Blog Entry

If you like goals, Colorado was the team to watch

Posted on: July 10, 2011 11:29 pm
Edited on: July 11, 2011 9:17 am
By: Adam Gretz

During the 2010-11 season the NHL averaged 5.59 goals per game, which was the second lowest league-wide average since it came out of the lockout in 2005 (the lowest was 5.57 in 2007-08).

Obviously, some teams are involved in higher scoring games than others due to their system or roster makeup, and you probably know going into a game against New Jersey or Nashville that goal scoring is going to be at a minimum.

But which teams were involved in the highest and lowest scoring games last year (goals scored and goals allowed)? Here's a look at the top-and-bottom 10.

Let's start with the teams that were involved in the highest scoring games…

2010-11 Highest Scoring Games
Team Goals Scored Per Game Goals Allowed Per Game Total Goals Per Game
Colorado Avalanche 2.70 3.50 6.20
Detroit Red Wings 3.13 2.89 6.02
New York Islanders 2.74 3.15 5.89
Atlanta Thrashers 2.66 3.20 5.86
Tampa Bay Lightning 2.94 2.85 5.79
Philadelphia Flyers 3.12 2.63 5.75
Chicago Blackhawks 3.07 2.68 5.75
Calgary Flames 2.94 2.80 5.74
Buffalo Sabres 2.93 2.78 5.71
Anaheim Ducks 2.87 2.84 5.71

If you like a lot of goals, the Colorado Avalanche were definitely the team to watch. In their case, as well as teams like the Islanders and Thrashers, they appear so high on the list because they allowed a ton of goals, not necessarily because they scored a lot. So while their games were lighting up the scoreboard, it probably wasn't the type of excitement you wanted to see if you were a fan of one of those clubs.

Red Wings games, on the other hand, were generally exciting because they were not only the second-highest scoring team in the league, but also because they were eighth in goals allowed. The 2.89 goals the Wings allowed per game was the highest of any team to qualify for the postseason.

At the other end of the spectrum, here's a look at the teams that were involved in the lowest scoring games…

2010-11 Lowest Scoring Games
Team Goals Scored Per Game Goals Allowed Per Game Total Goals Per Game
New Jersey Devils 2.09 2.52 4.61
Nashville Predators 2.60 2.32 4.92
Los Angeles Kings 2.55 2.39 4.94
Washington Capitals 2.67 2.33 5.00
Florida Panthers 2.33 2.71 5.04
Montreal Canadiens 2.60 2.51 5.11
New York Rangers 2.73 2.38 5.11
Pittsburgh Penguins 2.78 2.39 5.17
Minnesota Wild 2.48 2.78 5.26
Boston Bruins 2.98 2.30 5.28

The usual suspects appear at the top (New Jersey and Nashville): teams that struggle to score and also play tight, defensive systems.

How big of a gap is there from the top team (Colorado) and the bottom team (New Jersey)? Look at it this way: If you watched every single Devils game, you would have witnessed 130 fewer goals over the course of the season than a person who watched every Avalanche game.

There are also a couple of unexpected teams in the bottom group, particularly Pittsburgh and Washington. When you look at the Penguins, it's maybe not quite as surprising when you consider they played the first half of the season without Jordan Staal and then played the second half without a pair of former scoring champions in Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.

But Washington? Involved in the fourth-lowest scoring games in the league? That's certainly not what we've grown to expect from them in recent years, and it offers a nice look into just how defensive that team became last season.

In the three previous years they went from the 11th highest-scoring games in 2007-08 to fourth in 2008-09 to the top spot in 2009-10. How much of a shift was there from being involved in the highest-scoring games to the fourth-lowest? The average Capitals game in 2010 averaged 1.59 fewer goals per game than the previous year.

The second biggest drop belonged to the Penguins whose games averaged 0.74 fewer goals.

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Since: Dec 2, 2011
Posted on: December 16, 2011 6:24 am
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Since: Oct 7, 2011
Posted on: October 19, 2011 9:48 pm

If you like goals, Colorado was the team to watch

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Since: Oct 8, 2009
Posted on: July 13, 2011 11:54 am

If you like goals, Colorado was the team to watch

Yup even though the Wings highest scorer (Franzen) only had 28 goals on the season, they still managed to put up the numbers offensively. Too bad they couldn't keep the puck out of their own net nearly as well. Detroit's defensive play and penalty killing have declined sharply since they won the cup in '08. That may be one of the main reasons they've failed to get past the second round of the playoffs for the past two seasons.

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