As I wrote in a previous report, a huge void in my coverage of the Canadiens last season resulted from the timing of my writing. I began compiling stats after Andrei Markov and Josh Gorges were injured. This meant that I had no tangible way of expressing just how important these two players are to this team.
Gorges grade and ratings through the games I've scouted have been better than I expected. In fact, Gorges average grade and risk/reward rating were the best of any Canadiens player. Gorges plays a clean, low-maintenance game. He wins puck battles, blocks shots and works hard to get the puck out of danger.
In an attempt to quantify the loss of Gorges over the final 48 games of last season, we can use the teams record with and without the 27-year-old defenseman. With Gorges the Habs record was 20-12-2; for a winning percentage of .588. Without him their record was 24-18-6; for a winning percentage of .500.
That said, teams are classified by the amount of points they accrue over the course of the season. With that in mind, I feel a more reflective way of quantifying Gorges loss is to look how many points-per-game the Canadiens earned with, and without number 26 in the lineup.
Montreal average 1.23 points-per-game with Gorges in the lineup. Averaging these numbers out over the course of the season we see that the Habs would have potentially earned 101 points had Gorges remained healthy; an increase of 9 points.
Consequently the Habs averaged 1.12 points-per-game without Gorges in the lineup. Averaging these number out we see that the Habs would have potentially earned only 92 points without Gorges. Obviously these numbers are only worth the paper they are printed on, but remain an interesting exercise none-the-less.
The following scouting report is from the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 loss to the Florida Panthers on October 30th, 2010.
Gorges overall grade was 1 percentage-points below his overall average, but 9 percentage-points above the Habs regular season average. Gorges grade was helped by his 2 shots on goal, but hurt by a minus-1 rating.
Overall Risk/Reward Rating
Gorges overall risk/reward rating was above his average, and double that of the Montreal Canadiens. His best work was in the defensive and neutral-zones. He showed solid puck-management skills, while winning the majority of puck-battles.
|EVENTS/ MIN||3.66||EVENTS/ MIN|
Offensive-zone Risk/Reward Rating
Gorges saw limited powerplay time, which lowered his o-zone risk/reward rating. He won 50% of his offensive-zone puck-battles; most of which occurred during attempts to pinch-in at the offensive blueline. He completed 67% of his o-zone pass-attempts, while having 50% of his attempted shots from the blueline blocked by the opposition.
|EVENTS/ MIN||0.93||EVENTS/ MIN|
Defensive-zone Risk/Reward Rating
Obviously, this is where Gorges earns his money. He won 67% of his defensive-zone puck-battles, while completing 85% of his defensive-zone pass-attempts. He also blocked 2 shots, and 1 pass. He did a great job finding the open man coming out of the d-zone. One of Gorges greatest strengths is his ability to stay on the defensive-side of the puck; he rarely gets pulled out of position.
|EVENTS/ MIN||1.92||EVENTS/ MIN|
Neutral-zone Risk/Reward Rating
Gorges had an above-average neutral-zone risk/reward rating. He was successful with 4 of his 6 pass-attempts, and won the only neutral-zone puck-battle he engaged in. Gorges made solid puck decisions, as he was successful with 4 of his 5 attempts to dump the puck deep into the offensive-zone.
|EV/ MIN||0.81||EVENTS/ MIN|
Raw data from a 3-2 loss to the Florida Panthers on October 30th, 2010.
|SKI +||SKI +|
|PK DUMP+||1||PK DUMP+|
|PK DUMP-||PK DUMP-|
|PS THRU||1||PS THRU|
|OZ PS BL||1||OZ PS BL|
|POINTS X2||POINTS X2|