(Wow, it's been a long time since I've written a FanPost...)
Last year, fans kept track of "scoring chances" for and against for the Canadian teams and the Wild, in every game. With so much potentially hinging on having a better understanding about how players play defense--at this point, defense is more-or-less a team statistic--other fanbases have started tracking scoring chances for this season. George E. Ays on Blueshirt Banter has taken up the Rangers, Derek Zona has adopted the Panthers, Knee high to a duck and myself the Capitals, and so on. I was wondering if any of you would be interested in keeping track of "scoring chances" for the Hurricanes.
The "scoring chances" numbers you see on TV are based upon, by my understanding, a pretty strict definition (I think you even have to get a shot on goal, so posts don't count, though I could be wrong). Counting scoring chances is subjective, and we need actual people who understand what they're counting to help keep track. It's really a fun exercise and hopefully at the end of the year we can compare across teams.
Counting chances is really quite simply. Just get a notebook and a pen and sit in front of your TV, then each time either the Canes or the opponent get some sort of play that makes you excited or anxious (that someone may score), jot down the time remaining in the period and which team got that chance. The focus should be on shots from the "home plate" area, goal posts to faceoff dots to tops of the circles and across the slot. You don't have to exactly follow these rules, or you'd just be the unofficial scoring chance counts that broadcasts display. Nor do you have to be a stats guru like Hawerchuk or JLikens.
When you're finished, go to Vic Ferrari's scoring chances tool at timeonice. Choose Carolina as the primary team. For "Game number," head to the game preview or recap on NHL.com--somewhere in the website URL, you'll see a string of ten digits. The Game number is the final five digits(normally starting with 2). Then just enter the scoring chance data you have--which team, period, time remaining, and any notes you may have (I note goals). It's a little tedious, but when you're done and click "Submit Query," you get this nice chart with what scoring chances you had, who was on the ice, and how individuals did with regards to chances.
You probably want to save the url of this page (it can exceed 3500 characters, so bit.ly or tinyurl is helpful here) and/or save the page to your computer. Periodically then you can take a look to actually see, for example, if Tim Gleason has been playing good defense over the past week (keeping in mind zonestart, quality of competition, etc).
Apologies if some of you already do this. I realize that the season is already a few games old, but skipping a few games is not too big of a deal, and I'm sure some of you have access to Gamecenter archives or the missed games on DVR. Counting scoring chances is really fun exercise for the more statistically-inclined of you [looks at C-Leaguer]. I highly recommend it. Even if you can't catch every game, a few people keeping count means we get data from most of the games, and our hockey knowledge base will be richer as a result.