Steven Lorentz 2020-21 Season By The Numbers
- Age: 25
- NHL Seasons: 1
- Scoring: 2 goals, 6 assists, 8 points in 45 games
- Advanced numbers: 53.42 CF%, 53.08 SCF%, 53.85 GF%
- Average TOI: 10:12 ES, 0:04 PP, 0:09 SH
- Contract status: One year left at $725,000
Every team needs at least one “feel good story” every season, and Steven Lorenz was certainly that for the 2020-21 Carolina Hurricanes. The 2015 seventh rounder, after a long and winding journey through various levels of hockey, got a chance to fulfill his dream and make his NHL debut early in the season with several lineup regulars out due to COVID protocols.
Lorentz was in and out of the lineup for the next couple weeks before eventually claiming a permanent role among the Canes’ bottom-six forward group, one he wouldn’t relinquish.
One of the biggest highlights of his season came when he scored his first NHL goal in Nashville, a marker that stood up as the game winner.
On the ice, Lorentz proved himself as a prototypical bottom-six forward, willing to get in on the forecheck and create havoc, play physical and work his hardest every shift on the ice.
He might have some more offense to give, however, as his possession numbers were positive and he seemed to have some poor puck luck in terms of quality chances not going in.
Off the ice, it was impossible not to feel better after talking to Lorentz, hearing him talk or just seeing the smile on his face. As a seventh rounder who worked his way up to the NHL, Lorentz’s appreciation for being in the NHL always shined through.
No matter what, throughout his rookie season, he always seemed to be happy, always had a smile on his face and any interview with the 25-year-old forward was a must-watch.
“You talk to the guy and you come away with a smile on your face,” Rod Brind’Amour said of Lorentz. “He’s just happy to be alive. He’s happy to have this opportunity to play in the NHL, whether there’s zero fans, nothing, whatever. It’s not the ideal debut, but he’s just happy to be here. He wants to contribute. He doesn’t just want to check the list off that he played a game in the NHL. He wants to do something special. And you root for guys like that. I don’t know what it is about him, but you just do root for him.”
Lorentz proved capable of playing both center and wing in his first NHL season, but, with Derek Stepan in the fold now, figures to be a bottom-six winger next season, likely slotting in on the fourth line with Stepan and Jordan Martinook. He could slide into the middle in the event of an injury though.
One area Lorentz could make more of an impact going forward is on the penalty kill. He played just nine seconds per game with Carolina down a man last year, but his skill set seems ideal for killing penalties, so it’ll be interesting to see if Brind’Amour trusts him with more PK time.
Lorentz is an RFA after next season, but is the kind of player you want around on your team and in the locker room, and should be a fixture in the Canes’ bottom six for years to come.
How would you grade Steven Lorentz’s 2020-21 season?
This poll is closed
A - Outstanding performance
B - Above average performance
C - Average performance
D - Below average performance
F - Significantly below average performance