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Draisaitl number crunching, around the NHL, and more

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Photo credit:James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Gregor
6 months ago
Leon Draisaitl’s recent dominance over the Nashville Predators piqued my interest in seeing if other snipers dominate one team to the same degree.
— Draisaitl is the only active NHL player averaging a goal per game against an opponent (minimum 20 games). Draisaitl has 24 goals in 24 games against the Predators, due mainly to his ridiculous streak of 22 goals in his last 12 games vs. Nashville. It is an amazing run by Draisaitl and one you don’t see very often.
— I looked at the other top goals scorers around the NHL. Since Draisaitl became a regular in the league in 2015-2016, he has the second most goals in the NHL with 308. Alex Ovechkin leads with 347, while Connor McDavid and Auston Matthews have 305, David Pastrnak has 294, Brad Marchand 256, John Tavares 254 and Sidney Crosby 251.
Ovechkin has played significantly more games in his career. He has 53 goals in 71 games v. the Atlanta/Winnipeg franchise and 50 in 73 games v. Tampa Bay. Ovechkin’s highest rate of goals per game is against Minnesota. He has 19 goals in 21 games.
Crosby has 53 in 83 games v. Philadelphia which is also his highest goals/game v. any opponent.
McDavid’s best is 29 goals in 37 games v. Calgary.
Tavares’ highest is 28 goals in 45 games. v. Carolina.
Matthews has scored 26 goals in 32 games. v. Montreal.
Pastrnak’s best success is 24 goals in 28 games against Philadelphia.
Marchand’s best rate is 11 goals in 20 games against Vancouver and Arizona.
For Draisaitl to dominate one team like this is rare. Very rare. The more games he plays the more difficult it will be to maintain a high goal/game rate, but right now his run v. the Predators is incredible to watch.
— Wayne Gretzky’s best goal/game rate was against the LA Kings. He scored 60 goals in 69 games. The most goals v. one franchise was 79 in 105 games against Winnipeg/Arizona.
— Draisaitl’s run is even more ridiculous when you realize he has 22 goals in the past 12 games and the Predators team has scored 28. The Oilers are 10-0-2 in those games and have outscored the Predators 55-28. For a decade between 2009-2018 the Oilers were the team getting owned by the opposition.
— Jack Campbell stopped 42 of 43 shots and was excellent in the 6-1 victory last night. If you look at all five of his starts — three in the preseason and two in the regular season — Campbell has stopped 155 of 163 shots for a .950sv%. Four goals came in one game, while he’s only allowed one in the other four. This is a perfect example of how many people will focus on the one game, and act as though it is more important than the other four. He wasn’t terrible in the Vancouver loss — he just wasn’t as solid as he was in the other four. Overall, I think he has looked very good, and it was impressive how well he played last night. He was the main reason the game was a blow out.
— Early season number crunching often has a few head scratching stats. The Carolina Hurricanes were second in the NHL in goals against last season. They averaged 2.56/game. They allowed the fewest shots/game at 26. This season they’ve allowed 25.3/game (fourth lowest), but they are currently 28th at 4.25 GA/game. Freddie Andersen and Antti Raanta have both struggled mightily. Raanta has an .838Sv% while Andersen sits at .855. I expect both will improve, but it is interesting to note how both Andersen and Raanta’s Sv% has dropped each of the past three seasons. Both have had injury issues, and it will be interesting to see if this is just a very early funk, or if they could be looking to recall Pyotr Kochetkov sooner than later. They benefit from having a pretty sound defensive team in front of them.
— The Seattle Kraken can’t score. Last year they shot the lights out at 5×5 with a team SH% of 10.34. Only Boston (9.68), St. Louis (9.60) and Buffalo (9.42) were within 1% of them. Montreal was fifth at 9.16. The Kraken are at 2.13SH% thru four games. It will improve, as the lowest team SH% last year belonged to Ottawa (7.49) and Pittsburgh (7.61), but the Kraken won’t lead the NHL in 5×5 scoring this season like they did last year. They have a measly three goals in four games, and when most of your team is looking for their first goal it can start to wear you down. They rode the wave of offensive confidence last season, but I don’t see them catching a similar one this season.
— Fun trivia question for you: Draisaitl set the Oilers’ franchise record for most power play goals last night when he scored his 127th and then added his 128th. Of those 128 PP goals, how many has McDavid assisted on? Not an easy one to look up. (Answer tomorrow in Game Notes.)
— The Anaheim Ducks don’t draw many penalties. For the past three seasons they’ve averaged the second-fewest PP opportunities per game at 2.60. Columbus is last at 2.55, while Colorado is first at 2.40 and the Oilers are seventh at 3.11. It is early, but the Ducks are 32nd this year at 2.50/game. And the Ducks have been on the PK an average of 6.00 times/game. Quite the disparity.

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