Coyotes vs. Kings WCF Game 4 Possession and Deployment Breakdown (or Are We There Yet?)

Game 4 seemed like a flight delay before a long awaited vacation. You had the feeling this was going to happen eventually. Mike Smith was going to have a game where the idea of scoring a goal would seem futile. After the first goal, this one had "Coyote Ugly" written all over it.

This wasn't for a lack of effort on the Kings part. They had their most dominant puck possession performance since Game 1 (although to be fair some of that was to due with the Coyotes jumping out to a lead and the Kings having to play catch up).

Let's see how the numbers brokedown:

    Line Matching Heat Map

  • The Hanzal line saw limited time due to injury (and probably as well as ineffectiveness). Tippett confirmed in his post game presser that Hanzal missed a stretch due to injury, although his wingers didn't end up seeing very much more time in his absence. As a consequence, they saw 3rd line minutes and are represented as L3 above. The line had their most woeful game of the series (15.1% ZSAC*) and were rolled pretty evenly against the entire Kings line-up.
  • The Stoll line had their first "off" game in a while. They were matched almost exactly evenly across all 4 lines while seeing a lot of Klesla-Aucoin (50.5% ITA**).
  • Probably the most interesting takeaway from the charts is the fact that the Fraser line was hard matched against the Vermette line (L1) and they performed extremely well (71.9% ZSAC). This bodes well for the Kings going forward as, with the Hanzal line struggling with injuries and performance, their are seemingly not any matchups for the Coyotes to exploit.
  • The Oliver Ekman-Larsson pairing had their best performance of the series (56.8% ZSAC). They were matched mainly against Kopitar and both came out with positive ratings. It is reasonable to surmise from this that Ekman-Larsson was very dominant when not matched against Kopitar.
  • Contrary to what some local beat writers may have written post game, the Kings were absolutely good enough to win this one. The Kings out shot-attempted the Coyotes 51-38 at even strength and of those 51 only 5 were blocked. 83% of their 36 total shots on goal came from below the perimeter. Give the Coyotes credit, they played a gutsy game under very difficult circumstances, but they cannot continue to play like this and expect to reverse sweep the Kings.

Even Strength Line Combinations:

Kings Forwards:

  • L1 = Brown-Kopitar-Williams
  • L2 = Penner-Richards-Carter
  • L3 = King-Stoll-Lewis
  • L4 = Clifford-Richardson-Nolan

Kings Defense:

  • D1 = Scuderi-Doughty
  • D2 = Mitchell-Voynov
  • D3 = Martinez-Greene

Coyotes Forwards:

  • L1 = Boedker-Vermette-Doan
  • L2 = Korpikoski-Langkow-Pyatt
  • L3 = Whitney-Hanzal-Vrbata
  • L4 = Pouliot-Gordon-Chipchura

Coyotes Defense:

  • D1 = Yandle-Morris
  • D2 = Rozival-Ekman-Larsson
  • D3 = Klesla-Aucoin
* - Shots attempted and even strength adusted for zone starts.
**- Even strength ice time against.

Others in the series: Preview, Game 1, Game 2, and Game 3.

follow us on Twitter @RobertJftC and @NiesyJftC

In This Article

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Jewels From The Crown

You must be a member of Jewels From The Crown to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Jewels From The Crown. You should read them.

Join Jewels From The Crown

You must be a member of Jewels From The Crown to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Jewels From The Crown. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.