A Quick Look At Preseason Stats

With the enormous disclaimers that preseason stats mean very little (except for the players trying to make teams) and that the NHL's record-keeping to date has left a lot to be desired, here are some numbers that jumped out at me from the NHL's preseason schedule:
  • Brent Johnson went 1-1 with a 1.14 goals against average and a .941 save percentage. Bravo.
  • On the other hand, Olie Kolzig was 2-2 with a 3.49 GAA and a save percentage of .853. Not good.
  • The powerplay only clicked on five of 48 opportunities, which is 10.4% and fourth-worst in the League. Given the lineups on many nights, this isn't too troubling, but given that San Jose's Devin Setoguchi also had five power play goals in the preseason, I figured it was worth mentioning.
  • The penalty killers did their job 34 of the 40 times they were sent out there (85% - 14th in the League), thanks in no small part to Dave Steckel's work.
  • Jeff Schultz was a team-worst minus-six in the preseason. Mike Green and Shaone Morrisonn were each a team-best plus-five.
  • Michael Nylander and Nicklas Backstrom combined for two assists in 12 man-games.
  • Matt Pettinger led the team with 17 shots on goal.
  • The team's goals against average was 3.00. It's going to have to be lower if they're going to make the playoffs. Outshooting opponents 201-165 in seven games, however, is encouraging.
  • Shots on goal were off 5% compared to 2006 preseason, with opponent's SOG down 15% - good news. And penalties taken by the Caps? They're down 24%.
  • Finally, checking in with old friends, Kris Beech, Jiri Novotny and Bryan Muir combined for zero points in 12 man-games. Dainius Zubrus had two goals and no helpers in five games for Jersey.


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