NHL Advanced Stats

Written by: Joseph Falchetti, Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert
Last updated:
5 minute read

There is value in NHL advanced stats as they will improve your knowledge of the game and hopefully your betting skills. While there are many stats that break away from traditional statistics that are factored in and used by oddsmakers to create betting lines – some are not. Read on to learn which advanced hockey statistics matter and which are worth skipping.

You should consider this page as an “NHL Advanced Statistics 101” class. We won’t be exploring especially complex concepts but will provide enough of a foundation so that you can take this information and apply when betting on the NHL online at one of our recommended betting sites.

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Advanced Hockey Statistics For Betting

NHL hockey advanced statistics is the analysis of the characteristics of hockey players and teams through the use of statistics to gain a greater understanding of the effects of their performance as well as the teams they play on. The four commonly used statistics in NHL ice hockey “Corsi” and “Fenwick”, both of which use shot attempts to approximate puck possession, and “Zone”, which it is a measurement of a team’s offensive prowess and finally “Goals Saved Above Average” used to evaluate goalies.

NHL Corsi Hockey Stats

NHL Corsi Hockey StatsCorsi hockey statistics is another plus/minus metric that looks at how many shots are directed on the net by both teams when the teams are at even strength. Even if the shot misses the net, it factors into Corsi statistics. Corsi can be used for both player and team evaluation. It can be utilized as a single player or team statistic, but for betting purposes, the team statistic is where the value is when it comes to evaluating betting lines.

NHL Fenwick Hockey Stats

Fenwick hockey statistic is similar to Corsi and depending on your preference; you may choose one or the other. Invented by Alberta Blogger, Scott Fenwick, it’s nearly identical as a plus/minus advanced statistic, but discounts blocked shots, unlike Corsi, which counts them. Again, both statistics are available at Hockey Reference. Both stats will help measure a team’s true ability to put up shots, which is obviously important to scoring goals.

NHL Zone Hockey Stats

The zone hockey statistic is like Corsi and Fenwick, it is a measurement of a team’s offensive prowess but instead is more focused on how much a team keeps the puck in their offensive zone. You will see two stats for zone starts, oZS% and dZS%, which stand for offensive zone percentage and defensive zone percentage. Teams with a higher offensive zone percentage will have a higher chance to score goals by virtue of the puck being closer to the opponent’s net. Of course, this isn’t the only factor to consider, but when coupled with other offensive statistics, this can let you know which teams have the most attacking chances. Which, in turn, lead to goals.

Goals Saved Above Average NHL Statistics

Evaluating goalies is key to making sense of an NHL betting line. The most popular statistics for evaluating goalies is wins, goals against average, and save percentage. Of course, these still have some value, but with the advancement of statistics, these stats have become somewhat archaic. For the most part, wins are more reflective of a team’s performance, rather than a goaltender’s skill. The same can be said for save percentage but to a lesser extent.

Goals Saved Above Average (GSAA) is brought to you by HockeyReference.com. In many ways, it’s similar to the advanced baseball statistic, WAR, which is used to evaluate position players. You take a league average save percentage and apply that to the number of goals that a keeper has faced in a game. That number is then crossed with the number of goals surrendered by that goaltender, and the formula creates a plus/minus.


Similar to WAR, that (Wins Above Replacement), which is essentially a comparison to the average baseball player, if the number is positive, that is how many goals they would have saved compared to the league average goalie. It’s easily the best metric to use when evaluating a goaltender’s skill level. However, it’s worth noting that bettors should consider the number of games a goalie has played, as they accumulate more goals saved if they play more games. Other factors to consider are how often they are on the penalty kill and fatigue factors. In our opinion, GSAA is by far the best metric to use for evaluating goaltenders, and that is a huge part of predicting hockey games night in and night out.

How To Use NHL Advanced Stats Online Betting

How To Use NHL Advanced Stats Online BettingA knowledge of NHL online betting and proper line shopping is more important than these above statistics, but when used together, they can be a heck of a combination. Of the above statistics, GSAA has by far the most value (as evaluating goaltenders is huge when it comes to going against the oddsmakers), followed by zone starts. Many online sports bettor find Corsi and Fenwick helpful more often when it comes to the NHL Playoffs compared to during the regular season.

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About the Author

Joseph Falchetti

Joseph Falchetti

Editor-in-Chief, Pro Sports Bettor and Casino Expert

Joe is the author of the majority of sports betting pages on SBS and he serves as a gambling consultant to our content team. He's been mentioned on Forbes.com as a gaming analyst, and his articles have been linked by larger publications, such as the New York Times.

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