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Examining the St. Louis Blues numbers

Saturday, 09.22.2007 / 10:25 AM / Season Preview

By John Kreiser - NHL.com Columnist


 

NHL.com's 2007-08 Blues Season Preview Package:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards | Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster

Advantage Margin: -33
The Blues had 11 more chances than their opponents at home, but made their penalty killers work overtime on the road, allowing 44 more power plays than they received. St. Louis also gave up 52 power-play goals, tied with Toronto for the most in the NHL.

Even-Strength Goals Margin: 0
The Blues scored and allowed 155 goals when both sides had the same number of players on the ice, and actually outscored the opposition 143-139 when playing 5-on-5. 

Special Teams Goal Margin: -40
There was nothing special about the  Blues’ special teams. Their combined ranking of 55 (26th on the power play, 29th in penalty killing) was by far the worst in the NHL. Their 46 power-play goals were the second-fewest in the NHL, just three more than Chicago.

Category Rank
(Conference / NHL)
2006-07 Points 81
(10th West / 22nd NHL)
Change From 2005-06 +24
Home Points 40
(12th West / 25th NHL)
Road Points 41
(9th West / 19th NHL)

Goals by defensemen: 26
The Blues hope the addition of Eric Johnson, the No. 1 overall pick in the 2006 Draft, will bring more offense to the blue line, especially on the power play. Christian Backman (7) and Eric Brewer (6) accounted for half of the goals by the Blues’ defense.

Goals by forwards: 182
Undrafted free agent Lee Stempniak (team-high 27 goals) has turned into an offensive force and should benefit from the addition of free agent Paul Kariya (24-52-76 with Nashville). The return of Keith Tkachuk (27 goals) will also help.

Overtime Record: 10-7-6 (OT: 4-7, SO: 6-6)
Not only was Stempniak the Blues’ top gunner, he was sharp in shootouts, netting half of his eight opportunities, including three deciding goals. Doug Weight was 6-for-11, including a league-leading five tallies in road games.

Times Scored First/Record: 44 (Record: 25-10-9)
The Blues’ .568 winning percentage when scoring first was only 24th, but it was a big jump from 2005-06, when they were 16-15-9 (.400) when getting the first goal. They improved to 11-4-6 on the road after going 7-9-5 a year earlier.

Best 06-07 Number: 27-18-9
The Blues’ record under Andy Murray, a big improvement from their 7-17-4 start under Mike Kitchen. A full season at their winning percentage under Murray (.583) would have put the Blues in the playoffs.

Worst 06-07 Number: 14.3
The Blues’ power-play percentage on the road, easily the worst in the NHL (Chicago was next at 11.2 percent). Combined with their league-low 174 road power plays, the Blues scored just 16 goals with the man advantage away from the Scottrade Center.

Scheduling:
As usual, the Blues open on the road (this time with a two-game trip to Phoenix and Los Angeles). The Blues will play 11 home games in a 17-game stretch from Feb. 1 to March 4 before beginning a marathon nine-game trip in which no more than two consecutive games are in the same time zone.

NHL.com's 2007-08 Blues Season Preview Package:
Intro | Goalies | Defense | Forwards | Feature | Numbers | Sked | Roster

 

 

Quote of the Day

I'm hoping Bob [Murray] didn't go out and get Dany Heatley just to get someone. I'm sure he's excited and motivated.

— Anaheim Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau on general manager Bob Murray's decision to sign Dany Heatley