Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Predictions and "Grade-ictions" Series

Scott Hartnell
2009/2010 Regular season stats: 14G 30A -6
2010 Playoff stats: 8G 9A +4
Grade: C-

If Hartnell didn't have the playoffs that he had, his grade would have been a D at best.  The 2010 season was a huge drop off not only in points and plus/minus for Hartnell, but in quality penalty minutes as well. During the 2008/2009 season, Hartnell had 30 goals and 30 assists and was a +14. In 09/10, he was second in the league in minor penalties with 54, compared to 08/09 when he was first in the league with...54. Yea, he had the exact same amount of minor penalties in back to back years. But the thing this past season with Hartnell was that since he netted only 14 goals compared to last years' 30, the team (and the fans) were less reluctant to overlook each hook, trip, or hold. It seemed as if No. 19 was hurting the team this year more than he was helping. He not only took a lot of minor penalties, but he took them at the most inopportune times and usually for no reason at all.

But much of that changed in the postseason; Hartnell was a completely different player. He was scoring big goals when the team needed them and not going in and out of the penalty box every ten minutes. He had very good chemistry with his playoff linemates--Danny Briere and Ville Leino. We can only assume that same trio will be the Flyers' second line in 2010/11, and I expect a nice rebound year for Scotty starting in October.

2010/2011 Predictions: 24G 31A +8

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