Friday, September 13, 2013

HABS: Obstruction penalties-drawn per-minute played

Using even-strength data from the 2013 NHL regular season, this post will focus on the number of obstruction penalties drawn per-minute of even-strength ice-time. It will also show the amount of attempted dekes each Montreal player attempted, as well as the amount events each player engaged in while in possession of the puck.

Puck-possession events used in this calculation include, shots, passes, dekes, dump-ins, and dump-outs. Simply put, they include any play made while the player has the puck on his stick.

Obstruction penalties used in this calculation include; tripping, hooking, holding, interference, and holding the stick.

How to read the graph:
  • The higher the bubble is, the more often that player attempted to beat opposition players 1on1 (deke) per-minute of ice-time.
  • The further to the right the bubble is, the more times that player made a play while already in possession of the puck
  • The bigger the bubble is, the more obstruction-penalties that player drew per-minute played


Alexei Emelin and PK Subban drew the most obstruction penalties per-minute of even-strength ice-time. The high number of obstruction penalties opposition players took against Subban is easy to understand, as he led all Montreal defensemen in both puck-possession events and attempted dekes. Emelin on the other hand, engaged in the fewest puck-possession events among Habs d-men, while attempting few dekes.

Andrei Markov drew the fewest obstruction penalties among Montreal defensemen; despite engaging in more events with possession than any Montreal d-man not named Subban. Markov's low penalties-drawn number could be the product of his low attempted-deke total, as well as his ability to move the puck up ice before being engaged by the opposition.


Ryan White drew more total penalties per-minute played than any other Montreal player. What was surprising however, was the fact that he also drew more obstruction penalties than any other Montreal player; this despite engaging in a below-average amount of puck-possession events.

Lars Eller drew the second-most obstruction penalties per-minute among Montreal centres. He also engaged in far more puck-possession events, and attempted far more dekes than any other centre. Tomas Plekanec drew the fewest obstruction penalties. He engaged in the second-most puck-possession events, but attempted the fewest dekes.


Rene Bourque drew the most obstruction penalties per-minute among Montreal wingers. That said, he engaged in the fewest puck-possession events. Max Pacioretty engaged in the most events with the puck on his stick, and drew the third-most obstruction penalties, while Brendan Gallagher attempted the most dekes, and drew the second-most obstruction penalties.

Quite surprisingly, Alex Galchenyuk drew the fewest obstruction penalties per-minute played. This despite engaging in the fourth-most puck-possession events.

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