Dylan Coghlan Is Good, But Just Not Seasoned As Well

Jan 21, 2023; Elmont, New York, USA; Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dylan Coghlan (15) controls the puck against New York Islanders left wing Matt Martin (17) during the second period at UBS Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 21, 2023; Elmont, New York, USA; Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dylan Coghlan (15) controls the puck against New York Islanders left wing Matt Martin (17) during the second period at UBS Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports /
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Dylan Coghlan remaining on the Carolina Hurricanes roster, even as a healthy scratch, remains an enigma for many Hurricanes fans. In a fit of intellectual curiosity, I have decided to take a look at Coghlan and how he stacks up against several other Carolina Hurricanes defensemen at similar points in their respective careers. With each player, I will get as close to as many games between the AHL and NHL as Coghlan’s 285, since he has time in both the AHL and the NHL. This is to include both a larger sample size and to get a better picture of his numbers in comparison.*

Dec 22, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry (35) defends the net against Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dylan Coghlan (15) during the second period at PPG Paints Arena. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 22, 2022; Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry (35) defends the net against Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dylan Coghlan (15) during the second period at PPG Paints Arena. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports /

My goal is to see just which player Carolina’s defensive roster Dylan Coghlan would resemble at roughly 285 games into their career, if he would at all.

Again, I will be  comparing the Dylan Coghlan of today against the player of the past to see which player he most resembles. I am going to use that comparison in attempting to determine why the Dylan Coghlan of today, is not getting game time.

Dylan Coghlan Career Line

  • AHL- 131 GP, 28 G, 41 A, 69 P,16 PPG, 0 SHG, 4 GWG
  • NHL- 104 GP, 6 G, 16 A, 22 P, 2 PPG, 0 SHG,1 GWG
  • Totals- 285 GP, 34 G, 57 A, 91 P, 18 PPG, 0 SHG, 5 GWG

Jalen Chatfield.

Chatfield had a slow start to his NHL career but as part of the Hanfield Express Line, and now playing with Shayne Gostisbehere have exploded in what is his first full season in the league and with the Carolina Hurricanes. I initially thought that perhaps Coghlan is still in Raleigh because he has the potential, like Chatfield, to blow the doors off at any time.

  • AHL- 209 GP, 10 G, 34 A, 44 P,  0 PPG, 1 SHG, 2 GWG
  • NHL– 95 GP, 5 G, 11 A,16 P, 0 PPG, 1 SHG, 2 GWG
  • Total- 304 GP, 15 G, 35 A, 60 P, 0 PPG, 2 SHS, 4 GWG

Coghlan v. Chatfield

  • Coghlan- 283 GP, 34 G, 57 A, 91 P, 18 PPG, 0 SHG, 5 GWG
  • Chatfield- 304 GP, 15 G, 35 A, 60 P,  0 PPG, 2 SHS, 4 GWG

Chatfield had more time in the AHL (3 full seasons), but Coghlan (1 season and change) has more NHL experience. Still Coghlan, surprisingly, is higher across the board than Chatfield, with one notable exception. Jalen Chatfield has twice played in the Calder Cup play-offs to Coghlan’s one. Chatfield played with the Utica Comets in 2018 and the Chicago Wolves in 2022. That 23 games of playoff experience netted 9 extra points for Chatfield. Coghlan’s only trip to the AHL playoffs was with the 2019 Chicago Wolves added 2 points, and 7 games.

Brady Skjei

Skjei has been a consistent starter since making it to the NHL, but his AHL numbers show why it did not take long for him move up. At just one season and 8 games he did so fairly fast.

  • AHL- 91 GP,  5 G, 21 A, 31 P, 1 PPG, 0 SHG, 1 GWG
  • NHL- 169 GP, 9 G, 59 A, 64 P, 0 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG
  • Totals- 260 GP, 14 G, 80 A, 94 P, 1 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG

Coghlan v. Skjei

  • Coghlan- 283 GP, 34 G, 57 A, 91 P, 18 PPG, 0 SHG, 5 GWG
  • Skjei-260 GP, 14 G, 80 A, 94 P, 1 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG

Brady Skjei took just one full AHL season, and two full NHL to equal Dylan Coghlan’s 285 games played, and his numbers reflect. He passed Coghlan’s totals in that amount of time bettering him in all but goals. Skjei also had a BOATLOAD worth of playoff experience at the NHL level. In his first three years in the NHL, Skjei played in three playoffs racking up big time stats as well, not to mention the 2015 Calder Cup experience where he tallied three points in 15 games.

Again, Coghlan just has the one AHL play-off run.

Calvin de Haan

Going up the Hurricanes defensive unit, I can at least see some comparisons between Coghlan and de Haan.

AHL- 80 GP, 3 G, 20 A, 23 P, 1 PPG, 0 SHG, 0 GWG
NHL- 188 GP, 6 G, 38 A, 44 P, 1 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG
Totals- 268 GP, 9 G, 58 A, 67 P, 2 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG

Coghlan v. de Haan

  • Coghlan- 283 GP, 34 G, 57 A, 91 P, 18 PPG, 0 SHG, 5 GWG
  • de Haan- 268 GP, 9 G, 58 A, 67 P, 2 PPG, 1 SHG, 1 GWG

I stopped with de Haan’s third full season (2015-16) in the NHL, so his totals will reflect all three of his season in the AHL. This gives a rough, side by side in that de Haan had roughly a full year’s worth of games in the in the AHL and so does Coghlan. De Haan did have more time in the NHL by the time he reached the magic 285 games.

Stats wise, Coghlan still has the numbers over the starting Hurricane. Given that Calvin de Haan has yet to score 34 goals in his NHL career, Dylan Coghlan has him beat there. De Haan had more assists but doing some rough math it would take him two more seasons after the 285 mark to score as many points. Again where Coghlan falls behind is play-off experience. Calvin de Haan had experience going for the Calder Cup in the AHL and two years worth of time seeking Lord Stanley’s Cup with the New York Islanders.

Brent Burns

There was no way Burns’ career stats would be beaten, but I was curious to see if perhaps Coghlan looks like a much younger Brent Burns. Granted Burns had a beard and was chopping down trees when Dylan Coghlan was still wetting the bed, I was interested…….and that is not totally fair since Brent Burns had a beard and was chopping trees down in diapers.

  • AHL- 78 GP, 11 G, 16 A, 27 P, 6 PPG, 2 SHG, 3 GWG
  • NHL-185 GP, 12 G, 35 A, 47 P, 4 PPG, 0 SHG 4 GWG
  • Totals- 263 GP, 23 G, 51 A, 74 P, 10 PPG, 2 SHG, 7 GWG

Coghlan v. Burns

  • Coghlan- 283 GP, 34 G, 57 A, 91 P, 18 PPG, 0 SHG, 5 GWG
  • Burns- 263 GP, 23 G, 51 A, 74 P, 10 PPG, 2 SHG, 7 GWG

Coghlan again beats a Canes starter BUT, only because Burns has 20 fewer games, since adding the 2007-08 NHL season  for Burns (which Burns played over 80 games) would put him at more games then Coghlan.**

Where Burns (again roughly 285 games in) wins out is that he was producing more in the NHL from day one. His rookie season was impressive, and even being sent down to the Houston Aeros after that did not deter his numbers. He also was (and still is) good for big time goals where that is not the case with Dylan Coghlan. Looking at 7 GWG in essentially three season would be hard to pass up.

Originally I thought Dylan Coghlan needed more time, like Jalen Chatfield took, to pop off thus the Canes were keeping him around to see when he was ready. As the number show, he is somewhere between a Brady Skajei and a Calvin de Haan at the same points in their career. But his numbers have been produced on mostly level ground. All of other Carolina’s defensemen are more experiences at higher levels. Burns, and de Haan, had more NHL experience at the same point in their careers, Brady Skjei had better numbers, and Jalen Chatfield has accelerated faster.

Maybe it is time for the Hurricanes to send Coghlan back to the Chicago Wolves where he can produce, or think about a summer time trade. His numbers are not terrible but given the level of play he has scored them, he might not be at the same caliber of player other Canes getting more time on the ice are.

*I will go in chronological order.

**Adding this season, where Burns completely went bonkers would make things more interesting.