A quick glance at the team level stats through two weeks

The season is two weeks old already. It seems like it just began yesterday. Yet here we are, able to get some data on how the Rangers have looked under new coach David Quinn to start the season. Two weeks is not nearly enough time to accurately tell how the Rangers will look for the rest of the year, but it’s a starting point.

The first thing is the shot rates. We expected the Rangers to fall back a bit offensively, but at the very least do better at limiting shots against. That has not been the case so far, and the Rangers have been downright bad thus far on the shot rate side of things. They allow a ton of shots and don’t generate sustained offense. This shouldn’t surprise anyone, as Henrik Lundqvist has been forced to be marvelous, and, well, the Rangers can’t consistently generate offense.

The next look is at how the Rangers are performing in the net and in the offensive zone. Naturally, the Rangers have one of the higher save percentages to start the year, with Alex Georgiev’s game the one outlier so far. That was expected. What wasn’t expected was the 7% SH%, which is down significantly from last year. The Blueshirts don’t generate many rush chances anymore, which was a source of their high SH% under Alain Vigneault. Regardless, it won’t stay that low for long. If they can up the shot totals, they will eventually positively regress to the mean.

This last one is pace of play, meaning the average number of shot attempts taken by both teams in a game. The Rangers were always near the top of this because many games became track meets, and it looks like very little has changed. Most of this, though, has been a product of shots against, and not shots for.

So what does all this mean?

As of right now, seven games and two weeks into the season, not much. It’s way too early to read into these numbers, especially with a new coach and system in place. The Blueshirts are going to need at least through November until the system becomes habit. At that point, I expect the number of shots against to go down. I also expect that the forwards are too good to be limited to this few shots for in the offensive zone. All this is tied together.

That said, the Rangers are not going to be a good team. They will be competitive, for sure. They have the goaltending to keep them in games. They have a no-quit attitude, which is great. This is a rebuilding year, and the results will be as such.

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3 thoughts on “A quick glance at the team level stats through two weeks

  • Oct 18, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    My translation of these numbers is as follows:
    On the defensive side, we have yet to add a strong defensive minded defenseman. We also have been rotating players in a brandy new system. As the changes lessen, and the team learns the system, I am hopeful that the defense stops allowing so many high-quality shots. Pionk, Smith and Shatty seem to be better. Staal a little worse.

    On the offensive side, I do not see a ton of upside. Howden is a welcome surprise, but Buch has been a disappointment. Our first 2 lines need to generate more offense and our 3rd & 4th lines need to contain and be opportunistic. If Zibby is our go-to forward, then other teams fear not. We tend to go for quantity over quality, which means our 3rd & 4th lines need to score more. I am hopeful they will, but they need to be on the ice, in the O zone more often.

  • Oct 19, 2018 at 12:20 am

    heres my interpretation:

    there is still significant roster turnover that needs to happen before the team is in the good parts of the charts. this is basically the same group as last year less nash. they weren’t a great puck possession team under AV and maybe that was by design because he knew the talent wasn’t there to play that kind of game, like you said rush based offense boosted production. im pretty convinced of that. I think that’s partly why were seeing slow starts from hayes etc. this isn’t only about the forwards – our defense has a ton of issues getting shots in from the point – in fact in past years you would see mostly rim arounds.. its just not a strength. to play the system quinn has described they need more long range shooters both at forward and d. otherwise crash the crease offense will struggle to produce like you are seeing now.

  • Oct 19, 2018 at 6:31 am

    Well done David.

    “Competitive, one goal losses.” That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

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