One of the biggest issues for the Oilers this early in the season has been their special teams. And it was a big focus for the team at practice today.
When stories like this come out, it’s worth digging into a little further for a couple of reasons. Since the focus is on goals, both scoring them on the powerplay and preventing them on penalty kill, we’re dealing with all sorts of luck. Goals are influenced by so many things, we have to be able to dig into the shot metrics to know if the special teams success is sustainable or not.
It’s also good to know what the underlying numbers are like and which player’s are driving or dragging the team in the hopes that the team makes intelligent decisions going forward. For example, Mark Letestu has a history of success on the powerplay, but you wouldn’t think it considering he’s been mostly a bottom-six type player. Initially, the Oilers didn’t even give him a chance on the powerplay, even healthy scratching him for a stretch of games early last season. Today, he’s a key part of the powerplay and a big reason why they’re able to generate so many shots.
Full article is at The Copper & Blue.