Sunday, January 1, 2012

2011/12 Team Stats--December

December can be looked at as a leveling off of overall team stats. Some teams have hot starts here and there while others are slower in some areas. But with nearly half the games played for the season, league leaders are settling into their pace while the other teams make movements behind them.

As for the Buffalo Sabres, they've made movements, unfortunately in the wrong direction.

October and November leaned heavily towards lower-eschelon opponents, December was quite the opposite. Of their 14 games, nine were against teams in the top-8 of their conferences while no opponent was at or near the bottom of their conference.

That factored into the Sabres going 4-7-3 for the month, and if the powers that be were not concerned before, they should be concerned now. In fact, the Sabres found themselves ending the 2011 calender year going 1-5-1 in the second half of the month.

The Sabres could do nothing right last month and it showed in their precipitous drop in the standings. Where once they were thought to have a solid goaltending tandem, Ryan Miller and Johnas Enroth's goals against average went from 2.58 to 2.90. Youch! Granted, Enroth played very little and Miller still isn't back fully from his concussion issues, but "couldn't stop a beachball" aptly describes how Miller played.

Poor goaltending (and ultimately poor defensive play) could have been offset by more scoring, but they continued to struggle landing in the middle of the league. Their goals-for has dropped each month, although not as far as shots/game. Another troubling sign is that they scored one goal in five contests for the month, seven times in the last 17 games dating back to November.

Special teams have been solid through this morass, with both maintaining their pace and both, surprisingly, in the top-ten. But five-on-five they've plummeted from 2nd in October to 7th in November to 20th in December.

Although you can use their inordinate amount of injuries as an excuse, their five-on-five compete seems to be a major factor in their drop in the standings from 7th in the conference to 11th.

Quick note:  since the Milan Lucic hit on Ryan Miller in early November the team has gone 7-12-4.

Year to date team stats

  • October--6 (T-9th)
  • November--13 (T-10th)
  • December--17 (T-23rd) 

  • October--12 (12th)
  • November--27 (T 15th)
  • December--38 (T-23rd) 

Eastern Conference Standing:
  • October--7th
  • November-7th
  • December-11th 

Northeast Division Standing:
  • October--3rd
  • November--3rd
  • December--4th 

  • October--2.90 (8th)...(#1, Wash-3.78)
  • November--2.75 (15th)...(Philly, 3.48)
  • December--2.58 (T-17th)...(Bos, 3.43) 

  • October--29.4 (18th)...(#1, Det-35.7)
  • November--30.9 (10th)...(Det-34.9)
  • December--29.0 (T-19th)...(SJS-34.6) 

Goals Against/Game:
  • October--2.20 (T-5th)...(#1, Edm-1.46)
  • November--2.58 (T-14th)...(Stl, 2.00)
  • December--2.90 (23rd)...Bos, 1.91) 

Shots Against/Game:
  • October--31.9 (22nd)...(#1, Stl-25.9)
  • November--31.1 (21st)...(STL-25.6)
  • December--31.3 (T-24th)...(STL-26.5) 

Five-On-Five GF/GA Ratio:
  • October--1.43 (2nd)...(#1, Wash-1.64)
  • November--1.12 (T-7th)...(Bos-1.71)
  • December--0.93 (20th)...(Bos-1.83) 

  • October--21.9% (8th)...(#1, Ott-31.0%)
  • November--18.4 (10th)...(Van-24.8)
  • December--19.0 (9th)...(Van-24.2)

Penalty Kill:

  • October--91.9% (2nd)...(#1, Pit-92.3%)
  • November--87.6 (5th)...(NJD--94.4)
  • December--84.2 (9th)...(NJD--91.2)


  • October--50.8% (11th)...(#1, Col-54.7%)
  • November--51.3 (T-9th)...(Bos-55.0)
  • December--51.0 (11th)...(Bod--55.4)

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