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Marc Bergevin - "My kingdom for a center!" Edition

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Old
07-17-2017, 03:30 PM
  #576
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Wait, in what way did Danault produce like a top 6 center this year? He's listed as a left winger on nhl.com, but if you were to place him among centers he'd have been 67th in absolute scoring, and 77th in PPG. That is starting to stretch the definition of top 6 center production.

He did well with the opportunity he was given: big minutes with our two best offensive players. That opportunity showed us some good qualities of his. He's a great skater, defensively responsible, and analytically speaking, a possession monster. However, it also exposed a lot of flaws on the offensive side of things.

He's just not a very good player in that last 50 feet of the ice. He's not really a threat to the other team.
The answer is power play time, as in he didn't get much. Danault actually produced a lot at even strength. Even with Ryan Johansen for instance. Just as many 5-on-5 points as Toews but with far less ice time than any of those guys. He absolutely lapped Giroux at even strength. But in total the points don't look great because he didn't play a lot (or well) on the power play.

You need to separate the power play and even strength. Being good at one doesn't mean you're ideally suited to be playing the other. Danault is and always will be more of a 2-way guy than a prime offensive talent. That to me lines up as a 2nd liner, and he's got the numbers to justify that already, at only 24 years old. If he sneaks onto the PP more and puts up some points he'd get to 50 in a hurry. Then we can stop having this goofy argument about whether he's a top 6 centre or not.

I think the main reason why everyone seems to have troubling labeling the guy as a top-6 forward is that he was acquired by Bergevin.

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07-17-2017, 03:34 PM
  #577
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There's not that many misplaced center listings. Coyle and Nelson were ones that I spoted, but most of the centers listed above him actually do play center. It doesn't paint a very accurate picture to lump them all together, since centers produce more than wingers on average. It's even less accurate when you consider who his wingers were for the lions share of his playing time this year.

Moreover, that 138 rank is in absolute production. Comparing his production rate, he's 180th on the nose among all forwards.

He was a fine 3rd center miscast as a top line center this year, not really a top 6 center offensively (which should be part of the job description).
Well that 180 in P/Game includes several players with 1 point in 1 game played. Filter it to say 41 games played and he's tied for 160th. Which again puts him as a low end 2nd liner.

Danault certainly had some advantages playing Pacioretty/Radulov that other players maybe didn't get. But at the same time whoever played with McDavid, Crosby, Malkin, etc... had as good if not better advantages. Then there's PP, most others got regular PP time which Danault didn't get. How do we account for that? If you just look at ESP he's tied for 72nd for example.

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07-17-2017, 03:36 PM
  #578
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The Center/Winger is notoriously bad, so I think most people just restrict it to forwards. Danault was 138th amongst forwards, there were 180 top-6 spots. So he's in the lower half of 2nd line players.
When calculating where players should end up, I like to use the average of PPG of players with 40 games and up.

Danault finished 161st in PPG where forwards had played 40 games or more.

If we use my breakdown, and do a weighted average of the forwards from 91-180, you fall on 0.55 PPG to be a top6 player. Danault falls outside of that range.

The problem with this discussion is that it reeks of Desharnais. Can Danault turn into a top6 Center? Why the hell not. He has some good tools, has very little NHL experience, 1 full season. Nothing says he can up his game and become a 50-60 point center.

But what bugs me about this, is that once again the Habs have no answer at center and yet again we put a stop gap in that place, hoping and praying he can become that guy. But what happens if he has plateaued and this is the best Danault can put up offensively. What then? The Habs have absolutely no other options.

I may not be in favor of MB keeping his job, but I won't spin that the Danault deal wasn't a steal. However MB cannot rest on having Danault as a top6 center... He simply cannot be that arrogant to think this is how you build a Stanley Cup contender. At under $1M he is the ideal 3rd line center with an offensive upside. The Habs must utilize these productive young players on cheap contracts (Danault, Lehkonen) to surround them with superior talent, that will cost a bit more.

The discussion really shouldn't be about "if Danault can become a top6 Center in the NHL", but it should be about "What is MB waiting for to acquire a bonafide top6 Center, to solidify this roster".

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07-17-2017, 03:41 PM
  #579
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Originally Posted by NotProkofievian View Post
Moreover, that 138 rank is in absolute production. Comparing his production rate, he's 180th on the nose among all forwards.

He was a fine 3rd center miscast as a top line center this year, not really a top 6 center offensively (which should be part of the job description).
This is a total byproduct of management's inability to land the right players to slot in a top 6C role. And, how likely will it be for them to even add one top 6C before the season starts? That's where the whole Danault issue begins and ends.

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07-17-2017, 03:42 PM
  #580
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To be better than last season up front I think we need:
1) Danault to produce 50+ points (pace he never produced at in 3 AHL seasons)
2) Galchenyuk being kept at C indefinitely and produce 55-60 points again (never played C for a full season in NHL)
3) Plekanec returning to at least a 35-40 point C.
4) Drouin to be better ES catalyst than Radulov
5) Price/Weber/Pacioretty don't regress or get injured
6) one of Gallagher/Lehkonen put up 45-50 points
7) Alzner/Petry career year
8) Jarabek out of no where.

In luck we trust.
For every team in the League.

You think Nashville makes the Cup Finals if Rinne kept his Sv% at .918, his regular season avg?

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07-17-2017, 03:46 PM
  #581
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Well that 180 in P/Game includes several players with 1 point in 1 game played. Filter it to say 41 games played and he's tied for 160th. Which again puts him as a low end 2nd liner.
Low end second line forward but again, he's a center, so among centers in that group he's at the bottom, and very likely outside an average ''top 2.''

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Danault certainly had some advantages playing Pacioretty/Radulov that other players maybe didn't get. But at the same time whoever played with McDavid, Crosby, Malkin, etc... had as good if not better advantages. Then there's PP, most others got regular PP time which Danault didn't get. How do we account for that? If you just look at ESP he's tied for 72nd for example.
PP's happen. Good offensive players play their way onto them. Moreover, good EV production doesn't mean you'll do well on the PP. Danault didn't get a lot of PP ice time in total, but he got his chances on the power play when Galchenyuk was injured and when he sucked for a prolonged period of time. It didn't result in anything.

The coach has to put someone on the ice when he has a powerplay. That choice should be considered when appraising Danault's ability, not ignored. It doesn't seem quite fair to attribute some phantom production to Danault that might come in minutes that he didn't earn for himself.

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07-17-2017, 03:47 PM
  #582
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Originally Posted by CrAzYNiNe View Post
When calculating where players should end up, I like to use the average of PPG of players with 40 games and up.

Danault finished 161st in PPG where forwards had played 40 games or more.

If we use my breakdown, and do a weighted average of the forwards from 91-180, you fall on 0.55 PPG to be a top6 player. Danault falls outside of that range.

The problem with this discussion is that it reeks of Desharnais. Can Danault turn into a top6 Center? Why the hell not. He has some good tools, has very little NHL experience, 1 full season. Nothing says he can up his game and become a 50-60 point center.

But what bugs me about this, is that once again the Habs have no answer at center and yet again we put a stop gap in that place, hoping and praying he can become that guy. But what happens if he has plateaued and this is the best Danault can put up offensively. What then? The Habs have absolutely no other options.

I may not be in favor of MB keeping his job, but I won't spin that the Danault deal wasn't a steal. However MB cannot rest on having Danault as a top6 center... He simply cannot be that arrogant to think this is how you build a Stanley Cup contender. At under $1M he is the ideal 3rd line center with an offensive upside. The Habs must utilize these productive young players on cheap contracts (Danault, Lehkonen) to surround them with superior talent, that will cost a bit more.

The discussion really shouldn't be about "if Danault can become a top6 Center in the NHL", but it should be about "What is MB waiting for to acquire a bonafide top6 Center, to solidify this roster".
So just randomly doing analysis with your own parameters, you can come up with a result to back your opinion.

The swing between a player in 40 games and Danault's 82 is pretty wide. What would the numbers be if you used a comparable time frame of at least 70 games?

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07-17-2017, 03:50 PM
  #583
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Originally Posted by SouthernHab View Post
For every team in the League.

You think Nashville makes the Cup Finals if Rinne kept his Sv% at .918, his regular season avg?
You think the Habs lose to the NYR if MB went out and found himself 1 scoring forward, like Vanek or Eaves?

We need to stop looking at "what ifs" as fans and hold the team accountable for what has happened. Nashville may have painted themselves into a corner. SCF this year, and what happens if they miss the playoff next year because they were already a bubble team? Does Poile go from GM of the year to fired? Wouldn't surprise me in this "what have you done for me lately" business.

MB should be no exception. ECF in 2013-2014 and only 1 playoff series win since then... I find this to be unacceptable, especially with the state I see this roster. 2 enormous holes that the team has no prospects to fill (top6 C, #1-2 LHD). I don't like the way he manages this franchise. It's time for a change.

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07-17-2017, 03:56 PM
  #584
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Originally Posted by CrAzYNiNe View Post
You think the Habs lose to the NYR if MB went out and found himself 1 scoring forward, like Vanek or Eaves?

We need to stop looking at "what ifs" as fans and hold the team accountable for what has happened. Nashville may have painted themselves into a corner. SCF this year, and what happens if they miss the playoff next year because they were already a bubble team? Does Poile go from GM of the year to fired? Wouldn't surprise me in this "what have you done for me lately" business.

MB should be no exception. ECF in 2013-2014 and only 1 playoff series win since then... I find this to be unacceptable, especially with the state I see this roster. 2 enormous holes that the team has no prospects to fill (top6 C, #1-2 LHD). I don't like the way he manages this franchise. It's time for a change.
No. Vanek or Eaves would not have changed much.

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07-17-2017, 03:59 PM
  #585
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So just randomly doing analysis with your own parameters, you can come up with a result to back your opinion.

The swing between a player in 40 games and Danault's 82 is pretty wide. What would the numbers be if you used a comparable time frame of at least 70 games?
Statistically speaking, its not that wide.

Better to critique the variance between game-states or the fact that P/GP is not as good as P/60 in determining relative production since it favours guys that get cushier deployment and heavy PP time more. Or creating formulas on results as opposed to inputs to results (i.e. RBI vs. OBS).

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07-17-2017, 04:00 PM
  #586
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So just randomly doing analysis with your own parameters, you can come up with a result to back your opinion.

The swing between a player in 40 games and Danault's 82 is pretty wide. What would the numbers be if you used a comparable time frame of at least 70 games?
The problem with 70 games is that it nullifies a lot of injured players. I find that 40 games is a pretty good number because not many random players will be about to put up 20 points in 40 games. You will find players with 5 points in 6 games, but no one will be consistent of 40 games, unless they are NHL ready. A good example was Hanley who had 6 points in 10 games in 15-16. That number would certainly even out over 40 games.

The other problem with 70 games, is only 229 player played 70 games or more. Tomas Plekanec with his 0.36 PPG is 175th... Top6 C? I think not.

Using 40 games, I have 385 players, which is pretty close to having 360 players to make up 4 lines of 3 for 30 teams.

If I use 42 games, we have 378 players. Danault is 159th instead of 161st. Not much of a difference.

You still think my analysis is cherry picked for my argument? I find it rather unbecoming that we have people wanting to defend a 0.49 PPG player as a top6 player... His numbers DO NOT represent a top6 player. But does it mean next year he won't be a top6 player? Absolutely not. I hope and pray Danault scores 20-25 goals, 50-60 points.

edit: sorry got my numbers mixed up. At 48 games, the NHL had 359 forwards and Danault barely moved and was still 157th. (Gallagher is 169 and Shaw at 182) If I do the weighted average it falls from 0.55 to 0.5475...


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07-17-2017, 04:06 PM
  #587
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No. Vanek or Eaves would not have changed much.
Suit yourself. I won't think MB had no choice at the deadline to have helped this team. Eaves played well for Anaheim in the playoffs before his injury. Vanek was a cheap trade, could have added to the depth of the roster who actually has an offensive flair.

Not gonna twist your arm, but I think it is rather disingenuous to think the Habs would score 11 goals even if they added a proven offensive forward.

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07-17-2017, 04:08 PM
  #588
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Originally Posted by SouthernHab View Post
So just randomly doing analysis with your own parameters, you can come up with a result to back your opinion.

The swing between a player in 40 games and Danault's 82 is pretty wide. What would the numbers be if you used a comparable time frame of at least 70 games?
That number (being Danault's rank) would have excluded players like Evgeni Malkin, Jack Eichel, T.J. Oshie. What would be the purpose of such a ranking other than to pretend that these vastly superior players don't exist?

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07-17-2017, 04:13 PM
  #589
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Originally Posted by NotProkofievian View Post
That number (being Danault's rank) would have excluded players like Evgeni Malkin, Jack Eichel, T.J. Oshie. What would be the purpose of such a ranking other than to pretend that these vastly superior players don't exist?
40 games excluded Stamkos. The difference is that 40 games effectively kills guys with unsustainable streaks (Ryan Carpenter) while providing a large enough sample to not let unsustainable streaks skew players higher than their performance actually warrants.

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07-17-2017, 04:15 PM
  #590
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Statistically speaking, its not that wide.

Better to critique the variance between game-states or the fact that P/GP is not as good as P/60 in determining relative production since it favours guys that get cushier deployment and heavy PP time more. Or creating formulas on results as opposed to inputs to results (i.e. RBI vs. OBS).
On hockey-reference.com they have something called "point shares" would that work?

Found a site with "all situations" for p60. Stand-by.

Danault is 141st among forwards in p60 with 750 minutes of more (48 games*15/16 mins a game) with 1.93

If I do a weighted average of 91-180 we have: 1.9317. In this exercise, he is exactly on the edge of what I would consider a top6 forward.

Which makes senses, because my arguments are all around the fact that he is right there, but why risk everything if he has a down year.


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07-17-2017, 04:30 PM
  #591
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For every team in the League.

You think Nashville makes the Cup Finals if Rinne kept his Sv% at .918, his regular season avg?
No they would go out easily.......like the did against the Pens.

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07-17-2017, 04:33 PM
  #592
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Suit yourself. I won't think MB had no choice at the deadline to have helped this team. Eaves played well for Anaheim in the playoffs before his injury. Vanek was a cheap trade, could have added to the depth of the roster who actually has an offensive flair.

Not gonna twist your arm, but I think it is rather disingenuous to think the Habs would score 11 goals even if they added a proven offensive forward.
But the MB apologists will reach for crap like that. Disingenuous as it maybe.

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07-17-2017, 04:34 PM
  #593
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No they would go out easily.......like the did against the Pens.
Let's not forget the pens got .928 saves % by Murray the last 2 years.

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07-17-2017, 04:38 PM
  #594
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On hockey-reference.com they have something called "point shares" would that work?
Not really. Its based on an already ineffective stat from basketball and baseball and the methodology behind translating it to hockey is guesswork.

The best grading stats we have at the moment are P/60 at even strength. The best predictive stats are probably xGF% and XPM. All of those grades have strengths and weaknesses. GAR is the best attempt so far as an all-in-one stat, but has plenty of flaws. Based on all those stats, I'd say Danault is valuable to have in a top-6 role, even if he may not have the talent to star on a top-2 line.

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07-17-2017, 04:41 PM
  #595
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40 games excluded Stamkos. The difference is that 40 games effectively kills guys with unsustainable streaks (Ryan Carpenter) while providing a large enough sample to not let unsustainable streaks skew players higher than their performance actually warrants.
Sure, you have to put the line somewhere for the reason you mention here. I was just arguing against putting it at 70 games. 40 games is more or less where it should be, IMO.

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07-17-2017, 04:54 PM
  #596
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Originally Posted by CrAzYNiNe View Post
On hockey-reference.com they have something called "point shares" would that work?

Found a site with "all situations" for p60. Stand-by.

Danault is 141st among forwards in p60 with 750 minutes of more (48 games*15/16 mins a game) with 1.93

If I do a weighted average of 91-180 we have: 1.9317. In this exercise, he is exactly on the edge of what I would consider a top6 forward.

Which makes senses, because my arguments are all around the fact that he is right there, but why risk everything if he has a down year.
The problem with "all situations" is that it doesn'y do any accounting of how much PP time a player gets. Danault was Montreal's 4th used center on the PP, behind Galchenyuk, Plekanec, and Desharnais. That's not to say Danault was all that productive (he decidedly wasn't), but guys like him are going to suffer in an "all situations" judgement of offense compared to a guy like Point or Lindholm.

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07-17-2017, 04:55 PM
  #597
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Sure, you have to put the line somewhere for the reason you mention here. I was just arguing against putting it at 70 games. 40 games is more or less where it should be, IMO.
Agreed.

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07-17-2017, 05:07 PM
  #598
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Originally Posted by CrAzYNiNe View Post
When calculating where players should end up, I like to use the average of PPG of players with 40 games and up.

Danault finished 161st in PPG where forwards had played 40 games or more.

If we use my breakdown, and do a weighted average of the forwards from 91-180, you fall on 0.55 PPG to be a top6 player. Danault falls outside of that range.
It's a minor point, but the 180th best forward is a top-6 player. Now it's true that year to year this will vary as fringe players will have good/bad years and so will fall in/out of what constitutes a top-6 player. So if you want to have a category of players who are fringe top-6 fine then your method would be a decent way of doing it.

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The problem with this discussion is that it reeks of Desharnais. Can Danault turn into a top6 Center? Why the hell not. He has some good tools, has very little NHL experience, 1 full season. Nothing says he can up his game and become a 50-60 point center.

But what bugs me about this, is that once again the Habs have no answer at center and yet again we put a stop gap in that place, hoping and praying he can become that guy. But what happens if he has plateaued and this is the best Danault can put up offensively. What then? The Habs have absolutely no other options.

I may not be in favor of MB keeping his job, but I won't spin that the Danault deal wasn't a steal. However MB cannot rest on having Danault as a top6 center... He simply cannot be that arrogant to think this is how you build a Stanley Cup contender. At under $1M he is the ideal 3rd line center with an offensive upside. The Habs must utilize these productive young players on cheap contracts (Danault, Lehkonen) to surround them with superior talent, that will cost a bit more.

The discussion really shouldn't be about "if Danault can become a top6 Center in the NHL", but it should be about "What is MB waiting for to acquire a bonafide top6 Center, to solidify this roster".
Desharnais had seasons where he produced like a top-6 guy. The main issue with Desharnais's usage was opportunity cost. In order to get top-6 production out of Desharnais we had to build everything around him (Top linemates, most PP time, sheltered usage, etc...) so this hurt guys like Plekanec who was a better player offensively and it stalled the development of Galchenyuk/Eller who were at least as good as he was offensively.

If Julien plays Danault between Pacioretty/Drouin and gives Danault more PP time then Galchenyuk it would be as bad as Desharnais and I'll certainly be criticising that kind of usage.

The reasons it might be different now is that Therrien is gone, and Danault doesn't need to be sheltered defensively. That said it's still a failure on Bergevin's part, as the offence needed an upgrade from last year and we didn't do that.

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Low end second line forward but again, he's a center, so among centers in that group he's at the bottom, and very likely outside an average ''top 2.''
That's a fair complaint, center
s should produce more.

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PP's happen. Good offensive players play their way onto them. Moreover, good EV production doesn't mean you'll do well on the PP. Danault didn't get a lot of PP ice time in total, but he got his chances on the power play when Galchenyuk was injured and when he sucked for a prolonged period of time. It didn't result in anything.

The coach has to put someone on the ice when he has a powerplay. That choice should be considered when appraising Danault's ability, not ignored. It doesn't seem quite fair to attribute some phantom production to Danault that might come in minutes that he didn't earn for himself.
We've had a coach who treated Desharnais like Crosby, we had a coach who thought Bouillon was a good PP option, etc... We can't read too much into how a coach especially Therrien deployed people.

Danault's production on the PP was 2.33 P/60 which isn't anything special, but who knows how limited minutes effected him. With regular 2nd unit PP time he probably puts up an additional 3-5 points. Still nothing special, but probably enough to have him more solidly in that top-6 category.

Also it's hypocritical to claim the coach's PP usage is an indication of how good/bad a player is while at the same time arguing against the ES usage of the same coach.

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07-17-2017, 05:24 PM
  #599
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We've had a coach who treated Desharnais like Crosby, we had a coach who thought Bouillon was a good PP option, etc... We can't read too much into how a coach especially Therrien deployed people.
We can't take it as the end all be all, but just because he got some things wrong doesn't mean he got everything wrong.

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Originally Posted by Sorinth View Post
Danault's production on the PP was 2.33 P/60 which isn't anything special, but who knows how limited minutes effected him. With regular 2nd unit PP time he probably puts up an additional 3-5 points. Still nothing special, but probably enough to have him more solidly in that top-6 category.
Danault wasn't really tried on the PP until it was necessary due to Galchenyuk's injury. During that time he got a lot of opportunity, but it just didn't translate to anything. It's not that it wasn't anything special. He wasn't good. There were 200 forwards with 50 minutes of PP time (Danault had 51) who were better by p/60. That number includes Tomas Plekanec, btw.

The power play is everything that Danault sucks at. He has no lethal weapon to be leveraged.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sorinth View Post
Also it's hypocritical to claim the coach's PP usage is an indication of how good/bad a player is while at the same time arguing against the ES usage of the same coach.
I'm not sure what you mean.

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07-17-2017, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Lebowski View Post
Plekanec was in his prime, Desharnais was coming off a 60 points season, Eller was a promising young center with size, and we had just drafted Galchenyuk 3rd overall... That was our depth chart at center going into Bergevin's first season as GM.

He then proceeded to commit to Desharnais, and the coach, for far too long, which in turn hurt the development of Eller and Galchenyuk as centers. If you make that transition to the young guys sooner, maybe we have our two top 2 centers right now.

Is there a choice but to continue down the road we are on at this point? After the Price extension, most likely not.
Dude can we get a braille version of this post?

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