Worst Faceoff Teams since 1997-98

Here are the ten-worst faceoff teams since the NHL started recording data in 1997:


Team Season FO%
TAM 1997-98 44.1
PHX 2008-09 44.8
FLA 1998-99 44.9
NYI 2008-09 45.7
ATL 2002-03 45.9
PIT 2005-06 45.9
ATL 1999-00 46.1
ATL 2000-01 46.1
FLA 2001-02 46.1
FLA 2003-04 46.1


Atlanta, Florida and Pittsburgh have figured very prominently at the bottom of this list.  Let's look at these teams a bit more closely.  First, the disaster that was the Tampa Bay Lightning:


Player FO WPCT
Paul Ysebaert 1329 45.6
Daymond Langkow 1128 42.9
Darcy Tucker 585 50.9
Mikael Andersson 479 43.4
Jason Bonsignore 421 51.8
Rob Zamuner 362 36.2
Brian Bradley 270 41.1
Vladimir Vujtek 250 37.6
Jeff Toms 154 39.6
Mikael Renberg 87 34.5
Steve Kelly 83 39.8


On the top end, this wasn't the worst faceoff team, but from the 6th center down, Tampa was a colossal disaster, winning just 38% over more than 1200 draws.

And last year's Phoenix catastrophe:


Player FO WPCT
Martin Hanzal 1078 48.3
Steven Reinprecht 886 46.3
Olli Jokinen 737 42.2
Kyle Turris 567 42.9
Matthew Lombardi 384 50.3
Shane Doan 362 44.2
Daniel Winnik 138 37.0
Kevin Porter 95 29.5
Peter Mueller 92 44.6
Garth Murray 80 45.0
Joel Perrault 76 44.7
Viktor Tikhonov 60 38.3


Here the problem was regular centers Olli Jokinen and Kyle Turris.  The solution?  Get rid of both of them - and Phoenix's faceoff percentage the next season was over 50%.

The Florida Panthers had a more focused problem:


Player FO WPCT
Rob Niedermayer 1895 47.1
Kirk Muller 1157 49.1
Viktor Kozlov 985 41.2
Oleg Kvasha 373 28.4
Dave Gagner 236 55.5
Chris Wells 231 40.7
Ray Whitney 144 43.8
Radek Dvorak 98 46.9
Bill Lindsay 57 40.4


Viktor Kozlov is bad at faceoffs, but Oleg Kvasha's 28.4% winning percentage is the worst of any regular faceoff taker in our entire database.

Last year' Islanders were terrible at faceoffs, among many other things:


Player FO WPCT
Richard Park 809 48.9
Josh Bailey 807 41.1
Frans Nielsen 758 47.2
Doug Weight 679 45.1
Nate Thompson 429 50.3
Mike Comrie 390 41.3
Dean McAmmond 267 47.2
Andy Hilbert 186 38.2
Mike Sillinger 122 58.2
Jeremy Colliton 70 64.3
Bill Guerin 61 44.3
Blake Comeau 45 31.1
Ben Walter 43 41.9


Here, the Islanders were incredibly hurt by injuries.  Mike Sillinger got hurt just a few games into the season; the gap between him and Josh Bailey was massive, costing the Islanders 200 faceoff wins.  Of course, that would have vaulted them up roughly one inconsequential point in the standings.

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