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Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Tom Renney and Qualcomp

EDMONTON CANADA - DECEMBER 16: Linus Omark #23 of the Edmonton Oilers is checked by Kris Russell #10 of the Columbus Blue Jackets at Rexall Place December 16 2010 in Edmonton Alberta Canada. (Photo by Dale MacMillan/Getty Images)
EDMONTON CANADA - DECEMBER 16: Linus Omark #23 of the Edmonton Oilers is checked by Kris Russell #10 of the Columbus Blue Jackets at Rexall Place December 16 2010 in Edmonton Alberta Canada. (Photo by Dale MacMillan/Getty Images)
Getty Images

I've written at length about the importance of context in framing statistical discussions.  Some pundits aren't capable of comprehending context, leading to gross misrepresentations of stats, both traditional and underlying.  Fans are selective in recall, muddling hazy memories with facts, leading to gross misrepresentations of memories, which collide with stats. 

Corsi helps to understand team and individual puck possession through a simple count of shot attempts.  Though people like Don Cherry consistently misrepresent what it means, certain metrics exist that help to better explain the numbers.  We've previously graphed the inverse relationship between Zonestart and Corsi at the team level, but Vic Ferrari and JLikens have worked out the math at the individual level.  Vic demonstrated that each net offensive zonestart is worth +.6 Fenwick, and Jlikens demonstrated that each net offensive zonestart is worth +.8 Corsi.

With that information, we can use a bit of simple math to understand how each player's starting position impacted their overall Corsi and compare that to Qualcomp to get a more complete picture of each player's performance in 2010-11.

Legend:  DZ - defensive zone starts; OZ - offensive zone starts; OPct. - Offensive zonestart percentage; Corsi/60 - Net Corsi per 60 minutes of even strength ice time; Adj. Corsi - Corsi adjusted for zonestart; Corsi Rel QC -Quality of competition relative to on-ice Corsi.

All stats are taken from the venerable and terrifying Gabriel Desjardins' Behind The Net.  The data is sorted by Adj Corsi/60.

Forward DZ OZ Opct. Corsi/60 Adj Corsi/60 Corsi Rel QC
Linus Omark 146 167 0.534 -0.19 -1.762 -0.405
Jordan Eberle 264 257 0.493 -3.27 -2.925 0.189
Taylor Hall 233 252 0.520 -2.14 -3.071 0.461
Shawn Horcoff 174 178 0.506 -3.68 -3.975 0.571
Sam Gagner 256 265 0.509 -3.81 -4.267 0.023
Andrew Cogliano 289 267 0.480 -5.88 -4.904 0.187
Magnus Paajarvi 264 281 0.516 -4.76 -5.530 -0.061
Ales Hemsky 173 202 0.539 -6.59 -8.742 0.484
Liam Reddox 123 143 0.538 -7.77 -9.713 -0.044
Zack Stortini 69 57 0.452 -13.6 -11.040 -1.166
Colin Fraser 152 135 0.470 -14.9 -13.265 -0.801
J.F. Jacques 98 90 0.479 -14.71 -13.628 -0.601
Gilbert Brule 111 108 0.493 -15.38 -15.092 0.261
Ryan Jones 241 238 0.497 -16.16 -15.994 -0.023
Steve MacIntyre 30 34 0.531 -30.24 -31.853 -1.529


  • I've given up on things to say about Ryan Jones' underlying numbers.  They're all just so bad.  Middling qualcomp and even zonestarts weren't enough to help.  Compare his numbers to Liam Reddox and cringe.
  • If you're an eternal optimist, you could find hope in Gilbert Brule's Qualcomp suppressing his Corsi, I guess.
  • There is a building narrative amongst the fanbase that Omark should be on the trading block.  His underlying numbers disagree.  Though his Qualcomp wasn't as strong as some others on the list, he's a possession machine and scored at an impressive rate for a rookie.
  • Tom Renney should do everything in his power to keep Paajarvi away from the toughs or even second-toughs for the coming season.  Paajarvi came on strong at the end of the season and performed pretty well against middling competition last season.
  • If Renney again fails to match lines, the Hall - Horcoff - Eberle line is going to take the tough minutes.  By the possession numbers, they aren't ready to do so just yet.  Renney is better off matching lines and giving the toughs to Smyth - Gagner - Hemsky and allowing Horcoff and the kids to beat up on second minutes.
Defense DZ OZ OPCT Corsi/60 Adj Corsi/60 Corsi Rel QC
Jeff Petry 139 134 0.491 0.11 0.532 -0.164
Tom Gilbert 365 386 0.514 -3.36 -4.093 0.455
Jim Vandermeer 247 248 0.501 -4.63 -4.681 -0.2
Ladislav Smid 324 306 0.486 -6.03 -5.346 0.199
Kurtis Foster 247 295 0.544 -7.55 -9.907 -0.89
Theo Peckham 308 274 0.471 -12.18 -10.708 0.461
Ryan Whitney 153 175 0.534 -11.86 -13.599 0.175
Jason Strudwick 134 157 0.540 -19.37 -21.362 -0.348


  • Steve Tambellini should be doing everything in his power to make sure Theo Peckham is not going to play toughs should injuries hit the Oilers again this upcoming season.  His Adj. Corsi is better than his raw Corsi, but it's still terrible.  Peckham struggled when exposed to second and third-pairing minutes and can't be counted on to be much better than he was in 2010-11.  Andy Sutton and Cam Barker aren't enough.
  • Gilbert takes so much crap from the fans but he took on the toughs for the third season running, and considering his partner, he looks damned good by the possession numbers.
  • Petry played easy minutes, though not as easy as Foster, and performed extremely well.  If the Oilers are able to keep him as the 6th or 7th defenseman for the entire season, he should be able to perform in the same manner.
Call-up DZ OZ OPCT Corsi/60 Adj Corsi/60 Corsi Rel QC
Alex Giroux 28 31 0.525 5.93 4.348 -0.109
Teemu Hartikainen 49 62 0.559 1.04 -2.569 -0.403
Chris VandeVelde 42 50 0.543 -9.01 -11.317 -0.34
Taylor Chorney 43 41 0.488 -15.02 -14.404 0.179
Ryan O`Marra 44 67 0.604 -23.6 -28.769 -0.774


  • Hartikainen's positive Corsi is underwater when adjusted for his zonestart and his qualcomp was generally easy.  The numbers are still impressive for a 6th-round pick making a cameo in the NHL.
  • O'Marra's already terrible Corsi is substantially worse when his easy zonestarts are considered.  Throw in the easiest non-goon Qualcomp and that number is just awful.
  • Taylor Chorney is a case study in how not to develop a defenseman.  Last season he was thrown into action due to numerous injuries on the blueline.  Tom Renney (who ran the defense for Pat Quinn) paired him with Jason Strudwick and gave him the toughest zonestarts on the team, which were some of the toughest in the league.  The results were bad. This year, he was again thrown into action due to injuries and Tom Renney paired him with Kurtis Foster and ran them out against middling competition (though the number is likely skewed because of a limited sample size) and the results were bad.  If Chorney were a pilot, he would be in the midst of learning to fly by landing a commercial airliner at Kathmandu's airport with a comatose co-pilot and a tower full of drunken air traffic controllers.  Is it so much to ask to give the guy a capable veteran and some easy assignments just to see what they have in the player?