Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Jozef Stumpel: The New Sharpshooter?
One of the hottest players since the Olympic break, and the one you haven't heard a peep about, is Florida Panthers centerman Jozef Stumpel. You know, the Slovakian version of Craig Janney.
Before the Olympic Break, Stumpel had played 56 games and put up a modest 7 goals and 23 assists with an EVEN +/-. Jozef's decline hasn't been steep, but it has been somewhat noticeable since his best days playing alongside Zigmund Palffy.
Since the break, Stumpel has been on a tear. In 11 games, he has 6 goals and 12 assists with a +13!!!
What's the big secret?
More Power Play time? Hardly... Stumpel has only 3 of his post-Olympic points on the PP, and had only 10 of his 30 pre-Olympic points with the man-advantage.
The answer? HE'S SHOOTING THE DAMN PUCK!!!
For years, I've stated that Stumpel has a pretty fine arsenal of shots, but he never ever wants to use them. Like Craig Janney, Stumpel has this frustrating habit of ALWAYS looking for a passing option unless he has a perfect shot opportunity. Rather than the 'unselfish' tag that most playmakers get, I find this kind of attitude a bit 'selfish' in that these guys pass off decent scoring chances, looking for assists rather than just doing what it takes to get some goals.
Pre-Olympics: 72 shots in 56 games (1.29 shots per game)
Post-Olympics: 29 shots in 11 games (2.63 shots per game)
Good things happen when you shoot the puck. It's too bad Stumpel never learned that lesson earlier.