2/14 Recap: Shooting Efficiency

Today, Jhonas Enroth made 37 saves in SSK's 4-3 OT loss to Farjestad. SSK currently owns a tiebreaker with Skelleftea for the eighth and final SEL playoff spot, and can ill afford any late season losses. Enroth has kept a 2.11 GAA this season, stopping 572 of 615 shots along the way for a league-best .930 save percentage. He'll need to maintain his sparkling play down the stretch for SSK to hold that spot. In Germany, Felix Schutz did not connect with any of his three shots on goal as Ingolstadt defeated Augsburger, 4-2. The center is shooting at an 11.3% clip on the season, with nine goals on 80 total shots. To some, shooting efficiency is the ugly step child of statistics. It's just "there", right at the end of the stat line. To others, it's a good indication of a player's "hands". Regardless, it's only viewed properly when taking into consideration how many shots on goal the player actually has. Prospect tweener Patrick Kaleta is hitting on 11.9% of his tries while on recall, good for sixth on the Sabres, but he's only taken nine shots all year long. His time in Rochester reveals a better sampling, where he's a 4% shooter (25 shots). In combined time for 2007-08, he is scoring on 5.9% of his shots (2/34). The Sabres have some prospects who really like to shoot the puck. Nathan Gerbe has fired 149 times this season in just 27 games, with most of them coming from close range. That's an impressive 5.5 shots per game for a 5'5 left wing. Gerbe is shifty, using that smallish frame to get down low and convert quality chances. He leads the nation in points per game (1.59) while carrying a 14.8 shooting percentage. Simply put, Gerbe produces. Another player known for getting to the net, Tim Kennedy leads Michigan State with 13 goals on 84 shots. He takes about half the number of shots Gerbe has (2.7 shots per game), but connects at a better clip with a 15.5 shooting percentage. Other top shooting percentanges amongst Sabres forward prospects with at least forty shots on goal include: Dylan Hunter - 15.9% (63 shots) Marek Zagrapan - 14.9% (101 shots) Benjamin Breault - 13.9% (180 shots) J.S. Allard - 12.8% (117 shots) Corey Tropp - 12.8% (47 shots) Cologne's Philip Gogulla, who is having his finest season as a professional with 36 points, currently connects just 9.9% of the time. However, Gogulla's 27 assists are tied for second on the Sharks, rendering him rather effective in a broader offensive sense. Who is the most efficient shooting forward in the Sabres prospects ranks? Gatineau center Paul Byron has scored 26 goals on 125 shots this season. That computes to 20.8% success, a total that is ninth-best among Q players with a minimum of 100 shots. Shooting percentage isn't indicative of a player's overall value. It's just another shade used to paint a picture of a player's game.
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