Sven Andrighetto is a misunderstood and sometimes divisive player for Avs fans. He was acquired in darkest times last season and immediately made an impact on the top line. Now his role is different and one he’s more suited for but expectations and perceptions vary wildly on whether he is what he should be or doing what he’s capable of.
Since he was moved off of the top line with Mack & Mikko, Sven has settled into a depth forward role and done a fair job of it. He admittedly struggled with the reduction in ice time and skill of his linemates at times but the staff have worked with him to emphasize his strengths while on the ice. At his best he can be a contributor and even a driver of play in the top 9. Let’s look at how.
Despite what his hero chart indicates, he is a major shot generator. His individual shot attempts per 60 minutes is 2nd on the Avs behind Nate MacKinnon, and he’s actually quite close to Mack at 15.5. The same goes for individual expected goals per 60 where he is also 2nd at 0.71 to Mack’s 0.76.
On-ice rates agree with this, he’s top 3 on the team in both shot attempt percentage 5v5 (49.7%) and on-ice shot attempts per 60 minutes (56.7).
What this says is that Andrighetto is bucking the team’s trend lately and when he’s on the ice shots favor the Avs rather than the opponent. An even better way to look at it is to use WOWY or With Or Without You vizualization:
The best way to interpret this graph is when he is not on the ice, shots against come at a much higher rate and shots for decrease noticeably.
The final subject I want to mention is offensive zone entries. Data here is hard to come by, BR’s own Rudo3 has tracked a couple of games and once in a great while you can catch analysis of an Avs game from Corey Sznajder. By and large, Andrighetto is very good at this, definitely one of the best on the team both in frequency and rate of success. It’s a subtle point unless you’re specifically watching to see who’s driving play into the zone but look for it and you’ll be impressed.
So what we have here is a player that generates shots and shots on goal better than anyone on the team except it’s biggest star. Along with that, opponents shots are suppressed when he’s out there and he’s a specialist at gaining the offensive zone.
So what are the drawbacks? Why isn’t he still on the top line?
The drawbacks are a little funky and hard to put on him directly. The Avs goalies have a save percentage of .882 when he’s on the ice and that’s last on the team. Opponents get 13.22 high-danger chances per 60 minutes when he’s on the ice, which isn’t good but it’s not the worst on the team (Lindholm and Nemeth are the worst btw). Individually, his 5v5 shooting percentage is 5.8% but both Carl Soderberg and JT Compher shoot 2.7% so it could be worse. His PDO is 966, above only Big Z’s 949, so you would expect some regression upwards. Probably a lot of regression upwards.
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Next time you’re hanging out in the GDT and want to impress your friends with your knowledge of the Avs young Swiss, just throw these catchphrases down:
√ Shot generator
√ Shot suppressor
√ High ixGF/60 (big bonus if you can explain what ixGF/60 is)
√ Zone entry specialist
X PDO victim
X Low shooting percentage (call it unsustainable if you want, I think it is)
Special thanks to ownthepuck and Micah Blake McCurdy for their vizzies and to Rudo3 for tracking zone entries.