Who has the best PP in the League?

PITTSBURGH PA - FEBRUARY 23: Logan Couture #39 of the San Jose Sharks celebrates after scoring a second period power play goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the NHL game at Consol Energy Center on February 23 2011 in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)


I was watching the Sharks-Ducks game on Saturday and the Sharks announcers - I'm not going to lie, I don't think they know what they're talking about most of the time - said "San Jose has the third-best power-play in the league."  Really?  Let's look at 5-on-4 performance over the last four seasons:

 

Season Team Shots/60
2010-11 SJ 71.8
2008-09 DET 64.5
2007-08 DET 61.9
2008-09 ANA 61.7
2009-10 SJ 61.2
2008-09 NJ 60.9
2008-09 WSH 60.2
2010-11 ANA 59.4
2009-10 DET 58.4
2010-11 WSH 58.2

 

Not only does San Jose have the best power-play in the league this season by a massive margin, they're way ahead of the next-best team we've seen since the NHL started tracking this stat in 2007-08.  When you're trying to evaluate special teams performance, don't be misled by luck-driven PP shooting percentages like Vancouver's (Edmonton is 3rd in the league in 5v4 shooting percentage, after all) or teams that spent a lot of time at 5v3.  The PP is all about directing shots on goal.

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