Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Ales Hemsky is an Improving Hockey Player

I never understood the Hemsky "bashing." [for a lack of a better word].

2002-2003 - 0.51PPG
2003-2004 - 0.48PPG
2005-2006 - 0.95PPG
2006-2007 - 0.83PPG
2007-2008 - 0.89PPG

He's shown improvement. Not following a linear curve, but improvement nonetheless. I believe last year's numbers should be looked at in context [final 20 games].

If the arguments are that he doesn't step up in big games - I have a feeling you missed the 2006 Cup run [17 points in 24 games]. He was arguably the Oilers best forward in the SCF.

And this year - for whatever reason, the PP has struggled. It's improved recently, and we should expect that over the long haul, it gets on track and subsequently improves his numbers with the man advantage.

The key things you should take note of are:

a) SOG
2007-2008: 88 shots in 37 games - 2.38 SOG/game
2006-2007: 122 shots in 64 games - 1.91 SOG/game
2005-2006: 178 shots in 81 games - 2.20 SOG/game
2003-2004: 87 shots in 71 games - 1.23 SOG/game

*The final 20 games in 2006-2007 - Again, use the numbers in context.

2007-2008: 11 of his 33 points are on the PP - EV PPG: 0.59
2006-2007: 25 out of 53 point were on the PP - EV PPG: 0.42
2005-2006: 42 out of 77 points were on the PP - EV PPG: 0.43
2003-2004: 11 out of 34 points were on the PP - EV PPG: 0.32

It's no secret how much Pronger improved the Oilers PP. The Oilers simply haven't been able to replace him at the point. Perhaps Souray will help in that department - and perhaps also when Pitkanen learns to take the shot more often instead of constantly having the urge to pass it off.

However, the fact Hemsky's improved significantly at EV is a sign of an improving hockey player. He's only 24 - patience obviously isn't a strong fort in this city.

1 comment:

dstaples said...

Excellent post, PunjabiOil. It's also worth nothing that when you look at errors committed by Oiler forwards -- misplays that lead to goals against -- Hemsky is in that group that commits the fewest. He is strong defensively.
Cheers, David Staples.
P.S. I know all about "errors" now as I have just finished watching every Oilers goal against this year, and figuring out which players have committed the most errors.