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Lars Eller; by the Numbers

By Kicks @Chrisboucher73
Already impressive, and still improving
Lars Eller came into this season without an assigned role. Yet, he has established himself as a cornerstone player on the Montreal Canadiens. He is among the leading forwards in most puck-possession categories, and is the most involved player on the Habs. Eller averages more events per-minute of ice-time than any other player; including PK Subban. He also makes more successful plays per-minute played than any other player. Expressed differently, this shows that when Eller is on the ice he helps the Canadiens maintain or acquire puck-possession more efficiently, and more often than any other player; bar none.
Lars Eller; by the numbers
These averages have been calculated over hundreds of games and approximately 2000 individual scouting reports:

Average grade: 67

Average ratio: 2.03
Average risk/reward: 1.31
Average offensive-zone risk/reward: 0.30
Average defensive-zone risk/reward: 0.62
Average neutral-zone risk/reward: 0.30

Eller's overall risk/reward rating of 1.58 is better than any other Habs forward, and trails only PK Subban and Tomas Kaberle. However his even-strength ratio of 2.10 successful plays for every 1 unsuccessful play is seventh among forwards with substantial playing time. He recovers the most defensive-zone loose-pucks of any forward, and trails only Max Pacioretty for loose-puck recoveries in the offensive-zone.
He has a success-rate of 72% for plays that require him to obtain or acquire puck-possession from the opposition; good enough for third-best among forwards.  These plays include puck-battles, blocked passes, etc. He also has a success-rate of 65% for plays that require him to maintain puck-possession; good enough for second-best among forwards. Plays used in this calculation include passes, dekes, shots, etc.
He has played over 84 minutes while the Habs were short-handed. In that time he has the best penalty-killing risk/reward rating (1.21) of any forward. He also averages more blocked shots per-minute of short-handed  playing-time than any other forward.
Eller has the team's second-best offensive-zone risk/reward rating; behind only Max Pacioretty. He averages  1.71 successful plays for every 1 unsuccessful play in the offensive-zone. He wins 53% of his offensive-zone puck-battles, and completes 59% of his o-zone pass-attempts. He is successful with 65% of his attempts to beat opposing players 1on1 (deke), but gets only 49% of his attempted shots on net.
Eller has far-and-away the best defensive-zone risk/reward rating (0.69) among forwards. Apart from Eller, the highest d-zone rating among forwards is Tomas Plekanec's 0.47. His d-zone ratio of 2.48 successful plays for every 1 unsuccessful play is also tops among forwards, and is in fact, better than any players not named Subban, or Gorges.
He has the third-best success-rate when engaging in defensive-zone puck-battles, and the best rating among forwards. He completes 74% of his d-zone pass-attempts; only Subban, Kaberle, and Gorges complete a higher percentage, and he is successful with 70% of his attempts to beat opposing players 1on1 in the defensive-zone. This is where we believe Eller gets into trouble with coaches. Eller has attempted 3 times as many defensive-zone dekes than any other forward. Granted his success-rate is 70%, but due to the high number of attempts, his tendency to attempt these plays in the defensive-zone have created 21 defensive-zone give-aways; more than any player not named PK Subban.
Eller has the seventh-best neutral-zone risk/reward rating among forwards, and the eighth-best overall. His neutral-zone ratio of 2.10 successful plays for every 1 unsuccessful play is below average, but he has the best success-rate when engaging in neutral-zone puck-battles (58%). He has completed 69% of his neutral-zone puck-battles, and has an average success-rate of 82% when attempting to dump the puck deep into the offensive-zone.
Eller might still not have a defined role. But any player at his age, with his size, his talent, and his puck-possession numbers, can only be defined as a cornerstone player.

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