Getting Pucks To The Net

You'll recall earlier in the season that the Caps were having trouble getting shots to the net. Under Bruce Boudreau that trend seems to have reversed itself a bit, but here's a quick set of stats for you: the Caps have 11 of the top 33 players in the NHL in "on the ice for blocked shots against" per sixty minutes of ice time, four of the top 24 in "on ice for missed shots for" per sixty and only two of the top 56 in "on ice for shots for" per sixty, despite getting 23-plus minutes per night from the League's leader in shots on goal. Granted, this is due in large part to said shooter's almost certain League lead in shots blocked against and definite lead (by a wide margin) in missed shots (when you shoot a ton, you're going to miss and have your shots blocked a ton), but it's hard not to see some missed opportunities in these numbers.

Put another way, while the team is in the top 10 in the League in shots per game with 29.9, that number could - and should - be higher. And, as we all know, 100% of the shots that don't make it to the net don't go in. So take a split second, Caps shooters, and step to the side of that defender whose shin guards are two feet in front of you and between the puck and the net - you just might find some more goals to his left or right.

And I'm done with stats for the night. You guys can wake up now.

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