Washington Capitals Second Quarter Review: 2021-22 Season

Photo: Duane Burleson/The Associated Press

With the Washington Capitals having played 42 games of their 2021-2022 regular season schedule, it’s time to take a quarterly assessment of the team for the second quarter.

Links to Past Quarterly Recaps

2017-18:  1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2018-19: 1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2019-20: 1st Quarter   2nd Quarter   3rd Quarter  4th Quarter
2020-21: 1st Trimester  2nd Trimester 3rd Trimester
2021-22: 1st Quarter

2021-22 Season – Second Quarter

After 42 games, the Capitals have a 23-10-9 record with 55 points, are in fourth place in the Metropolitan Division and sixth in the Eastern Conference. Their points percentage of .655 ranks fourth in their division and eighth in the Eastern Conference.

Inside the Numbers (Wins and Losses)

Of the Capsitals’ 23 wins, 19 were in regulation, two were won in overtime that did not proceed to a shootout, and two were won in the shootout. The Capitals have lost nine games in regulation and nine games in overtime, with seven of those overtime losses ending before a shootout.

The Capitals were 5-0-3 in October, 9-4-2 during November, 6-2-2 in December, and 3-4-2 in January, so far. They have gone 12-5-5 at home and 11-5-4 on the road.

Scoring

The Capitals have scored 137 goals, which is 18 more than the NHL average of 119 goals, and have given up 115 goals, which is four goals better than the league average. They have a Goal Differential of +22.

The “Goals For” and “Goals Against” totals per NHL.com, are listed as 139 and 117, given that teams are credited with an extra “Goal For” for shootout wins and debited with an extra “Goal Against” for shootout losses. In the case of the Capitals, they won two shootouts and lost two shootouts so their “Goals For” and “Goals Against” totals reflect this.

Team Leaders

Goals

  • Alex Ovechkin – 29
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov – 13
  • Tom Wilson — 12
  • Conor Sheary — 10

Assists

  • Alex Ovechkin — 29
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov — 28
  • John Carlson — 24
  • Tom Wilson – 17

Points

  • Alex Ovechkin – 58 (29 goals, 29 assists)
  • Evgeny Kuznetsov – 40 (13 goals, 27 assists)
  • Tom Wilson – 29 (12 goals, 17 assists)
  • John Carlson – 24 (eight goals; 24 assists)

General Statistical Analysis

Goals 

  • Of the 137 goals scored the Capitals, 114 were at even-strength, with 98 at 5-on-5, 18 were on the power play, five were scored shorthanded, and 11 goals scored on an empty-net.
  • The Capitals have averaged 3.26  Goals Per Game, which ranks tenth in the league, while their Goals-Against Average is 2.74, which is eleventh lowest.
  • The Capitals’ 137 goals is 18 more than the league average of 118.
  • The Capitals have scored more than four goals on eight different occasions, winning them all. They have given up five goals seven times, winning one, losing four times in regulation and twice in Overtime.
  • Their record in one goal games is 6-5-9.
  • Their record in games where the goal difference is 3 goals or more is 7-3-0.

Possession Metrics

  • Washington’s Corsi For Percentage (CF%) at even-strength is 52.05%, which ranks 10th in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Fenwick For Percentage (FF%) at even-strength is 52.74%, which ranks eighth in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Shots For Percentage (SF%) at even-strength is 52.16%, which ranks eleventh in the league.
  • The Capitals Goals For Percentage (GF%) at even-strength is 57.31%, which ranks fourth in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Expected Goals For Percentage (xFG%) at even-strength is 57.31%, which ranks eleventh in the league.
  • The Capitals’ Scoring Chances For Percentage (SCF%) at even-strength is 51.16%, which ranks 14th in the league. They had 966 scoring chances and 919 scoring chances against.
  • Washington’s Percentage Driven Outcome (PDO) at even-strength is 1.016 based on a shot percentage of 9.36% and a Save Percentage of 92.26 or expressed in three digits as .923.

The full set of team advanced statistics from Natural Stat Trick through January 22, can be found here.

Natural Stat Trick lists a breakout of Capitals’ players’ offensive statistics through January 20 at 5-on-5 even-strength. It shows goals, primary, and secondary assists, followed by a breakout of advanced statistics.

Additional Statistics

  • The Capitals have taken 1326 shots on goal and given up 1182 shots on goal. At Even-Strength, they have taken 1043 shots, which ranks seventh and opponents have taken 943 shots, which ranks 11th . Their overall Shooting Percentage is 10.3% which ranks tenth.
  • On the average, the Capitals have taken an average of 31.6 shots per game and have given up an average of 28.2 shots
  • The Capitals have won 46.2% of their faceoffs, which ranks 31st in the league, as in second to last place

Goaltending

Vitek Vanecek has played in 21 games, starting 20, and had 500 saves on 550 shots for a save percentage of .909, which is his career save percentage of .909. He has only had one NHL season prior to this season. He has a 9-5-5 record for the year. Vanecek has authored one shutout this season

Ilya Samsonov has played in 21 games, starting 19 and has a 13-4-3 record for the year, with a save percentage of .903. That is below his career save percentage of .906 but he only has two seasons of NHL experience, besides this season. Samsonov has authored three shutouts this season,

The team’s overall save percentage is .908 which is better than the league average percentage of .907. The statistics includes four games where Zach Fucale was in goal for one game.

Special Teams

For the season, the Capitals have scored 18 power play goals on 122 power play opportunities for a conversion rate of 14.75%, which currently ranks 29th in the league and is worse than the league average of 20.56%.

The Capitals Penalty Kill percentage is 80.0%, as they have killed 88 penalties of 110 opportunities, which ranks 15th out of 32 teams. Their penalty minutes per game is 7.0 which is second lowest in the league. Opponents have earned 8.2 penalty minutes per game.

The Capitals have scored five shorthanded goals and given up five shorthanded goals this year.

The Road Ahead

The Capitals continue their home stand, playing Las Vegas Knights on January 24, and San Jose Sharks on January 26. After that, they travel to Dallas to play the Stars on January 28.

Statistics obtained from NHL.com, Hockey Reference, Puck Base, and Quanthockey. Standings and statistics complete through games of January 21.

By Diane Doyle

Related Reading
Performance Review: Ilya Samsonov And Vitek Vanecek After The First 37 Games
Capitals Defense: Reviewing Blueline Player Performance Through The First 30 Games
Assessment Of The Hershey Bears As They Approach The Midpoint Of The 2021-22 Season
Washington Capitals First Quarter Review: 2021-22 Season

About Diane Doyle

Been a Caps fan since November 1975 when attending a game with my then boyfriend and now husband.
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