Thursday, February 15, 2007

Worst NHL Regular This Season

I try to keep track of the player, who has a regular spot in his team's lineup, who is contributing the least in the NHL. In a typical season, "name" players lead this category at the beginning of the year, because an unknown playing poorly would typically not be able to stay in the lineup. As time passes, marginal players who have regular fourth line roles tend to take over.

This season began with Petr Nedved and Derian Hatcher whop had been the worst NHL regular. Both are name players, so both have been given second chances, and though neither have been superstars this season, neither are playing as poorly has they did at the beginning of the year.

As time passes in the season, it is possible for a marginal player to be the worst regular (early in the year a marginal player playing poorly tends to lose his job). For a while, I think the worst NHL regular was Ryan Hollweg of the New York Rangers. Recently, Hollweg has not been a star, but at least he scored a goal for the Rangers (Feb 9th vs Tampa), so I am making a new pick as the worst NHL regular. I pick Jody Shelley of the Columbus Blue Jackets. He is a fourth line "energy" player (or possibly just a goon). So far this year in Columbus he has 51 games played. He is yet to record a single point. He doesn't even get a shot on goal every other game (he only has 20 so far). The only number of note in his statline is his 73 penalty minutes. Columbus only gives him five minutes of ice time a game, but given how little he does for the team, why give him any ice time at all?

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