Whether they’re paid $500,000 or $6,500,000 (cough Orpik) as a fan it’s frustrating to watch a guy play 15+ minutes per night when he hasn’t scored in months. Below is a list of 12 skaters who played at least half the season but didn’t light the lamp once:
There were a lot of questions raised when Brooks Orpik was signed for 5 years at $27.5 million. Prior to being picked up by Washington he had 13 career goals in 11 seasons with the Penguins (if you’re wondering that’s 703 games played). Orpik wasn’t signed to score goals but when you’re being paid that kind of money and skating almost 22 minutes per night it’s expected that you’ll at least contribute a couple goals.
The second highest paid skater on the list is Josh Gorges who made $3.9 million last season and played a total of 46 games for the Sabres. Similar to Orpik, Gorges wasn’t signed to be a goal scorer (14 career goals) but it’s almost like he isn’t even trying to score; he only had 28 shots on the season (0.61 shot per game). The Sabres will be stuck with Gorges cap hit until 2018.
Michael Latta and Patrick Kaleta were the only two forwards (min. 41 GP) who didn’t light the lamp last season. With a cap hit of only $575,000 the offensive expectations for Latta are low but he’s going to need to produce a little more if he wants to stay on the Capitals roster. Kaleta isn’t an offensive juggernaut by any means but he typically scores one or two goals per season. With only 4 points in his last 3 seasons Kaleta’s time in the NHL may be finished as he enters the 2015-16 season without a contract.
Pardy and Sustr deserve special mentions after accomplishing the improbable last season. After failing to score in 55 regular season games Pardy scored a beautiful goal in the playoffs. On that very same night Sustr did the exact same thing and scored this goal in the Lightning’s series against the Wings. April 18th was one memorable night for these two gentlemen.