So, at this point, we all have to call this thing a heater right? A win streak just doesn’t sound the same, or as good. But in reality, this streak has been a sight to behold. Not only are the New Jersey Devils winning all of these games, finding that finishing and closing ability that they have not had for a long time, but they are also dominating many of the games they are winning. They are not winning these games with some puck luck despite having the ice tilted against them. No, they are going out there night in and night out and just crushing the opposition, giving themselves way more chances and opportunities, and between that and the ability to finish games, it has led to wins.
Today, I wanted to quantify that domination somewhat, especially for those who follow the team but really don’t follow hockey analytics Twitter, which has been more-or-less in love with this team for basically this entire season. So the question is, during these last 11 games, how many games have they deserved to win, at least where the numbers are concerned? The following table takes data from both MoneyPuck and Natural Stat Trick.
So, among these last 11 games, according to MoneyPuck’s Deserve-To-Win-O’Meter, the Devils have deserved to win 9 of those games. The only two they are under 50% on that meter were in the Edmonton game and the home game against Calgary. However, you could make the case that they were very much deserving to win the Edmonton game, as both their Corsi and expected Goals were above 50%. The only game they were truly dominated was that second Calgary game where they got crushed in basically all metrics but still managed to pull out a one goal win.
In the other 9 games, however, it was more-or-less pure domination by New Jersey. In only one of those 9 games was the Meter below 60%, and even then it was just under at 59.7% in the game against Vancouver. The others are all above 60%, with 4 of them above 70%. That is next level, and it just shows that the Devils have really controlled just about every single game in this heater. They needed one lucky win, one win where it was more or less a coin toss, but the others have been extremely good.
Further, if you want to quantify how dominating this streak has been, JFresh had a table after they hit 10 games. On it is every team that has had a 10-game winning streak going back to 2007-08. Check out the Tweet about it, but here is the chart:
As you can see, this streak stands up incredibly well to the others. In fact, he has only St. Louis from 2018-19 as having a more dominating 10-game winning streak. And remember, that is still with one bad game that NJ luckily won against Calgary. If that chart was based on the 9 dominating performances, removing that Calgary game and the Edmonton game, it would be even better numbers for NJ, most likely enough to take the top spot.
In the end, this has been some of the most fun you could have as a Devils fan watching regular season hockey. Our team is winning, and in almost every game, is dictating play and is the better team by far. Let’s hope that can continue today against Ottawa.