I think it must be tough to be Alexandre Giroux. I don’t mean “Tiny Tim” tough but tough all the same: gifted with soft hands and reasonable size, his feet of clay got him to the outskirts of the NHL. And there he stays, waiting for the chance given to many lesser or equal men. At Giroux’s level, there’s one helluva lot of luck involved in deciding who makes the grade and who spends a decade knocking on the door.
Many years ago, the Montreal Expos had prospects named Raines and Shines (I’m not making this up). Raines had enormous talent, you could see excellence in everything he did; once he made the majors as a rookie, it was obvious that no baseball reason would keep him from a long career.
Shines? He was a “tweener” talent: good bat but not good enough for first base and he was a little shy with the leather when moved up the defensive (third base, catching) spectrum.
And so it was that Raines played 2500 big league games over a 23-year career and Shines played 1480 games in the minors over 16 seasons. Raines’ page at baseball-reference is sponsored by “Amy’s husband” who writes “our first baseball game together was Rock’s first game back from the ’87 collusion – 4 for 5, grand slam in the 10th to beat the Mets. She had a hero for life, and a year later, we were married. He remains her favorite; she remains mine.” That was May 1, 1987. Razor Shines was on the Expos roster at the time, a 30-year old pinch hitter hanging on. His last major league game was played 13 days later, May 14. Raines, despite being drafted one year earlier than Shines, would play 15 more seasons and retire September 2002. Razor Shines played 68 MLB games, 10 as a position player.
Raines and Shines.
Alexandre Giroux 10-11
- 5×5 points per 60: 1.32 (10th among forwards but DNQ)
- 5×4 points per 60: nil
- Qual Comp: 7th toughest faced among forwards but DNQ
- Qual Team: 2nd worst available teammates among forwards but DNQ
- Corsi Rel: 5.3 (6th best among forwards but DNQ)
- Zone Start: 52.5% (8th toughest among forwards but DNQ)
- Zone Finish: 49.3% (15th best among forwards but DNQ)
- Shots on goal/percentage: 13 shots/7.7 (tied for 13th among forwards but DNQ)
- Boxcars: 8gp, 1-1-2
- Plus Minus: -2 on a team that was -52
- What do these numbers tell us? Along with his minor league numbers (70gp, 32-46-78) we can see the offensive talent Giroux delivers. He could probably post some solid numbers if an expansion draft came along. He has a nice Corsi and scored a goal during his cup of coffee.
- How could these numbers be better? Considering he played with Cogliano and Reddox (25%) and Cogliano and Jones (17%) I’d say these numbers are solid at EVs. Giroux didn’t do a thing on the PP despite playing 3 minutes a night. Overall, I don’t think he’s going to threaten anyone currently on the skill lines but he’s a fine option for callup.
- The Oilers didn’t treat him very well. What now? They signed him to a 1-way deal at $500,000 no matter where he played. That’s a pretty nice insult.
- Yeah but they didn’t call him up until late. Right, because the club wanted to remain competitive at the AHL level while covering off big league injuries as best they could. Giroux would have been called up earlier based on merit but that’s the job; he did get 8 games in the show this year.
- Well he’s a free agent now, forget about him ever coming back. Okay. Although I’d think the Oilers could get him back for exactly the same deal as last season. Giroux has played in 39 NHL games now and he’s one month from 30 years old. If he feels like there’s a chance to build on something with Edmonton, I can see him re-signing. Otherwise, there will be plenty of AHL teams lining up for Giroux’s services.
- He’s a good AHL player. GREAT AHL player. Over 250 AHL goals since the lockout.
- Why can’t he have an NHL career? Foot speed isn’t great and now he’s 30. An expansion draft could turn him into the modern Frank St. Marseille. Or he could go to Europe.
- Is there any way to get him onto the Oiler roster? Without injuries? Hmmm. I don’t think so. You’d want him on a skill line and the Oilers just added four rookie skill wingers to go with Hemsky. Plus you have Hartikainen and Jones hanging around. It would be tough.
- Any chance he makes another NHL team? He’s $500,000 (inexpensive) and gives your team a nice offensive option at the end of the roster. If he was a little faster and had a PK rep someone might take a chance. Still can’t believe he didn’t get any powerplay points.