Giroux has a Serious Argument for Hart
Leaving the Wells Fargo Center Saturday afternoon after yet another impressive Flyers win, this one over the St. Louis Blue 4-1. I thought one simple thing, Claude Giroux has a serious shot at winning the Hart Memorial Trophy this year.
Giroux added 2 assists to his stats this season against the Blues, hitting the 50 assist mark this season and 74 points overall. He also added 8, uncharacteristic, penalty minutes on the day. However, the penalties are nether here nor there in this argument for Hart. The 26-year old center, is the most valuable player on the Philadelphia Flyers. Which by definition of the Hart Memorial Trophy qualifies a player for the award.
74 points by Giroux has him tied for third in the league in point total with Phil Kessel. Sidney Crosby is the league leader with 94. A lot of writers seem to look at point totals as the biggest factor in achieving the Hart Trophy. I don’t look at it like that. Yes points are a big factor in it but something else is just as important, if not more important.
Where would that player’s team be if he wasn’t on the team?
Can you imagine a Flyers team playing this well without the contributions of Claude Giroux? Simple answer…
We saw for nearly a full season 2 years ago and then some a Pittsburgh Penguins team without Crosby and they were still a top team in the league. I have even said (before I joined the Wooder Cooler) that Malkin has bigger value than Crosby for that team.
Scott Hartnell, Wayne Simmonds, Jake Voracek, and the rest of the Flyers feed off Giroux’s production and leadership. That is the difference when comparing Giroux and Crosby. If Crosby was forced to retire a few years back due to his concussion issues, the Penguins probably would of been just fine. The Flyers would not be in that scenario.
Since December 11 of this season, Giroux leads the league in points and the Flyers have one of the best records in the league since then as well. See the correlation? Yeah that is called value of a player. Giroux playing well= a competitive Flyers team.
Imagine where the Flyers and Giroux would be if they and him didn’t have that extremely slow start. They might be in the hunt for the top seed out of the Metro division.
Now I’ve discussed Crosby being a value to his team and I almost forgot about the other probable Hart finalist, Alex Ovechkin. Ovechkin leads the league in goals at 46, a very impressive stat for the Washington Capital. Corey Perry, of Anaheim, is in 2nd for league goals and he’s at 36.
But other than Ovechkin’s 46 goals, is there really anything else that is more impressive than Giroux? Ovechkin has 23 assist, Giroux has 50. Ovechkin is a -31! How can you be in the discussion for Hart if you can’t play both ends of the ice. -31 isn’t bad, it’s abysmal for a player like Ovechkin. Giroux is a +7 by the way.
The Hart Trophy is awarded to the player that is most valuable to his team’s performance in a season. Claude Giroux has 74 points on the year, most coming from assists (50), and continues to carry the Flyers after a very slow start.
That is a pretty high value if you ask me.
Posted on March 22, 2014, in Billy Kornfeld, Flyers, Posts and tagged Alex Ovechkin, claude giroux, Hart Memorial Trophy, NHL, philadelphia flyers, Sidney Crosby. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.