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Reign #FancyStats Recap: Ontario Revoir, Mike

The Reign play one of their best weekends yet, but must say goodbye to their best player. How big a loss is Mersch? Also, Jeff Schultz tells us how he thinks Mersch's game will translate to the NHL.

Robyn Pennington

All scoring chance, Corsi, and faceoff counts are estimated.

This weekend, the Reign are home for a back-to-back against the Bakersfield Condors and San Jose Barracuda.

Notes

  • How will Ontario compensate for the call-up of Michael Mersch? In my mind, his absence creates an Anze Kopitar-like hole in the Reign lineup. Not that I'm suggesting Mersch is anywhere as good a player, but the young winger is just as vital to Ontario's success as Kopitar is to LA's. As we saw in our Reign #FancyStats 1st quarter review, "Big Mike" has been that dominant in every zone: Forechecker, backchecker, play driver, front net presence. If you've missed any of his recent highlights, check here. Otherwise, enjoy yet another example of his chemistry with Nic Dowd:
Mersch Dowd

  • Yesterday at practice, I asked Jeff Schultz his thoughts on how Mersch's game would transition to the NHL. As the only defenseman with NHL experience on Ontario's current roster, I was curious in particular about how he thought Mersch's array of moves around the net would translate:

"I think it will be an easy transition for him. I think he showed a lot of it in training camp.

"He's a big body, he's strong on his skates, he's got a good nose for the net, likes to take the puck to the net. Like the Kings like to say, he plays a heavy game, kind of in the corners, in front of the net. So it should be a pretty smooth transition for him. It would be strange not to see him do well, just with the type of game he plays and the type of game that the Kings play.

"I have full confidence that he'll do well up there."

  • And finally, after long, fruitless relationships with the post and crossbar, Jonny Brodzinski hooked his first professional goal. Brodzinski looks like he's taking Mersch's place by Dowd this Saturday:

Brodzinski

12/5/15

This 3-1 victory was perhaps the Reign's most dominating performance this season. After Charlotte had the temerity to open up shooting with a 5-1 advantage, Ontario took 33 of the next 39 shots.

[Box Score]

Even Strength Scoring Chances

1 2 3 TOTAL
ONT 4 10 6 20
CHA 3 1 2 6

Even Strength Corsi

1 2 3 TOTAL
ONT 27 24 15 66
CHA 13 5 12 30

Faceoffs

Name FOW FOL FO%
K. Newbury 12 6 66.7%
A. Crescenzi 11 4 73.3%
R. Horvat 0 4 0.0%
N. Dowd 9 9 50.0%

Individual Even Strength Corsi

Number Player CF CA CF%
4 K. Gravel 18 10 64.3%
5 V. LoVerde 32 9 78.0%
7 V. Zykov 12 5 70.6%
9 A. Kempe 19 6 76.0%
11 K. Newbury 11 5 68.8%
15 P. Bissonnette 11 6 64.7%
16 S. Backman 18 6 75.0%
18 J. Samuels-Thomas 18 7 72.0%
20 K. MacDermid 24 5 82.8%
21 A. Crescenzi 11 3 78.6%
23 N. Ebert 17 10 63.0%
24 R. Horvat 19 8 70.4%
25 S. Sabourin 14 9 60.9%
26 N. Dowd 24 13 64.9%
27 M. Mersch 18 11 62.1%
33 K. Raine 24 14 63.2%
39 J. Auger 19 9 67.9%
55 J. Schultz 17 12 58.6%

Lines

Ontario Reign

9 Kempe - 11 Newbury - 16 Backman

27 Mersch - 26 Dowd - 39 Auger

18 Samuels-Thomas - 21 Crescenzi - 7 Zykov

15 Bissonnette - 24 Horvat - 25 Sabourin

20 MacDermid - 5 LoVerde

4 Gravel - 33 Raine

55 Schultz - 23 Ebert

31 Budaj

29 Houser

Charlotte Checkers

25 Bowman - 10 Ryan - 14 Shugg

11 Boychuk - 33 Karlsson - 16 Tolchinsky

21 Woods - 12 Sutter - 24 Brown

18 Hagel - 38 Wohlberg - 26 Sandlak

5 Carrick - 6 Murphy

4 Lowe - 9 Biega

27 Chelios - 36 Cornell

22 MacIntyre

1 Tirronen

12/6/15

While Charlotte pushed back a tad more the following nightfor half the game, the score was actually knotted up at one apiece!the Reign answered every Checkers volley with extreme prejudice, on way to a 5-1 rout.

[Box Score]

Even Strength Scoring Chances

1 2 3 TOTAL
ONT 3 8 4 15
CHA 1 3 1 5

Even Strength Corsi

1 2 3 TOTAL
ONT 14 22 16 52
CHA 12 17 16 45

Faceoffs

Name FOW FOL FO%
A. Kempe 1 2 33.3%
K. Newbury 8 4 66.7%
P. Bissonnette 1 0 100.0%
J. Samuels-Thomas 0 2 0.0%
A. Crescenzi 6 7 46.2%
R. Horvat 5 5 50.0%
N. Dowd 10 4 71.4%
M. Mersch 0 1 0.0%
J. Auger 1 0 100.0%

Individual Even Strength Corsi

Number Player CF CA CF%
4 K. Gravel 13 16 44.8%
5 V. LoVerde 21 17 55.3%
8 Z. Leslie 9 15 37.5%
9 A. Kempe 15 9 62.5%
11 K. Newbury 11 10 52.4%
12 J. Brodzinski 12 20 37.5%
15 P. Bissonnette 7 6 53.8%
16 S. Backman 16 12 57.1%
18 J. Samuels-Thomas 13 16 44.8%
20 K. MacDermid 19 19 50.0%
21 A. Crescenzi 16 8 66.7%
24 R. Horvat 12 15 44.4%
25 S. Sabourin 10 6 62.5%
26 N. Dowd 15 12 55.6%
27 M. Mersch 17 9 65.4%
33 K. Raine 19 9 67.9%
39 J. Auger 10 12 45.5%
55 J. Schultz 22 14 61.1%

Lines

Ontario Reign

9 Kempe - 11 Newbury - 16 Backman

27 Mersch - 26 Dowd - 39 Auger

18 Samuels-Thomas - 21 Crescenzi - 12 Brodzinski

15 Bissonnette - 24 Horvat - 25 Sabourin

20 MacDermid - 5 LoVerde

4 Gravel - 33 Raine

55 Schultz - 8 Leslie

31 Budaj

29 Houser

Charlotte Checkers

25 Bowman - 10 Ryan - 14 Shugg

11 Boychuk - 37 Rashid - 33 Karlsson

18 Hagel - 12 Sutter - 24 Brown

26 Sandlak - 38 Wohlberg - 16 Tolchinsky

5 Carrick - 6 Murphy

4 Lowe - 9 Biega

27 Chelios - 36 Cornell

1 Tirronen

22 MacIntyre

Past Reign #FancyStats Recaps

Week 1: Ontario Opens on Top

Week 2: Mashing Manitoba

Week 3: Sweet Home Ontario

Week 4-5: Ontario Rolls On

Week 6: Ontario Hiccups

1st Quarter Review