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2013 Report Cards: Zdeno Chara

Oh Captain, My Captain!

Jamie Squire

Chara was damn good. As Sarah pointed out yesterday in the Patrice Bergeron report card, Chara is the second half of the shutdown dynamic duo. They let in a grand total of one goal when on the ice together. One. That's ridiculous. Chara plays the tough minutes, as well. Here are our defensemen this year, from Hockey Abstract:

As you can see in the chart, Chara is tucked up in the top-left corner. He started in the defensive zone more than anyone else not named Seidenberg, and played against tougher competiton than everyone. On top of all that, he managed to keep that circle blue, which is good. Very good. It's interesting to see this chart. There are three Bruins defensemen who play shutdown roles, one guy in the middle, and the rest are sheltered. I guess I'd keep going back to Chara if I was Julien, as well. Just look at this 5v5 WOWY chart:

The bubble colors are based on position. This compares CorsiFor %, and it's from The diagonal line I drew would be where you'd be sitting if you had the same CF% when on the ice with or without Chara. Under that line, are players that weren't as good without Chara. Above the line are players who were a little better. This chart doesn't account for zone starts or score effects. Chara looks pretty dang good. Rask is that big blue circle under the line. Here's the same chart, but only when the score is within one goal and numbers are adjusted against zone starts:

So now even more people are below the line. Basically, Chara owned real hard in the regular season.


Well, this was more of a mixed bag. For one, Torey Krug stepped the heck up and that'll make everyone else look bad, especially in a CorsiRel world, as you can see here:

For one, maybe if Dougie plays in the playoffs he gets his name on the cup BUT WHATEVER I TRUST CLAUDE. Chara spent more time facing off in the defensive zone than anyone else. He apparently got himself a nasty hip pointer during the playoffs. What's a hip pointer? It's a bruise on the pelvis that usually causes internal bleeding that can move your leg and make leg movement painful. So remember that when you bring up "got scored on a bunch at the end" about the playoffs. On top of all that, Chara had the best CorsiRelQoC of any regular (8+ GP) Bruins defenseman. He was still great.

Final Grade: A

Chara was good at everything. That's one reason he's the captain. He did everything possible to bring the cup home, and almost managed it. It wasn't his fault that it didn't happen. Plus, Chara did this: