Edmonton's Defensive Collapse - Is Corey Potter THAT Important?

Copper & Blue readers are often a very astute bunch. Take BusDriver, for example. When I pointed out the enormous gains at even strength due to the Oilers' defense, not the offense, he asked:

can you compare the first 15 games and last 14? I suspect the defense is getting worse.

And off to the numbers we go. The table below shows the splits requested by BusDriver as well as the season totals. Note that scoring chances for game 30 were not available at the time this article was written.


CF/60 CA/60 SC%
First 15 games 13.238 13.153 0.502
Last 14 games 15.233 18.113 0.457
Total 14.191 15.521 0.478

BusDriver's suspicions were bang on. The defense, which was surprisingly strong through the first 15 games has not been very good since. While the offense has picked up the pace to the tune of 2 additional chances per 60, the defense has collapsed, surrendering 3 additional chances per 60. The offense over the last 14 isn't quite up to par with the 2010-11 season average of 15.792 and the defense over the last 14 is nearly as bad as 2010-11 -- the Oilers gave up 18.240 chances per 60 last season. After breaking even through 15, the Oilers have only managed to tally 45.7% of the chances since - worse than 2010-11's 46.4%

Some of this was expected. Remember, the Oilers early season schedule was ridiculously soft and they couldn't draw patsies all year long. Corey Potter's injury meant increased minutes for Theo Peckham and Colten Teubert, Andy Sutton's suspension meant cameos by Alex Plante and Taylor Chorney. Add in the return of zombie Ryan Whitney sans feet and it's a recipe for disaster on the back end.

Corey Potter is due back within the next week and the Edmonton Oilers Community Foundation is furiously searching for a pair of replacement legs for zombie Ryan Whitney. If either one pans out, the Oilers should be able to reverse their fortunes, even if only slightly.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join The Copper & Blue

You must be a member of The Copper & Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Copper & Blue. You should read them.

Join The Copper & Blue

You must be a member of The Copper & Blue to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at The Copper & Blue. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9355_tracker