Canucks Army Contest: Do our Job for Us and Win a Pair of Tickets to a Game

We assume you’d like to be in the building for a Canucks-Blackhawks game, yes?

Have you ever wanted to be as nerdy as a Canucks Army writer?

If you answered “yes” to the previous question, please reconsider your answer. Canucks Army is rolling out a fun and creative contest over the next couple of weeks to secure a pretty big prize to one of our loyal readers. The contest? Create a statistic, either a serious or joking one, and impress the panel of Army judges so much, that they decide to reward you with a pair of tickets to the Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks game on November 23.

Yes, you’ll be able to watch your favourite Canucks like Mike Santorelli and Brad Richardson carve into awful players from Chicago like Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and hurl vicious insults at Duncan Keith. Disclaimer: the tickets we’re offering do not come with a guarantee that you’ll score a goal on Corey Crawford’s glove hand, and we’re also advised to warn you that you may get wet if you sit in the splash zone.

Details below.

So The Pint Vancouver graciously offered these tickets to Canucks Army as a prize giveaway. At first, myself and Dimitri were just going to go to the game ourselves, but that might compromise our cover as people that actually watch hockey games. Instead, we decided to use the tickets as originally intended, to give away to one lucky, good-looking and talented reader at the Canucks Army base.

The contest? Create a statistic, describe how it would be used, and point out to us the leaders of this particular statistical category. We use a lot of statistics over at this website outside of the traditional goals, assists and plus-minus and delve into that Corsi, Time on Ice QualComp and VUKOTA that never make it onto TV broadcasts. It’s time for us to embrace our roles as the Statmilt-haven of the Stan Smylosphere, and offer our readers the opportunity to be Statsmilts themselves.

So what do you have to do? Inform us of something we didn’t already know, but that can take a LOT of work, so I would suggest creating your own statistic and make us laugh in doing so. One of my favourites is the Kordic, or “Punch Corsi” rating found at Backhand Shelf last year:

A Corsi number can be summarized as the difference in shots attempted by the player’s team and the shots attempted against the player’s team in standard 5v5 situations. The stat is named after its inventor, and Buffalo Sabres goaltending coach, Jim Corsi. Corsi essentially measures puck possession. Although it is particularly useful in measuring possession, Corsi is best understood in context with numerous other advanced analytics and their varied incarnations, such as quality of competition, Fenwick, PDO, zone starts, etc. When used properly, advanced analytics help paint the bigger picture.

Punch Corsi, while certainly not telling the whole story, attempts to analyze who controls the fight. Throwing the most punches does not necessarily indicate control, as tossing wild haymakers is bound to leave a brawler vulnerable, but it gives us an indication of punching ability. For instance, the NHL’s fighting major leaders thus far in 2013 are B.J. Crombeen and Jared Boll with ten and nine, respectively. If you’ve watched either of those guys fight, you would know that they usually take more shots than they dish out. Guys like Mike Brown and Jordin Tootoo, though, usually appear to toss more than than they receive. Heading in to this project, I assumed that either Brown or Tootoo would likely boast the highest punch Corsi number.


Punch Corsi is calculated as follows:

Punch Corsi Number = (Punches on Target For + Missed Punches For + Blocked Punches Against ) – (Punches on Target Against + Missed Punches Against + Blocked Punches For)

The Kordic leaders through March last season? Mike Brown, Colton Orr and Frazer McLaren, with Punch Corsi numbers of +48. +36 and +22, respectively. Dale Weise scored first in the “non-played for the 2013 Leafs” category, with a +4. Tom Sestito was just a +1 through his first six fighting majors.

Another good one was SPROUT in the comment section for a Backhand Shelf post of mine a year ago:

I would like to propose a new advanced stat called the “Cherry Ratio” (name is a work in progress).

The calculation is:
(Hits + Blocked Shots + Takeaways + Faceoffs Won) / 1000

You have to divide by 1000 otherwise the numbers just look silly.

This stat should indicate how much grit and toughness a team has. If you crunch the numbers for last year you can see that the Rangers were the toughest team in the league (obviously) with 6.579, but Toronto was actually second with 6.432. This year however Toronto appears to have a decent lead with 1.547 over Philly (which is another tough team of course) with 1.516.

So with these numbers I would expect Toronto in the finals this year.

SPROUT eventually took its name later in the thread (called so because commenter ‘Sprout’ created the ‘metric’) but unfortunately was not very predictive of the future. The top three teams in SPROUT, Colorado, New York and Toronto at the time of the post, wound up winning one playoff series between them, and zero games in the second round.

A good statistic is usually one that:

  1. is shown to be repeatable
  2. is shown to lead to winning games

For our contest purposes though, we’ll add a single point. Make us laugh and have some fun with it. Parse around some data on Divide hits by blocked shots and create some pretend reasoning for why you’d do that. Create a Grit Chart™ like Sportsnet Flames attempted to last season, in a real awful way at making intangibles tangible.

You can post on your own blog and link it by sending a tweet to the Canucks Army account, or send an email to myself or Dimitri ( or and we’ll parse through some of the really good ones, share them on the site when we have nothing else to post, and our committee will declare a winner on Saturday, November 16.

The deadline, shall we say, will be FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 15, at 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time. Please, one entry per person, and the contest is not available to people in Quebec or Papua New Guinea. The winning entrant will receive a pair of tickets provided by The Pint to the game on the 23rd, plus some pre-game beers with the Canucks Army crew at The Pint on Abbott and Pender.

Obviously, we aren’t intending this to be serious research, but there are some good opportunities for mocking the absurd commentators that make liberal use of flimsy real time statistical data, or proving their 1970s hypotheses to be correct. Shouldn’t be too hard to make us laugh, unless you really do believe we are humourless clowns driven by opinions only found on spreadsheets.

  • Sylvia


    Number of posts on message forums in favour of a pylon taking up a valuable roster space / number of posts on message forums stating that said pylon should be working at a Denny’s (or anywhere else but on an NHL roster) x 100

  • velocikesler

    Thrill Corsi. This stat is for calculating how exciting a game is. Sadly, this stat has fallen out of favor as icing rules have changed.

    Calculate how many times a team wins an icing race. Fans love icing races, best part of the game. Then subtract from that the boring total goals scored by that team. Then arbitrarily divide by 100, because that’s what the cool stats guys do (source: am in a college intro stat class).

    The team with the highest Thrill Corsi number is the most exciting team to watch!

    Thrill Corsi = (Icing Wins – Goals Scored)/100

  • Roberto Luongo’s mentally checked out save percentage.

    This statistic is based entirely on one’s interpretation of when Luongo is, in fact, mentally checked out.

    Some possibilities include:

    1) Save percentage starting with the 2013-2014 season

    2) Save percentage starting with the 2013 season

    3) Save percentage in October

    4) Save percentage in meltdown games

    5) Save percentage in the last 10 minutes of a meltdown game

    6) Save percentage when ‘Chelsea Dagger’ plays multiple times in a game

    7) Save percentage in June

    8) Save percentage in Stanley Cup Final games

    9) Save percentage in Stanley Cup Final road games

    10) Save percentage in Stanley Cup Final games after requesting tire pumping

    As the great Roberto Luongo said on April 25, 2010, he only plays when he feels like it…