clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Crowdsourcing Passing- Initial Results

A few weeks ago, I put out a request for people to help me chart some games in a basic, basic way. Though I didn't get the enthusiastic and go-getter response I was hoping for, I still did the experiment myself and hoped that someone else would partake. I'm proud to say that reader Ian, otherwise known as Hattrick12488, joined me in doing charting a game from the day of April the 3rd.

The game wasn't too hard to do live. I did need to rewind four or five times. My main suggestion would be to use three separate colored pens: one for even strength and one for each team's power play. Of course, this depends on what you're looking for, but that's what affected the totals the most for sure. That, and the fact that the trailing team obviously has a lot more puck possession toward the end of the game, leading to more passes. - Ian, hereafter known as My Favorite Reader Ever

Clearly Ian has watched a Montreal Canadiens game or two in his life. I had not thought to separate the tallies by game situation in terms of who is leading and who is trailing, but on his advice I did go back and separate out the power plays, as I had noticed they really, really skewed the O-O stats. What we did was tally up the all the passes by either team in nine possibilities: Defensive-Defensive, Defensive-Neutral, Defensive-Offensive, Neutral-Defensive, Neutral-Neutral, and so on. Most of the passing comes from a couple of areas that will be obvious if you've seen a hockey game before. That is to say that there weren't a whole lot of Offensive to Defensive zone passes being made.

Here are the results for his game, the Anaheim-Dallas game on 4/3/11, and my game, the NYR-PHI game on 4/3/11:

1st Period: 110
D-D: 31 D-N: 8 D-O: 1
N-D: 1 N-N: 10 N-O: 1
O-D: 0 O-N: 2 O-O: 56
2nd Period: 147
D-D: 19 D-N: 10 D-O: 1
N-D: 0 N-N: 8 N-O: 5
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 95
3rd Period: 62
D-D: 30 D-N: 9 D-O: 1
N-D: 2 N-N: 5 N-O: 1
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 14
Total: 319
D-D: 80 D-N:27 D-O: 3
N-D: 3 N-N: 23 N-O: 7
O-D: 0 O-N: 2 O-O: 165

1st Period: 66
D-D: 18 D-N: 8 D-O: 1
N-D: 2 N-N: 9 N-O: 3
O-D: 0 O-N: 1 O-O: 24
2nd Period: 69
D-D: 18 D-N: 6 D-O: 1
N-D: 0 N-N: 6 N-O: 3
O-D: 1 O-N: 1 O-O: 33
3rd Period: 128
D-D: 38 D-N: 12 D-O: 2
N-D: 1 N-N: 6 N-O: 3
O-D: 1 O-N: 0 O-O: 65
Total: 263
D-D: 74 D-N: 26 D-O: 4
N-D: 3 N-N: 21 N-O: 9
O-D: 2 O-N: 2 O-O: 122

1st Period: 105
D-D: 42 D-N: 14 D-O: 1
N-D: 2 N-N: 11 N-O: 2
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 33(9 from PP)
2nd Period: 105
D-D: 26 D-N: 10 D-O: 0
N-D: 2 N-N: 12 N-O: 3
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 52(35 from PP)
3rd Period: 98
D-D: 28 D-N: 9 D-O: 2
N-D: 2 N-N: 14 N-O: 1
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 42(12 from PP)
Total: 308
D-D: 96 D-N: 33 D-O: 3
N-D: 6 N-N: 37 N-O: 6
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 127(56 from PP)

1st Period: 90
D-D: 23 D-N: 9 D-O: 2
N-D: 1 N-N: 6 N-O: 0
O-D: 0 O-N: 1 O-O: 48(26 from PP)
2nd Period: 93
D-D: 28 D-N: 8 D-O: 2
N-D: 5 N-N: 5 N-O: 4
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 41(15 from PP)
3rd Period: 73
D-D: 21 D-N: 12 D-O: 1
N-D: 1 N-N: 6 N-O: 2
O-D: 0 O-N: 0 O-O: 30(18 from PP)
Total: 256
D-D: 72 D-N: 29 D-O: 5
N-D: 7 N-N: 17 N-O: 6
O-D: 0 O-N: 1 O-O: 119(59 from PP)

Whew. I'm not even sure I need one of my patented quick-guides to interpret those things. The main goal of this experiment was to see if it was feasible to get a quick and dirty total of completed passes by each team, and to see if it could be done live. Just having this data would probably be a huge upgrade on what we have. So, as always, questions for the commenters:

  • For those who saw these games, did the passing stats match up with your perceptions? The Rangers got outplayed pretty badly in the third period and played well in the second. They had the puck a lot less, and made a lot less passes as a result.
  • Is this too broad of a stat? Do we need to track attempted/completed passing stats as well? I wanted this to be the easiest possible metric to do so maybe we could up the complexity a bit and keep the tracking easy for people.
  • Power plays were a huge source of O-O passing, as you would guess. Would it be worth it to track a bunch of power plays and see if passing correlates with success/failure? This would be a lot easier to do than tracking whole games.
Thanks for reading, as always.