Stick Tap to all of you

First of all, the whole staff here at CtA would like to thank everyone who participated in the Community Rankings. We really value your input and think this should be, at the very least, an interesting feature going forward. We’ll not only compile the results for this post, but we can also revisit them when we do previews for opponents later in the season.  I’m also personally compiling a spreadsheet of the stats, both advanced and standard, for each player from each game. While I’m still not sure exactly what I’m going to do with those, I’ve got a few ideas rolling around in my head.

All the stats below the players are derived from the NHL.com box score and ExtraSkater.com’s advanced box. If you would like more information on the advanced stats, I encourage you to visit ExtraSkater’s glossary or Arctic Ice Hockey. Right, let’s get to the results.

Coach Joel Quenneville
Average Rating: 7.59

For the most part, everyone seems to think Joel Quenneville did a solid job in the opener. I’ve been as big a critic of the mustache as anyone, but my personal rating (8) was in line with the community’s (8). The Hawks were the first team since 2009 to win when raising their banner and Joel deserves credit for keeping his team’s focus.

The Powerplay
Average Rating: 5.23

This one was kinda all over the board. I tallied up the responses and got the true mean which was 5.23. So, we all agree it was somewhere in the middle. They did score a PP goal going 1 for 4. They also seemed to get it together a bit more as the game went on. In my opinion, only the first attempt was truly a disaster. I’d say a 5.23 out of 10 is progress though based on what we’ve seen in the recent past.

The Penalty Kill
Average Rating: 3.93

The PK probably would have graded out lower than it did if not for the excellent finish to the game on the 5-on-3. The true mean here was 3.93. Though there are nine of you that thought it graded out at what would be deemed an above-average to elite range. They went 50% (3 for 6) on the kill but when it mattered, the Hawks were able to kill off the most important penalties. Something to work on for sure, but I don’t think our concern levels should be creeping up just quite yet. Not after one game at least.

Jonathan Toews
Average Rating: 7.48

Stats: 0 G, 1 A (primary), 1 P, even (+/-), 18:46 TOI, 2:29 PP TOI, 11 for 21 (52.4%) on faceoffs, 0 penalties taken/drawn

Advanced: -2 CORSI (CF% 47.4), -5 Fenwick (FF% 40.7%) 

The Captain also averaged out at about a 7.5 much like his head coach. He had the primary assist on Kane’s goal, but really, that was more about Patrick sniping a puck he found on a pop-up than anything. Negative in the CORSI and Fenwick, but positive in the faceoff dot.

Patrick Kane
Average Rating: 8.46

Stats: 1 G, 0 A, 1 P, even (+/-), 17:54 TOI, 3:36 PP TOI, 1 penalty taken, 0 penalties drawn

Advanced Stats: +9 CORSI (CF% 62.2), +4 Fenwick (FF% 52.3%) 

Patrick Kane was 2nd in the team in CORSI (tied with Nick Leddy) and scored one hell of a beautiful first goal. It would appear the consensus was a near elite performance from Kaner, grading out at about an 8.5. The penalty he took probably held him back from a 9 or higher as it did lead to a Capitals PPG.

Bryan Bickell
Average Rating: 6.36

Stats: 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, even (+/-), 15:05 TOI, 2:29 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: +6 CORSI (CF% 60), +1 Fenwick (FF% 52.4)

Bicks seemed to grade out as a solid six in his first stint during the regular season as a regular top six player. He didn’t show up on the scoreboard, but he also didn’t show up on the penalties sheet. He was a positive in both CORSI and Fenwick and ate the required minutes you’d expect from a top three forward.

Duncan Keith
Average Rating: 7.14

Stats: 0 G, 1 A (secondary), 1 P, -1 (+/-), 24:51 TOI, 3:28 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: +4 CORSI (CF% 54.2), +3 Fenwick (FF% 54.5)

Another near elite performance, and one you’ve come to expect. He was the leader in ice time at both even strength and on the powerplay. Once Time On Ice is back, I’ll manually go into the shift charts and get the shorthanded time as well, but it’s safe to assume Keith led the team there as well. He chipped in the secondary assist on Saad’s goal, but really, the credit on that one goes to Handzus’ saucer pass. Still, Keith was as solid as you’d want from your top D-man. He’s only a minus in standard plus-minus because he stepped off the ice before Saad potted the goal. Otherwise, he would have been even. He still gets the 2A on it.

Brent Seabrook
Average Rating: 7.53

Stats: 1 G, 0 A, 1 P, even (+/-), 20:42 TOI, 2:29 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: -1 CORSI (CF% 48.5), +1 Fenwick (FF% 52.4)

Seabrook nearly graded out as the 2nd best defencemen by the community. He scored the lone PPG, and should be credited for it. He came down into the slot and chipped in a rebound. More of that. While Seabrook finished negative in the CORSI department, it was barely a blip. He and Keith faced the toughest competition at even strength all night, and with Grabovski, Ovechkin and Backstrom rating in double digit pluses on the CORSI side, it’s not surprising that Seabrook was negative. Being a -1 was actually pretty good in this instance.

Corey Crawford
Average Rating: 7.17

Stats: 28 saves on 32 shots, 17 of 18 at Even Strength, 10 of 13 while Shorthanded.

Team CORSI: The Blackhawks were a -2 as a team CORSI wise meaning Crawford had more shots directed at him, by 2, than Holtby. Not all of them reached the net (blocked, missed etc.)

Crawford graded out on the low side of the 7s. If this were purely on even strength performance, which is what most goalies should be evaluated on, Crawford was at least a nine. I confess to grading him at a 7, and looking back, I should have bumped that to an 8 all things considered. The even strength goal was a snipe by Ovechkin on a rebound. The powerplay goals, well, those are tough to fault Crawford on. Yes, you’d like him to stop them all, but predicting shorthanded save percentage is a fool’s errand. Overall, it looks like you as a community were generally happy with Crawford’s performance save for maybe three of you.

Patrick Sharp
Average Rating: 7.13

Stats: 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, even (+/-),18:11 TOI, 3:44 PP TOI, 1 penalty taken, 0 penalties drawn

Advanced Stats: +14 CORSI (CF% 71.9), +15 Fenwick (FF% 85.7)

Sharp absolutely dominated possession. I mean, he powerbombed it through the top of a cage and onto a table full of thumb tacks. He grades out in the community at about a 7.13 and that’s pretty fair considering he didn’t put anything up on the scoreboard. He may have drove possession, but he also flubbed a breakaway chance in the first from 18 feet out trying a backhander (you have no idea how much I love having shot distance and type available, THANKS EXTRA SKATER!). Still, only Ovechkin and Backstrom had a higher CORSI among skaters. Sharp led the team, and by a wide margin. Solid performance from the handsome man.

Marian Hossa
Average Rating: 7.35

Stats: 1 G, 1 A (primary), 2 P, +2 (+/-), 17:09 TOI, 3:41 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: +3 CORSI (CF% 54.5), +8 Fenwick (FF% 66.7)

Welcome back, healthy Hossa. Marian Hossa scored without scoring. Just want to put that out there. Big Hoss graded out around a 7.35 in the community and it was nice to see the big fella back to what looked like full speed. A solid, but not spectacular performance from Hossa. Something I think we can agree on we’ll take if he can suit up for 70 games this season.

Michal Handzus
Average Rating: 6.97

Stats: 0 G, 1 A (primary, and what a pretty one it was), 1 P, +2 (+/-), 10:28 TOI, 0:00 PP TOI, 6 for 9 (66.6%) on faceoffs, 0 penalties taken/drawn

Advanced Stats: +1 CORSI (CF% 52.6), +4 Fenwick (FF% 66.7)

Despite missing an entire period, the Professor still graded out at about a 7. He did what was asked, win draws and keep up with his linemates. When he came back for the third, his saucer pass was probably the prettiest play of the game not made by Patrick Kane. Let’s hope going forward he doesn’t require an entire period off each game. He could have been an 8 or higher if that was the case.

Niklas Hjalmarsson
Average Rating: 7.53

Stats: 0 G, 2 A (1 primary, 1 secondary), 2 P, +4 (+/-), 20:57 TOI, 0:17 PP TOI, 0 penalties taken, 1 penalty drawn

Adavanced Stats: -15 CORSI (CF% 33.3 ), -8 Fenwick (FF% 38.2)

Hjalmarsson grades out just a tick above 7.5. His scoresheet stats are excellent. He assisted on two goals, finished a plus four and even drew a penalty. This is where I’ll probably get some pushback though. Hjalmarsson and Oduya were a disaster possession wise. They spent most of the night in their own zone with shots being directed at the goaltender. Many of the failed clears were results of poor decisions by Hjalmarrson and his partner. I gave him a 5, but really wanted to go lower. Love the scoring contributions, but Hjalmarsson is a stay at home defencemen first and foremost. I’m sure this one will brew some productive discussion.

Johnny Oduya
Average Rating: 7.61

Stats: 1 G, 0 A, 1 P, +4 (+/-), 18:40 TOI, 0:17 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: -9 CORSI (CF% 35.9), -4 Fenwick (FF% 42.9)

Probably the hardest guy to grade on the night. He came out at 7.61, but that two you see on there is me. I admit that’s harsh, I probably should have stuck him with a five like his partner but I knee-jerked this one. The goal he got was a gift (lol birthday pun, I’m so funny <ducks fruit>) from Holtby who basically threw it behind him into his own net. I was disappointed in the 2nd pairing. The community approves of his performance and you guys matter more than I do.

Brandon Saad
Average Rating: 8.38

Stats: 1 G, 2 A (1 primary, 1 secondary), 3 P, +2 (+/-), 14:06 TOI, 2:47 PP TOI

Advanced Stats: +3 CORSI (CF% 57.9), +4 Fenwick (FF% 66.7)

Manchild, indeed. So, everybody loves Saad. Other than Kane, he’s the highest of any forward on the team. Saad was dominant. He potted a goal off Handzus’ great assist and then assisted on Oduya’s gift directly while being one of the players that drove the net to set up Seabrook’s PPG. The Blackhawks third line should be deadly this year. Saad will be a large part of that. Rather large.

Andrew Shaw
Average Rating: 6.84

Stats: 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, +1 (+/-), 16:16 TOI, 2:26 PP TOI, 3 for 9 in faceoffs (33.3%), 1 penalty taken, 0 drawn

Advanced Stats: +1 CORSI (CF% 52.2), +3 Fenwick (FF% 60)

Another solid high six, nearly seven. On the third line, I think we’ll gladly take it. Shaw’s deficiency is definitely faceoffs, and to an extent, discipline. His one penalty taken and pretty awful performance at the dot show that. Then again, most of his lost faceoffs occurred in the offensive zone where as Toews’ were in the defensive zone and eventually led to goals. He’s going to get a major bump in all his peripheral advanced numbers playing with Saad. Depth: A Good Thing.

Jimmy Hayes
Average Rating: 5.61

Stats:  0 G, 0 A, 0 P, +1 (+/-), 11:08 TOI, 0:00 PP TOI, 0 penalties taken, 1 penalty drawn

Advanced Stats: +2 CORSI (CF% 56.3), +3 Fenwick (FF% 66.7)

Instead of assigning Hayes a number, I think it’s safe to say we can just rate him as “meh.” The skating problems aren’t really as noticeable as in the past so that’s a plus. Everything else? He just blends in with the scenery for the most part. If hits are your thing, he was credited with two. There isn’t much else for me to derive here. In fact, based on the ratings, I’d say that everyone had trouble really coming to a conclusion and just settled somewhere in the middle.

Nick Leddy
Average Rating: 6.16

Stats: 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, +1 (+/-), 17:28 TOI, 3:41 PP TOI, 0 penalties draw/taken

Advanced Stats: +9 CORSI (CF% 65.5), +5 Fenwick (61.9%)

The Blackhawks could sell tickets for Nick Leddy to skate in open ice and I would buy them.  It looks like most people settled on 6 for Leddy and I think that’s fair given his playing time and 3rd pairing status. I rated Leddy an 8, and a lot of that had to do not only with his own performance, but that of the 2nd pairing. By comparison, and I know the 2nd pairing faced stiffer competition, Leddy was in orbit. He led all defencemen in CORSI pushing the puck the other way all night. I really think we’re in for a breakout year from the youngster.

Michal Rozsival
Average Rating: 5.85

Stats: 0 G, 1 A (secondary), 1 P, +1 (+/-), 14:44 TOI, 1 penalty taken, 0 penalties drawn

Advanced Stats: +5 CORSI (CF% 60), +2 Fenwick (FF% 55.6)

All. Over. The. Board. I think we can settle on basically a 6 for Rozsival much like Leddy, but hoo boy did everyone scatter their votes here. If Toews’ primary assist on Kane’s goal doesn’t mean much then Rozie’s secondary means even less. Still, positive possession numbers. The drawback being his hook penalty, but how many of us really though that should have been called? Ward got lucky Rozie’s stick was caught. If he lets his stick go, probably no call.

Marcus Kruger
Average Rating: 6.52

Stats: 0 G, 1 A (secondary), 1 P, +2 (+/-), 10 for 17 in faceoffs (58.8%) 14:37 TOI, 0:17 PP TOI, 0 penalties drawn/taken

Advanced Stats: -6 CORSI (CF% 40), -4 Fenwick (FF% 41.7)

For a 4th line center, can you really ask for more than a solid 6.5, perhaps a little lower? Kruger won his draws at a reasonable rate, he killed penalties (kinda) and even chipped in a secondary assist. Now, his possession numbers look a little sketchy, but consider his linemates at even strength. In fact, let’s do that right now.

Brandon Bollig
Average Rating: 6.06

Stats: 1 G, 0 A, 1 P, +1 (+/-), 8:04 TOI, 0:17 PP TOI, 1 penalty taken, 1 penalty drawn

Advanced Stats: 0 CORSI (CF% 50), -2 Fenwick (FF% 40)

I have no issues whatsoever with Brandon Bollig’s performance on Tuesday save for his penalty for roughing. Consensus was about a 6. He drew a penalty against a rookie that got the Hawks a PP when the ice was tilted in favor of the Caps in the 2nd. He scored the first goal by cleaning up a mess in front. He had zero giveaways. I’m fine with this. I rated the kid an 8 because I was pleased. If he doesn’t commit the penalty and tops 10 minutes of TOI, I consider a 10 relative to what we’ve seen in the past. Seriously.

Joakim Nordstrom
Average Rating: 5.06

Stats: 0 G, 0 A, 0 P, +1 (+/-), 12:23 TOI, 0:17 PP TOI, 1 penalty taken, 0 penalties drawn

Advanced Stats: -6 CORSI (CF% 37.5%), -6 Fenwick (FF% 35)

Consensus of a 5 and I dare say he’s lucky to have gotten that. Nordstrom lost a board battle due to his lack of size which resulted in the first goal. He took a penalty that wasn’t necessary. He was a negative possession player. But, he did skate 12 minutes which is more than you can say for Bollig, I guess. He earned his spot with preseason play, but that wasn’t against the competition he’s going to see in the regular season. It’s one game, but it wasn’t a very good one in my opinion. It looks like most of you agree.

So, what do you think? Comments? What can we do better? What do you like? This is a work in progress so let us know!