Knowing how many points a player has is usually an effective means of showing how well they have generated offense. However included in those points can be goals, first assists and second assists. It can be argued that first assists have more value because they led directly to a goal while a second assist may have a higher relation to luck.
With that in mind we will compare the top ten CWHL players in terms of overall points and first points (goals and first assists only).
As can be seen based on the above table some players received more “help” from their teammates than others did. Both Cathy Chartrand and Julie Chu of the Montreal Stars were ranked seven spots lower in terms of first points. While Kim Deschenes and Jessica Campbell were nine and six spots higher respectively in terms of first points.
These types of statistics help to give a better idea of which players to key in on in order to shut down the opposition offense. Players that have larger differences in ranks may have misleading point totals and more time should be spent checking others.
This past season I was very excited to have worked directly with both the Head Coach and General Manager of the Boston Blades to provide analytics reports to help win games. I was able to develop a number of metrics based on the statistics tracked in the CWHL to assist with coaching decisions.
An interesting one is Close Goals For Percentage. This is a measure of the percentage of goals the player was on the ice for while the score was within one goal in the first and second periods and when tied in the third period. This helps to give a better idea of which players should be sent over the boards in tight games when you are looking for a win.
The table pictured below has the top 20 skaters on the ice for at least five total close goals listed by their Close Goals for percentage relative to their teammates.
The column headers are defined as follows:
GP – games played
tP – total points
GFc – close goals for on ice
tGc – close goals for and against on ice
cGF% – close goals for percentage
cGF%rel – close goals for percentage relative to their teammates
The top player for each team:
Boston Blades – Kacey Bellamy
Brampton Thunder – Leah Whittaker
Calgary Inferno – Jenna Cunningham
Montreal Stars – Marieve Provost
Toronto Furies – Kelly Terry
It is worth noting that the Clarkson Cup winning goal scorer Janine Weber is ranked fourth overall and second on the Boston Blades in terms of this metric. While the other forwards on her line, Jordan Smelker and Corinne Buie, ranked sixth and tenth overall in the CWHL, as well as fourth and seventh on the Boston Blades.