Earlier in the week, we looked at the best and worst special teams in the NHL. After which one commenter wrote, “These numbers don’t mean jack.”
So in hopes of building off such a rave review, here are the shot differentials for all 30 teams, ranked from highest to lowest:
— These numbers mean something. Three of the top five teams are the last four Stanley Cup winners, and right down at the bottom you have the NHL’s worst team.
— Yep, that’s why goaltending has been so important in Toronto, Colorado and Montreal this season. The Maple Leafs in particular have played a dangerous game with all the time they’ve spent in their own end. In a related story, Joffrey Lupul’s attempted clearance last night versus Tampa Bay will not go down as the best ever:
— In addition to shot quantity, there’s definitely a discussion to be had about shot quality. In fact, it’s one of the most talked about topics in the stats community. You hear arguments like this all the time with teams like the Islanders: How can you blame their poor goalies with all the defensive gaffes they make that lead to prime scoring chances? And there’s something to be said for that argument. That being said, Garth Snow has to do something about his goaltending. The last time the most important position in hockey was a strength on Long Island was what, 2006-07?