Eller, Desharnais, and offensive production

My dad was at the game last night, and as such, he wouldn’t have heard the news that Desharnais was out of the lineup due to illness. I texted him as much and he replied, “That’s not good, we need more offense.” Instantly I made a face at my phone, because fact of the matter is, DD has not been a key offensive player so far in these playoffs, and while I feel bad for the guy being out with the flu, I didn’t find it that much of a blow to the team. But then, if that wasn’t enough, my dad continued, “Maybe Eller will have a good game.”

Bristling, I responded, “You say that like he hasn’t been playing well.”

His answer? “He needs to produce offensively.”

Now, don’t get me wrong, my dad usually has a really good hockey sense, especially when it comes to goalies, and I usually agree with almost all of his opinions. This time, I instantly knew he was dead wrong. Of course, gut feelings aren’t always right, so I looked up some stats to be sure.

In terms of offensive production, the quickest and easiest stat to look at is points. Desharnais and Eller each have 2. Taking that a little bit further, DD’s points per 60 minutes played is 1.04 and Eller’s is 0.93. DD produces one tenth of a point more than Eller per 60. Hardly significant. So, for all intents and purposes, in terms of point production, they are equal.

Let’s look at scoring chances next. DD has had 54 scoring chances in the playoffs so far, and Eller has only had 43. However, the Habs have given up 56 scoring chances with DD on the ice, and only 38 when Eller is playing. Taking this a little further, DD has started 75% of his shifts in the offensive zone, whereas Eller’s only started 32% of his shifts there. DD is constantly placed in prime position to produce more scoring chances, and he actually gives up more scoring chances against than he produces. Meanwhile, Eller’s playing significantly more difficult minutes and still managing to out-chance the other team, while DD does not.

Similarly, Eller also beats DD out in shot attempts – though a case can be made that DD is more of a playmaker and prefers to pass. That being the case, let’s look at the on-ice shots for and against for both of them. When Eller is on the ice, his team has achieved 75 shots for and given up 52 shots against. With DD, it’s 63 shots for and 69 shots against. Again, when Eller is on the ice, his team outshoots their opponent, and the same cannot be said for DD. Furthermore, the Habs have produced more shot attempts with Eller on the ice than they have with DD.

I should mention that these stats have been obtained from war-on-ice, in all situations (including power play and penalty kill time). DD generally spends significantly more time on the pp than Eller, and Eller has a role on the pk unit whereas DD does not. Extrapolating from that we can see that DD is always better equipped to produce offensively than Eller (and let’s not even talk about their wingers), yet Eller has produced more chances and has been much more solid defensively as well, all the while playing with less offensively-minded linemates and facing much tougher competition.

All that being said, one could make the argument, well, if Eller is getting more scoring chances, why doesn’t he have more points to show for it? That, however, then requires an entire team comparison, because most of the team has not produced nearly as much as they’ve been expected to. All forwards who beat Eller in scoring chances and on-ice shot attempts either have the same number of points as him (2), or 1 more. That’s it. This includes names like Pacioretty (3), Plekanec (3), Gallagher (2), and even Galchenyuk (2), who has taken a lot of heat so far in the playoffs. If Eller, the player consistently in a shutdown role, needs to produce more offensively, what does that say of our most productive offensive players from this past season?

All this to say, DD missing a game due to the flu did not hurt our offense. Eller’s play so far is not what’s hurting our offense. There is much more to it than that, but that’s for a whole other rant.

Carey Price imagine for anon!

You stretched your legs out before starting your run. You made sure you had your IPhone strapped to your arm and you started the music putting in your headphones. You Stretched your other leg and started walking down to the end of the street that your apartment was on. You started jogging down to middle of the city.
You listened to the music and passing people, you turned down one of the roads and ran into somebody, hitting them extremely hard landing straight on your behind.
“I am so sorry.” You said, taking the white earbuds out of your ear.
“No need to apologize, I was on the wrong side of the walkway” he said. He was in gym shorts and a teeshirt, you couldn’t see his face because the sun was blocking your view. You saw his hand reach down and you grabbed on as he pulled you up..
Instantly you recognized him. Carey price. You just ran into Carey Price. Man your dad is going to love this.
“where are you headed?” He asked and you looked at him.
“To the tim hortons down the street. Would you like to join me?” You asked. And he smiled.
“I am done with my run anyway. I would be happy too.” He asked.
“My treat.” You smiled.
“Not if I get there first.” He smirked and he was off down the street. Wait. Was this actually happening? Racing Carey price to a coffee shop..
You chuckled and jogged behind him. He got there first and opened the door for you.
“Thank you.” You smiled not breaking a sweat.
“I got here first, so my treat.” He smiled.
He pushed you upfront, you ordered and he paid even tho you argued for a few minutes.
Even tho you just met him, it feels like you’ve known him for years.
You sat down at a table and started to get to know each other. He made you laugh and smile and you enjoyed his company. He got asked for a few pictures with fans but you didn’t mind and neither did he.
You guys exchanged numbers and even planned on going on a date tomorrow. You both walked out the door,
“Well. I will see you tomorrow Y/N” he smiles and you nod. You still had a 2 mile run back to your house and you were not looking forward to it.
“For sure Carey. I’ll see you then” you smiled and put your earbuds in. You turned on your music and parted ways.
At least you have a good story of how you two met.

(I feel like my writing Is absolute shit. Horrible. I am the worst writer. I am going to give up.-n)

Dear Habs fans,

Last night was bad, wasn’t it? It may be time to wash the jerseys or change out your lucky caps but it is not time to give up hope. Because the unending belief that your team is the best is what makes you a fan. Remember what colors you bleed and #GoHabsGo!

Love in bleu, blanc, et rouge,

Die Hard Fan.

vine

This is the best thing I’ve seen all night

To people who say race isn't a factor in hockey

At the Habs/Sens game a few minutes ago, Smith-Pelly got knocked over in front of his net. The white boys behind me started cheering and chanting their usual “PK sucks”. I turned and told them it wasn’t PK. Their answer?

“Doesn’t matter, same color.”

Just try to tell me racism isn’t a problem in hockey.