|Written by Tim Lucarelli|
|Wednesday, 17 August 2011 22:19|
With each passing day of the NHL offseason, fantasy owners look further and further into statistics, hoping desperately to find the “steal” of the draft. Almost every guide or magazine on the market will provide their reasons why each player will score X amount of points. But even in most “points-only” leagues, power-play-points is still a prevalent scoring category. Remember that if a player scores a point on the power-play, you’re typically collecting points in two scoring categories instead of one. This article will look into some of the clutch performers from last season and whether or not they have the opportunity to replicate that success.
Let’s start with an example. On draft day, who would you choose first, Nathan Horton or Drew Stafford? Without looking at statistics, I’d probably choose Horton. I realize that Horton played 80 games and Stafford only played 62 which could already sway your vote, but let’s look at the fact that both scored right around the same number of points. Surprisingly, Horton scored only 15% of his points on the power-play, as Stafford scored 37% of his on the man advantage. Assuming Stafford scored the same number of points in 80 games played, the power-play advantage would be a huge bonus for those who drafted Stafford.
On the flip side, here are the players in the Eastern Conference who scored at least 40 points but had the lowest percentage of their total points come while on the man advantage. This was rather alarming to me, noticing players like Marchand, Grabner, Wheeler, Horton, Cole, Voracek, and Kane, all scoring less than 10 points on the man advantage, while still having relatively successful seasons.
Sergei Gonchar – As mentioned previously, Gonchar scored 74% of his points on the PP last year. The year before, he scored 60% of his points on the PP. Ottawa should have a better season this year and Gonchar’s production should naturally rise.
Martin St. Louis – Sidney Crosby missed 41 games last season but was on pace to score 38 PPP. The only person who would have beaten him was St. Louis, who scored 41 points on the man advantage. Marty will have ample opportunities to repeat the success again. Note: 37 of St. Louis’ 41 PPP were assists.
Steven Stamkos – Someone has to bury all those feeds from St. Louis and Stamkos’ 17 power-play goals were tops in the East. The next closest person to him was teammate Vincent Lecavalier with 12. His 36 man-advantage points were also second in the East, but would have been third behind a healthy Crosby.
Derek Roy – Although Roy was only able to dress for 35 games last season due to injury, he scored 40% of his points on the power-play. That prorates to just under 33 points on the year, which would have placed his name right next to Brad Richards’.
Kris Letang – Even with Sidney Crosby out for half of the season, Letang still scored 24 of his 50 points on the power-play, putting him in a tie for 10th overall in Eastern power-play points. With Paul Martin being his only real competition, Letang should remain the #1 PP option on defense in Pittsburgh. If Crosby ends up playing 60 or more games, Letang should see a residual increase in PPP.
Drew Stafford – Stafford’s 52 points in 62 games still haven’t elevated him to elite status with most fantasy owners, but that’s a 69-point pace that shouldn’t go unnoticed. His aforementioned PPP percentage (37%) would have given him 25 PPP on the year, good enough for 14th overall in the East.
Nik Antropov – Antropov had his worst season since 2007, but despite scoring only 41 points, 39% of his points came on the power-play. If Antropov improves his point total by only 10 points (a very realistic possibility), he should be looking at 20 power-play points. There aren’t many people in Winnipeg to challenge for ice time, so expect Nik to have plenty of opportunities to bounce back.
Please let me know thoughts below and I’ll be happy to reply.
Ryan Lenethen said:
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|Last Updated on Thursday, 18 August 2011 12:43|