Friday, December 9, 2011

Awards Watch: Dec 2011

  1. Claude Giroux--tied for fourth in goals, first in points, plays top competition in all situations. I thought he'd struggle a bit without Carter...nope.
  2. Phil Kessel--first in goals, second in points, and his zone shift is positive despite a start already near 57%, playing power-versus-power. He's taken a big step forward.
  3. Jonathan Toews--does everything against tough competition in all situations, like Giroux. I just think Giroux is more of an impact player on offense.
  4. Niklas Backstrom--Minnesota has ridden to the top of the league on crazy, timely goaltending. While Harding plays a'plenty, Backstrom is their starter.
  5. Nikolai Khabibulin--a .932 on a team that's lottery on the road and home-ice-playoff at home needs some consistency between the pipes, and Khabby provides that, strangely.


It's pretty difficult to differentiate between pair-mates (McDonagh-Girardi, Boychuk-Chara, Leddy-Keith, Hjalmarsson-Seabrook, Bouwmeester-Butler, etc), but I'll try. Also seems like a lot of these guys get serious help from great checking forwards (Callahan, Kopitar/Richards, Datsyuk/Zetterberg, Bergeron, etc), but can't do much about that.
  1.  Ryan McDonagh--he and Girardi are being matched very aggressively to top lines with Marc Staal out, and with hard zone starts, too. Still, he boasts a positive relative plus-minus and a GAON/60 of only 2.12.
  2. Drew Doughty--tough competition and a 14.3 Corsi Rel on a middling possession team, with a zone start at 53% and zone finish of 54.2%. Few defenseman can drive offense...Doughty is one of them.
  3. Nicklas Lidstrom--any way you cut it, tough competition and a 22.73 Corsi per 60 is ridiculous. Only Brent Burns--who plays 2nds, not 1sts--is better among big-minute D (minimum 15 ESTOI/gm).
  4. Zdeno Chara--top competition, 18.2 Corsi Rel despite 45.5% zone start, which he turns into a 51.4% finish.
  5. Erik Karlsson--plays shutdown in Ottawa with a 10.9 Corsi Rel, and leads all D in points. He's a terrific defenseman...and only 21. No relation to John Carlson, by the way.
  1. Tim Thomas: a .941 in 19 games is...Thomas-esque.
  2. Brian Elliott: a .944 in 19 games is...Thomas-esque.
  3. Henrik Lundqvist: the Rangers were a bad team in the early going, and Lundqvist make them look good. His .931 is 6th overall.
  4. Jonathan Quick: see Lundqvist, but the Kings haven't picked up their play yet.
  5. Jimmy Howard: the Wings have been great, just not scoring. Luckily, Howard is keeping pucks out of the net.
  1. Joe Pavelski--first in the league in quality of competition and a 11.7 Corsi Rel.
  2. Anze Kopitar--second in quality of competition, 13.9 Corsi Rel.
  3. Joe Thornton--third on his team in quality of competition, but with a ridiculous 20.1 Corsi Rel.
  4. Jonathan Toews--the man, the myth, the legend-in-the-making does it all.
  5. Tom Pyatt--get this: 29.5% zone start, fifth on his team on quality of competition, and only a -3.9 Corsi. That's really, really good.
  1. Ryan-Nugent Hopkins: leads the scoring race among rookies easily, over a point-per-game. Yeah, he does a lot of it on the PP, and yeah, he'll likely cool off pretty soon, but still pretty impressive for a kid that's really thin.
  2. Adam Larsson: he may not be Tyler Myers, but Larsson is logging huge minutes on a good New Jersey team and putting up great offensive numbers for an 18-year old.
  3. Gabriel Landeskog: once the Avs start scoring, he'll really be on the radar. For now, his 17+ Corsi Rel will have to suffice.
  4. Craig Smith--the Predators' scoring leader.
  5. Adam Henrique--just behind Patrik Elias for the Devils' scoring lead.
  1. Mike Yeo, Minnesota--at least, while the Wild are atop the league. They've ridden hot goaltending to this point, though. Not a good ES team, but hey, whatever works, right?
  2. Kevin Dineen, Florida--again a great possession team. Somehow, making sure Fleischmann isn't a liability and working strong special teams (which really, really hurt the Panthers last season).
  3. Dave Tippett, Phoenix--who's Ilya Bryzgalov?
  4. Ken Hitchcock, St. Louis--I think they would have righted the ship, anyway, but Hitch made the Blues even better. They were already a top-5 Corsi team last season; couple that with above-replacement-level goaltending, and voila.
  5. Mike Babcock, Detroit--these Red Wings are closer to the 07-09 dominant, dominant possession teams than the 09-11 excellent-but-not-outstanding ones. Lidstrom, Datsyuk, and Zetterberg have ridiculous possession numbers.
  1. Phil Kessel, 18
  2. Milan Michalek, 18
  3. Jonathan Toews, 17
  4. Claude Giroux, 16
  5. Steven Stamkos, 16
  1. Claude Giroux, 37
  2. Phil Kessel, 36
  3. Joffrey Lupul, 33
  4. Daniel Sedin, 33
  5. Jonathan Toews, 32

No comments:

Post a Comment