Looking At Flames Zone Entries Through 19 Games

So we’re basically at the point of the season where roughly a quarter of the games have been played – I still have to re-watch the 20th game to count entries – so now seems like a great time to revisit the zone entry data we’re collecting this season.

Who carries it in? Who dumps it in a lot? And how have these figures changed since the 10-game check-in? Let’s dive in, gang!

A DISCLAIMER

This data was collected by a heavily-caffeinated human being. There are over 1,800 individual data points involving individual players – in addition to entry events such as icings, penalties or other weird plays – so bear in mind that these numbers should only be taken to represent trends. And even then, take them with a grain salt.

CLASSIFICATIONS

Some quick definitions:

  • Offensive Zone Entry: The act of intentionally bringing the puck into the offensive zone, traditionally for the purposes of attempting to score a goal, but not exclusively. (Sometimes you just want to eat up the clock a bit or give your team a chance to do a line change.)
  • Carry-In: A zone entry where a player has the puck on his stick and enters the zone in a controlled manner.
  • Dump-and-Change: A zone entry where a player throws the puck deep into the offensive zone without a player in pursuit of it, with the purpose of the dump-in as buying time for a line change.
  • Dump-and-Chase: A zone entry where a player throws the puck deep with one or more players in pursuit of the puck, with the purpose of regaining possession deep in the offensive zone. (Often used to get pucks past big defenders, with an aim towards getting them skating a lot and tiring them out.)
  • Missed Entry: A zone entry where the puck goes into the zone because of something a Flames player attempted that went awry, but the puck still went in without an icing or off-sides. (As in, a T.J. Brodie stretch pass that goes off somebody’s skate and goes cleanly into the offensive zone.)
  • Pass-In Entry: A zone entry where the puck goes across the blueline into the offensive zone in an uncontrolled manner, but because it’s being passed to a player (who collects the puck).
  • Tip-Dump: The cousin of the dump-and-chase, except involving less puck control. A player uses their stick to tip the puck into the offensive end, typically off a knee-high hard pass from a defenseman in the defensive zone.

FORWARDS

(From highest carry-in percentage to the lowest; 10-game percentage in brackets)

  • Johnny Gaudreau – 71.60% [71.74%]
  • Sean Monahan – 61.83% [62.86%]
  • Mikael Backlund – 57.94% [58.93%]
  • Sam Bennett – 53.85% [57.45%]
  • Joe Colborne – 50.00% [40.00%]
  • Josh Jooris – 43.75% [55.32%]
  • Matt Stajan – 42.17% [42.50%]
  • Mason Raymond – 41.82% [46.15%]
  • Jiri Hudler – 39.34% [39.34%]
  • Michael Frolik – 38.02% [50.00%]
  • Micheal Ferland – 38.00% [32.43%]
  • David Jones – 36.89% [32.00%]
  • Brandon Bollig – 36.73% [35.14%]
  • Derek Grant – 33.33% [NEW]
  • Lance Bouma – 31.25% [31.25%]
  • Markus Granlund – 0.00% [0.00%]

Trending Up:

  • Colborne – he’s playing a lot more with Jones and Stajan than he was before, which means more defensive zone-starts AND the opportunity to turn those into more offensive zone entries.
  • Jones – see above; the Colborne/Stajan/Jones line has been very effective at turning defensive zone starts into offensive zone entries and scoring opportunities.
  • Ferland – his percentages are up, but his overall numbers are still relatively low, so a lot of the variation can just be statistical noise at this point.

Trending Down:

  • Bennett – he’s getting more consistent offensive zone-starts with Backlund and Frolik and as a result, fewer opportunities to generate zone entries.
  • Frolik – very similar to Bennett.
  • Jooris – buried on the fourth line with minimal ice time.
  • Raymond – buried on the fourth line with minimal ice time.

DEFENSEMEN

(From highest carry-in percentage to the lowest; 10-game percentage in brackets)

  • T.J. Brodie – 35.59% [33.33%]
  • Dougie Hamilton – 31.71% [24.53%]
  • Dennis Wideman – 24.69% [28.30%]
  • Mark Giordano – 20.35% [18.46%]
  • Kris Russell – 19.59% [20.37%]
  • Brett Kulak – 18.18% [18.18%]
  • Deryk Engelland – 14.29% [13.89%]
  • Ladislav Smid – 0.00% [0.00%]

Trending Up:

  • Hamilton – he’s moved away from Giordano and the really tough match-ups, and as a result he’s getting more opportunities to generate zone entries.

LEADERS

As we mentioned at the 10-game mark, for a lot of the “raw” numbers, being a leader in a category is basically just a product of ice-time. That said, even when you factor those things in, you can notice that a few players do specific things more often than their teammates.

Most Entries of Any/All Kinds:

Johnny Gaudreau (169), Sean Monahan (131), Jiri Hudler (122)
Defensemen: Mark Giordano (113), Kris Russell (97), Dougie Hamilton (82)

Most Carry-In Entries:

Johnny Gaudreau (121), Sean Monahan (81), Sam Bennett (56)
Defensemen: Dougie Hamilton (26), Mark Giordano (23), T.J. Brodie (21)

Most Dump-and-Chase Entries:

Kris Russell (53), Mark Giordano (45), Michael Frolik (39)

Most Dump-and-Change Entries:

Sam Bennett (11), Josh Jooris (9), Mark Giordano (9)

Most “Missed” Entries:

T.J. Brodie (15), Mark Giordano (15), Dennis Wideman (12)

Most Pass-In Entries:

Johnny Gaudreau (8), Sam Bennett (7), several tied with 5

Most Tip-In Entries:

David Jones (29), Jiri Hudler (24), Matt Stajan (15)