FanPost

Penguins 1st Round Playoff Grades

During the regular season, I posted grades for the Pittsburgh Penguins during each Quarter. Actually, I may have never posted the 4th Quarter, I know I have the data for it, but it seems to not exist as a FanPost... oh well. But throughout the season, I used various methods to evaluate the players, learning more about Advanced Stats and incorporating the available data whenever I could. So now in the playoffs, I have access to individual game score sheets as well as individual game Advanced Stats to work with. So being able to look at players overall performance as well as pinpointing when they had a good game and when they had a poor game, I am better able to get an overall look at the individual player performances. I'm not posting many of the actual values I have in my spreadsheets, but it is worth noting that all of the values I use are adjusted for TOI.

Forwards

Craig Adams - C+

Adams had one of the lowest average even strength TOI on the entire team, although his contributions on the PK brings his average up to about what one would expect from the 4th line. When adjusted for TOI, Adams has the 3rd lowest Point total amongst forwards, which is not necessarily bad as we don't expect a lot of scoring from him and the other 4th liners. Oddly, the two that have less then him are not 4th liners though. Despite the general lack of scoring, he does have a positive +/-, so at least he still manages to contribute defensively. He has a decent amount of Hits and Takeaways, with no Giveaways, and he is one of the handful of players that have not been on the ice for a single even strength goal against. He also managed to win an impressive 57.9% of his limited faceoffs. His possession numbers (Fenwick/Corsi) leave a little to be desired, as he is negative there. But considering he is the type of player that tends to have negative possession numbers, and most of the team did this series, I'm not concerned, and he is nowhere near the lowest. Strangely, in the two shutouts he was amongst the top of the small number of players with positive Fenwick, yet in the other 4 games he was amongst the worst. Yet despite being massively outshot by the opposition on numerous occasions, he didn't let a single goal go by.

Beau Bennett - B-

Bennett only got to play in 3 games, and even then he had rather sheltered minutes. He has shown the ability to play well at both ends of the ice, scoring goals, one of the better +/- ratings on the team, and a decent amount of Hits and Blocked Shots. Unfortunately some Giveaways as well, but far less than some of the others on the team, and not altogether unexpected from a rookie. Like most of the team, he has struggled with possession this series. Unfortunately, his Fenwick is one of the lowest ones on the team, so he was getting a bit dominated while he was on the ice. However, he did manage to allow fewer goals than some of the other people that got outshot as badly, and actually has one of the better Corsi Save % on the team. It would be nice if the team could control possession, but at least he was able to keep the Islanders out of the net more often than not. He actually did well in all 3 games, of course that was also before the team really fell apart in Games 4 and 6, but what is really keeping him out of the lineup isn't his ability, but his youth and inexperience. He should be in the Top 6, but there is no room for him, and even when he is he gets so little ice time that he might as well be a 4th liner.

Matt Cooke - B

Cooke played in all 6 games, almost exclusively on the 3rd line, getting standard Check line minutes matching up against the Islanders top scorers, plus some decent exposure on the PK. He has the lowest Point total amongst all forwards, but we don't normally look to Cooke for points, so its not overly worrisome. However, during the season we saw some excellent scoring bursts from the 3rd line, so it would still be nice to see an increased output from him. He does, however, have a really good +/- Rating, and has more Hits than anybody else on the team. He also has some Blocked Shots, and an impressive number of Takeaways, that outweigh his limited Giveaways. He is another of the handful of players that have not allowed a single Goal Against at even strength, so his defensive acumen far outweighs his limited offensive contribution. Like most of the team, he has negative possession numbers, but its one of the higher negative values on the team. The 3rd line as a whole didn't have any real offensive contribution the first few games, although in Game 3 he was one of the few players that actually had a high positive Fenwick. By the 4th Game, the 3rd line was one of the best units on the ice, and he continued to improve, having positive Goals For and Fenwick stats in both Games 5 and 6. He managed to be excellent defensively, despite some tough match-ups and decent amount of TOI, and started to really pick up the offensive push in later games.

Sidney Crosby - B+

Crosby is no longer leading the team as he did in the regular season, but he is still amongst the highest in Goals, Assists, and Points. However, his line has uncharacteristically struggled defensively... possibly due to the lines getting shuffled around, both in game and on the depth chart, so he now spends more time with some less than defensively skilled skaters. Not that he isn't blameless for the offense's lack of defensive play this series, but its just not as common with his usual linemates. He gets the most TOI of any of the forwards, both at even strength and total, as he is one of the primary PP skaters and sees minimal PK exposure. He has a fairly high number of Giveaways, but balances it out by having the same number of Takeaways. He also has an alarmingly high number of Blocked Shots, though considering the shot to the collar bone and the one to the toe, he isn't necessarily blocking them on purpose. His faceoffs are terrible compared to his regular season totals, only 47.5%, so I am willing to believe the face cage makes it extremely difficult to see the puck drop. Possession-wise, he actually evens out to a 0, despite being fairly dominant some games, but considering most of the team is in the negatives a 0 isn't bad. His Fenwick Shooting % values are down however, and the Corsi Save % numbers are rather terrible, actually being the worst on the team. The entire Top 6 has been really bad defensively this series, which was particularly concerning seeing how low his numbers were in Games 3 and 4 despite high positive Fenwick values in those games. He should be so much better, its slightly concerning that they are performing so poorly.

Pascal Dupuis - B+

Dupuis played in all 6 games, mostly on the Top line, with very minimal PP exposure and a lot of time on the PK. Continuing on his regular season success, he has been a goal scoring machine, leading the team in Goals as well as one of the higher Point totals. His time away from the Top 6 also gave him the opportunity to come away with a positive +/- Rating. On the defensive end, he has one of the higher Hits and Blocked Shots totals amongst forwards, and he has twice as many Takeaways as he does Giveaways. He is one of the handful of players that came away with a postive Fenwick score in the series, and he has a decently high Fenwick Shooting %. However, as we see with the rest of the Top 6, his Corsi Save % is uncharacteristically low. Strangely, the games in which he did best from a possession standpoint, he had his worst Goals Against and Save %, with Games 2-4 being particularly awful, and Game 6 not much better. As Dupuis was arguably the best defensive forward on the team in the regular season, and quite possibly should have been a Selke candidate, his utter lack of defensive success in the playoffs is quite disturbing.

Tanner Glass - C

Glass, for whatever reason, got next to no exposure in the series. He only played in 4 of the games, and even when he was on the roster he got the lowest TOI on the entire team, averaging less than 8 minutes a night, and even a large chunk of that was on the PK. He even managed to score a goal, which considering his extremely limited TOI makes him one of the higher scoring players. He also manages to have the 2nd highest number of Hits, and a decent amount of blocked shots. He even has limited exposure at faceoffs, although his success rate fell a bit from the regular season to only a 40%. His defensive ability did take a bit of a hit, as he let in just enough goals to even out his +/- to a 0, although he does still manage a decent Corsi Save %, about middle of the board for the team. His Fenwick is negative, as one would expect considering the regular season, but so is most of the team, and he is actually the least negative, which is rather odd. He did fairly well in Games 1 and 2, scoring his goal and while his possession numbers were negative it wasn't as low as many of the others on the team. Then by Game 3, he somehow managed to have the highest Fenwick on the team. And in all that time, not a single even strength goal went by him in 3 games. Granted, his extremely low TOI makes the numbers quite unreliable, but considering his performance up to that point it makes no sense why he was seeing so little time on the ice. However, Game 4 he was just awful, the highest Goals Against and worst Corsi Save % on the team. Despite the fact that the entire team was awful in Game 4, it was enough to get him scratched the remainder of the series.

Jarome Iginla - B

Iginla has spent time bouncing back and forth between the top 2 lines, and more often than not find himself on the top PP unit. He falls about middle of the road in Goals, but has racked up and impressive number of Assists, which allows him to fall in at #2 in Points. He, like most of the Top 6, has a negative +/- Rating, as well as a slightly high number of Giveaways with no Takeaways to counteract it. He has one of the lowest number of Hits amongst forwards, in addition to a fairly minimal number of Blocked Shots. Obviously he isn't the type of player we want to see blocking shots, but you would think with his style of play he would be playing physical and racking up the Hits. Possession-wise, he has the 2nd lowest Fenwick on the entire team, which is a bit of a concern considering the rest of the Top 6 is vastly higher. He does, however, have quite a high Fenwick Shooting %, so he is still capable of being offensively dominant, but unfortunately like the rest of the Top 6 has a rather terrible Corsi Save %. He played fairly poorly in Games 2 and 3, and was downright terrible in Game 4, which was oddly the one game he had a positive Fenwick. He bounced back in Game 5 and then was less than stellar in Game 6.

Jussi Jokinen - B-

Jokinen played in the first 4 games, playing primarily limited minutes on the 4th line, although a small amount on the PP and PK, before being scratched in favor of speed. He had a decent amount of Points in his limited exposure, as well as a positive +/- Rating. He had a fairly low number of Hits, but had the 2nd highest number of Blocked Shots amongst forwards, and was one of the few that did not register a Giveaway in the series. He was also excellent on the faceoff dot, finishing with a 64.7%, with nearly twice as many faceoffs taken as the only player who was higher than him (and the one directly below). Jokinen was another of the handful of players that did not allow a single even strength Goal Against in his time on the ice, which is excellent for a defensively minded 4th liner. He did have a negative Fenwick, as did most of the team, but it wasn't as low as many of the players. He also had a fairly impressive Fenwick Shooting %. He was excellent in the first shutout, posting a 0 Fenwick and participating in some scoring drives. However, Game 2 when the team fell apart he had a rather highly negative Fenwick and no Goals For, and the trend continuing into Games 3 and 4 in which he had a slightly negative Fenwick. He was amazing defensively though, despite failing to contribute offensively, so I didn't really understand why he was the one that got scratched for the remaining games.

Tyler Kennedy - A-

Kennedy stepped in for Game 5 when Bylsma decided the team needed to add more speed. Despite the way he played in the regular season, he seemed to come into the playoffs with an energy that only comes from a player trying to prove they deserve to be in the lineup after getting scratched. He started on the 4th line, but it wasn't long before they moved him up to reunite the old Check line, and he also got some exposure on the PP. He actually put up an impressive number of points in his limited exposure, making him #2 in Goals and #4 in Points, as well as having the highest +/- Rating. He did not have an awful lot of Hits, one of the lowest amongst forwards, but he had a decent number of Blocked Shots and the highest number of Takeaways on the team, coupled with being one of the few players with no Giveaways. To expand on his defensive repertoire, he is one of the handful of players that allowed no even strength Goals Against while he was on the ice. And unlike most of the team, he finished with a positive Fenwick, the 2nd highest on the team, and even had a decent Fenwick Shooting %. He had the fortune of joining the team when they all stepped up and played total hockey in Game 5, but also was one of the few that carried that excellence into the next game, where he had the highest Fenwick in Game 6. He certainly earned his spot on the roster.

Chris Kunitz - C-

Kunitz started the playoffs on the top line, but as the series progressed and the team started to falter, he was bumped to the 2nd line, presumably an attempt to try to bring them back to their former glory. During the regular season, Kunitz was rather close to catching up with both the Art Ross and the Rocket Richard trophies, but he really struggled when his Captain went down. Now, in the playoffs, we see his ability to score still affected by not getting to play with his usual linemates. He is still able to score, but he is no longer at the top, being around the middle in both Goals and Points, and having a negative +/- Rating despite finishing the regular season near the top of the league. He does have a fairly decent amount of Hits and Blocked Shots, as he likes to play a physical two-way game, but unfortunately he has twice as many Giveaways as Takeaways. He is one of the few players to have a positive Fenwick, although it is a fairly low positive. Unfortunately, he has a fairly low Fenwick Shooting %, and the 2nd lowest Corsi Save % on the team. Coming from a player who had previously been one of the best defensive forwards on the team, this is quite troubling. He was strangely one of the worst players in the 1st Game, posting a rare negative Fenwick and no Goals For. Then as if that's not weird enough, he pulled a complete 180 and was one of the lone bright spots in the trainwreck of Game 2. However, Game 3 and Game 4 were bad, with awful Corsi Save %, despite having one of the highest Fenwick in Game 4. Game 5 the entire team turned things back around, but then by Game 6 he was back to a largely negative Fenwick and a low Corsi Save %. His series was a complete roller coaster.

Evgeni Malkin - B-

Malkin had the 2nd highest TOI amongst forwards, and another excellent addition to the PP. He didn't have a lot of goals scored, despite quite a number of opportunities, but he led the team in both Assists and Points. And unlike most of the Top 6, he managed to come out with an even 0 +/- Rating. He had an incredibly low number of Hits and Blocked Shots, which is not unexpected for Malkin. However, he had quite a large number of Giveaways, the 2nd highest on the team, and 3 times as many as he had Takeaways, which unfortunately is also not unexpected for Malkin. And continuing with his usual Malkin-ness, he had the lowest Faceoffs, 45.9%, of players that took a significant number of drops. He had a negative Fenwick, but it was the 2nd highest of all the negative values, and he did still have a good Fenwick Shooting %. However, as the rest of the Top 6, he really struggled defensively and had a terrible Corsi Save %, 4th lowest on the team. Malkin started off slow, a negative Fenwick and no Goals For in the Game 1 shutout, followed by continuing negative Fenwick (although much less negative) and Goals For and Goal Against which evened out, but still with a decent Corsi Save %. But then by Game 4 when the entire team fell apart, he let in more Goals Against and had a fairly terrible Corsi Save %. But then he turned completely around and came into Game 5 with the highest Fenwick on the team, before dropping back down with a negative Fenwick and a low Corsi Save % in Game 6. He is most certainly not living up to his potential.

Brenden Morrow - D

Morrow played in all 6 games, mostly on the 3rd line, but in the final games found himself relegated to the 4th line, although he does still see limited time on the PP. He has the 2nd lowest Point total on the team, which isn't necessarily a bad thing for the Check line, but considering how he was playing to finish off the season we were expecting more out of him. Unfortunately, his lack of offensive output is coupled with having the lowest +/- Rating amongst all forwards, and one of the higher Giveaways without any Takeaways to counteract it. He did, however, have the 3rd highest number of Hits, as well as a decent number of Blocked Shots. He also has the lowest Fenwick on the team, and the worst Fenwick Shooting %, but at least his Corsi Save % was one of the better ones on the team. He started the first 2 games as one of the worst forwards, with an incredibly low Fenwick but at least no Goals Against. But then Game 3 he coupled his incredibly low Fenwick with a terrible Goals Against, although he still managed a decent Corsi Save %. Game 4 when the entire team was terrible he continued his downward trend, combining his negative Fenwick and terrible Goals Against with a newly found awful Corsi Save %. Its amazing that he was not the one scratched after this. He bounced back in Games 5 and 6, still incredibly negative Fenwick, but no more Goals Against, but unfortunately also back to no Goals For. He was quite possibly the worst player in the whole series.

James Neal - B

Neal got injured in Game 1 and then missed the next two, returning just in time for the Game 4 nightmare. Most of his time was on the 2nd line, and bounced between the two PP units, but his average TOI is low, probably due to the game in which he got knocked out early. He had a minimal amount of Goals, but did walk away with a positive +/- Rating. He was also on the lower end of Hits, as well as Takeaways, and with none of the Giveaways that plagued the team. He led the way in Possession though, having the 3rd highest Fenwick on the team, and a respectable Fenwick Shooting %. Unfortunately, like the rest of the Top 6, his Corsi Save % was rather terrible, one of the lowest on the team. In Game 1, before getting injured, he was one of the few players on the team with a positive Fenwick, the highest on the team, although no Goals For to go along with it. He came back in Game 4 with a vengeance, being part of the possession-dominant Top 6, with an impressive Fenwick Shooting %, and while his Corsi Save% was pretty bad it was one of the best on the team that night. The next game he continued to be dominant, with one of the highest Fenwick and a decent amount of offensive firepower. Unfortunately in Game 6 he had a rare negative Fenwick night, w negative +/- Rating, and an atrocious Corsi Save % that was the worst on the team. He can certainly do better, but even underperforming he managed to be one of the better offensive forwards on a consistent basis.

Brandon Sutter - B

Sutter managed to quietly get by in all 6 games, playing mainly on the 3rd line, with some exposure on the PP and PK. He is on the lower end in Goals, Assists, Points, and even +/- Rating, but at it is still positive, so that's all you really ask from your Check line. We saw in the regular season that he certainly has the ability to contribute offensively, so a little more would be nice,. He also has a decent amount of Hits and Blocked Shots, although low in comparison to other defensive forwards. He had a few unfortunate Giveaways, but balances that out with nearly twice as many Takeaways. And his faceoffs, unfortunately, are somewhat worse than they were in the regular season, down to 47.3%. As with much of the team, he has a negative Fenwick, being on the lower end of the team, but that was the case all season long. But despite the low possession stats, he has one of the highest Corsi Save % on the team, the highest amongst those that did not walk away with a perfect 100%. He started the series really slow, the lowest Fenwick in Game 1 and still a massive negative in Game 2, all with no Goals For. But then in Game 3 he bounced back to be one of the few players with a positive Fenwick, albeit still with no Goals For. Yet through those first 3 games, he managed to not allow a single even strength goal. Unfortunately Game 4 he joined the majority of the team with fairly awful stats, his first offensive output marred by evening out with his first Goals Against, resulting in a low Corsi Save %, although one of the higher ones out of an overall awful team performance. But Game 5 he was back, racking up a rare positive Fenwick and some excellent offensive output. But then Game 6 he was back to a negative Fenwick, though a really small one, and a lack of both Goals For and Against. His faceoffs and offensive output could use improvement, but otherwise he is plodding along fairly successfully.

Joe Vitale - C+

Vitale was one of the late additions to the 4th line, bringing in some speed for the final two games. He had an impressive number of Points considering his limited time, and one of the better +/- Ratings on the team. He played physically, winding up with amongst the higher Hits and Blocked Shots on the team. Unfortunately, he also had the highest number of Giveaways, with no Takeaways to even things out. Not the greatest performance, but not much less than what you expect from a 4th line Energy guy. He did manage to have the best faceoffs on the team with 70.3%, although that is in an incredibly low number of opportunities. During his limited exposure, he managed to have team leading Fenwick, as well as being one of the handful of players with no even strength Goal Against. His first experience in Game 5 he had one of the best Fenwick on the team, but no offensive success. Then in Game 6, his Fenwick took a hit to 0 but he made up for it by leading the team in Fenwick Shooting % and Goals For. He was quietly efficient for the most part, neither the best nor the worst on the ice.

Defense

Simon Despres - C

Despres only managed to play in 3 games, ostensibly being on the 2nd Pair, but getting incredibly sheltered minutes. He has no Points, but at least managed to remain at a 0 +/- Rating. He did play rather physical defensively, with a decent amount of Hits and the 2nd highest number of Blocked Shots on the team, in addition to a decent amount of Takeaways and no Giveaways. He actually managed to walk away with a 0 Fenwick, which considering the majority of the team struggling isn't really that bad. He had a decent Fenwick Shooting %, but unfortunately a fairly low Corsi Save %, tied for lowest amongst all D. In his short experience in Game 3, he was the worst player on the ice, leading the team as dead last in Goals Against, Fenwick, and Corsi Save %. After being scratched, he came back strong in Game 5, having an incredibly high Fenwick and a decent Goals For. Even Game 6 he managed to wind up with a 0 Fenwick, which was unfortunately on of the highest on the team, as well as good Goals For and Fenwick Shooting %. The best of course being that in the final two games, he did not let in a single goal at even strength. He bounced back well from an early failure, but he is still getting extremely limited exposure.

Mark Eaton - C

Eaton played in the first 4 games, mostly on the 2nd Pair, but early in the series struggled (as the whole team did), which resulted in his getting scratched. His Points were one of the higher number amongst D, but unfortunately his +/- Rating was one of the few negatives on the team. He had the lowest number of Hits amongst D, as well as one of the highest number of Giveaways, but did manage to have by far the highest number of Blocked Shots on the team. He joined most of the team with a negative Fenwick, and somehow managed to have one of the best Fenwick Shooting % coupled with one of the worst Corsi Save %. He started out as one of the best D in Game 1, the highest Goals For and Fenwick Shooting %, and the 3rd highest Fenwick, even if it was still negative. He continued his success into Game 2, now the highest Fenwick on the team at 0, the 2nd highest Goals For amongst D, and the only D that was not on the ice for an even strength Goal Against. Unfortunately, by Game 3, despite having a decent positive Fenwick, he had one of the worst Goals Against and one of the lowest Corsi Save %. This spiraled out of control, going into Game 4 he now became the worst player on an overall awful roster. He had the lowest Fenwick, the most Goals Against, the worst +/-, and the worst Corsi Save % on the entire team. So he went from one of the best D in the first two games to the worst player on the ice in Game 4, which resulted in him getting scratched.

Deryk Engelland - D

Engelland managed to get replaced even sooner, only playing the first 2 games of the series. He had no Points and the lowest +/- on the team, although defensively he did have one of the highest Hits and Blocked Shots amongst D. His Fenwick was the lowest amongst D, which put it as one of the worst on the whole team, and his Corsi Save % was unfortunately also tied for worst amongst D. His first game was not overly good, having the lowest Fenwick amongst D and no Goals For. Then his final appearance in Game 2 he had the 2nd worst Goals Against and Corsi Save % on the entire team, although he was much improved in Fenwick. Its not really hard to see why he was scratched.

Kris Letang - B-

Letang had more TOI than any other D, playing with pretty much everybody at one point or another, and racking up minutes on both the PP and the PK. He had the 2nd highest Goals and 2nd highest Points amongst D, as well as a decent +/- Rating. He also had an impressive number of Hits, although the lowest Blocked Shots on D. He had the most Giveaways of all the D, which is unfortunate, but we saw that in the regular season as well. However, unlike the regular season he managed to have more Takeaways, so he actually came out ahead. He led the D with the only positive Fenwick. He had a good Fenwick Shooting %, but was only middle of the road in Corsi Save %. In Game 1, he joined most of the team in getting dominated in possession, being one of the worst Fenwick amongst D, although he still managed quite the impressive offensive performance. Game 2 he still had a negative Fenwick, but it and his Corsi Save % were the 2nd best amongst the D. By Game 3 he was one of the few positive Corsi, the highest of the D, but unfortunately managed to couple that with a terrible Goals Against and Corsi Save %, the 2nd worst amongst the D. In Game 4 he continued to be awful, being the 3rdd lowest amongst D in Goals Against, Fenwick (but actually still positive), and Corsi Save %. He came back in Game 5, offensively dominant, with the 2nd best Fenwick and Fenwick Shooting % amongst D, and the best Goals For. Unfortunately, Game 6 wasn't very good for the whole team. Letang had a negative Fenwick, although still high enough to be the 2nd best on the D, but managed to have both the 2nd lowest Fenwick Shooting % and 2nd lowest Corsi Save %. He wasn't bad overall, but considering he is a Norris candidate, we expect much more out of him.

Paul Martin - B+

Martin was a stable force on the D, playing the 2nd highest minutes and being a steady force on an otherwise lackluster team. He led the team in Assists, Points, and +/- Rating. He has one of the lowest number of Hits and Blocked Shots, but its not overly low. Unfortunately where he really drops the ball is in turnovers, he has nearly 4 times as many Giveaways as he does Takeaways. He makes up for that by having the 3rd best (although still negative) Fenwick, good Fenwick Shooting %, and the best Corsi Save % amongst D. He started off strong, 2nd best Fenwick, Goals For, and Fenwick Shooting % amongst D. However, by Game 2 he had started making mistakes defensively, having the worst Fenwick amongst D and a worse Goals Against and Corsi Save %, although he managed to stay fairly dominant offensively. He bounced back in Game 3, slightly lesser Fenwick, but leading the team in Goals For, Fenwick Shooting %, and one of two with no Goals Against. He went back to having one of the highest Fenwick on the team in Game 4, but unfortunately like the rest of the team really sucked defensively. Game 5 he came back to excel defensively and continued his high positive Fenwick, but managed to not add anything offensively. Then finally in Game 6 he fell back into the negatives for Fenwick, although a decent Fenwick Shooting % and 2nd highest Corsi Save % amongst the D. He was quite likely the best D in the series, at least being the most consistent overall.

Douglas Murray - C+

Murray had one of the lowest TOI amongst D, playing primarily on the 3rd Pair with some PK exposure, yet somehow managed to lead the D in Goals, although his overall Points were a little low. He also managed to come out to an even 0 +/- Rating, which is not overly bad, but you expect a better ability to keep pucks out of the net for a defensive D. He had the 3rd highest Hits and 4th highest Blocked Shots, which again isn't bad, but considering he finished the 4th Quarter as the definitive leader in Blocked Shots and 2nd in Hits it is quite less than we have come to expect from his physical presence. He had the 2nd lowest Fenwick and 2nd lowest Fenwick Shooting % amongst D, which isn't strange considering his regular season performance. He did, however, manage to finish with the 2nd best Corsi Save % amongst D. In Game 1 he had the 2nd worst Fenwick, and brought nothing offensively, but that was not altogether unexpected. Unfortunately, he then had a terrible Game 2, with the 3rd lowest Fenwick amongst D, worst Goals Against and +/- on the entire team, and 2nd lowest Corsi Save % amongst D. He turned around and was amazing in Game 3, though still a negative Fenwick it was near the top of the heap, and he managed to have the 2nd best Goals For and +/- Rating amongst D while being one of the few to not let in a single even strength Goal Against. Game 4 he wasn't overly excellent, but considering most of the team performed poorly he was fairly good, having the 3rd best Fenwick and 2nd best Corsi Against amongst D, even managing to balance out his offenwive and defensive output to net a 0 +/- Rating. Game 5 he was back to being the 2nd worst Fenwick, but best Fenwick Shooting % amongst D. Unfortunately, he then came into Game 6 and struggled, getting the lowest Fenwick and worst +/- Rating on the entire team, in addition to the 2nd worst Goals Against and a poor yet 3rd best Corsi Save %. He has been both the best and the worst D on the ice at various times, but I still tend to be harder on him because of the performance we came to expect from the regular season.

Matt Niskanen - D

Niskanen actually had a pretty high TOI, although still only 4th amongst D. Ostensibly he was on the 3rd Pair, but moved up to the 2nd quite often and chipped in on the PP. He had the lowest number of Points (not counting the 2 with 0) on the entire team, and was one of the few to finish with a negative +/- Rating. Defensively he was amongst the lowest in both Hits and Blocked Shots, and had 4 times as many Giveaways as he did Takeaways. He also had the 3rd lowest Fenwick and lowest Fenwick Shooting %, although his Corsi Save % was 3rd highest amongst D. He started off Game 1 with the D's best Fenwick, although no offensive output. He then started downhill in Game 2 with the 2nd worst Fenwick and 3rd worst Goals Against, +/- Rating, and Corsi Save % amongst the D. Game 3 continued as one of the worst D with the 3rd worst Fenwick and Goals Against, with the 2nd worst +/- Rating, although his Corsi Save % was the 3rd best. Strangely, Game 4 in which most of the team was awful, he lead the D in Goals For, +/- Rating, Fenwick, and Corsi Save %. Then he somehow managed to be one of the few poor performers in Game 5, with the worst Fenwick amongst the D, although he did cash in offensively. He was then one the worst D in Game 6, 2nd lowest in Fenwick and +/- Rating, and lowest in Goals Against and Corsi Save %. It is quite shocking that he remained in the lineup despite his struggles.

Brooks Orpik - B-

Orpik missed the beginning of the series due to injury, unfortunately returning in the Game 4 debacle. He took his place back on the Top Pair and as one of the primary members of the PK, netting the 3rd highest TOI. His lone point comes in as the game-winning overtime goal that won the series in Game 6. Beyond that, he has the 2nd highest +/- Rating amongst D, as well as leading them in Hits. He still has a fair amount of Blocked Shots, but considering he was one of the highest in the league for most of the season, it is lower than one would expect. He also unfortunately netted some Giveaways without any Takeaways to make up for it. He had a negative Fenwick, as did most of the team, but he did most of the season as well, and it's about the middle of the D. However, he had the highest Fenwick Shooting %, although the 4th lowest Corsi Save % amongst D. His first game back in Game 4 he was the 2nd worst D, with 2nd worst Goals For, Goals Against, +/- Rating, Fenwick, and Corsi Save %. He did much better in Game 5, although still negative Fenwick (4th lowest D) and 2nd worst Goals For. By Game 6, he had the most Goals For and best +/- amongst D, although his still negative Fenwick was 3rd best D on the team, his Corsi Save % was 3rd worst. He didn't do overly well, but he just came back from injury. He can certainly do better, but he could have done worse.

Goaltenders

Marc-Andre Fleury - C+

Fleury started the series well, before completely falling apart in Game 4 and getting replaced. Although arguably he never should have been in for Game 4, as one of the recent articles suggested that he does best with 3 games on to 1 game off, and the regular season we saw the split an even more conservative 2 games to 1. His overall numbers are bad, 3.40 GAA and .891 Save %, but it is worth noting that the team as a whole was awful for most of his chances. Whilst he was in, the team had a -7.53 Fenwick and -15.05 Corsi. Looking at it game by game, his 1st Game was spectacular, pulling off a shutout despite the team posting an abysmal -10.48 Fenwick and -24.90 Corsi. Game was a loss, although Fleury played really well despite the utter lack of support from the skaters in front of him. The team had a -20.44 Fenwick and -29.98 Corsi, resulting in a bad 4.09 even strength GAA, but he still managed to pull off a .909 even strength Save %. Game 3 Fleury wasn't that great though. The team had a -3.28 Fenwick and a -9.84 Corsi, which still isn't overly good but was far better than the first two games. Fleury pulled off the W, but it wasn't pretty, with a 3.28 GAA and .893 Save % at even strength. He wasn't good, but he certainly could have done worse. Speaking of doing worse, Game 4 was just awful. The team actually netted a 2.57 Fenwick and 2.57 Corsi, but fell apart defensively and Fleury got extremely rattled ending with a 6.43 GAA and .750 Save % at even strength. So despite his overall stats being low, Fleury had 1 amazing game, another excellent game despite an utter lack of defense, a slightly below average performance aided by a struggling D, and then a completely awful game that he never should have been in for. I'm not willing to write him off due to one bad game, just as I'm not willing to call him the best in the world due to one good game to start the series.

Tomas Vokoun - B

Vokoun stepped in for Game 5, quite fortunately getting to play with a team that actually realized they were supposed to be here to play hockey. He has some of the best stats in the league, with a #2 1.41 GAA and #1 .957 Save %. Though to be fair, his 2 games compared to the remaining Top 10's 4-7 games make those numbers far less significant. The team as a whole played much better in front of Vokoun, with a -3.29 Fenwick and a -1.64 Corsi. His stats are still impressive, but less dominant, at even strength, with a 1.64 GAA and .948 Save %. His shutout in Game 5 was the game in which the players in front played the best they had all series, with a 6.04 Fenwick and a -1.21 Corsi. But then Game 6 the team cooled back down to their Game 3 level of incompetence, with a -11.03 Fenwick and -2.01 Corsi. At even strength, this gave Vokoun a 3.01 GAA and .903 Save %, which is not awful but also not particularly excellent. Like Game 3, the offense was able to connect and score first to end it in OT. Vokoun did better overall, but with just 2 games under his belt his one shutout is really skewing the data, as we saw at the beginning of the regular season. I'm not willing to call him the best in the league until he can maintain those kinds of numbers over the same amount of games as the rest of the league leaders.

The content expressed in fanposts does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the staff here at Pensburgh.com. FanPosts are opinions expressed by fans of various teams throughout the league but may be more Pittsburgh-centric for obvious reasons.

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