Jeff Carter (Los Angeles Kings)
Photo Credit: AP
Shocking, I know. But do not get caught up in his goal production this year. Yes, he has scored 17 on the year, giving him credit for 23 percent of the Kings’ goals. But the problem lies in his assists. Carter only registered two assists on the year so far. Two.
Between even strength and power plays he has played at one point or another with several elite players. Starting with Dustin Brown and Anze Kopitar as well as Mike Richards for forwards, he also has Drew Doughty on the back end for the power play. Two assists places him in a tie for 442nd in the NHL and that is nowhere near good enough. The infamous Paul Bisonnette even has three on the year. It is time to forget about the goal production and realize that he has to make his teammates around him better.
Chris Kunitz (Pittsburgh Penguins)
Photo Credit: Kevin Hoffman-US PRESSWIRE
The average NHL player does not see the age of 33 in the league, let alone find himself on the top-five goal scorer’s list. That being said, Kunitz is reaping the reward of playing next to the demi-god that is Sidney Crosby. Outside of Teemu Selanne, scorers do not peak past the age of 30. Kunitz is above average, but not a big time scorer.
I’m convinced I would able to make it to the 30-goal mark in a standard season if I was playing alongside Crosby. Heck, Mario Lemieux could climb out of the owner’s box, lace up, and put up 40. Sid the Kid averages almost an assist a game. He is fifth on the all-time per game list behind Gretzky, Lemieux, Orr, and Forsberg; only a few guys who know how to dish it out. Even more impressive is his margin between him and Peter Stastny, almost a tenth of an assist per game. Crosby is on a mission to tear up the record books and Kunitz is just along for the ride.
Brian Campbell (Florida Panthers)
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee
Once one of the best two-way defenseman in the game with the Sabers and Blackhawks, Campbell has come up way short of stellar of late. With six goals and ten assists, his offensive numbers are not horrible. However, as a defenseman, he has to take care of his own zone first and a minus 17 is not cutting it. That lands him 261st in the league and that is just among defensemen.
One thing that is not near the bottom for defensemen is his salary. His $7,142,875 cap hit is more than Chara, Karlsson, Doughty, and Seabrook. Even more ridiculous is the percentage of the Panthers’ cap he takes up. Consuming 12.6 percent of their cap, Campbell takes up more space that everyone mentioned above along with Weber, Suter, Keith, and Yandle. GM Dale Tallon is not getting his bang for a buck or anything close to that. Over valued and overrated, Campbell is not doing anything that would bring the Panthers out of last place any time soon.