Gaborik set a pretty high standard last year in his first year as a Ranger having the 23rd best season of any player in franchise history. He put up 42-44-86 in 76 games and as everyone knows, was definitely worthy of the Hart (not many are) and team MVP as well.
This year he obviously missed some time, but hes still producing at nearly his usual PPG pace with 22 points in 25 games. The team is also winning all kinds of ways and despite Gaborik's average year, theyre not depending on him to carry the offense anymore, which is huge. Lets remember he missed games due to separating his shoulder and you can tell at some points this season, he has definitely been playing through something (tender groin maybe). Im sure he is also keyed in more on other teams' gameplans as well, which is why its so important for this team to somehow acquire another elite threat to help do what we had hoped Frolov would and take some weight off him.
He has 11 goals in 25 games. Sure, that looks good on about 95% of other players stats around the league, but certainly not for Gabby. However, with the exception of a few players having only played one game (thus having a 1.00 GPG average, Gabby is still around 17/18th in league GPG. Hes also 37th in PPG average, after finishing 11th last year. He usually is always around the top 20 or 15 in PPG.
If you havent noticed, there are alot of players having "down" seasons. Look at Ovechkin and Kovalchuk. 14 goals in 40 games and 9 goals in 36 games, respectively. As you can see, even outside the top 3 snipers since the lockout (Ovechkin, Gaborik and Kovalchuk) this hasnt been the year of the sniper, outside of Crosby and Stamkos, who both have a pretty commanding lead over everyone else.
Point is this, sure Gaborik is having a pretty average year, but his numbers are still pretty respectable when you put them with everyone elses and you can definitely tell hes been playing through something. If this were Gabby last year we'd be lobbying for 15th in the conference but the team has grown considerably and EVERYONE is chipping in.
He did score a huge goal tonight as well in Tampa so hopefully this will get him going.