On Wednesday, I had an interesting discussion with Blue Jackets defenseman James Wisniewski on the difference between taking chances and being reckless. This started Wisniewski musing on how lousy a stat +/- is at measuring a blueliner’s worth. (Among Wiz’s gripes: That the +/- includes empty net goals.)
This started me wondering: What stats do the players use to measure whether they’ve have a successful season? I asked that of three CBJ forwards. The unprompted answer from all three was the same…
That’s right. Hits. Not goals, not assists. HITS.
This sometimes came with a caveat. One player said he would have chosen goals when he was younger, and less mature as a player. Another added that he understood hits can vary from building to building. (Some players run into someone and will get credited for ten, that player joked.)
I think this is the most Blue Jackety of Blue Jacket stories, though, in that it demonstrates this team’s commitment to the club (hits representing a less glorious stat) and to tough, blue collar play.