It doesn’t take a statistician to reveal why Patrick Kane is the Hart favorite this season, but a deeper look at the numbers does reveal one interesting fact: No team relies more on one player than the Blackhawks do on Kane.
Kane’s 30 goals and 43 assists this season both lead the NHL, and his 73 points represent 18.5 percent of Chicago’s total offense – also a league high.
No other team relies on a single player for more than 15.16 percent of its total offense.
In addition, the 27-point gap between Kane and Chicago’s second-leading scorer, Artemi Panarin, is also by-far the most in the NHL. Calgary ranks second at 16.
So what does this all mean? Well, maybe nothing. Or maybe everything.
Taking a look back at each of Chicago’s past three championship teams, no one player ever accounted for more than 14 percent of the team’s total offense.
Last season, Jonathan Toews led the Blackhawks with 11 percent of their total points. In 2013 it was Kane with 13.85 percent and in 2010 Kane again at 12 percent.
In fact, since the lockout season in 2005, none of the 10 Stanley Cup champions have relied nearly as much on one player as the Blackhawks currently do on Kane.
Pittsburgh came the closest in 2009 when Evgeni Malkin accounted for 16 percent of the Penguins’ total points, but his production was nearly matched by teammate Sidney Crosby.
Combined, the top scorers from the 10 teams contributed on average less than 13 percent of the team’s total offense.
The Blackhawks have ridden Kane to first place in the West through the first half of the season, but the numbers beg the question: How long can Kane keep up this type of success? And if his production levels off, where does that leave the Blackhawks?
Most All-Star game selections as a Blackhawk
Stats via NHL