Top 10 players with low 2015-16 shooting percentages
One of my strategies in one-year leagues is to choose players who take a lot of shots. In this year's expert draft, I selected Steven Stamkos, Corey Perry, Taylor Hall and Max Pacioretty with my first four picks. My reasoning is they contribute more to fantasy hockey as they are more likely to score, get power play goals and also directly impact their plus-minus more than non-shooters. That's why shooting percentages are so important. It's necessary to know that a usually sure-fire 25-goal guy may have scored just 15 goals because he had his worst shooting percentage season as opposed to taking fewer shots.
Below are 10 players who just had below-average shooting percentage seasons. It's imperative to keep in mind that not all of them will rebound next year. This season may be the first in an annual decrease for some of these guys. But it's worth keeping an eye on.
10. Radim Vrbata
Much of Vrbata's success next year will depend on where he winds up since he's an UFA this summer. But he didn't do himself any favours this past season. His 6.5 shooting percentage was his worst since he also had 6.5 with the Blackhawks back in 2006-07. His shooting percentage fluctuates wildly anywhere from 7.3 to 15.1. But his career average is 10.1. This year his career average would have seen him hit 20 goals instead of 13.
Zetterberg hasn't been a consistent goal-scorer for years, and he hasn't been a 40-goal guy in about eight seasons. But part of that reason could be his shooting percentage. This year he scored 13 goals on 214 shots, good for a 6.1 shooting percentage. That is way down from his career average of an even 10 per cent. His career average would have given him 21 goals.
8. Rick Nash
Nash has a career 12.3 shooting percentage. Only once had he ever been below 10 per cent, and that was 9.8 per cent in 2011-12. In 2014-15, when he potted a career-high 42 goals, it was 13.8 per cent. That's why it was a bit shocking to see him at 8.2 per cent this year. If he had shot his career average, he would have had an extra eight goals and would have had 44 points in 60 games. Not great, but not as disappointing a season.
7. Nazem Kadri
There's good news and bad news when it comes to Kadri: On the bright side, his shot total has increased significantly since 2012-13 (his first full campaign). But on the same token, his shooting percentage has come down just as significantly. Let's compare the years:
2012-13: 18 goals, 107 shots, 16.8 %
2013-14: 20 goals, 148 shots, 13.5 %
2014-15: 18 goals, 176 shots, 10.2 %
2015-16: 17 goals, 260 shots, 6.5 %
He's having to shoot the puck twice as much now to get the same number of goals. That's not a good sign. He'll probably recover his shooting percentage somewhat next year, but his shot totals will probably come down with Austin Matthews and a potential Steven Stamkos in the lineup. I am starting to doubt he can ever become a 30-goal guy.
6. Seth Jones
The trade to Columbus boosted Jones' shooting percentage, but just a small amount. He was shooting 1.4 per cent with Nashville and 2.4 per cent with Columbus for an overall total of just 1.9 per cent. This was much lower than his first two NHL seasons of 6 and 6.5 per cent. He did set a career high in shots and saw his ice time rise five minutes on average per game after the trade. So odds are he can have his first 10-goal, 40-point season in 2016-17.
It's kind of fitting that two players involved in the biggest trade of the season both make this list. Sure Johansen's assists were still there, but his goal-scoring was a disappointment. In his first breakout season with Columbus, he netted 33 goals thanks to a 13.9 shooting percentage. The following year he had 26 goals on 12.9 shooting percentage. This year was simply not up to expectations, with 14 goals on 7.6 shooting percentage. Odds are he'll rebound.
4. Ryan Getzlaf
It doesn't matter if Getzlaf is more of a setup man. In 11 seasons, he has been under 11 per cent shooting just twice: 5.9 per cent in 2011-12 and 7.2 per cent this season. His 13 goals this year was the second worst season of his career. His horrible start to the season plays a big role as he had just one goals on his first 62 shots (a 1.6 shooting percentage). Next year he should be back up to a 20-goal season.
There was no doubt that Voracek was one of the most disappointing players this season. So much so he spent some time on the fourth line. He scored on just 5.2 per cent of his shots, which is way below his career 9.5 per cent. This helped lead to just 11 goals, which was his lowest amount since his rookie season in 2008-09. Shooting his career average would have put him at 20 goals.
Going into the 2015-16 campaign, Johnson had a career 14.2 shooting percentage. This year he was at 8.4 per cent. That's perfectly acceptable for most players, but very disappointing when it comes to Johnson. Whether it was puck luck, quality of shots or an injury that took some zip of his shot, Johnson's disappointing season was a major hindrance to fantasy GMs.
1. Torey Krug
Most people wouldn't think that Krug struggled this season. After all, he set career highs in assists, points, and shots and also averaged a career-high 21:37 minutes per game. Think of how good he could have been if he had only been able to put the puck in the net. Krug scored just four goals on 244 shots for a shooting percentage of 1.6. This is way lower than his previous two seasons of 5.9 and 7.7 per cent respectively. If Krug had matched that 5.9 per cent, he would have had an extra 10 goals and been considered a 50-point dman. Something to keep in mind when drafting in September.
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