Maple Leafs Sign Shawn Matthias: Modern Stats-Focused Breakdown

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The Toronto Maple Leafs have added another body to their increasingly crowded list of centers (can also play wing) by signing unrestricted free agent Shawn Matthias to a one-year deal worth $2.3M.

Options among the team’s center depth now feature the likes of Nazem Kadri, Tyler Bozak (for now), Mark Arcobello, Shawn Matthias*, Peter Holland and Nick Spaling. While sporting mediocre possession numbers, Matthias found the back of the net 16 times last season at even strength which was good enough to rank 1st among Vancouver Canucks skaters and 38th league-wide. Here is how he has scored at 5v5 relative to his teammates throughout his career…

matthais1Matthias seems to have found his scoring touch during the lockout and has been somewhat of a handful for opposing netminders ever since. Possession-wise, Matthias has consistently been mediocre as his linemates have seen their Corsi For percentages jump 1.6% without him vs. with him since 2012-13. His closest cohorts over the past 3 seasons are presented below…

matthias2Matthias’ pay grade seems to mostly fit in with players who have managed comparable production rates while having a similar impact on their linemates’ shot generation and shot suppression. You can definitely do worse at $2,300,000.

A look at Matthias’ HERO chart (via ownthepuck.blogspot.ca) suggests he is likely capable of holding his own as a 3rd liner at the NHL level and if not given that opportunity, would excel in a 4th line role…

matthias3You can read about the Leafs’ other free agent acquisitions from a stats-focused standpoint here.