The end of the Philadelphia Flyers season brought up a lot of questions regarding their future. So far at Broad Street Buzz we’ve looked at what the future holds for Michael Raffl , the question of bringing back Kimmo Timonen, and looked back on the development of third year forward Brayden Schenn.
But today I wanted to take a look at the third oldest forward on the Flyers, the Original Ginger, Scott Hartnell. The 32-year-old Scott Hartnell will be entering his 8th season with the Philadelphia Flyers next season. He is the 2nd highest paid forward behind Claude Giroux at a cap hit of $4.75 million. His current contract will have him in an orange and black uniform until 2018/2019 barring any kind of release or trade.
Now that I outlined just how long Scott Hartnell with be Flyer I went ahead and tracked his contributions over his last five full seasons. Below you will find a graph illustrating those contributions along with a data chart showing the raw data I collected.
EV Total Pts
Of the five years of data I collected you can see that Hartnell posted his best CF% this year at age 32. Scott Hartnell showed this year that he still can be a positive influence offensively even if he isn’t putting the puck into the back of the net with quite the same frequency that we are used to. It doesn’t hurt either that he’s playing on a line that includes Jake Voracek and Claude Giroux. Both excellent possession players in their own right.
However, the concern for me is that he posted his 2nd lowest point total of these 5 years. While his 7.9 Sh% can be attributed to some of that decrease in production could this be the edge of the statistical cliff for Hartnell? The likely answer is yes and here’s why.
Eric T. over at Broad Street Hockey outlines it pretty well in the comments when Hartnell signed his current extension. Expecting a player to produce well into their 30’s is a very unlikely scenario. Unless you happen to be Jaromir Jagr, who I’m still convinced is a Highlander, then you’re going to see a significant decrease in production.
Age takes away your skates and the ability to create your own shot. Hartnell, like any veteran, will need to rely much more on his hockey IQ in addition to better offensive and defensive positioning.
Anything resulting in a 40-50 point year for Hartnell should be considered a good year. And don’t be surprised if Hartnell starts seeing more minutes on the 2nd line in the upcoming season if the Philadelphia Flyers land a sniper to compliment the Giroux and Voracek pairing.
And before I go, I asked some people to tweet at me their thoughts on Hartnell. Here are those thoughts.
— Kyle (@NHLFlyersHockey) May 21, 2014
— Bob Savino Jr (@bsjr5726) May 21, 2014
He does have a great beard.
Stats provided by Stats.HockeyAnalysis.com
Cap Information provided by Capgeek.
Graphs made with Google Docs.