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The Pronger effect, redux

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Last year, the above plot showed just how drastically the Flyers' performance dropped off when Chris Pronger was out of the lineup. It shows that when Pronger was in the lineup, the Flyers tended to control play, maintaining possession in the offensive zone and winning the shot battle. (The focus here is on results when the score is tied to eliminate score effects.)

Pronger has missed some time this year too, of course. And perhaps not coincidentally, the Flyers Corsi numbers don't look so great this year and have some analysts prognosticating that the team's results will drop off over time. So let's take a quick look at how the team did with and without Pronger in the lineup.

Close game Tie game
With Pronger 54.0% 52.5%
Without Pronger 47.9% 46.2%

Since the sample sizes are small, looking at the results just when the score is tied might be noisy, but we see the same result even if we expand the sample to include close games (close means tied at any time or within one goal in the first or second period).

Those predicting doom should dig a little deeper. Pronger is really important to this team.