Sunday, March 16, 2008

When teams score

Hi James,

I was wondering if you could help me with this one. One thing that has been so frustrating about watching this Flyers team is not only the inconsistency, but their inability to hit the ground running. It seems like almost every other game, they surrender a goal in the first five minutes. Do you know of any statistics sites that could show me how many goals they've allowed in the first few minutes of the game?

Sofie
I don't have the first few minutes stats, but what is available is a look at who scores first and in which period teams score.

The Flyers have played 73 games this season, scoring first in 37 of them, or almost exactly 50 per cent. They're 25-6-6 when they score first, and 10-22-4 when they don't.

The problem is, Philadelphia's almost never on the board early (and as Sofie points out, is often in the hole). The Flyers are 25th in the league in percentage of goals scored in the first period (26.48%). They score 40 per cent of their goals in the second and 32.5 per cent in the third.

Goals by period is something that Scott Mellanby brought up on Hockey Night in Canada yesterday, pointing out that the second period is where the league's goal bonanza is. The league averages are 29 per cent in the first, 35 per cent in the second (when teams have a long change at the bench) and 34.5 per cent in the third (with empty netters included).

Here's a look at the figures for all 30 teams (sorted by percentage of first-period goals):

Team 1st Pd Rank 2nd Pd Rank 3rd Pd Rank OT Rank
NYR 38.12% 1 30.94% 27 29.28% 29 1.66% 16
CHI 34.80% 2 27.45% 30 36.27% 9 1.47% 20
DET 32.13% 3 35.29% 13 32.13% 26 0.45% 29
BOS 31.32% 4 31.32% 25 35.71% 12 1.65% 17
WSH 31.25% 5 34.13% 19 31.73% 27 2.88% 4
SJS 30.65% 6 29.03% 28 39.25% 2 1.08% 24
VAN 30.43% 7 32.07% 23 35.33% 13 2.17% 9
NSH 30.29% 8 28.37% 29 39.42% 1 1.92% 13
MTL 30.09% 9 34.51% 17 33.63% 21 1.77% 15
LAK 29.50% 10 32.00% 24 37.50% 4 1.00% 25
EDM 29.41% 11 37.97% 8 30.48% 28 2.14% 10
CBJ 29.41% 11 32.94% 21 36.47% 8 1.18% 23
MIN 29.10% 13 41.27% 1 26.98% 30 2.65% 5
PIT 28.64% 14 33.80% 20 33.80% 19 0.47% 28
CGY 28.28% 15 36.36% 12 33.84% 18 1.52% 19
STL 28.16% 16 34.48% 18 37.36% 5 0.00% 30
ANA 28.02% 17 34.62% 16 35.16% 14 2.20% 8
ATL 27.96% 18 32.80% 22 36.02% 10 3.23% 2
CAR 27.85% 19 31.05% 26 38.81% 3 2.28% 7
NJD 27.32% 20 36.61% 10 32.79% 23 3.28% 1
OTT 27.31% 21 36.56% 11 34.80% 15 1.32% 22
DAL 27.23% 22 36.62% 9 34.74% 16 1.41% 21
FLA 27.08% 23 34.90% 14 35.94% 11 2.08% 11
BUF 26.67% 24 34.67% 15 36.89% 6 1.78% 14
PHI 26.48% 25 39.73% 5 32.42% 24 0.91% 27
COL 25.51% 26 40.31% 3 32.14% 25 2.04% 12
TBL 25.37% 27 40.30% 4 33.33% 22 1.00% 26
TOR 24.26% 28 38.61% 7 34.65% 17 2.48% 6
PHX 23.91% 29 40.76% 2 33.70% 20 1.63% 18
NYI 21.51% 30 38.95% 6 36.63% 7 2.91% 3

The Wild don't get nearly enough credit for being a speedy, counter-attack team, but they lead the way in taking advantage of the long change in the second period. Phoenix, Colorado and Tampa Bay are up there, too.

The third period's a bit trickier to draw conclusions from, given I've left the empty netters in the mix, but teams like Nashville, San Jose and Carolina have done a nice job of scoring late.

Some teams are examples of extremes: The Rangers, for one, score mainly in the first period and sit back. The Islanders, on the other hand, can't score until the second and third periods.

If I'm a coach, this might be a chart that offers a little insight into my opposition heading into the playoffs.

I'll take a look at the goals against by period numbers next.
.

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1 Comments:

At 6:54 PM, March 16, 2008, Blogger voxel said...

Flyers aren't that bad in the first 5 minutes:

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=pjQI4peSUvqvRaluuddJJKg

For all goals in the first 5 minutes - here is the data for games up until March 14/15th.

http://spreadsheets.google.com/pub?key=pjQI4peSUvqu1PkgxPJQ9EA

 

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