The Minnesota Wild outshot the St. Louis Blues two to one last night and yet the Blue Note still walked away with the overtime win. God bless playoff hockey.
This game reminded me of all those previous playoff games where the Blues would seem to outplay their opponents (out shoot, out attempt) and yet walk away defeated at the end of the game. But since I have an awful memory (and because our server is down at work this morning and I have nothing else better to do) I thought I would dig into the numbers just to see how accurate I am at remembering these games.
I pulled every single playoff game during the Hitchcock Era from Hockey Reference (for the raw numbers) and then I pulled the venue and score adjusted, 5v5 numbers from Corisca.Hockey. The first image below shows a distribution of games by the shot differential and divided into two columns, wins and losses. The middle of the boxes is the median shot differential. Both the raw numbers and adjusted numbers tell a similar story. The Blues tend to outshoot their opponents in games that they lose. The second image are two charts showing the average shot differential for the Blues when they win or lose for the raw numbers and adjusted numbers. It tells a similar story, but not as stark.
Before you start to over analyze, let me provide you with a couple of caveats. First, this is just looking at the Blues. Second, this was hastily put together after 5 hours of sleep. Third, this is just for fun. Obviously, the Blues cannot continue to be outshot 2-to-1 and win the series.
So sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride. And leave the stats at home Friday night.