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Behind The Numbers

Edge Duchene delivers could be boon for Senators

Center has better discipline, face-off statistics than Turris

by Rob Vollman / NHL.com Correspondent

The statistical differences between forwards Matt Duchene and Kyle Turris are not dramatic, but they could become telling.

The differences that favor of Duchene could pay dividends for the Ottawa Senators, who acquired him as part of a three-way trade with the Colorado Avalanche and Nashville Predators on Sunday. Turris went to the Predators as part of the trade.

Colorado received three players and three draft picks from those two teams.

The similarities between Duchene, 26, and Turris, 28, are obvious. Each is a scoring-line center with similar deployment, scoring totals and shot-based metrics during the past five seasons.

The differences are subtle. Duchene shows greater discipline and success in the face-off circle.

 

[RELATED: Turris latest bold move by Predators GM | Fantasy impact]

 

For Ottawa, which began the week second in the Atlantic Division with 17 points, seven behind the first-place Tampa Bay Lightning, and reached Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final last season against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the eventual Stanley Cup champion, Duchene could provide the edge needed.

There are three areas where Duchene may have a noticeable advantage against Turris: discipline, face-offs, and boosting impact on the scoring rate of his linemates.

In the past, Duchene has helped his linemates to particularly strong seasons. Milan Hejduk, PA Parenteau, Ryan O'Reilly, Jarome Iginla, each a different type of player at a different stage of his NHL career, excelled while playing on Duchene's line. In 2017-18, Duchene's most frequent linemates at 5-on-5, according to NaturalStatTrick.com, were Nail Yakupov (seven), Sven Andrighetto (10) and Alexander Kerfoot (nine); ach has at least seven points through 13 games.

Duchene's speed and discipline also have created additional power-play opportunities for the Avalanche throughout his NHL career.

Video: COL@PHI: Duchene nets slick power-play goal

Among those to have drawn at least 1.0 minor penalties per 60 minutes in his career, only three active forwards with at least 100 games played have taken fewer minor penalties of their own than Duchene's 0.35: Johnny Gaudreau of the Calgary Flames at 0.25 and Chris Tierney of the San Jose Sharks at 0.33. Turris has averaged 0.71 minor penalties per 60 minutes while drawing 0.83.

Since 2015-16, Duchene leads the NHL with a face-off winning percentage of 60.3 (minimum 100 faceoffs); Turris is No. 55 at 52.8 percent.

In most other areas it is difficult to separate Duchene and Turris, so there is little doubt that the Predators are receiving a top-end center as well.

Duchene has 428 points (178 goals, 250 assists) in 586 NHL games, which is No. 34 among forwards since 2009-10. His points-per-game percentage is 0.73

Turris, who played four seasons with the Arizona Coyotes, began with more modest scoring totals. In his first five seasons (2007-13) he had 104 points (43 goals, 61 assists) in 234 games (0.44 points per game) with the Coyotes and Senators.

In five seasons since then, he has 216 points (93 goals, 123 assists) in 310 games (0.70 points per game).

Duchene and Turris rely on shooting accuracy rather than high shot volume to generate points off their shot. Duchene is one of four players to score on at least 10.0 percent of his shots in each of the past eight seasons (minimum 130 shots per season); James Neal of the Vegas Golden Knights, John Tavares of the New York Islanders, and Jonathan Toews of the Chicago Blackhawks are the others. Turris has scored on at least 10 percent of his shots in each of the previous five seasons, and is at 11.5 this season.

Since 2011-12, Duchene has averaged 2:34 of ice time per game on the power play, while Turris has averaged 2:43.

At 5-on-5 during that same time frame, each has been used to center one of his team's top two lines. Duchene has averaged 15:14 of ice time per game, with a balanced offensive zone-start percentage of 50.67. In terms of shot-based metrics, the Avalanche's share of all shot attempts improved to 47.73 percent from 46.33 when Duchene was on the ice, for a Relative SAT of plus-1.4 percent. The numbers for Turris are much the same. He averaged 15:24 of ice time per game at 5-on-5, with an offensive zone-start percentage of 52.21 and a relative SAT of plus-0.6.

The similarities extend to other areas, such as the shootout and salaries. Duchene has scored on 36.7 percent (18 of 49) of his NHL shootout attempts. Turris is at 37.3 percent (22 of 59). Duchene has an annual salary cap charge of $6 million through 2018-19, according to CapFriendly.com. That's the same salary cap charge for the six-year contract Turris signed with the Predators on Sunday.

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