Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Who were the CBJ's last-minute scorers?

By request, I looked into a special type of scorer for the Columbus Blue Jackets - the end of the period, last-minute scorers.  By this, I filtered out the players who scored in the final minute of any period in a Blue Jackets game last season.  As my anonymous commenter suggested, there is a reason to look at these numbers:
How about a +/- relating to goals scored in the final 60 seconds of a period? That could show us who should be out on the ice in that final shift.
"Hey Antoine, how about you drop one in right at the end of the period?"
"Sure thing, Rusty!"  (Photo by Beauty Playin' Eh)
Yes, it could.  That goal in the final minute of the period can have a positive effect on team morale going into the locker room.  So let's look into the numbers and see who came up big as a last-minute scorer for the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2009-2010:
  • Antoine Vermette - 6 goals
  • R.J. Umberger - 4 goals
  • Rick Nash & Jake Voracek - 3 goals each
  • Raffi Torres - 2 goals
  • Jared Boll, Derick Brassard, Jason Chimera, Mike Commodore, Kristian Huselius, Andrew Murray & Anton Stralman - 1 goal each
Vermette, Umberger and Nash (sounds like a law firm) come out on top again.  This trio seems like the gutsy core of our team.  At the same time, don't overlook Jake Voracek...his scoring can't be overlooked and will probably be even more important now that Raffi Torres is gone.

Perhaps the most intriguing revelation of this query, however, was the number of empty net goals that the Jackets scored.  Empty netters count just like any other goals, but they also could represent the closeout to a game that was already won.  Thus, it's worth taking the empty netters out and seeing who's scoring against a goalie in what presuably would be a tighter game:
  • Antoine Vermette - 3 goals
  • Rick Nash, Jake Voracek, Raffi Torres & R.J. Umberger - 2 goals each
  • Jared Boll, Derick Brassard, Jason Chimera, Mike Commodore, Kristian Huselius & Andrew Murray - 1 goal each
But let's not discount the empty netter altogether.  If we did, we'd lose sight of gorgeous displays of talent like this one from R.J. Umberger at 18:52 of the 3rd period against the loathesome Dallas Stars (didn't qualify for this list because it wasn't in the 19th minute, but it's a sweet goal nonetheless):

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