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Pittsburgh Penguins mid-season player analysis

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A look at the fancy stats about the Pittsburgh Penguins players at the mid-season point.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Friends don't steal, we borrow, so when we saw this awesome player review on the Montreal SBN blog, we knew we had to bring it for our Penguins community. So thanks, EOTP! Hope everyone enjoys. And if you're not all 100% on your acronym soup below (it's a lot going on, we know) there's also a handy glossary of what it all means at the bottom for your reference.

We only looked at forwards, since we think a lot of these stats are better for them, and only included players who have logged 200+ minutes with the Pens (sorry David Perron , you'll have to wait a while). And, for fun and to boost debate, we graded what season they're having too, based on role, expectations and overall performance.

Forwards

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Craig Adams 36 1 3 0 3.4 9:29 -3.8 29.3 24.5 49.3 100.3 35.9 37.0

Typically ineffective on the ice in every metric, and now becoming a story for his multiple incidents in practice with his own teammates. Adams seems to be at the end of his rope. F

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Beau Bennett 12 2 5 0 8.0 14:33 1.4 31.6 34.6 54.5 98.4 46.5 38.8

He's been good from what we've seen, but as always, injuries have left him unseen more often than not. The underlying Fenwick numbers are very encourgainig, Bennett is moving the needle in the right direction, he just needs to prove he can stay in the lineup for a consistent amount of time. B but incomplete

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Blake Comeau 32 11 8 1 15.5 15:44 0.3 30.5 30.2 49.4 102.3 39.9 40.8

Don't be scared by the high shooting %, Comeau also shot 12.8% and 13.2% with NYI in his two best seasons, proving he can carry a high sh% over a long period of time. He's also produced all those goals this season without the benefit of a lot of power play time, which is awesome. The advanced stats don't jump off the page, but considering he's played a variety of role and lines, that's not surprising. The key to his season has been the goals, so hopefully that wrist heals up and the mojo hasn't been lost. A-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Sidney Crosby 38 12 32 17 10.5 20:02 3.7 34.9 28.1 53.9 102.6 44.8 38.3

If this was anyone else putting up those numbers, we would be raving about the strong numbers in every category. But it's Crosby so there's talk of a slump; never-mind the mumps diagnosis and changing linemates. But, it's a big deal because it's like Lisa Simpson not getting an A. Like Lisa, Sid always gets A's. Not this time though. B+

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Steve Downie 36 7 13 4 13.7 13:13 -5.0 30.1 31.2 48.7 104.2 36.0 38.9

If any player on the team is screaming regression, it's Downie. Above career average shooting %, terrible Corsi/Fenwick and the highest PDO among all forwards all indicate that Downie has had everything pretty much go his way in the first half of the season. Well, aside from the refs chucking him in the penalty box left and right, I guess. But the long season could even out and pull him back down to Earth a little. Or maybe he bucks the odds and continues to ride the wave of a great year, we'll see. B+

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Pascal Dupuis 16 6 5 3 13.6 16:38 1.2 33.6 23.2 54.0 101.6 45.3 38.6

Just left old Duper on here to show what the Pens will have to fill in his absence. It's a small sample size, but a shame, Dupuis was off to a great start and most of his numbers would have him ranked among the top of the list of his teammates, had he been able to play more. Injured, but A-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Andrew Ebbett 17 1 4 0 11.1 9:09 -5.7 29.2 32.6 44.2 103.1 29.5 37.2

Ebbett probably owes Marc-Andre Fleury a dinner. His numbers are boosted big time by some good goalie play, which is a good thing since Ebbett has some pretty challenging start numbers, and accordingly is on the ice for a lot of shots against. But, overall he hasn't come out with a lot of goals against, so that's a good thing. 5 points in 17 points isn't going to stop the presses, but it's more than any other 4th liner on the team. C+

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Marcel Goc 38 1 2 0 3.0 12:18 -3.5 25.7 36.2 48.3 97.5 34.0 36.4

The Fenwick against isn't so bad considering he's leading the team in zone starts in the D-zone. Add in solid faceoff numbers (54.6%, best on the team), being relied on to play #1 PK minutes and that's enough to make Goc a player that's probably juuust barely pulling his weight. But man, it would be nice if he could generate and finish some more. Doesn't seem like he even creates that many scoring chances, and his meager point total reflects that. C

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Patric Hornqvist 33 13 16 12 10.8 17:59 6.4 33.5 29.8 56.1 104.6 44.4 34.7

A lot to like in the numbers above. Maybe it's no coincidence that the PP has crashed as the team has dealt with Hornqvist's absence. His right-handed shot and net presence have been well received for the team, and he's never met a shot attempt he didn't like, a big reason he's got the best Corsi Rel numbers on the team. Great stuff from a guy who's fit right in to his new team and produced in spades. A-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Chris Kunitz 33 12 13 10 16.4 18:27 6.1 34.7 26.9 55.6 101.5 47.0 37.5

Kunitz's numbers tell a tale of an uneven season. He's great in the PP department, and boasting a typically high shooting %, but the team could probably stand to see him shoot more. Still, his Fenwick For and Fen% is best on the team, and he's been productive in all phases, though with only 15 ES points in 33 games, it's time to wonder if the 35 year old's best point totals are finally behind him. B

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Evgeni Malkin 41 19 28 17 15.0 19:41 4.3 34.7 28.3 53.0 101.5 44.2 39.2

Tops on the team in goals and points, Malkin is powering the show right now. All these numbers are very strong all across the board, as you would suspect of the guy who is among the league leaders in the MVP race through the first half of the season. And to make matters even better, as health returns he should be playing with even better linemates, theoretically getting to improve that PDO (as better players score more) which will only mean better thing for the team. A

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Jayson Megna 12 0 1 0 0.0 11:02 -6.7 24.3 41.1 42.1 98.7 29.3 40.3

Easy to see why Megna's back in the minors with these numbers, but the coaches didn't do him any favors with his heavy d-zone deployment. That said, it's not the most Heruclean task to create a little more chances/shots, if not points but Megna's been largely in his own end. Not a good place to be. D-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Bryan Rust 13 1 1 0 3.1 12:09 2.2 35.1 24.3 53.3 95.2 43.8 38.4

Flipped from above, Rust has gotten better starts than Megna, and gotten better results in the fancy stats. Better linemates help a lot too for that. The Pens have had to have Rust in the NHL mainly due to a string of injuries, when they return to health they should send this rookie back to the AHL for more seasoning. C-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Zach Sill 27 0 0 0 0.0 6:56 -6.3 30.8 22.2 45.2 98.1 33.5 40.6

There's nothing good here- has the lowest FF/60 and Corsi Rel among regular players, despite heavy shielding with offensive zone start. And, of course, absolutely nothing offensively with 0 total points. It all adds up to, without exaggeration, the worst player in the league who still has a regular spot in the lineup. Hopefully health will push Sill out.. F-

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Nick Spaling 41 6 11 1 12.5 15:47 0.3 32.1 27.6 52.8 101.1 39.0 34.8

Much like Spaling the player, Spaling's stats are OK but certainly don't pop off the page. His production is OK, his starts are fairly protected but he's backed it up with the appropriate split of pucks going at the right net. Spaling's been versatile playing multiple positions on anywhere from the 1st-4th line in every role, so the second half of the season might see him settle into more of a checking role. C+

GP G A PPP S% TOI/GP Corsi Rel OZFO% DZFO% FF% PDO FF/60 FA/60
Brandon Sutter 39 8 7 2 9.3 18:40 -6.1 28.0 33.3 48.1 98.9 38.3 41.3

As usual, Sutter's underlying numbers aren't great, but his d-zone starts and quality of competition puts him behind the 8-ball a lot. He's got respectable amount of Fenwick events for, but man almost 19 minutes a night seems like a whole lot of Brandon Sutter. The team could probably stand to cut that down a little. C+

Glossary (kudos to Eyes on the Prize)

GP = Games Played, G = Goals, A = Assists, PPP = Powerplay points, S% = Shooting percentage.

TOI/GP = Average Time on ice per game played, Corsi Rel = Relative Corsi, OZFO% = Offensive zone face off percentage, DZFO% = Defensive zone face off percentage.

FF% = Fenwick For %, PDO = Shooting percentage + save percentage while on ice, FF/60 = Fenwick for per 60 min TOI, FA/60 = Fenwick against per 60 min TOI.

All skater data sourced from Hockey Analysis and NHL.com