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Scott Cullen

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Evgeny Kuznetsov was back in action and made a big difference as the Capitals took Game Three of the Stanley Cup Final against Vegas; Carlson, Beagle, Ovechkin and more in Scott Cullen’s Statistically Speaking.

HEROES

Evgeny Kuznetsov – After leaving Game Two early due to injury, the Capitals centre responded with a goal and an assist in a 3-1 Game Three victory against Vegas. He leads all playoff scorers with 27 points (12 G, 15 A) in 22 games.

John Carlson – The Capitals blueliner fired 13 shot attempts (6 SOG), picked up an assist and had a strong possession game (22 for, 13 against, 62.9 CF%, 11-5 scoring chances) against Vegas in Game Three. He was especially dominant (11 for, 2 against, 84.6 CF%, 6-0 scoring chances) when matched against Vegas’ second line, centered by Erik Haula.

Jay Beagle – Washington’s fourth-line centre contributed a pair of assists in Game Three. He had one assist in his previous eight games.

Alex Ovechkin – The Capitals superstar winger scored a goal for the second straight game of the Final. He has 25 points (14 G, 11 A) in 22 playoff games.

ZEROES

David Perron, Erik Haula and James Neal – It was a tough night (9 for, 17 against, 34.6 CF%, 4-10 scoring chances) for Vegas’ second line and they were on the ice for all three goals against in a 3-1 Game Three loss at Washington.

William Karlsson – Vegas’ first line didn’t fare much better, and the No. 1 centre, who scored 43 goals in the regular season, failed to register a single shot attempt in a game in which the Golden Knights were trailing for the last 38:50.

STANLEY CUP HALF FULL/HALF EMPTY

Devante Smith-Pelly – The Capitals winger buried another important goal, giving Washington some third-period breathing room, but had yet another tough game in terms of shot differentials (7 for, 14 against, 33.3 CF%) and took an early goaltender interference penalty to negate a possible Washington goal. DSP has five playoff goals, which ranks fifth on the team, yet only Beagle (32.8 CF%, 40.6 SCF%) has worse possession numbers than Smith-Pelly (40.0 CF%, 41.3 SCF%).

Many of the advanced stats used here come from Natural Stat TrickCorsicaHockey Viz, and Hockey Reference.

Scott Cullen can be reached at scott.cullen@bellmedia.ca