Photo: Bruce Bennett
There was a patch of play in late 2015 when the Caps were winning consistently despite getting outplayed. Thursday night was nothing like that, as the Caps were the better team throughout.
Let’s take a look at some of the numbers.
The Caps had the better of the 5v5 score-adjusted shot attempts, 56-47. Non-adjusted the numbers were 53-49 Isles. Here’s the score-adjusted chart.
Despite entering the third period up by two, the Caps were out-attempted just 21-19 in the third. The average shot-attempt percentage of a team up by two is 41.4 percent, and the Caps are a 44.9-percent possession team when up by a pair, so the Caps turning in a 47.5-percent shot-attempt percentage shows that maybe they didn’t turtle as much as normal.Or maybe the Isles are a bunch of bums. Or maybe it was something random that happened over a twenty minute sample of hockey and means nothing. Bottom line: The Caps didn’t turtle and that was cool.
Further, it took a late flurry of shots by the Islanders to bring the Caps below 50 percent for the period.
Jason Chimera had the highest 5v5 shot-attempt differential at plus-8.
Andre Burakovsky had the lowest shot-attempt differential at minus-10.
Alex Ovechkin (shocker) led the team with 7 5v5 shot attempts.
Ovechkin tied with Tom Wilson for the lead in individual scoring chances (as defined by War on Ice) at 5v5 with 4.
Matt Niskanen led all Caps skaters in ice time, playing 25:50. The team has relied even more heavily on him and Karl Alzner (21:00) while the blue line has been banged up. Barry Trotz deployed the pair in the defensive zone frequently, as they started more shifts in the defensive zone than anyone else on the team.
For no good reason, let’s end this with a Pete Yorn album cover.
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