The Statsies: Canucks get absolutely dominated at 5v5 against the Kings

Photo credit:© Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Michael Liu
1 year ago
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Look, it’s almost over. We’re almost at the finish line.
The Vancouver Canucks threw up a tepid effort against the Los Angeles Kings last night, losing in deflating fashion even in a 3-0 win. Even with the Kings’ boring brand of hockey, this was a very hard game to watch. The two clubs combined for 18 high-danger chances to give you an idea of just how low-event this clash was. Still, there are numbers to get to from this 3rd to last game of the season.
Here’s the loss, by the numbers.
As always, you can find our glossary guide of advanced stats here.

Game Flow

The game flow paints the picture of the snoozefest well. Seriously, these teams were inseparable across all situations for over half the game, the puck possession and expected goals line barely deviating from 0 for the first and second periods. However, by the end of the Canucks’ second powerplay, the flow of the game was shifting in the Kings’ favour. The reason why the frame finished close to 50% was because of the man-advantage situations, as the 5v5 play really picked up towards Los Angeles.
The third period was all Kings. They simply dominated a lacklustre Canucks outfit to the tune of 67.86 CF%, 58.82 SCF% and 75.38 xGF%, all the while out-shooting the visitors 12-6 in a frame that should’ve theoretically seen a Vancouver pushback. It was just a flat effort from the Canucks who didn’t manage to get much of anything going through the entirety of the game.

Heat Map

While Joonas Korpisalo didn’t play poorly by any means, the Canucks certainly helped him look a lot more solid than what he has been this year. Vancouver managed to create a decent hot spot in the low slot area, but overall didn’t get nearly enough towards the LA net. While both teams had an even split in scoring chances (24-24) and HDCF (9-9), only 19 Canucks scoring chances came at 5v5, with 7 5v5 HDCF. Meanwhile, the Kings recorded 23 5v5 SCF and 9 5v5 HDCF. Simply put, even in an uneventful game in which both teams struggled to generate chances, the Canucks got outplayed at even strength and lost out in terms of replicable offensive success.

Individual Advanced Stats

Corsi Champ: JT Miller collects another champ award, topping Vancouver skaters with a 64.29 CF%. Miller also led the Canucks in xGF (1.15), SCF (15) and HDCF (6). Even then, it wasn’t exactly a great game for him, conceding the third-worst xGA (1.31) while also being on ice for a goal against. There wasn’t much being done in terms of offence, so it’s at least encouraging to see that Miller was able to get chances. But on the other hand, he didn’t finish anything and also was giving up a decent amount of chances against as well. Still, that was a pretty good tilt that he had.
Corsi Chump: I miss the Jack Studnicka that looked like a decent middle-6 option. He was the worst Canuck skater in CF% last night, bottoming out at 21.43 for a -25.24 CF% rel. Considering that Vancouver was outpossessed last night, it’s not the end of the world, but Studnicka was also out-shot 1-8 while yielding a 15.68 xGF%. He posted an anemic 0.08 xGF, but somehow that wasn’t as bad as Sheldon Dries’ 0.01 xGF and 2.47 xGF%. Studnicka spent most of his TOI up against the third line of LA, so the numbers don’t exactly do him any favours last night.


xGF: Kyle Burroughs has been the beneficiary of playing alongside Quinn Hughes as of late, leading the Canucks with a 65.19 xGF%. The defenceman posted the second-best xGA (0.26) as well as the 6th best xGF (0.49). Yup, the 6th best xGF last night was under 0.5. Still, Burroughs was solid, recording 10 SCF and 4 HDCF, with 0 HDCA amongst 3 SCA. Not bad considering that he got 33.33% offensive zone shift starts and 25.00% offensive zone faceoff starts.
GSAx: Colin Delia did decently for himself. The LA Kings posted an xGF of 1.99 and Delia recorded a GSAx of -0.01. That’s basically as good as you can get when you have your backup netminder in between the pipes. He gave the Canucks a chance to win the game by pretty much evening out the probabilities last night. Of the goals Delia gave up, one was at high-danger and one was at middle-danger. Those aren’t bad metrics, and it’s definitely a lot better than his previous performance against the Kraken. Delia shouldn’t be the one blamed for this loss.

Statistical Musings

Kravtsov’s cameo: Rick Tocchet was experimenting last night, placing Vitali Kravtsov alongside Elias Pettersson and Andrei Kuzmenko against the Kings. The eye test probably suffered a bit thanks to how poor the quality of the game was, but the numbers they put up weren’t all bad. At 5v5, this line broke even with a 50.00 CF% while also leading all Canuck forward lines with a 65.24 xGF%. Where they were let down (which goes for the entire team) was in the scoring chances category, only managing to create 2 SCF and 1 HDCF. Again, it’s a byproduct of a very dull game from all parties, and it might be worth taking another look at Kravtsov in a top-6 role especially with NHL roster places up in the air for next season.
The script flips for Ethan Bear: Maybe he heard what I said, but Ethan Bear had the exact inverse of a game alongside Cole McWard against the Kings. Here, Bear was the third-best defenceman Vancouver had by the numbers, while McWard was the worst. Together, the pairing recorded 34.62 CF%, 36.36 SF%, and 19.67 xGF%. Without McWard, Bear put up 61.54 CF%, 62.50 SF%, and 62.38 xGF%. As for McWard without Bear, his numbers were literal zeroes across the board. It’s a tiny sample size and there shouldn’t be too much reading into this, but it’s just a very interesting reversal of the Blackhawks game.

As a team

CF% – 42.70% HDCF% – 50.00% xGF% – 36.25%
There’s not much to this one. The Canucks simply did not look like they had legs, and it was made all that much worse against a very boring hockey team in the Kings. LA were just better down the stretch and the scoreboard reflects as much. A flat road effort starts off the final three games and honestly, a result like this one isn’t too bad to swallow. At least the team is now guaranteed a (slim) shot at Connor Bedard.
Vancouver caps off their back-to-back matchups tonight with a clash against the Anaheim Ducks.
Stats provided by naturalstattrick.com

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