Before Saturday’s game between the Ducks and the Caps got underway, NBC Sports Washington ran the graphic above. This is pretty weird, right? It’s not just me?
Talk about getting bang for your buck! $$$$ pic.twitter.com/bR2wA6h0Ky
— NBC Sports Capitals (@NBCSCapitals) December 17, 2017
Titled “bang for the buck,” the graphic shows two groups of players: “the goners,” who played for the Caps last season but have moved on, and “the replacements,” who are mostly new. It shows the sum of the salary cap hits for each group and how many goals each has scored. It turns out the new Caps get paid less and score more.
(This is weird, right?)
Turns out the group of four forwards and two defensemen scores more than the group of three forwards and three defensemen, of which one has missed half the season to injury (Marcus Johansson) and the other is Karl Alzner, who takes one shot per game and scores one goal roughly every thirty games. Whereas, among the replacements, one player, Jakub Vrana, accounts for 10 of those 25 goals.
But that doesn’t really matter. This isn’t weird because it’s an apples-to-oranges comparison. It’s weird because it calls players who the team declined to re-sign or lost to expansion goners.
a person or thing that is doomed or cannot be saved.
Those “goners” include Dan Winnik, who scored 25 points from the fourth line last season and helped Jay Beagle hit career-high scoring numbers; Karl Alzner, who played 591 games for the Caps and holds the team record for consecutive games played; Marcus Johansson, who fought through a concussion and worked under four coaches to prove himself as a vital top-six forward; Justin Williams, who has won three Stanley Cup Championships, which is precisely three more than the entire Capitals franchise has won in seven more years than Williams has been alive; Kevin Shattenkirk, whose overtime goal in Game Three kept the Caps alive in Pittsburgh; and Nate Schmidt, who is my sunshine my only sunshine you make me happy when skies are gray.
Hey, maybe let’s not call those players “goners.” Maybe let’s call them “our pals who moved out of town where they’ll get rewarded for all their hard work and we’ll be happy for them in their continued success.” Or something shorter, I don’t know. I don’t do graphics.
Except for right now.
Right now I do graphics, because in addition to comparing apples to oranges, the graphic also picks cherries.
There. That’s better.
Yeah, the “goners” are doing just fine in racking up points. They don’t score goals, because half of them are defense and one of them is injured, but they are certainly participating in the offense. They participate in a lot of things actually, since they play 18.7 minutes per night compared to the replacements’ 13.0. They also shoot more – 260 shots to 193, albeit with a lower shooting percentage, but honestly, who cares? No one really cares that the “goners” have generated 14.28571428 percent more expected goals per hour than the replacements because that’s pedantic and anyway we’re all just scratching our heads asking why this graphic got a) made, and b) put on television.
Who is this graphic for, anyway? Because it’s weird.
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