Monday, February 28, 2011

Vulgar Statistics Special: Brad Boyes and His $4.0M

After word of the Sabres trade of a 2011 2nd Round pick for St. Louis C/RW Brad Boyes began to spread, so did the tone of comments. Some people are ecstatic, calling him a legitimate upgrade to the top 6, and some people are calling him another Tim Connolly, lazy, and soft. (What is he European or something?) I can't speak towards his play, but I can compare his production to other forwards in his pay class like I did a few weeks ago with the rest of the Sabres.


There you have it. His production is slightly below average playing on a Blues team that can probably best be described as slightly below average. His TOI has dwindled in recent years (going from around 18-19 minutes in 07-09 when he notched 43 and 33 goals to 16-17 minutes from 2010 to present) which can probably be attributed to the massive logjam that St. Louis has at the center position. ( lists 12 centers that have seen icetime, and another 10 wingers that have played center at one time or another.)

At the very least we can say that Blues fans' assertion that Boyes is overpaid are false. Of course there are intangibles like heart, and toughness, and desire that can't be compiled in the chart above and we'll get to see those firsthand in the coming weeks. It could be said that the change of scenery coupled with the move to a better hockey town (sorry St. Louis), and a move closer to home (Boyes was born in Mississauga, Ontario and saw time with the Erie Otters) could elevate Boyes to his previous goal and point totals.

Boyes is coming in with 12 goals and 29 assists in 61 games, not entirely dissimilar from another guy who was traded to the Sabres with 17 goals and 29 assists in 68 games. That player was Daniel Briere and he went on to notch 7 goals and 5 assists in 14 games for the remainder of that season and became an integral part of the Sabres offense. Not saying it will happen, but the comparison is there.

Final Word:

I love the trade, my gut tells me that a second round pick for Boyes is a steal, especially considering that he is a cut above the previous players we've received for a second in terms of quality. I think with some of the players we have in Buffalo, namely shooters like Stafford and Vanek, Boyes could become a nightmare for opponents on one of the top two lines and I love that at 6-0 and around 200 pounds he brings a bit of size to the table. I am extremely excited to see him play this week.

(And his first career hat trick was against Cam Ward. How can you not love that?)

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