Arizona Coyotes’ Christian Dvorak Is Beginning To Break Out
Christian Dvorak is beginning to put it together offensively for the Arizona Coyotes.
When previewing the Arizona Coyotes’ season, I suggested Christian Dvorak might chart a similar trajectory to Florida Panther’s centerman Aleksander Barkov.
Barkov took a season or two to get going offensively before blossoming into a star.
Dvorak struggled to find his place in Glendale early on, but lately? Whew.
#18 is coming on strong.
The 21-year-old has contributed nine points in his past 11 games while finding a nice rapport alongside fellow rookie Brendan Perlini and captain Shane Doan.
Dvo’s responsible defensive game has earned him Dave Tippett’s confidence, and his time on ice has increased to compensate as the season has continued. Now he’s putting the pieces together in the offensive zone and providing the team with depth scoring.
He outlasted and outplayed highly touted prospect Dylan Strome in training camp and early in the season, and by the time the former 3rd overall pick reports to Glendale next fall Dvorak will have a full season of NHL hockey under his belt.
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The Illinois native is just shy of Barkov’s rookie season totals (8 goals, 16 assists in 54 games played) with his own rookie campaign (10 goals, 12 assists in 54 games played), and it seems likely that he could easily eclipse the Panthers centerman’s sophomore campaign total of 36 points next season.
That doesn’t mean Dvorak is destined to flirt with 60 points in his third year in the NHL like Barkov did, but should he begin to regularly push 50-plus point seasons in the future, the Coyotes will have found a higher scoring replacement for Martin Hanzal in the middle six.
And they cultivated it in house.
Should Hanzal not be traded or happen to re-sign with the Arizona Coyotes in the offseason, Dvorak and Hanzal should provide a capable one-two punch if Strome hasn’t bulked up sufficiently to assume the mantle.
Christian Dvorak still has some work to do, however.
Of players who have spent the season in Arizona, Christian Dvorak has by far the lowest score adjusted Corsi For percentage on the team at 42.26%. In layman’s terms, much of this season has seen Dvorak’s line get pummeled in the defensive zone.
Despite the fact that his line is regularly outshot, Dvo has somehow managed to sport a plus/minus of plus-8 on the season. That likely speaks more to luck than anything, but it’s an interesting statistic nonetheless.
Dvo, like the Arizona Coyotes, is not a finished product.
He is a complete player, however, and he will only improve from here.
#18 isn’t a talkative guy, but his improvement on the ice is speaking volumes to Coyotes’ brass and fans in the desert.
With a full offseason to prepare and work out at the NHL level, Dvorak could be a real treat to watch next season.