Welcome to the fifth edition of the Washington Capitals’ Weekly Trends Report. The regular feature provides a very brief overview of the most relevant statistical trends for capital cities over the past seven days.
The following table lists the Capitals’ team stats and league standings for last week (left side – after 18 games) and current stats and standings for today (after 20 games). Colors indicate improving (green) and/or deteriorating (red) trends over the past week. [Click to enlarge]
This week’s snapshot only includes two games. The week began with a 5-4 shootout loss to the Blues in St. Louis and ended with a 4-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on home ice.
Penalty kill – Penalty for continued decline in performance for a period of three weeks. Injuries were prevalent during this three-week drop, but not as much in this week’s snapshot. They fell from a season high of 81.0% (ranked 8th) to 78.3% (ranked 16th).
goals for Scoring 5-on-5 remains a challenge for the Capitals, and is arguably the team’s biggest injury reversal to date. The lines have changed constantly, with no single line truly providing any kind of consistent play.
Property – The Capitals’ possession metrics continue to improve, and the improvement has been consistent over several weeks now, which is a very good sign. Corsi For CF% (Call Attempts Percentage) crosses 50% for the first time. Their expected goals percentage (xGF%), scoring chances percentage (SCF%) and high risk shot attempts percentage (HDCF%) are all on the rise. This may be the biggest positive sense of the big picture.
Shots for/against – Your average shots vs. shots vs. shots continues to improve, which is also positive for long-term health.
shifts – Capitals continue to improve in both quick ask per 60 and always bid per 60. It is also a good long-term trend.
As mentioned last week, the team needs to find a way to hang on for dear life until Calvary comes — or players start coming back from injury. Compounding matters, the first half of the Capitals’ season schedule is the hardest, so the .500 by the start of January might not be so bad, considering the ease of the schedule in the second half of the season.
Written by John Sorensen