Blake Coleman never forgot his lunch pail in 2022-23
Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
6 months ago
He’s not going to shoot the lights out but he’s going to give you everything he has whenever he steps on the ice. Defence is the priority in his game and he excels on that front – contributing great metrics at 5v5 as well as being a reliable option on the penalty kill. Blake Coleman was a consistent positive influence on the Calgary Flames.
Year two of his six year deal in Calgary saw him achieve a career-high in points at 38 and assists with 20. I feel a 20/20 season is hiding in the remainder of his deal somewhere. He has the capabilities to do so.
One of the things I appreciate most about Coleman’s game is his shot suppression impact despite being a winger. Mikael Backlund gets a lot of the attention – as the centre that’s natural – but Coleman has shown an ability to play top notch defence no matter what pivot is in the middle. The chart above shows he is a goaltenders best friend leaving the high danger area in front of the net largely devoid of opportunities.
He finished 5th amongst regular Flames in CF% and 3rd in xGF% – constantly outperforming his competition. When with Backlund and Andrew Mangiapane the list of lines more effective than that trio is smaller than the amount of flavours of Crush soda – yes, Newfoundland folks, I’m including pineapple.
The fan in me has a lot of respect because I do feel we always get Coleman at his best – never taking a shift off. The analyst in me gushes over the fact he’s a perfect third line fit in virtually any lineup.
As we look at his career impact trajectory we do see his finishing ability has nosedived in Calgary. The team as a whole had abysmal puck luck (just ask Tyler Toffoli about it), but even then Coleman’s collective on ice shooting percentage was below 7% – way lower than even an average amount.
Coleman experienced a lot of offensive bad luck despite a career best in points and stayed at a top level impact in his own zone. If he does the exact same thing next year as he did this year you would see an improvement.
Letter Grade: B+
Recent articles from Shane Stevenson