Korpikoski vs The Nuge

Um, OK, so let me apologize for those of you who merrily clicked their way here thinking I’m setting up some sort of virtual confrontation between The Finn and Mr Softee.  It’s actually really just two short articles conjoined, looking first at one player and then the other.  But “vs” just sounds so much better than “and also”.


So yesterday, I marvelled at the Letestu line’s performance against Toronna:

(5v5) TOI CF% DFF% RelCF% RelDFF%
Hero Korpi M. Letestu  9:59 23.1 11.5 -32.7 -58.0

(DFF is Dangerous Fenwick, my version of Fenwick that weights shots by distance and shot type)

I mean … holy crap.  There’s bad, and then there’s these guys.  They give bad a bad name.

The worst offender was Letestube, who sported a 17.6 CF% and a 10.7 DFF%, worst on the team, though the Finn was not far ahead at 21.4 CF% and 11.2 DFF%.

Then today I read Young Jonathan Willis’  article about Korpi and I thought … he’s worse than Letestu?!  Can’t be.

A quick look at stats.hockeyanalysis.com shows something incredible though.  Letestu does indeed look pretty bad, with an on-ice CF% of 45.9%.  Third worst on the team.

But holy hells, look who’s in last.  Korpikoski.  37.9%. I didn’t think it was legal to go that low.  That number is so bad, you’d have to have elite levels of scoring just to overcome your own terribleness.

Whatchyou talkin’ ‘bout, Willis?  Korpikoski and his massive level of suck, that’s what Willis is talkin’ ‘bout.

Just to be thorough, though, I figured I should look into whether Korpi’s teammates might be dragging him down.  I mean, Letestu and Lander are not having the best of years.

So I pulled Korpikoski’s WOWY (without you with you) statistics, AND WHAT I FOUND CHANGED MY LIFE.

Ok, not really, I just wanted to write an internet style headline.

Anyway, if you’re not familiar with WOWYs, the basic idea is pretty simple: take a look at a player and his teammates, and see how they do with him and without him.  You’ll get a clear idea pretty quick as to who makes his teammates better, and who doesn’t.

So check out this table, of all the teammates Korpikoski spent at least 15:00 of EV time with, and their CF% with and without:

Teammate With Korpi Without Korpi Diff
Lander 40.4 49.6 9.2
Purcell 39.6 50.1 10.5
Gryba 33.0 51.7 18.7
Fayne 39.1 54.1 15.0
Sekera 37.7 48.9 11.2
Klefbom 37.4 51.2 13.8
Hero 51.3 49.7 -1.6
Letestu 26.5 50.0 23.5
Reinhart 46.7 47.0 0.3
Davidson 46.2 56.3 10.1
Schultz 34.0 49.8 15.8
Nurse 34.5 48.2 13.7
Hendricks 32.5 51.8 19.3
Slappy 43.3 49.5 6.2
Average 38.7 50.6 11.8

Now that you’ve taken a look at the table, take a look at it again.  Then go to stats.hockeyanalysis.com from whence I pulled this data, and confirm for yourself that I’m not just making sh*t up.

Because these numbers are almost unimaginably bad.

The average CF% with Korpikoski was an abysmal 38.7.

Those same teammates without Korpikoski went over 50%!

The formerly maligned Letestube is almost TWICE AS GOOD without Korpikoski as he is with him.

The average gain without Korpi was almost 12 percentage points!

Only one single player – Pakarinen – was better with Korpi than without.  And that just barely.

I kid you not – I’m pretty sure this is *the* worst WOWY I have ever seen.

Now, I do not like to scapegoat individual players.  Hockey is a team game.  Korpi by himself is not keeping the Oilers in last place, just like Ference was not keeping the Oilers D terrible by himself.

But oh man is Korpikoski not helping.  These numbers are beyond the pale. With Korpikoski off the ice, his teammates are last year’s Anaheim Ducks.  With him, they are last year’s Buffalo Sabres.

Please.  Get this guy off the ice.  There’s only a Korpse left.

The Nuge

Now on to a completely different topic – a good player.

I am astonished that Oiler fans can have watched the Nuge grow over the last number of years into an amazing two-way centre, facing the best C’s in the west every night and holding his own … and then have him get sick, slump for seven games – AND NOW THEY WANT TO TRADE HIM?!?!

The Nugey is under the weather.  YOU DON’T TRADE HIM BECAUSE HAS THE FLU.

Sorry for shouting, but really … it’s ridiculous.

You don’t believe he has the flu?  Remember how he missed the LA Kings game?  His relatively poor play has all been since then.  Let’s just pull up the before-sick and after-sick numbers and see.

Before After
CF% 49.5 47.7
Pts/G 0.76 0.43
EV Pts 7 0
TOI 21.3 19.0

Two point decline in CF%.  Almost a 50% drop in pts/game.  No even strength points.  Two minutes less time on ice.

Sure.  Let’s trade him.

3 thoughts on “Korpikoski vs The Nuge

  1. WOW! haven’t liked what I’ve seen from Korpikoski all year but I’m still shocked by how bad those WOWY numbers are. Also I’m a big fan of your DFF% since it shows the ability of players to keep opponents on the outside or block shots when they get on the inside. Keep up the good work.


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