NHL on Record Shootout Pace

NHL on Record Shootout Pace

    94

    Did the neutral zone trap morph into the shootout? The pre-lockout reason for altering the rules, transfigured into the shootout as teams play for the shootout more this season. If trends are any indication, perhaps the two memes have a direct correlation.

    Numbers since the lockout over 1230 games per season.


    2005-6 2006-7 2007-8 2008-9 2009-10 (TD)
    GlsPerGm 6.169 5.891 5.567 5.823 5.720
    AdjGlsPerGm(minus SO) 6.051 5.758 5.440 5.696 5.545
    % SO games 11.7886 13.333 12.682 12.683 17.505
    # of SO Gms 145 164 156 156 215(proj)

    The NHL is heading to a record amount of shootouts in 2009-10, on pace to eclipse the 200 mark for the first time, shattering the previous high of 164 in 2006-07 by over 25%.

    This chart shows actual number of shootouts since inception, with current season as projection (215)

    *This chart shows actual number of shootouts since inception, with current season as projection (215)

    There is a definite trend here that includes a reduction in goals per game – and adjusted gls/gm due to shootout goals – since the lockout, trends that prompted the league to alter rules to encourage scoring, and finally eliminate tie games.

    This chart shows the declining Goals Per Game trend since the lockout.

    *This chart shows the declining Goals Per Game (and Adj for SO goals) trend since the lockout.

    It might be the compressed schedule, maybe used more frequently in strategy .. Maybe it’s perceived parity in the NHL.

    The NHL has been reactionary in the past to trends, implementing overtime, altering the conditions, and then the shootout.

    Dreaded be the day the shootout meme replaces that of the neutral zone trap. What effect would it have if more teams played for shootouts? That may seem a stretch, but as indicated below, these numbers don’t lie.

    Projected shootouts as a percentage in the current season and where they were since inception.

    *Projected shootouts as a percentage in the current season and where they were since inception.

    Individual teams numbers regarding shootouts:

    Bos (5-4), Florida (4-5) lead the NHL with nine shootouts, while Buffalo, Vancouver and NY Rangers are a perfect 2-0 this season. Pittsburgh is a perfect 4-0 and Nashville (3-1), New Jeersey (5-1), Philadelphia (2-1) and Phoenix (2-1) have lost only once.

    Devils and Bruins lead the NHL with five SO wins .. Dallas (1-5) misses Jussi Jokinen, and Tampa Bay (1-5), NY Islanders (1-4) and Toronto (1-2) have only one win in the shootout.

    [email protected]
    Twitter: @KatsHockey