Christopher Hartsburg, Head Coach of the Erie Otters – Junior Hockey News


Welcome to another edition of “Monday Metrics”, our weekly feature that gets reports and feedback directly from the people who are utilizing “Bench Metrics” software in the rinks.

This week we visit Christopher Hartsburg, Head Coach of the Erie Otters in the Ontario Hockey League. Part of the purpose of our “Monday Metrics” series is to share how different coaches are using statistics and analytics to benefit their teams, as well as why they’ve chosen to use the Bench Metrics software.

To begin with this week, we asked Coach Hartsburg which stats he’s tracking, and why he and his staff have selected these stats specifically.

“We are currently tracking all Zone Entries and Exits, penalties drawn and taken, as well and Scoring Chances for and against,” he shared. “All of these really help us generate thoughts on how our team play is working to this point, and if there are things we need to change in order to get these numbers to a place where we are satisfied with the results.”

Regarding the zone entries and exits, we asked for details as far as what they are looking for specifically and how they would utilize their findings.

“I like to see who has the puck on their stick the most in those situations. Forward or defenseman, whether we are seeing more middle-ice or wide entries and exits, and if we are doing a good job of recovering pucks on uncontrolled entries. The biggest thing is seeing how many times we are entering with control or uncontrolled, and generating a shot. With our findings we are certainly finding video to show players different entry options controlled and uncontrolled to give them the opportunity to be more successful the next time they face a similar situation, as well creating practice scenarios where we are preparing for both controlled and uncontrolled scenarios on entry and exit.”

We also asked Coach Hartsburg what he might suggest as some good areas for young coaches to track.

“I think an easy one that also helps promote skill development is charting your Entries and Exits. At higher levels making plays and possessing pucks is at such a premium, the more encouragement we are giving younger defensemen to make clean plays, or to carry the puck and not just rim it, or chip off the glass and out will help so much in their development. As for the forwards, allowing them to be creative on Entries and not just dumping or rimming pucks but allowing them to gain confidence with the puck on their stick. Placing pucks in areas to a driving teammate, driving pucks wide and supporting pucks on Entry.”

Check back next week for another edition of “Monday Metrics”.

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