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Upshall vs. Carcillo by the numbers

Friday, March 20, 2009

In his Breakaways portion of yesterday’s Red Wings-Flyers wrap up, Sam Carchidi pointed out that both Scottie Upshall and Daniel Carcillo have contributed 3 points to their respective teams since the trade deadline and are equal in plus/minus. Sounds like an okay deal for the Flyers, right? Swapping players, taking less salary back, and getting the same amount of production?

Carchidi’s thought missed two additional key statistical factors to consider when weighing the trade value of role players – time-on-ice and time in the box.

In Phoenix, Upshall is playing top six forward minutes, typically playing 17-18 minutes and seeing time on the power play. Three points in seven games is adequate, especially on a struggling team like the Coyotes.

Carcillo, on the other hand, managed to put up his three points as a third-liner with only 10 mintues a night and no special teams time. True, it might just be a reflection of the Flyers’ depth at forward. But it’s good sign that Carcillo is finding ways to adapt his game into Stevens’ system. That trade looking any better now, Flyers fans?

It shouldn’t. What the most penalized team in the NHL this season needed least at the trade deadline was another player who would take costly penalties at crucial moments in the game. And unfortunately, that’s just what they got.

Upshall has only two penalties during his time as a Coyote, one of which was taken late in the third period of Buffalo’s 5-1 rout of visiting Phoenix. I wouldn’t call that particularly harmful in the grand scheme of things.

In addition to his three assists in the Orange and Black, Carcillo has racked up an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty, three roughing minors, a fighting major, and a game misconduct. One of those roughing minors was taken Tuesday night in Detroit; his actions cost the Flyers a rare power play opportunity against one of the least penalized teams in the league.

If we only learned one thing from last year’s playoff series between Philadelphia and Washington, it was that maturity makes a difference in the critical moments of the battle for the Stanley Cup. The Flyers had enough veterans who understood the necessary sacrifices and self-discipline. That alone sustained them against a red-hot Capitals squad with youthful exuberance and a hell of a lot of talent.

Carcillo would do well to take note. Preferably before we hit April.

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. John permalink
    Friday, March 20, 2009 8:59 am

    Somebody please tell me that that 8-1 scoreline was just a bad dream.. Anyway, good point about Carcillo. The last thing any team really needs is to bring in a penalty-prone player. Add in the fact that Philly has the second most penalties/penalty minutes and it could turn into a pretty significant problem. But hey, at least you guys are in great Playoff position. My Avs have now dropped to 28th in the standings.

    • Friday, March 20, 2009 10:17 am

      Ouch – just read the Edmonton-Avs wrap up from last night. Not pretty for your guys.

      Having been there a few years ago, I know there’s nothing to be said that can fix it. And regardless of what Tank Nation alleges, looking forward to the draft is nowhere near as satisfying as the playoffs.

  2. Friday, March 20, 2009 9:59 am

    Well, at least Leafs fans will be envious of you, given your shot at the number one choice in the draft. Perhaps a little action from a Tavares or Hedman would spice things up in Colorado.

    And the Flyers are in danger of falling out of their great playoff position or bombing in the first round if they don’t get their act together. Pittsburgh’s crept up on us, and the rest of the pack isn’t far behind. And we’ll have to play Jersey again before the end of the season, facing he-who-shall-remain-nameless. (Given the NHL’s decision to celebrate him to the nth degree, I have chosen to no longer mention him by name in protest.)

  3. John permalink
    Friday, March 20, 2009 1:02 pm

    You mean that sucker Brodeur who has spent his career behind a ridiculously good defense? In my mind, Roy is still better than Brodeur, and not just because he helped us win the Cup.. The reason? The 2001 Finals! I guess Brodeur wasn’t better after all, huh? ;-)

    Ah, those were the days. Days before Tony Granato and the nightmare that is our goaltending situation. That squad would have never lost to the freaking Oilers 8-1 on our home ice. I have to agree about ‘looking forward’ to the Draft. Sure, it’s nice to get a high pick, but that normally means your season sucked. Every time I look at the standings, we’ve dropped again. And the Lightning are right behind us, even though they’re on a two-game skid. {Of course, I don’t really know much about the prospects, making it even less interesting to contemplate a high pick}.

    Hmm, I hadn’t realized that Philly was that close to the pack now. Luckily for you guys, you have a few games in hand to get things going in the right direction again. And let me just repeat once again that Brodeur sucks!

  4. Saturday, March 21, 2009 5:46 pm

    Are you surprised that Roy’s been so, shall we say, well-mannered about Brodeur breaking the record?

  5. John permalink
    Saturday, March 21, 2009 8:24 pm

    Truthfully? Yeah, kind of. Patrick doesn’t really seem the type to willingly acknowledge this fact and act happy for Brodeur. Maybe Gary Bettman ordered him to keep his mouth shut so that the NHL could make it into an excessive celebration and not have Roy’s comments making it into anything else..

  6. Wednesday, November 4, 2009 9:30 am

    Todays fresh passes. 4/11-09, Barely Legal Pass! Link/Download (http://sharembit.com/386/bar-legal.zip.html)

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