The Oilers were very fortunate to have won the draft lottery that landed them an elite player like Connor McDavid. In 23 games this season, the 19 year old has scored 29 points, with 20 of those points coming at even-strength. His 3.29 points per hour at 5v5 has him third in the league, behind Kucherov and Stamkos. He consistently drives offence in all three zones, as teammates do better with him than without him when it comes to individual and on-ice metrics.
Without a doubt, McDavid has been the key driver behind the Oilers success so far this season. The club is 12-9-2, securing 26 points, and sits in first place in the Pacific division. And their +9 goal differential (all situations) ranks them second in the western conference. Say what you will about the teams in the west and their struggles, but the Oilers have managed to take advantage and remain competitive.
A quick glance at the underlying numbers, and the Oilers appear to be an average-to-good NHL club. Below is their overall share of shot attempts, scoring chances, expected goals and goals at 5v5 this season. Included for each metric is their ranking in the league.
|CORSI FOR%||FENWICK FOR%||SCORING CHANCES FOR%||XGOALS FOR%||GOALS FOR%||PDO|
|51.89 (9th)||52.60 (7th)||52.09 (10th)||50.59 (14th)||53.41 (9th)||100.44 (11th)|
This is all very positive for the Oilers as the club has historically been below 50% for pretty much every shot and goal metric. The fact that they have close to a 52.0% share of the shot attempts is significant progress and indicates that they should be able to compete for a playoff spot this season. But if we look at how the Oilers do with McDavid on the ice and compare that to how the club does without him, things get a little interesting.
Full article is at The Copper & Blue.