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Petr Sykora and Puck Possession

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Couturier: NOOOOOO! NOT THE POSSESSION MONSTER!
Couturier: NOOOOOO! NOT THE POSSESSION MONSTER!

We all know Petr Sykora has been a pleasant surprise. Considering that he signed for $650K after making the team on a tryout and currently has 35 points, it's pretty apparent he's been a good addition. While a lot of us like to talk about Sykora's offensive contributions, mainly because he's an offensive minded forward. While his production has been relatively inconsistent, he's been pretty consistent in one area- puck possession. In fact, he's been the best regular on the team in terms of puck possession. Not Zach Parise. Not Patrik Elias. But Petr Sykora.

As of now, Sykora is currently tied with Alexei Ponikarovsky in CorsiRel (10.2) and currently has the highest CorsiOn value of any Devils forward. In terms of events going for Sykora, 53.1% of all Fenwick and 53.2% of all Corsi events are going for him- which is the 3rd best amongst players who have played at least 20 games in a Devils uniform (only Jacob Josefson and Ponikarovsky have better rates). One thing to note about Sykora's offensive success- it also comes with his possession success. Sykora had a bit of a slump starting from January 4th to February 11th, where he put up 5 points in 17 games. His fenwick and corsi percentages during those games? 48.8% fenwick and 48.6% corsi.

Another factor in his high possession rates could potentially be Patrik Elias. While I can't necessarily prove that Elias is the cause of Sykora's high possession rates (mainly because I can't do a With or Without You Analysis), playing with a good possession forward like Elias (and a decent one in Dainius Zubrus) should help increase his possession numbers. While it's not something to nitpick about, his good possession numbers do indicate that he has been a factor for the Devils this season.