Colorado Avalanche's toes as dark horse Norris Trophy candidate - Sports1
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Colorado Avalanche’s toes as dark horse Norris Trophy candidate

among Crowded 2021-22 Norris Trophy Field, a dark horse candidate unexpectedly submitted his portfolio to be crowned the NHL’s best defensive player.the dramatic entrance belongs to Deventus, This Colorado AvalancheAnother dazzling blue-line star of . Despite missing 11 games this season, he has gradually climbed the scoring charts, and his return coincides with the Avalanche’s return to last year’s Presidents Trophy championship form. While he’s not like a traditional lead candidate, Toews’ apparent two-way impact is enough to get him some consideration in the Norris discussion. Let’s dig deeper.

Toews builds offense at a career-best pace

I guess the onus is on me to explain how I think Toews, who isn’t even the best defender on his team, is a worthy nominee for the Norris Trophy. Let’s start with his expanding offensive impact, shall we? Believe it or not, the 27-year-old blueliner’s 31 points (9 goals, 22 assists) in his inaugural season with the Avalanche last year represented a career high, but the Toews are on track to surpass that total Moving forward in 2021-22.

Through 21 games, the former new york islanders The defender has amassed seven goals and 17 assists for 24 points, which is a 94-point pace in the entire 82 games. Although Toews is expected to cool off as the season goes on, his 1.14 points per game (P/G) leads all defenders (played in at least 10 games). His 5v5 per 60 minutes (P/60) and assist percentage (A/60) are both in the top seven at the position (minimum 200 minutes). All things considered (and not recommended given the vastly different usage of special teams), Toews jumped to second place in P/60, behind only Carolina Hurricanes offense specialists, Tony DeAngelo.

Devon Toews, Colorado Avalanche (Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images)

when considering Kyle Macal With a productivity of 1.11 P/G in second place, it’s clear that Avalanche has plenty of awkwardness on the back end. In retrospect, acquiring the Toews should have cost more than a pair of second-round picks, and Lou Lamoriello’s decision to part ways with the underrated Toews rather than a higher-cost, less productive player to ease the Islanders’ salary cap crunch proved to be It’s getting short-sighted day by day.One might question the idea of ​​Toews being so successful on Long Island, but Colorado-based analysts The History of Mining Unappreciated Gems at a discounted price.

Toyce’s growing offensive skills this season were most evident in Colorado’s comeback victory. Toronto Maple Leafs Last Saturday night. Toyce’s confident move when he scored the extra-time winner ended a fascinating back-and-forth between the two. NHL’s Biggest Fire Truck Hockey Supporter, adding to his unexpected scoring burst at the start of the new season.

Toyce’s impressive scoring ability is an underrated ability to find teammates in the danger zone and try to get them in threatening shooting positions. With the exception of Quin Hughes (10.9) and Samuel Gillard (10.6), no other guard completes major field goal assists per 60 minutes (the last completed pass before the shot), according to Tus Beato Iss this season (10.2) more. Data collected by Corey Sznajder. As a full offensive unit, he may not overshadow Makar, but he’s not slack either. While Makar’s offensive impact is nearly unmatched in the current NHL environment, Toews sets himself apart on the defensive end.

Toews, not Makar, is Colorado’s defensive compass

When allowing Makar to attack, Toews played the defensive awareness that was crucial for Avalanche. Toews has played nearly a minute more than Makar this season, especially in penalty shooting, and Toews is averaging two minutes more than his younger opponents.The focus is clearly on Take advantage of Makar’s massive offensive talent Creating scoring chances is fine, but the result is that Toews has to juggle more difficult and more varied uses.

Toews is a master of his blue line defense, allowing fewer than 2.5 attempts per hour, a rate well above average among qualified blue line players. Makar beats him here, though, but it’s no small thing for Toyce, who doesn’t have the same physical talent and has to rely more on his spatial awareness and sharp defensive instincts to break through Neutral zone games.

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In terms of the 5v5 on-ice metric, Toews outscored Makar, further affirming his strong two-way ability, despite the pair’s shooting and chance-inhibition rates ranking first in the league. Additionally, Toews played slightly more minutes against the opposing team’s three most-used forwards, while Makar was slightly behind in that usage. That’s a slim profit, but it shows that despite Toews’ reputation, he’s not swayed by top-tier competition.

Among defensive players with at least 200 minutes of 5-on-5 play, Toews ranks third in unblocked goals allowed (FA/60), fourth in scoring chances allowed (SCA/60), and ranks fourth in goals allowed per hour 7th in expected goals (xGA/60). Avalanche also controlled 58.5 percent of shot attempts (third time) and 61.1 percent of high-crisis attempts (HDCF%), with Toews on the ice, outscoring opponents 26-11 in actual goals.Additionally, Toews’ average 5v5 ice time at 18:52 is Tied for 15th among qualified defenders, meaning he did not put these results behind a substantial reduction in workload.

Deventus Colorado Avalanche
Colorado Avalanche Devon ToewsAmy Owen /hockey writer)

These results are encouraging, but are they just a byproduct of playing alongside the rest of Colorado’s stars? Upon further investigation, this does not appear to be the case. In the 235 5v5 minutes Toews and Makar played together, they accounted for 57.2% of SCF and 53.1% of HDCF. Looking at a slightly smaller sample (160 minutes) where Toews is separated from Makar, he has 62.3% and 74% on these same metrics. Makar observes that his own shot and chance share is different than Toews, but not as important as his most common defensive partner. The duo complements each other perfectly, incorporating some of the earliest blue-line talent the league has to offer.Still, Toews is a formidable force in its own right, even if Public perception has not caught up.

It is worth mentioning that the Toews did not have any Makar or Colorado’s first team in a very limited 93 5-on-5 minutes, aggregating 65.1% scoring chances, 84% high crises and 8-2 actual scoring chances . Target.Whatever the reasoning behind those who doubt Toyce’s Norris credentials is unfounded, as he not only has his own superstars without avalanches. Is this enough to get a minority of voters to support him?

Can Toews maintain his performance in Norris?

That’s it, the reasons for Toews being considered in the final Norris Trophy vote have been laid bare, even though the second half of the season represents a real test of merit for the Avalanche defenders. Is his unexpected offensive performance a mirage, or has he added an exciting new dimension to his already stuffed toolbox? Regardless, his off-ice performance away from Colorado’s major stars and the team’s regular-season performance will be the talk of the year at the end of the year awards ceremony. Whatever the outcome, Toews’ influence cannot be denied any more – he’s not just the lucky beneficiary of Makar’s remarkable achievements, it’s time for him to get the recognition he deserves.

data by all three regions, Evolving Hockey, money parker, and Natural Statistics Skills.


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Marko is an aspiring sports writer with a passion for creating stories that combine visual testing and (shuddering) analysis, complemented by an academic background in criminology and political science.

When not covering the Colorado Avalanche and the Pittsburgh Penguins hockey writer, also sees him devoting countless hours to various sports video game franchises, indulging in science fiction, and running long distances in his community.

Marko can be reached via his personal blog Unexpected Target.ca, you can pass follow him on twitter and other social media seen under the article like this.


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