Winning the Stanley Cup is definitely a team effort, but there’s no question that individual player performances also affect the outcome of the playoffs. Some players raise their games in the postseason while others struggle and others play at the same level during the regular campaign and the playoffs.
The list below consists of the 20 most shocking player statistics from the 2016 NHL Playoffs. Some of them are surprising while others may not be at all to some fans. The list includes rookies and veterans from all positions on the ice. For interest sake, we’ve generally included the players regular-season statistics as well to see how he played in the postseason compared to the regular 2015-16 campaign.
Those who struggled were surprising because they performed well in the first 82 contests of the year and are also regarded as respected and fine career players. Perhaps one of the biggest shocks were well-known star players who failed to score a goal in this year’s postseason. These include Corey Perry, Jaromir Jagr, Jonathan Toews, Claude Giroux, Eric Staal, Jakob Silfverberg, Pavel Datsyuk, Drew Doughty, Milan Lucic, Ryan Suter, Tomas Tatar, Wayne Simmonds, Brayden Schenn, Mike Ribeiro, Tyler Toffoli, Marian Gaborik and Mike Richards.
Anyway, the 2015-16 playoffs have just concluded with the Pittsburgh Penguins winning the Stanley Cup in six games over San Jose for their fourth title. Sidney Crosby was perhaps a controversial choice for the Conn Smythe, but overall the postseason was memorable and enjoyable.
20 20. David Backes’ Clutch Goals
19 19. Paul Stastny Goes 58.5% on Faceoffs
18 18. Filip Forsberg Posts a -11 rating
17 17. Phil Kessel Leads Penguins with 22 Points
16 16. Reilly Smith Scores 1.33 Points Per Game
15 15. Joe Pavelski Scores 14 Playoff Goals
14 14. Corey Perry, Jonathan Toews, and Jaromir Jagr Fail to Score a Goal
13 13. Logan Couture Leads All Scorers with 30 Points
12 12. Evgeny Kuznetsov's Scoring Drought
11 11. Staal Brothers Combine for Zero Goals
10 10. Drew Doughty Struggles at Both Ends of the Ice
9 9. Matt Martin Averages 6.27 Hits Per Game
8 8. Roman Polak Goes Pointless in 24 Playoff Games
7 7. Henrik Lundqvist Posts League-Worst GAA
6 6. Kris Letang Involved in All Four Game-Winners in Final
5 5. Michal Neuvirth Records .981 Save Percentage
4 4. Marc-Edouard Vlasic Blocks 68 Shots
3 3. Martin Jones Records Three Shutouts
2 2. Joe Thornton Led Playoffs in Both Giveaways and Takeaways
1 1. Matt Murray’s 15 Wins Ties NHL Record for a Rookie
Penguins’ 22-year-old goalie Matt Murray was given the ball and ran with it during the postseason by leading his team to the ultimate prize. Murray went 15-6 in 21 games while posting a .923 save percentage, a 2.08 goals-against average, and a shutout. The 15 wins ties an NHL playoff record for a rookie. The only other netminders to achieve the feat were Patrick Roy of Montreal in 1985-86, Ron Hextall of Philadelphia in 1986-87, and Cam Ward of Carolina in 2005-06. Murray was 9-2 in the regular season with a 2.00 GAA, a .930 save percentage, and one shutout.
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