Thursday’s Thought: Plus/Minus

Plus/Minus, one of the worst stats in that everyone talks about. Marty Mcsorely called Alex Ovechkin a “product of hype” after criticizing his +/- rating. In a game that emphasizes team play, we still focus on this poor individual statistic that measure luck along with “skill”. Look at last night, the first Penguin’s goal came on a pass that hit not one but two Capitals sticks and sneaked behind Neuvirth. Yet we are expected to see that those Capitals were -1 after that and it was because they lack defensive skill?

I’m not the only person to criticize the stat, Neil Greenberg does a wonderful job doing so. Although it is a poor stat it still has some truth to it, it shows us who is on ice when goal are scored. With that being said it’s not pretty for the Caps. 15 players (more than 10 GP) have a minus rating, including Ovechkin’s -13, Backstrom’s -8 and Green’s -8. Only six players (more than 10 GP) have a rating of 0 or better. Like Neil says, it’s not a good indicator of individual talent, but still shows our defensive woes.

And I leave you with a Russian Machine-esque finish, here is your 2009-2010 +/- leader, former NHLer Jeff Schultz

jeff-schultz-dog-607x404

Also stealing RMNB photo because I need a featured image and I can’t think of a good one

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