FanPost

How Senators Top 4 Score Goals



Players show tendencies over a full season which may or may not match the public perception. The video " Josh Norris - all 35 goals" popped up in You Tube and I opened it expecting to see a lot of his one timers from the right circle and was surprised that this was not the way he scored most of his goals. This piqued my interest so I reviewed all the goals scored by Ottawa's top four forwards and classified the goals as follows:

Wrist shot - goal scored off a wrist shot from outside the net front area

Back hand - goal scored on a backhand shot from outside the net front area

One Timer - goal scored from outside the net front area by shooting the puck without first stopping it

Net Front - goal scored within 10 feet of the net, primarily a goal of opportunity from a rebound, lose puck or receiving a pass. I separated two sub categories that I think are particular skills:

- Deke - in a one on one situation stick handle the puck around the goalie

- Deflection - intentionally tipping a shot with your stick

So here is how I classified the goals:

Player

Wrist shot

Backhand

One Timer

Net front

Deke

Deflection

Total

Norris

8

0

11

16

0

0

35

Tkachuk

13

0

0

14

0

3

30

Stutzle

11

0

0

8

3

0

22

Batherson

8

2

0

3

2

2

17

My first observation is that the one timer (as I have defined it) occurs almost exclusively on the power play and it is a special skill as for this group of players, only Josh Norris does it. Back hand goals are rare but Batherson had a couple so I needed a a category. Lots of goals are scored from the net front area for a variety of reasons.

While he has the special skill of one timers on the power play and has a wrist shot that can beat goal tenders from distance, Josh Norris scores more of his goals by being an opportunist in the net front area. He is seldom right in the crease but lurks 5-10 feet in front, in good position to pounce on rebounds or to convert passes from outside the net front area.

Brady Tkachuk is known as a net front presence but it he still scores almost half his goals on medium range wrist shots, primarily off the rush and several into empty nets. He does not have as good a wrist shot as the others in this group, but he has the accuracy to hit his spot from 10-20 feet. I remember Brady going to the deke on breakaways in the past but this year he opted to shoot.

Tim Stutzle has an excellent wrist shot and he would score a lot more goals just by shooting more often. He is also excellent on the deke when he gets the chances.

Drake Batherson does not score very many goals based on net front opportunities, possibly because his line mates live in that space. Batherson is a pass first player but he can score any way you want. Probably even on one-timers if given that role.

To complete their top two lines, the Senators need another natural scorer/net front presence like Norris and another primarily pass first player like Batherson (this could be Connor Brown once he gets his wrists back).

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