Who was the best at penalties drawn and taken last season?

I've been sifting through Behind The Net's ES stats the past few days for something I hope to post next week and keep coming across the Penalty +/- category, basically the correlation between the penalties you take and the penalties you force the opponent to draw.

If you're Hordichuk, Rypien, Glass or other such energy guys chances are you will give more than you take. But drawing non-coincidental penalties are pretty important to get the team on the man advantage obviously while not sending another guy (a potential PK'er even) along with him. If you're Vancouver and your PK is 18th in the regular season and dead last in the post season, it behooves your squad (and the sanity of your faithful fans) to jump on every advantage possible.

Not so much is made about the ability or talent it takes to draw penalties, but it's worth a look . After the jump, check out who was the best and worst at drawing penalties at even strength for the PIM-happy Canucks in 2009-2010.

Taken
Drawn
Difference
Kesler
16 36 +20
Burrows
37 32 -5
Raymond 12 27 +15
H. Sedin 18 23 +5
Ehrhoff 14 12 -2
Wellwood 6 10 +4
Samuelsson 20 10 -10
Edler 19 8 -11
Alberts 21 8 -13
Bieksa 12 7 -5
Hansen 6 6 0
Salo 7 5 -2
Bernier 4 5 +1
Demitra 0 4 +4
O'Brien 21 3 -18
Grabner 3 3 0
D. Sedin 11 3 -8
Rome 7 3 -4
Mitchell 8 2 -6
Shirokov 1 2 +1
Baumgartner 1 1 0

Click the header to sort each column

[Note: Behind the Net doesn't split stats when a player is traded, so Alberts totals are there are for both Carolina and Vancouver]

Some thoughts:

  • Not shocking Kesler and Raymond lead the charge here. Defensive-minded forwards, great wheels and an aggressive forecheck made them obvious targets to be hooked or obstructed. My man crush for the two of them continues to skyrocket.
  • Wellwood's strengths included his stickwork and quickness and Demo had wheels when he felt like using them. Both are reflected well in the season totals.
  • For once we have opposite stories with the twins. With Henrik playing more games and perhaps attracting tougher opposition as the season progressed, it makes sense he ended up drawing more calls. I can't explain Daniel who - though 28 PIMs was the third lowest of his career - comes out looking pretty poor. It suggests (without examining it further) he may have gotten lazy at some points or retaliated during others.
  • Samuelsson took a career high in penalties last season (64 PIMs) so ideally he edges back towards the positive in 2011. A gritty player in his own right, he likely retaliated a time or two (or three).
  • Is anyone shocked Burrows ended up in the negative? When he's on, that's his type of agitating style that helped draw the second most calls for the Canucks.
  • It would have been nice to see a puck moving defensemen like Ehrhoff in the positive.
  • You can't fault someone like Mitchell or Edler in the negative since they have to stop the best of the opposition and are bound to get their nose dirty in the process. I'd like to extend a similar consideration to Alberts or O'Brien but...egads man.

I ignored the playoffs, but if you were curious, Wellwood lead the team with a +3 followed by Henrik and Kesler with a +2. The defense collectively took it on the chin, but if you paid attention to the Kings series, then you know Alberts was the worst Canuck in the playoffs with a -7.

In regards to the reserves coming to the team via this offseason: Keith Ballard was a -1 and Dan Hamuis was a -2 but I put them in the Mitchell camp in terms of their defensive responsibilities and a "do what you gotta do" mentality. Surprisingly Manny Malhotra was -3, Raffi Torres was -2 (Buffalo only) and Jeff Tambellini was -3.

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