How Lucky Has Your NHL Team Been This Season?

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How Lucky Has Your NHL Team Been This Season?
Joel Auerbach/Getty Images

Though NHL hockey is a game of tremendous skill, puck luck can have a huge influence in the standings. Is there a way to quantify those breaks and bounces and figure out which teams have been most fortunate so far in 2013-14? 

Five separate luck-based factors are considered in a system first introduced in Rob Vollman's Hockey Abstract. The data is sourced directly from, up to and including Sunday night's games.

  • A team's record in overtime and shootout
  • A team's record in one-goal games decided in regulation time
  • The team's injuries, as measured by adding up the cap hit of the injured players (source)
  • The difference between a team's shooting percentage and that of its opponents
  • The difference between a team's power-play percentage and that of its opponents

These factors aren't added up without adjustment. Each of these factors need to be reduced to remove their skill-based component, and to remove any double-counting between categories. Then they can be converted to points in the standings in order to achieve the final ranking. 

Don't like the results? Then use the Team Luck tool at Hockey Abstract to make your own ranking. As for mine, they obviously begin with some basement dwellers and finish with exactly the team you'd probably expect.


All advanced statistics are via writer's own original research unless otherwise noted. 


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