Lord of the Philadelphia Flyers: The Fellowship of the Sean Couturier

Photo by Debora Robinson NHLI via Getty Images

Philadelphia Flyers Center Sean Couturier helps get hobbits to Mordor and Flyers to the Stanley Cup, in three days.  Soak in an epic analysis and be convinced.

If you have been keeping up with your Philadelphia Flyers scuttlebutt, you know one of the breakout stories is the shake up moving third line center Sean Couturier to the front line.  This shifts former first line center Claude Giroux to the left wing.  It’s only been three games in, but it’s the Philadelphia Flyers and people are never shy about analysis and speculation.  As you read this ode to obsession and wonder if the narrator has a “serial killer wall” connecting all these dots, remember, don’t take things so seriously.  People who do write articles like this

Let us now confabulate over Sean Couturier’s season on the 1st line performance.  How has the move up from the 3rd line affected his play?  Awesomely, and the numbers reinforce this theory.

This is a very small sample size, it’s only three games into the season, but whose brain could leave this alone?  Also the numbers are rounded off.  Getting over these issues will make further reading more enjoyable.

All these figures regard goals scored, assists and points per game over regular season play.

Over his career as a Philadelphia Flyer on the third line he has .17 goals, and .29 assists and .46 points per game.

In the 2016-2017 season, on the third line, he averaged .21 goals, .30 assists and .52 points per game.

In the current season, on the first line, he is averaging .33 goals , .67 assists and 1 point per game.

What does this mean for Coots?  Lets see the how the numbers per game interact with one another.

Comparing this season to his Flyers career history, Coots is seeing an 94% increase in goal scoring, a 131% boost in assists and 117% swell in points per game.

In like fashion, there is an 57% upsurge in goals, a 123% rise in assists and 92% bump up in points per game from last season.

Small sample size, but big results!

The hockey oriented brain is full of slippery slopes.  For now the question is; How has is move effecting line mates?

Jakub Voracek

His career as a Philadelphia Flyer sees him averaging .26 goals, .53 assists and .80 points per game.

The 2016-2017 season had him averaging .24 goals, .50 assists and .74 points per game.

The season we currently inhabit is projecting no goals, 1.33 assists and 1.33 point per game.

Statistics regarding countries conquered by or armies that unconditionally surrender to his beard have yet to be finalized.

Scrutinizing Voracek’s new age of peace, love and Couturier that is this season, is illuminating the following: when juxtaposed to his career per game, his goal scoring is down 100% (he’ll get on the board at some point), his assists are up 151% and his points are 66% higher.

In like fashion, his difference in statistics from the 2016-2017 season also show improvement, except for the 0 in the scoring department.  They include a 166% surge in assists and 80% hike in points per game.

He is a nominee for a Nobel Prize; if he wins, he will receive one million dollars to continue to grow his beard.

Lack of goals aside, his time with on the front line with Sean Couturier is being fruitful, though the sample size is small.  Except for his beard, there is no small sample size, just a less big sample size.

Captain Claude Giroux

Subsequently, let’s look at his career as a Philadelphia Flyers Center: he was averaging .24 goals, .60 assists and .88 points per game.

In the 2016-2017 season he was averaging .17 goals, .51 assists and .71 points per game.

In the season of our present-ness, as a Left Winger and Coots’ mate on the 1st line, he is equating .33 goals, .33 assists and .67 point per game.

Now we contemplate how Giroux’s performance per game over his career  correlates to his time building a front line bromance with Couturier this season.  We are seeing a 38% rise in goal scoring, a 45% drop in assists and a 24% decrease in point per game.

The previous numbers are not fabulous, though perhaps the change from the 2016-2017 season bodes better.  His goal scoring is rising, up 94%, however, his assists are down 35% and his points are 6% lower.

Goal scoring aside, the assists and points are down thus far, his decreases are still out weighed Voracek and Couturier’s increases.  If you needs exact numbers, by all means get clickity clacking on your calculators, but skimming the above analysis is sufficient to qualify this.

For The Entire Line Up In 2016-2017 Regular Season

Want a wider scope?  Since you narrator does her statistical math herself to satisfy her labyrinthian brain, keep reading and pretend you do, she works so hard.  Over the course of the Philadelphia Flyers 2016-2017 regular season, the team was scoring 212 goals, garnering 407 assists and 561 points total.  Averaging it out over the 82 game season, we have 2.6 goals, 5.0 assists and 6.8 points per game.

New to this quagmire of numbers is the win loss ratio and the resulting game point ratio, which, be honest, you really want to know.  Respectively, those numbers determine the post season and regular season outcomes.  The team amassed wins 48% of the season, losses 40% and over time losses 12% of the 2016-2017 regular season.  Still rounding.  They also managed to suck up 53% of the possible game points over the season.

In the same manner, we now peruse our limited sample size of the shiny and new 2017-2018 season.  We have 2.7 goals, 4.7 assists and 7.3 points per game.  Wins represent 67% of played games, with regulation losses taking up the remaining 33% of game results.  There are no overtime losses at this time.  The Flyers have wrangled 67% of available points.

Summarily, this a 4% increase in goal scoring.  However, the number of assists, although close, is down 6%.  Lastly, points per game is up 7% and game points earned is increasing 24%.

The numbers in use are rounded off.  Please keep in mind that these are not precise to the second or third decimal place.  For most comparisons, the numbers were not so similar to one another to warrant more numbers after the decimal.

The point is, the integrity of goal scoring and points per game has remained and slightly improved.  The decrease in assists is small and right now implies that more players are getting the puck in the net on their own.  A decrease in goals will be more devastating.  Goals win games, where as assists are nice.  They do not show up in change the final score, though they spread out the stat love among players.


Some may be concerned about the small sample size or consider may consider the above not relevant because of it.  Rather than wait for more games to be played to get a relevant sample size, let’s make some up.  In Philadelphia, creating projections 3 games (or less) in is acceptable, even encouragable.

The individual player statistical projections will in total and be based on their assumed continued performance from the first 3 games over the entire remaining 79 games in the regular season.  For the sake of making a fantasy fantastic, they will be free of illness, injury or being banished to the press box.  These projections will then be compared to last season, because while projections are fun on their own, comparing them to the previous season gives them context and meaning.  Also, this article is the very definition of extra, did you think this wouldn’t happen?

Sean Couturier is projected is score 27 goals, provide 59 assists and amass 82 points over the season.  This is up 93% from last seasons 14 goals.  He is assisting 54 times, which is a 170% increase from 20 assists.  82 points will be his, which is 141% more points than the 34 he had last season.  Everything is coming up roses for Coots in his 1st line center place in the sun.

Jakub Voracek will be scoring no goals.  According to the numbers, his slump from last year is turning into a mega drought.  Or the small sample size has created holes in this article’s integrity.  It is most likely the first option though.  He must be so upset over this.  However, he WILL be lending many helping hands with 109 assists.  What a guy!  This is a 166% surge of helpfulness over last season’s 42.  It’s not just his beard that deserves a Nobel Prize, it’s his heart as well.  Consequentially, he is on track to get 109 points, a 79% swell from last years 61 points.  If he weren’t destined to score no goals this season, life would be great for Voracek with Sean Couturier front and center!

It is still unknown how many countries will offer unconditional surrender to his beard.  But, world hunger will be a nonissue by 2024 due to it’s efforts.

Captain Claude Giroux will be scoring 19 goals, up 36% from last seasons 14.  He will be providing 27 assists, dropped 61% from last season’s 44.  The prophecy states that he will collect 54 points, rising 12% from 48 points from days of yore.  Giroux’s numbers will be suffering in comparison from last season in the event that current trends continue.  Seeing it in the bigger picture emphasizes this and makes it a more concrete, as it is meant to do.

The Philadelphia Flyers En Masse

The Orange and Black is going to score 221 goals, bank 385 assists and 598 points over the present season.  This is a 4% goal lift, a 5% dip in assists and a 7% elevation is points.

They will win 54 games, up 38% from last seasons 54.  They will lose the remainder of the seasons 28 games in regulation.  This will total 108 game points.  This calculation is the sum of all parts and is the most important.  This foreshadows post season involvement.  Last season, the Washington Capitals topped the Metropolitan Division with 55 wins with the Penguins and Blue Jackets tied at 50 wins behind them.  If similar trends and or numbers for play off contention recur, the Philadelphia Flyers would make the post season with out scratching out a wild card spot.  Sean Couturier is so very kind to arrange all that, it’s thoughtful to say the least.

Will all (or any) of the things in this article come to pass?  Probably not.  It takes a close look at three games with good things happening and discerns to find out what and why.  Though some of them may have similar out comes with different numbers.  However, it will be interesting to see how these numbers hold up over the course of the season.

Howbeit, we decisively arrive at two irrefutable facts.  First; Sean Couturier front and center correlates to a good performance by the Philadelphia Flyers.  Second and last; math is no ones friend.


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