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04-16-2013, 01:26 AM
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I hadn't voted yet, as I was waiting for the end of the regular season, but I'll go ahead and cast my vote/make a case for Backes.

1) He plays the hardest ES minutes, by far, of anyone on the team (forward or defenseman). For the advanced stat people out there, his Corsi Rel QoC is 1.557. That's good enough for 13th overall in the league among all players with at least 20GP (7th among forwards, and 5th among centers behind Sutter, Datsyuk, Nielsen, and Hanzal).

Of those 7 forwards, only 3 have a positive Corsi...Datsyuk, Hanzal, and Backes. What's even more impressive is that Backes generates that positive Corsi while starting 41.4% of his shifts in the offensive zone (lowest among all regulars on the Blues). He also finishes there 44.7% of the time, which means that in addition to generating positive shot differentials, he's also driving the play forward against outstanding competition. To compare, Datsyuk's numbers are 54.2% and 51.3%, and Hanzal's are 61.6% and 56.7%. Backes arguably plays harder minutes better than any forward in the league.

2) Back to the Blues for a moment. In spite of the competition he faces, Backes is the only forward who has played in the top 9 all year who finishes in the offensive zone more than he starts there. He's second overall on the team in driving the play forward to Jackman (who starts 41.9% in the offensive zone and finishes there 47%).

3) In spite of the competition he faces, Backes has a lower GA/60 at ES (1.99 GA per 60 minutes of ice time) than any regular (non-4th liner, non-scratch) on the team besides Perron (1.95 GA/60).

4) Back to "traditional" metrics for a minute. Backes is the tied for the team lead in assists, tied for 3rd in points, 5th in plus/minus, 2nd in shots, 3rd in overall TOI/game (excluding the two new defenseman), 1st in TOI/game among forwards, leads the team in hits by a lot, leads all forwards in blocked shots, has 23 takeaways to only 9 giveaways (second on the team in takeaways to Perron, and second in overall ratio to Sobotka), has a 51.7 faceoff percentage, and he hasn't missed a single game in spite of all the abuse his body takes.

That's all David "Second Line Center" Backes means to this team, folks.

Disappointing season my ***. I don't care where his goal total stands, I don't think there is a player here who has done more to help this team win this year.

Last edited by EastonBlues22: 04-16-2013 at 01:46 AM.
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