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Chicago Blackhawks passing stats: Week 2

This is a series looking at passing and shot generation stats for the Chicago Blackhawks. Read on for the details.

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

In this series, I’ll show you how many there were, from where on the ice they were created, and who was involved in each of the offensive chances created from the passing of the New Jersey Devils and their opponents. If unfamiliar with passing statistics, please refer to my primer. This week, we focus on the Blackhawks getting Leafed by the Calgary Flames and their recent tilt against the Nashville Predators.

A few notes on how to read the charts: The "Close" columns indicate which events a player was involved in while the game was within a goal in the 1st or 2nd periods, and a tie game in the 3rd period. The columns that do not have the "Close" designation represent a player’s stats during non-close situations. Obviously.

You’ll see a sortable excel table for each team’s stats. You can filter by individual player, position, position grouping, and team totals if you wish. You can also download or open up the full gamesheet I use when tracking in another window. One note on the charts: the totals may appear to be incorrect at first glance, but the formulas built into the spreadsheet account for each shot to also include a shot attempt in the total so that the efficiency columns are correct. I did it this way rather than have everyone recording double the work. Let’s get to it.

Glossary of Terms

Terms

Hawks vs Flames

As you recall (or maybe you don't want to), the Hawks dominated this game. They generated twenty-four shots on forty-seven attempts. That. Is. A. Lot.

Andrew Shaw (5 A2 SAG and 3 A2 SG) and Niklas Hjalmarsson (3 A2 SAG and 1 A2 SG) were heavily involved in sustained passing plays. Shaw was more than double any forward, which is something I'll keep an eye out as to why that is.

So, this Ben Smith and Marcus Kruger duo are quite good at generating shots from the scoring chance area. In this game, Smith generated two scoring chances, and in the Flames game below, Kruger generated three. The season is still early, but that's very promising passing work from depth players like Smith and Kruger. Kruger also added two shots generated on two A2 attempts.

The trio of Jonathan Toews, Marian Hossa, and Patrick Sharp are fun to watch (Toews and Sharp combined to generate seven shots against the Flames). Obvious, right? Even a play like this shows how they can create something from nothing. Take a look.

Toews_Hossa_Sharp_1
Toews sees that he has Hossa and Sharp on the far side and hammers it around to them. Sharp gets is just as Hossa pretends to skate away from the goal. He circles back and finds himself all alone for the deflection from Sharp. This is what I like about doing this: you really get to see the off-the-puck movement from players just as important as the pass that creates the chance.

Flames

For the Flames, TJ Brodie was the only one to generate multiple shots (2). There wasn't much to track for Calgary.

Hawks vs Predators

So, I mentioned above that Kruger had a big game against the Predators. This is one of his scoring chances generated and it's my favorite because of how simple it is. The understanding between the players is quite good here as well. Take a look.

Kruger

After Nashville takes the shot, Van Riemsdyk quickly makes the outlet pass to Smith. Smith carries and nudges it forward, completing an entry pass to Kruger. Kruger draws Smith's man slightly and then just lightly passes the puck into the space Smith is skating into for a shot from inside the face-off circle. He added two more this game and the two of them are becoming some of my favorite players to track. I'd like to see someone better than Dan Carcillo with them, but he's be good enough thus far.

Toews joined Kruger in generating three scoring chances. Overall the team generated nineteen shots on thirty-three attempts. Wicked efficient (57.6%).

Predators

The Predators generated a mere ten shots on twenty-eight attempts generated. Viktor Stalberg led them with two shots generated, the only Predator to generate multiple shots. The Hawks seem to have a habit of dominating play. Is this normal? Should I get used to this?

Your Thoughts

What did you think? Would you rather I focus on specific passing sequences each week? I think offering the stats in easily sortable tables and spending time looking at how the play developed makes for a more intriguing article and helps get across the important point that not all shot attempts generated from passes are the same. Thoughts?