Another week in the books, another round of free-floating hostility.
It’s been just about a week since the Hawks signed Brad Richards, and thanks to other commitments and the holiday I haven’t really had time to get in up to the elbow on what the Hawks have taken a flier on here. We’ve got time today. So roll up the sleeves, Hondo.
What they’ve gotten is clearly a player on the decline. Richards had 91 points with Dallas the year the Hawks won the Cup the firs time. He then went to 77, 66, a 60-point pace in the lockout year, and 51 points last year. So none of that is going to be encouraging, especially when he switched to the easier Eastern Conference and continued to put up less points.
Are there some mitigating factors? A few but hardly nothing major. He was bounced around the lineup a lot by John Tortorella, and Torts was allergic to offense. But the introduction of Alain Vigneault didn’t help much either.
That time again, let’s geek out a bit.
This is something we’ve harped on all year, but it’s worth revisiting because it’s so ridiculous. This is Patrick Kane’s CORSI/60. Both his normal linemates at the moment, Jimmy Hayes and Dave Bolland, are below -10. Sharp’s around where Kane is. So even though that line wasn’t good in terms of possession when Sharp was around, it was better than it is now. And yet Kane is in the top five in scoring in the NHL.
How? Well, Kane is shooting 8 points above his career average in shooting percentage, so that helps. But it’s not just goals for Kane, obviously, as he he would be on pace for a career high in assists too. Basically, Kane is getting hits while down 0-2 in the count pretty much every at bat. He doesn’t get a lot of looks in the o-zone as you’d like, and yet he’s making something happen in almost all of them. Kane starts 54% of his shifts in the offensive zone. Only 48% finish there. What if that were higher? Well, Sidney Crosby wouldn’t be running away with the Hart race, I think.