It’s frequently stated that physicality and a strong hitting game lead to winning. With that in mind, I decided to look at how the five highest hitting teams each season over the past decade compared with the five lowest hitting teams.
To make things fair, I’ve ranked them using only hits recorded in road buildings, since the standards for hitting can vary widely depending on who is tracking them – by using only road statistics, each team is judged by a wide field and half the data isn’t coming from their home rinks. All information comes from NHL.com.
I also inserted the average point total for teams pre- and post-lockout..
Top Five Hitting Teams
- 2008-09: TB, NYR, PHI, LA, BOS – Total Points: 455
- 2007-08: ANA, NJ, BOS, PHI, OTT – Total Points: 484
- 2006-07: ANA, NYI, WSH, TOR, NYR – Total Points: 457
- 2005-06: ANA, OTT, TOR, PHI, CGY – Total Points: 505
Post-Lockout Average Point Total Per Team: 95.1
- 2003-04: PHI, CAR, COL, ATL, CBJ – Total Points: 417
- 2002-03: COL, SJ, EDM, NYR, CGY – Total Points: 423
- 2001-02: CGY, COL, NJ, EDM, FLA – Total Points: 425
- 2000-01: COL, NYR, SJ, BOS, LA – Total Points: 465
- 1999-00: NYI, CAR, EDM, LA, ATL – Total Points: 363
- 1998-99: NYI, BUF, VAN, EDM, CHI – Total Points: 355
Pre-Lockout Average Point Total Per Team: 81.6
Bottom Five Hitting Teams
- 2008-09: COL, DET, MIN, FLA, VAN – Total Points: 463
- 2007-08: MIN, COL, EDM, LA, DET – Total Points: 467
- 2006-07: COL, DET, MIN, VAN, TB – Total Points: 510
- 2005-06: TB, COL, DET, MIN, NJ – Total Points: 496
Post-Lockout Average Point Total Per Team: 96.8
- 2003-04: MIN, DET, TB, SJ, DAL – Total Points: 499
- 2002-03: CHI, MTL, DET, BUF, OTT – Total Points: 451
- 2001-02: DET, TB, MIN, WSH, MTL – Total Points: 430
- 2000-01: MIN, CHI, NSH, ATL, DAL – Total Points: 385
- 1999-00: NSH, STL, DET, BOS, OTT – Total Points: 460
- 1998-99: DET, NSH, DAL, BOS, PIT – Total Points: 451
Pre-Lockout Average Point Total Per Team: 89.2
- Hitting Teams: 86.98 points per season
- Non-hitting Teams: 92.24 points per season
To borrow a quote, who saw that coming?
As for what it means, I think the implication is obvious.