The Texas Stars are second in their division, 11 points behind the Abbotsford Heat with three games in hand. They have a nice mix of future NHL prospects and veterans coming together to make an interesting AHL team. There is evidence to suggest that they could actually be better than where they are now.
Over at NHLNumbers on November 15th, Josh Weissbock posted his projections for team Corsi percentages of all of the AHL teams. He essentially teased out how shots relate to Corsi in the NHL and used shots from the first two periods of AHL games (to avoid score effects) to estimate the Corsi percentages for the AHL clubs.
Believe it or not, the Texas Stars come in at number one. As of Nov. 15, the Stars had taken 37 more shots in those parameters than any other team. Seventeen teams had allowed more shots than the Stars. Overall it has been a dominant performance.
The Stars have been led by Travis Morin and Colton Sceviour. Morin leads the league in points by four. Sceviour tied for fourth. They are getting solid production from rookies Brett Ritchie and Curtis McKenzie. Ritchie has 15 points in 20 games with a lagging shooting percentage. McKenzie has 14 in 19 games and is presumably closer to being ready. The veteran stability is allowing the Stars prospects to develop in a lower stress environment.
The rest of the list is interesting too. The Syracuse Crunch and Worcester Sharks follow the Stars. Affiliates for the Penguins, Red Wings, Bruins, and Devils are also in the top 10. Success starts from the bottom. This point has been stressed in the past, but having a coherent system from the top to bottom makes transitioning into the NHL easier for young players. The top ten of this list, for the most part, feed into successful NHL teams for a reason.
The Stars can take positives from seeing their farm team near the top. They can see they are on the right track at the NHL level, but seeing the changes take place in the minors is a good sign for the future development of the franchise.
The full list:
|Team||Shots For||Shots Against||Possession|
|San Antonio Rampage||494||409||54.71%|
|Grand Rapids Griffins||414||379||52.21%|
|St. John's IceCaps||461||450||50.60%|
|Bridgeport Sound Tigers||364||360||50.28%|
|Lake Erie Monsters||344||348||49.71%|
|Oklahoma City Barons||403||454||47.02%|
|Hartford Wolf Pack||370||425||46.54%|