The Habs are a much better team than last year, that's for sure. But how much better? Looking at the underlying numbers using the VERSUS Team Comparison Tool, we can pin-point some major differences in performance between last year's version of the Habs, and this years'.
The overarching improvements have been overall 5v5 OFFENCE generation, and a better PK, which is off-set by a bad PP this year. A closer look reveals more specific details:
1️⃣ SHOOT % - is way up. Last year's 5v5 SHOOT% was at the very bottom of the league. This year it's in the middle of the pack at 8.3%. Which also means greater likelihood of sustainability. (it's not unrealistically high)
2️⃣ OFFENCE WHEN TRAILING - the teams ability to generate offence when trailing is near the top of the league. It has been an exciting component of this year's Canadiens.
The bad new is, these two major improvements over last year have taken a hit the LAST 10 GMs (see 2nd chart below). The 5vs5 offence generation has taken a nose dive and so has the defence (nose-bleeding high-danger chances).
How are they still winning? Carey Price. His SAVE % has sky rocketed. This is a bit concerning, as the underlying numbers do not align with sustainability here. But this is the NHL. Anything can happen. The Habs could ride Price as they have in seasons past.
LAST YEAR VERSUS THIS YEAR
2018-19 FULL SEASON (left) VERSUS LAST 10 GMs (right)