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Time and Opportunity: Even-Strength

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Over at OilersNation I did a post on Andrew Cogliano, and a number of comments were made to the effect that Cogliano hadn’t received much ice-time in the top-six. I remembered it that way too, but it got me wondering: did he deserve more ice-time, based on his level of production.

With that in mind, I decided it would be interesting to compare even-strength ice-time to even-strength offensive performance. The chart below shows the average amount of even-strength ice-time each forward received per game (from NHL.com), as well as their even-strength PTS/60 (from behindthenet.ca). Items which caught my attention are in bold.

  • Shawn Horcoff: 14:19 TOI - 1.59 PTS/60
  • Ales Hemsky: 14:18 TOI – 2.08 PTS/60
  • Patrick O’Sullivan: 14:11 TOI – 1.69 PTS/60
  • Sam Gagner: 13:24 TOI – 1.69 PTS/60
  • Robert Nilsson: 12:39 TOI – 1.22 PTS/60
  • Fernando Pisani: 12:36 TOI – 1.81 PTS/60
  • Ales Kotalik: 12:35 TOI – 1.38 PTS/60
  • Ethan Moreau: 12:34 TOI – 1.50 PTS/60
  • Andrew Cogliano: 11:51 TOI – 1.69 PTS/60
  • Dustin Penner: 11:49 TOI – 1.71 PTS/60
  • Marc Pouliot: 10:19 TOI – 1.67 PTS/60
  • Kyle Brodziak: 9:52 TOI – 1.62 PTS/60
  • Liam Reddox: 9:13 TOI – 1.43 PTS/60
  • Zack Stortini: 7:12 TOI – 1.76 PTS/60
  • Steve MacIntyre: 3:49 TOI – 1.43 PTS/60

Obviously offensive production isn’t the sole criteria for ice-time, but it is an important one. The three players I’ve highlighted are particularly interesting, since most people would likely agree that Kotalik and Nilsson provide marginal defensive benefits; scoring is their chief purpose in the lineup.

At the same time, Fernando Pisani provides a needed defensive presence but his scoring numbers this season were excellent, second only to Ales Hemsky on the team. It’s a little bizarre that these three should have been treated similarly by the coach when common sense would say that with those scoring rates Fernando Pisani deserves more ice-time and the other two less.