This time around I want to draw attention to another Leafs player that played under completely different circumstances than the previously mentioned Brad Boyes. Thirty three year old Pierre-Alexandre Parenteau is coming off of a 1 year 1.5 million dollar contract and while Brad Boyes is the definition of a support player P.A. Parenteau is exactly what you want in a top line scorer. While he is starting to get up there in age, he's shown no signs of slowing down. That he's never played a full season, along with a relatively late start to his NHL career, is probably the likely reason why his contract value is so low, he nevertheless showed some measure of utility this past season playing on both wings with a very young team. Via Left Wing Lock his top three most common line combinations are thus
Mike Babcock clearly took advantage of Parenteau's scoring ability by putting him on a soft minutes line alongside fellow veterans Shawn Matthias and Tyler Bozak. When he played the right side, it was mostly with James van Riemsdyk and Tyler Bozak. There wasn't a lot of consistency in who his linemates were and what position that he was playing throughout the season but his versatility is clearly illustrated. So just how good was he in the scoring department this season?
Turns out, pretty good. He drove possession, he drove scoring, he created high danger chances and he outscored the crap out of his team mates. That 12.3% goals for relative to his team is, for lack of a better word, ridiculous. On the flip side, he was also given a lot of the high ground relative to his team. Getting 57.5% of the teams offensive zone starts is the definition of putting a player in a position to succeed, particularly when it comes at the expense of his own team mates, represented by his ZS%Rel of 10.6. At the same time, when we look at Johnny Gaudreau and Sean Monahan, which is the line that I am targeting Parenteau for, we see that they have also been given the high ground relative to their team. Gaudreau clocks in at a ZS%Rel of 9.8 while Monahan comes in slightly lower at 8.3.
If the Flames want another Hudler to play with that line, at half the cost, I think Parenteau is the player for them. Once again, to add some perspective, was this just a good year? Is PA Parenteau likely to repeat this performance?
While he did have a good year scoring wise I would also say that it's a fair statement that he can repeat his Toronto performance. Maybe not to the same degree as this last season but Parenteau has always driven possession, chances, and scoring through out his career. If the Flames want a top line player for a year or two for a reasonable price then Parenteau is their man.
Next up, Teddy Purcell .