NHL.com is providing in-depth analysis for each of its 31 teams throughout August. Today, three key statistics for the New York Islanders.
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1. More scoring needed from Tavares
New York Islanders center John Tavares has the lowest scoring rate at even strength and on the power play of the five forwards selected with the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft from 2004-09.
Tavares, who turns 27 on Sept. 20, averaged 2.20 points per 60 minutes at even strength the first eight seasons of his NHL career. Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby leads the group (3.16), followed by Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals (2.58), Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks (2.48) and Steven Stamkos of the Tampa Bay Lightning (2.46).
Tavares, who was selected No. 1 by the Islanders at the 2009 NHL Draft, has averaged 5.41 points per 60 minutes on the power play in his NHL career, trailing Crosby (6.16), Kane (5.99), Ovechkin (5.47) and Stamkos (5.47).
Video: DAL@NYI: Tavares buries his second while shorthanded
2. Defenseman on the rise
The Islanders traded defenseman Travis Hamonic to the Calgary Flames on June 24. The presence of Calvin de Haan may have given general manager Garth Snow the confidence to part with such a talented defenseman.
One of the most underrated do-it-all players in the NHL, de Haan can take on top opponents in the offensive and defensive zone, kill penalties, drive possession, hit, and chip in on offense (five goals, 20 assists in 82 games last season).
The 26-year-old also is among the best at blocking shots. In the past three seasons, de Haan blocked 13.36 percent (395 of 2,956) of opponents' shot attempts at 5-on-5, third in the NHL behind Kris Russell (15.91 percent) and Nate Prosser (14.26 percent).
Video: 31 in 31: New York Islanders 2017-18 season preview
3. Effective from up close
Goalie Thomas Greiss had a .917 save percentage the past three seasons, which ranked 26th among the 64 goalies who faced at least 1,000 shots. This creates the impression that Greiss is an average goalie, but overall save percentage treats all shots equally, not taking location into account.
When considering only shots taken from up close, within the home plate area, Greiss ranked second in the NHL with an .869 save percentage, behind Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lightning (.877), based on shot-location data contained in NHL play-by-play files.
(Note: The home plate area runs from the goal posts to the faceoff dots, then up to the top of the faceoff circles and across.)
Video: NSH@NYI: Greiss absorbs Arvidsson's wrist shot