Gaining the Offensive Zone
June 3, 2015
Zone entries are very important to the efficacy of a team’s offense. It is commonly held that carrying the puck into the zone leads to more shots than dumping the puck in and trying to recover possession. While I have tracked the zone entries for the Chicago Blackhawks as the season has worn on...
Read More >>
Must Read
Clearing the Defensive Zone: The Dangers of Dumping the Puck Out
May 19, 2015
Over the course of the season, I and others have often talked about the importance of defensive zone exits. On numerous occasions, we have debated (on Twitter) the pros and cons of simply getting the puck out of the zone to relieve offensive pressure versus starting a proper breakout play. People often argue that...
Read More >>
Must Read
Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Special Teams
June 2, 2015
The Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning are getting ready to face each other in the Stanley Cup Final. You can bet that the coaches are reviewing game film to find out what to expect from their opponent and make some adjustments to how they approach certain aspects of...
Read More >>
Must Read
Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Gaining the Offensive Zone
June 3, 2015
Zone entries are very important to the efficacy of a team’s offense. It is commonly held that carrying the puck into the zone leads to more shots than dumping the puck in and trying to recover possession. While I have tracked the zone entries for the Chicago Blackhawks as the season has worn on...
Read More >>

Articles

Back To Basics: Offensive Zone Entries
September 30, 2015
When I first got into writing about hockey, I did some primers on stats to help people learn. I haven’t done much of that in the past year and recently some hockey people asked if I would be willing to do some more, so basically it’s their fault if you don’t like this.

If you are newer to the statistics side of hockey, you may not know what all the fuss is about with regard to zone entries. Analysts on TV...
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Puck Possession, A Potentially Misleading Principle
September 28, 2015
Over the years, analytics in hockey have grown and evolved. Shot metrics and measures that provide context to them have become part of the standard toolbox used by many inside and outside of NHL offices. The principle of puck possession, while known to the hockey world since time immemorial, has taken on a whole new level of importance with shot metrics gaining in popularity.

Shot metrics were initially explored...
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Competitive Advantage: Putting 2 and 2 Together
September 2, 2015
With expansion plans in the works, the NHL and the teams that comprise it are under pressure to increase revenue. Sports are entertainment and in the entertainment business, fun is money. It’s not rocket science to link a rise in the number of fans to a rise in the amount of money coming in. Every team in the NHL wants to win. Even the teams that have been rumored to have tanked for attractive draft picks want to win, albeit just a little bit farther in the future. All things considered, winning, or even...
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Using Player Skill Sets To Gain An Advantage: 1-3-1 Neutral Zone Forecheck
August 15, 2015
The race to find a competitive advantage in hockey is reaching unprecedented heights. One of those advantages is finding a reliable way to identify a player’s unique skill set. Once you know what a player’s strengths and weaknesses are, you can more efficiently maximize his strengths and insulate his weaknesses.

Knowledge of a player’s skill set can help inform...
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Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Defense
June 3, 2015
This part of my exercise in looking at how each of the teams in the Stanley Cup Final operate will be focused on defense. To be honest, I could probably do ten posts on this topic because it is far more complex a topic than would fit here, but I am not sure that others are as obsessed with defensive systems as I am, so we’ll just hit some of the basics and highlights...
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Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Gaining the Offensive Zone
June 3, 2015
Zone entries are very important to the efficacy of a team’s offense. It is commonly held that carrying the puck into the zone leads to more shots than dumping the puck in and trying to recover possession. While I have tracked the zone entries for the Chicago Blackhawks as the season has worn on, I have not done so for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Because of that, I thought we could look...
Read More >>
Stanley Cup Final Systems Look: Special Teams
June 2, 2015
The Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning are getting ready to face each other in the Stanley Cup Final. You can bet that the coaches are reviewing game film to find out what to expect from their opponent and make some adjustments to how they approach certain aspects of the game as a result. We can...
Read More >>
Zone Entries, Exits, Targets CHI vs ANA
May 30, 2015
The following data was tracked from Game 5 of the Anaheim Ducks vs. Chicago Blackhawks series. Given that Game 7 is also at Anaheim, this information may be useful for insights into how the matchups on Anaheim’s home ice affected the teams’ performances...
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Clearing the Defensive Zone: The Dangers of Dumping the Puck Out
May 19, 2015
Over the course of the season, I and others have often talked about the importance of defensive zone exits. On numerous occasions, we have debated (on Twitter) the pros and cons of simply getting the puck out of the zone to relieve offensive pressure versus starting a proper breakout play. People often argue that because players are tired at the end of a shift, particularly one where they have been actively defending for an extended period, simply getting the puck...
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Zone Exits & Breakouts: Chicago vs Nashville
May 14, 2015
Zone Exits and actions taken in the defensive zone are the most intriguing part of microstats to me. I am admittedly a bit obsessed with defensive systems and shot suppression so this is probably not surprising. Defensive zone microstats are key to evaluating players, systems and teams. They can help teams identify areas of weakness or strength in players. In turn, defensive zone microstats can...
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Defensive Targets: CHI vs NSH
May 7, 2015
While tracking zone entries, I include the defenseman targeted on the entry. I also keep track of whether a forward assisted on defending against the zone entry. This data can help evaluate team and player performance as well as the efficacy of the systems used by the teams. This is particularly true of a team’s neutral zone forecheck, or the system they use to stop the attacking team from...
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Zone Entries: CHI vs NSH Player Breakdown
May 7, 2015
Now that the team breakdown is complete, we can move on to the player breakdown of the zone entries throughout the Chicago versus Nashville playoff series. Aside from telling you how each of the players fared during the series, I also want to show you some of the possibilities for using the information tracked through microstats (such as zone entries and exits) to evaluate players, line combinations and systems...
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Zone Entries: Chicago Blackhawks vs Nashville Predators
May 5, 2015
I initially wanted to put all of the data I tracked from the Chicago vs Nashville series in one post; however, that would be massive and lose a lot of meaning that way, so I am breaking it down. I plan to post 5 articles as of right now. If one of them gets too long, I’ll break it down further...
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PLAYOFFS? PLAYOFFS!
April 15, 2015
Good systems, good scoring and good luck get teams into the playoffs, but once they are there, it is often about which teams get hot at the right time. Good systems and talent certainly help this happen, but a goalie stealing a playoff series or even the Stanley Cup is not a real oddity in the NHL.

If you’ve ever read anything I’ve written on shot metrics, you’ll know that most of the teams that make the playoffs have a good mix of shot generation and shot suppression strength...
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