In our second checkpoint of the season, let’s revisit some old and new statistics as the Penguins approach the halfway point of the season.

As always, statistics never tell the whole story. However, they can back up what we see on the ice and provide key insight into the teams makeup.

All statistics are specific to five on five play and in most cases we limited the minimum number of games played to 10 in order to get a larger body of work involved in these updates.

On-Ice Corsi

Let’s start with the Corsi numbers for the Penguins. Corsi is the on-ice shot differential. The calculation is goals + saves + missed shots + blocks – the same for the opposition. It’s an indication of zone time advantage and overall offensive power.

1. Sidney Crosby – 18 GP – Corsi 17.40
2. Evgeni Malkin – 18GP – Corsi 16.13
3. Kristopher Letang – 15GP – Corsi 13.22
4. Simon Despres – 14GP – Corsi 12.99
5. Chris Kunitz – 18GP – 12.12

There are 11 Penguins with a positive Corsi number. This number is a little lower than what we’ve come to expect over recent years. Matt Cooke has the worst number on the team at -23.3. Perhaps the biggest surprise is that none of the members of the Penguins vaunted fourth line appear in the top 11, each has a negative Corsi number on the year.

Penalties Drawn Per 60 Minutes of Play

This is one of my favorite numbers to discuss. Because of the discrepancy in minutes played per game among players, this statistic takes the number of penalties they drawn with their specific time on ice and projects it out over a 60 minute timeframe. This statistic excludes coincidental minors.

1. Craig Adams – 2.1
2. Evgeni Malkin – 1.9
3. Sidney Crosby – 1.6
4. Tyler Kennedy – 1.3
5. Chris Kunitz / James Neal / Joe Vitale 1.0

Craig Adams has dethroned Sidney Crosby in most penalties drawn per game. You have Joe Vitale on this list as well, a testament to the fourth lines aggressiveness. Dustin Jeffrey and Zach Boychuk both have top five numbers, but we did not include them because they have both played less than 10 games.

Penalties Taken Per 60 Minutes of Play

The same as above, only reversed. This projects the number of penalties a player takes per 60 minutes of play.

1. Simon Despres – 2.5
2. James Neal – 1.8
3. Evgeni Malkin – 1.2
4. Deryk Engelland / Tanner Glass – 1.1
5. Chris Kunitz / Pascal Dupuis – 1.0

It’s been no secret that the second line has exhibited problems with staying out of the box so far this year. These numbers back that up.

On-Ice Team Goals Against Per 60 Minutes of Play

Let’s start with the best in this category.

1. Brandon Sutter – .85
2. Tanner Glass – 1.44
3. Deryk Engelland – 1.68
4. Craig Adams – 1.72
5. Simon Despres – 1.75

Is anyone else really excited to see Craig Adams name appear so much today? Also, kudos to the third defensive pairing for doing well to limit the opposition. They were able to knock Orpik/Martin out of the top spot after the Philadelphia game.

Now moving on to the worst.

1. James Neal – 3.60
2. Matt Niskanen – 3.20
3. Evgeni Malkin 3.13
4. Chris Kunitz – 2.53
5. Sidney Crosby – 2.45

It’s a little out of the ordinary to see so many star players for the Penguins on this list.

On-Ice Team Goals For Per 60 Minutes of Play

1. Chris Kunitz – 4.55
2. Sidney Crosby – 4.46
3. Simon Despres – 3.86
4. Kristopher Letang – 3.75
5. Pascal Dupuis – 3.72

Statistically speaking, the Crosby line is second only to the Vanek line in Buffalo in terms of even strength scoring. The statistics back this up pretty well. Also, speaking of players we’re seeing on here quite a bit, we can say with a lot of certainty that Simon Despres has made big impacts for the Penguins both positively and negatively. With any luck, he continues to trend upwards.

On-Ice Team Goals Against Per 60 Minutes of Play

Let’s take a quick peek at the players that have been scored against the least thus far this year.

1. Brandon Sutter – .85

Let’s just stop right there. That number is above Sutter’s average in the past few years, and is absolutely ridiculous when you consider some of the players he’s gone against thus far this year. Already the Penguins have visited Giroux, Nash, Gaborik, Kovalchuk, Tavares, etc. multiple times this year. This number is a great testament to his shutdown ability. James Neal, Evgeni Malkin, and Matt Niskanen make up the team worst in this category.

On-Ice Team Saves For Per 60 Minutes of Play

This statistic takes a look at how many saves Penguins goaltenders have to make per 60 minutes of play when a certain player is on the ice.

1. Joe Vitale – 15GP – 23.1
2. Tanner Glass – 18GP – 23.3
3. Craig Adams – 18GP – 24.0
4. Brooks Orpik – 18GP – 25.0
5. Brandon Sutter – 18GP – 25.8

Speaking of the fourth line, while their Corsi numbers weren’t very good, they’ve absolutely dominated in penalties drawn and shots against. Many of you have mentioned how good the fourth line has been, this is a pretty good indicator as well.

PDO

PDO is a statistic that trys to quantify the role “luck” plays in the game of hockey. It is the sum of a players on-ice save percentage and on-ice scoring percentage. It always regresses heavily to the mean of 1000. A player with a high PDO can be said to have played in some good luck and might drop down again soon, a player with a low PDO can be said to have played in some bad luck situations, and can be expected to bounce back.

For a more in-depth discussion and explanation of PDO, check out this link

Paul Martin – PDO 982

Pretty amazing to envision Martin below the mean here. He’s been noticeable in such a positive fashion this season that you’d almost expect to have a higher PDO as a result. We might see things pick up for Paul Martin even more here.

James Neal – PDO 920

Neal is way below the mean here. Considering how much he’s scored on the power-play, it’s not all that surprising. If this number can trend upward and Neal can continue to score with the man advantage, you’re might just see those goal numbers increase dramatically.

Other Notables:

Brandon Sutter – PDO 1059
Sidney Crosby – PDO 1026
Joe Vitale – PDO 956
Simon Despres – PDO 1046
Evgeni Malkin – PDO 935
Matt Cooke – PDO 1019

Our next update will be up after the next nine game segment.