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2015-16 Rink Wrap: Taylor Chorney

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From Alzner to Winnik, we're taking a look at and grading the 2015-16 season for every player who laced 'em up for the Caps for a significant number of games during the campaign, with an eye towards 2016-17. Next up, Taylor Chorney.

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Japers' Rink Player Card (click for a hi-res version, and a glossary of terms used in this post can be found here; data via NHL.comwar-on-ice.comGeneral Fanager and Stats.HockeyAnalysis.com):

Chorney Card

Chorney's Season, Game-by-Game (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Chorney game-by-game

Chorney's HERO Chart (via Own The Puck):

Chorney HERO

Chorney and His Defensive Partners:

Chorney linemates

Chorney's 5v5 Teammates and Competition (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Chorney QoCT

Chorney's 5v5 Usage:

Chorney's With-or-Without You (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Chorney WOWY

Chorney's Rolling Shot-Attempt (Corsi) -For Percentage:

Chorney rolling CF%

Chorney's Two Qualifying Seasons (via Stats.HockeyAnalysis.com):

Chorney HA

Previous Rink Wraps: None

Key Stat: Chorney played 55 games in the regular season, setting a new career high and falling four games short of his entire NHL regular-season career coming into this season (59 games with Edmonton, St. Louis and Pittsburgh). He also set a new career high in playoff games played in a single postseason, dressing for seven games this spring.

Interesting Stat: Chorney's assist in Game 5 against Pittsburgh marked his first career playoff point.

The Good: Having spent most of his career so far as a fringe player who has bounced between the NHL and AHL, it's not surprising that just about everything Chorney did this year set a new benchmark. His first and only goal of the season was also his first as a Cap, and the first even-strength tally of his career; he set new career highs in games played, assists, points and plus-minus in both the regular season and the playoffs.

Chorney was given the opportunity to have this career year after injuries to the team's top-two defensemen shortened the blueline for a good portion of the season. And while no one is going to mistake Chorney for John Carlson or even Brooks Orpik, he did a solid job of filling in for one or both over the course of the season. When Orpik was nabbed with a three-game suspension in the Caps' second-round series against Pittsburgh, Chorney again stepped in, playing a bigger role on the team's near-perfect penalty kill and making a highlight-reel play along the way.

The Bad: On the surface, Chorney's performance this year was perfectly suitable for a seventh defenseman rotating in on the third defensive pair. Dig a little deeper, though, and there were some troubling trends underneath. Chorney's SF%, FF% and CF% at even strength were all below 50%, and he was on the ice for 2.14 goals-against per 60 at even strength, which trailed only Orpik among Caps' defensemen (and a number that would have been even higher had he not also benefited from an on-ice save percentage of .922). He also led his fellow blueliners (appearing in at least 10 games) in high-danger scoring chances per 60, with 11.27. These struggles occurred despite the fact that he was relatively sheltered, generally facing the "easiest" competition on a nightly basis.

Chorney stepped in for seven games in the playoffs - first as a replacement for doghouse dwellers Dmitry Orlov and Nate Schmidt, then for Orpik during a three-game suspension - and his struggles continued. This time, however, they were less about the underlying numbers (although those weren't great) and more about a couple of glaring mistakes. Granted, the puck off his skate in Game 5 against the Flyers wasn't exactly something he could control, but his penalty in Game 4 of that series led to Philadelphia's lone power-play tally - and the team would lose both games.

The GIF/Video:

The Vote: Rate Chorney below on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential and your expectations for the season - if he had the best year you could have imagined him having, give him a 10; if he more or less played as you expected he would, give him a 5 or a 6; if he had the worst year you could have imagined him having, give him a 1.

The Discussion: How comfortable are you with Chorney as the team's sixth or seventh defenseman next season? Do the underlying numbers match what you saw on the ice from Chorney this season? What would it take for you to give him a "10" next year?