The Common Sense Scoring Index: 2013

The King of CSSI - Gregory Shamus

The CSSI is back...mostly

After two seasons of doing the Common Sense Scoring Index, we're getting into a time where we can start to see the first buds of longitudinal information come out about how players contribute to a team in ways that traditional stats don't. CSSI is meant as something of a bridge between the traditional stats and the advanced stats which have become so popular in hockey over the last several years.

The system is relatively simple: How many times have you seen a guy dominate a play only to be unfortunately robbed of an assist because the puck gets passed two more times after he sets up the play which ends in a goal? How many times have you seen a guy earn a minus because he stepped onto the ice just in time to see a goal scored against his team? While a long season should balance everything out (key word being *should*), CSSI provides more detail to create less statistical noise.

This season is going to be slightly different. Honestly, with a 48-game in 99-day schedule, I'm simply not going to be able to keep up with that pace while continuing to do CSSI like I've always done. Without the ability to do both an in-depth explanation of how the play develops AND a breakdown of the adjustments, I'm going to cut out the less-important part and focus on the numerical adjustments.

This season, CSSI posts aren't going to explain the entire play. Adjustments will be explained, but we're going to go with a more-interactive way of setting the context (read: if you're not sure why an adjustment was made, ask in the comments and we can discuss it).

The same categories and scoring system from last year will be back. For skaters, we will adjust scoring based on points and we will adjust their plus/minus based on performance. For goaltenders, we'll keep track of bad goals, head-to-head play, and overall effectiveness.

Here's how it breaks out:

Points Adjustments:

Screener’s Assist Given to a player whose body position prevented a goaltender from seeing a puck to make a save.

Third Assist Given to a player judged to be the third person in a play worth of earning an assist for a goal.

Fourth Assist Given to a player judged to be either fourth or fifth in a play worth of earning an assist.

Self-Assist Awarded to a player judged to have made an assist-worthy play on a goal he scored himself.

Non-Touch Assist These are given to a player who, by positioning, prevented a player from the other team from being able to make a play to prevent a goal being scored.

Bonus Assist Awarded to a player on a play which has been judged that, by its virtue, is special enough to warrant giving the same player more than one assist on the same goal.

Assist Lost Designed to keep track of times when an official assist has been taken from a player due to context.

Goal Credit Designed to track goals awarded or lost due to the context of a scoring play.

Plus/Minus Adjustments:

Goal-Scored Plus These are plus ratings awarded to a player when it was deemed that a defensive contribution he made on the ice (whether by starting or preventing transition) helped lead directly to a goal.
Coverage Minus Given to a player who made a mistake in defensive coverage that was determined to have led directly to an opponent scoring.
Turnover Minus Given to a player who was judged to be directly or indirectly at fault for a turnover that the opposition used to score a goal against his team.
Overall Plus Given to a player whose overall play during the game was ascertained to have positively impacted puck possession for his team in a way that he was not properly credited for in the official stats.
Overall Minus Given to a player whose overall play during the game was ascertained to have negatively impacted puck possession for his team in a way that he was not properly credited for in the official stats.
Penalty Plus Given to a player who worked to force the opposition to take a penalty.
Penalty Minus Given to a player who either committed a bad penalty of his own or made a mistake which forced his teammate to take a bad penalty.
Shift Change Plus Created to allow for correction of official plus/minus stats to either give or take away credit on a play when a goal is scored during or after a line change in which a more deserving player was not on the ice during the scoring play.
Shift Change Minus Created to allow for correction of official plus/minus stats to either give or take away credit on a play when a goal is scored during or after a line change in which a more deserving player was not on the ice during the scoring play.
Power Play Plus Lost Designed as a minus category to clear undeserved plus ratings from players who were on the ice when a goal was scored between the time a power play ended and the penalized player was able to get back in the play.
Penalty Kill Minus Cleared Designed as a plus category to clear undeserved minus ratings from players who were on the ice when a goal was scored between the time a power play ended and the penalized player was able to get back in the play.
Goal Against Minus Cleared Given to a player who was deemed to have been in position and not-at-fault for a goal scored. These are also given to players on the ice for a bad goal against. A player may have minuses added on for specific faults, but he will have his official minus cleared to track goaltender fault.
Goal Saved Plus Given to a player who does anything that prevents what should be considered a surefire goal. Lifting the stick of a player preparing to receive a pass on a wide-open backdoor and outright making a save on a shot are both examples of this.

Adjustments can be made by half-points or whole and players are not limited to a maximum of one on a plus or a minus. If a play is good enough, a player can find himself with more than one assist. If a turnover is bad enough, he can find himself with multiple minuses on the same goal. Large adjustments are uncommon, but are used when called for.

Goalie Ratings:

Bad Goal Given each time a goalie allows the puck in the net on a shot or play that he is deemed to have been expected to make the stop.
Goal Forgiven Credited to a goalie who was judged to have done everything right to prevent a goal, but saw one getting by him through bad luck or bad play by his defense. An example would be for one of his own players deflecting a puck past a goalie.
Head-to-Head Plus/Minus A rating of -1, 0, or +1 given to a goalie as a measure of how well he played in comparison to the opposing goaltender.
Overall Game Rating A rating on a scale of -3 to +3 (0 being average) given to a goaltender for his performance during a game. Ratings on the severe end of the scale should be used very judiciously.
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