Posted: 4:07 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 2, 2013
By Brad Gardner
With opening night NHL rosters finalized The Globe's James Mirtle compiled his yearly list of average heights, ages and weights today, giving hockey fans a chance to see if the "tale of the tape" matches their perceptions of where the directions and off-seasons of their respective teams are concerned.
Such a thing has little bearing on how the season will play out, but you just can't help but take a look.
The Dallas Stars are younger than last season, but... barely. They have been packing on the pounds, though, and are trending up in height. Here are the opening night averages for Dallas' teams in of the last three seasons:
|Weight||Weight Rank||Height||Height Rank||Age||Age Rank|
The Stars were the fifth oldest team in the league last year and they're the fifth oldest team league in the year this season. To begin, anyway. How in the world did that happen with an 18 year-old 21 year-old new-comers taking center stage along with 23 year-old Alex Chiasson and 24 year-old Jamie Benn?
Ray Whitney, Sergei Gonchar, Stephane Robidas, Erik Cole and and Shawn Horcoff is how, and that's alright. The defending champions have the 8th oldest roster. The Canucks have the 4th. Youthful talent pointing, presumably, at a bright future is a wonderful thing. Veteran experience is still needed to win.
Winnipeg, Toronto, Columbus and Buffalo are among the very youngest in the league, and all could easily miss the playoffs.
What should matter to Stars fans is that the "core" here is getting younger. Brenden Morrow, Mike Ribeiro, Brad Richards, Stephane Robidas are giving way to Jamie Benn, Tyler Seguin, Cody Eakin and Brenden Dillon. A changing of the guard is inevitable, of course, but to see the skill level maintained or increased while it happens is the goal.
Take a look at where the points have been coming from. Here are the average ages of the top-five scorers the last three seasons...
|Season||Average Age of Top-Five Scorers|
So old Jags and Ray Whitney really drag those numbers up as well, but in two years (or this one?) that number is liable to be in the mid-twenties, indicating a solid group of talent under control for a while, and that actually will be something to give a little credence.
Jamie Benn, Valeri Nichushkin, Alex Chiasson, Tyler Seguin and Brenden Dillon average just 21.6. How do you like them apples?