Blue Jackets: Weekly Stat Round Up 11/23


Nov 20, 2015; Columbus, OH, USA; Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber (6) checks Columbus Blue Jackets right wing Cam Atkinson (13) along the boards in the second period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back to our weekly stat recap, my apologies for it coming out a day late, but on the bright side we now have an extra game to analyze, and the first axiom of analytics is the larger the sample size the better.

The past week was one of ups and downs, with the Blue Jackets going 2-2, also known as 50% or 17% points higher than their overall record before that week. This stacks on top of last week in which the Jacks went 2-1, and it can reasonably be said that the results are starting to turn around and look more positive. Still the season started off with an eight game losing streak, so if there’s any chance of Columbus making the playoffs, the turn around will have to go even further.

Looking beyond the results at the process stats we once again get a weekly reminder that very little about this team makes any sense. The early week games against the Blues and Senators went as the probabilities would dictate. The Jacks outshot the Blues 38-20 and took the game 3-1, then were outshot by the Sens 29-25 and lost 3-0 (Craig Anderson is really good at hockey). But this is where things get bonkers. Columbus put just 18 shots on net compered to 39 from the Predators, and yet somehow won the game 4-0. Then, last night, the opposite happened as they carried the shot count 31-29 (essentially a wash but still) and lost 5-3 (though really it was 4-3 for analysis purposes)

As I said last week, these variations in result are to be expected in such a small sample size, Corsi evens out over the course of a season, and serves more as a predictor of final record than of game to game results. But outshooting your opponent does increase the probability of you winning the game, as a metaphor consider two high school students (or if you prefer college students) about to take a test. One studies from the moment the test is announced and is well prepared before hand, the other doesn’t study at all and simply writes the test. It’s not guaranteed that the first student will achieve a higher grade, but it’s extremely likely. The same is true for Corsi, run a high one and you are much more likely, though not guaranteed, to win.

That’s your weekly Union and Blue recap, the team will play three games this week and hopefully we’ll have positive things to talk about next time. As of this morning the Jackets playoff odds stand at 3.7%, not great but as long as that’s above zero there’s still hope!