Big Ten: A Look Into Corsi, Week One

Posted by: Jashvina Shah

Since advanced stats like Corsi are becoming more and more important, I wanted to try calculating them for Big Ten hockey. This is my first attempt, and it’s what will become a weekly calculation and breakdown of Corsi stats within the conference.

Corsi essentially measures puck possession, accounting for all shots taken by both teams. I won’t go into a more in-depth explanation of how Corsi came about, but if you’re interested in that and more advanced stats, check out Scott McLaughlin’s piece on WEEI.

To calculate the Corsi stats for each team, I looked through the available play-by-play archives of five games from last weekend: Minnesota’s matches at the Icebreaker tournament, Ohio State’s contests against Providence and Penn State’s 7-1 win over UConn. I manually counted each shot and denoted when it was taken, so I could break up Corsi by period and by situation.

I ended up with several categories for each period and the game overall: 5-on-5 play, penalty kill, even strength and total Corsi. I chose to express the stats as percentages.

I’m a big fan of stats, but I know they’re only telling when you put them in context. So I wanted to compare these stats to what I saw in the games, but I only watched Minnesota last week. As far as the Gophers are concerned, their total Corsi of 62.79 percent against RPI last Sunday supports how much Minnesota dominated the Engineers. The Gophers also recorded a 5-on-5 first-period Corsi of 70.98 percent.

In their first game of the season, the Gophers came away with a 4-3 win over Minnesota-Duluth, recording a 39.71 percent Corsi in five-on-five play during the game. In the first period, the Gophers’ Corsi for 5-on-5 play was 14.29 percent.

I can’t provide much context for the other games, but here are all the Corsi percentages I calculated:

Minnesota vs. Minnesota-Duluth, 4-3 W:

First period: 14.29% (5v5),  46.15% (PK), 33.33% (Total)

Second Period43.48% (5v5), 48.28% (Total)

Third period: 48.39% (5v5), 46.88% (Total),

Total: 39.71% (5v5), 42.27% (Total)

Minnesota vs. RPI, 3-0 W:

First Period: 70.98% (5v5), 69.70% (Total)

Second Period: 56% (5v5), 58.33% (Total)

Third Period: 65% (5v5), 61.54% (Total)

Total: 64.67% (5v5), 62.96% (Total)

Ohio State vs. Providence, 5-4 OT W:

First Period: 46.67% (5v5), 43.24% (Total)

Second Period: 30.43% (5v5), 27.27% (Total)

Third Period: 32% (5v5), 43.33% (Total)

Total: 37.97% (5v5), 38.61% (Total)

Ohio State vs. Providence, 2-1 OT L:

First Period: 39.29% (5v5), 40.54% (Total)

Second Period: 60% (5v5), 55.88% (Total)

Third Period: 37.84% (5v5), 37.5 (Total)

Total: 44.23% (5v5), 43.33% (Total)

Penn State vs. UConn, 7-1 W:

First Period: 66.67% (5v5), 48.78% (Total)

Second Period: 62.5% (5v5), 71.79% (Total)

Third Period: 46.43% (5v5), 60% (Total)

Total: 58.54% (5v5), 60% (Total)

These are just very basic Corsi percentages for each teams. At some point,  I’d like to add more context by looking at how Corsi changes based on each game’s score. 

I’ll have another edition next week, which should include Corsi for Michigan and Michigan State.

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