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Detroit Red Wings Plus/Minus Adjustments Guide 2014-15

After years of running a system called the Common Sense Scoring Index, we've scaled things back a bit on that and have changed up the postgame analysis to combine a lot of the great analytics being captured in real-time for game these days.

We'll still be breaking down goal-scoring and penalty plays to try and correct for how broken the NHL's standard plus/minus system works; we'll just do it with the understanding that the new system is still heavily reliant upon goal-scoring events, which don't really tell the whole story about how a particular game went from a standpoint of what is and isn't teachable about the "right way" to play.  After all, like it or not, luck is still a pretty big part of this game and it is entirely uncontrollable.

Here's how it breaks out:

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.