Winnipeg Jets Best Special Team Players - Power play forwards

Bruce Fedyck-US PRESSWIRE

We take a look at the Winnipeg Jets best players in special teams situations, next with forwards when on a man-advantage.

Let's be honest; special teams has been a bit of a problem for the Winnipeg Jets 2.0. While this is probably the only situation I'll give some validation to the move and no training camp, there is still something we can learn with who has been more and less successful under the team's new systems.

We'll look at how the Jets performed over the last two seasons combined in five versus four situations:

Name TOI SF/20 CF/20 CF% P/60
Blake Wheeler 311 15.370 31.897 88.6% 4.24
Bryan Little 306 15.504 31.143 88.8% 3.34
Andrew Ladd 315 15.504 31.136 88.9% 2.86
Evander Kane 264 15.745 30.657 87.5% 2.73
Olli Jokinen 337 16.369 30.365 88.4% 4.09
Kyle Wellwood 181 14.693 28.834 86.7% 3.31
Alexander Burmistrov 131 13.918 28.253 87.7% 1.38
Devin Setoguchi 260 16.067 28.213 89.9% 3.46
Nik Antropov 206 12.815 24.173 85.6% 3.20

All shot attempts for (CF/20 = shots, misses, blocks and goals) has been shown to be most repeatable for year-to-year, so this would be a good indication of natural skill and predictor of what can reasonably expected for our pieces the next season.
P/60 probably needs a larger sample size than this to be overly conclusive but it isn't terrible either at this point.

Looking at all regular NHL PP forwards (~229 players with 100+ mins):

* Blake Wheeler is 60th in the NHL for points per minute, while Olli Jokinen is the only other top 90 at 68th

* Andrew Ladd, Evander Kane and Alexander Burmistrov have had difficulty in obtaining more points per minute on power play than they do at even strength

* No Winnipeg Jets were in the top 90 for shot attempts per TOI

Random Thoughts and Notes:

It should be noted that power play success is heavily influenced by team system. This is apparent when looking at shot attempts for this season, with the top four forwards all being San Jose Sharks players, the next three all being Philadelphia Flyers and the next three all being Detroit Red Wings. The Jets did not fair well here, although they were improved over 2011-12 season, and the second half of the 2012-13 season was much better than the first half.

Another thing to note, while the Jets power play does need to improve, there are only so many points and opportunities to go around, and much of the Jets is heavily leaned towards an arguably elite power play defensive core.

Blake Wheeler and Bryan Little are strong power play forwards in getting points and pucks at the net. While Andrew Ladd is not nearly as effective, he plays his part by generating havoc in front of the net, thus making room for the other two.

The second unit is not as promising. Evander Kane is improving his 5v4 game, although he is not nearly effective relatively as he is at even strength. The puck movement tends to die once it reaches Kane, with Evander relying too much on his shot rather than evaluating the play and making the right move. If he can learn to improve his power play usefulness, it will be a major step for him moving from a ~30 goal scorer to a ~40 goal scorer.

Meanwhile, Olli Jokinen had a poor outing last season (partially due to luck and partially due to usage as I have shown previously), but still averaged out effective when looking over the span of two seasons. This should be a good indication that if Claude Noel moves Jokinen into a place of success (as noted in the article previously mentioned) we could see the Jets improve to having two decent power play units. This bodes well for the Jets but shows the difficulty it may be for rookie Mark Scheifele to earn a spot on the 2nd power play unit, as he may end up fighting Devin Setoguchi for that final spot.

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