New NHL Statistics Enhance Fan Understanding of Game

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This week, the NHL began unveiling some serious changes to their website’s stats pages, with traditional measures like goals and assists being utilized alongside new ones like Shot Attempts For.

These unveilings are the first of many that the NHL will be featuring over the course of the next few seasons, and the numbers tell us some very interesting things about the Chicago Blackhawks.

Here is a sampling of the data that fans have access to on the new stats page:

-The Blackhawks are currently leading the NHL in shootout success percentage, scoring on 45.2 percent of their shots. Patrick Kane is leading the charge with six goals in 10 attempts. The league average for success in the shootout is 29.5 percent.

-Duncan Keith is currently leading the NHL in Shot AttemptsSAT, which is also known as Corsiat even strength, with a total number of +274. Meaning that while Keith has been on the ice, the Blackhawks have taken 274 more total shots than they’ve allowed.

-Jonathan Toews has taken 34.8 percent of the Blackhawks’ total face-offs this season, good for the sixth-highest total in the league. Claude Giroux of the Philadelphia Flyers is the current leader in this category, taking a remarkable 39.5 percent of his team’s draws. Toews is also in second place in the league in road assists, trailing Anze Kopitar’s 23.

-Kane has 15 goals scored on the road this season. That is the fifth-highest total in the leagueAlex Ovechkin leads with 20and he has more than double the road goals of the next closest member of the Blackhawks, with Toews, Patrick Sharp, and Brandon Saad all tied with seven. Kane is also in third place in the NHL in primary assists, meaning that he was the last person to touch the puck before the goal scorer did, trailing only Ryan Getzlaf and Tyler Seguin.

-Niklas Hjalmarsson leads the Blackhawks in average shot distance, taking his shots from an average of 62 feet from the net. Sharp leads the forwards in this category at 41 feet.

-The Blackhawks as a team are in second place in the league in SAT for, with 2,852 total shot attempts so far this season.

In April, the NHL will unveil a couple of new features according to Yahoo’s Greg Wyshynski, offering stat visualizations and stat search filtering. These graphs will provide some context for fans as they argue about the merits of Selke Trophy contenders, or whatever other points they’re trying to defend.

In October 2015, the league will potentially begin offering real-time tracking data on players, with their distance skated and the speed of their slap shots all being fed into their systems.

Finally, in 2016, the league is hoping to have every box score in their history inputted into the system to allow comparisons between generations of hockey players.

Want to know whether Kane has scored more third period goals than Bobby Hull or Stan Mikita? This system will provide the answer to those questions and many more.

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