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The Big Question: Which player has been the most disappointing?

Jan 16, 2012, 2:25 PM EDT

Ilya Bryzgalov Getty Images

The Big Question will be a weekly feature on PHT where we ask a question, provide some background and ask you, the reader, to weigh in with your opinions.

Today’s question: Which player is having the most disappointing season?

Last week the NHL announced its 2012 All-Star roster, a collection of players that are having superb seasons. But enough with all that celebrating the good – let’s get down to blasting the bad.

There’s no shortage of underperformers in 2011-12. A few to consider:

Ville Leino – Signed with the Sabres for $27 million over six years. Has three goals in 33 games.

Ryan Kesler – Scored 41 times last year for the Canucks. Just 12 goals so far, and only six of them even strength (read: without the Sedins).

Dwayne Roloson – Horrendous numbers (3.68 GAA, .880) for the guy that helped the Lightning get to within a game of the 2011 Stanley Cup finals.

Eric Staal – One of the league’s top snipers is on pace for 19 goals with a minus-37 rating.

Mike Cammalleri – For a $6 million cap hit, 10 goals isn’t enough. Allegedly not the greatest teammate either.

Brenden Morrow – Seven goals in 37 games for a guy that scored 33 last year. Plus, he plays on a team without a ton of depth, so it hurts even more.

Lubomir Visnovsky – Not even close to producing at the same “top scoring defenseman in the NHL” rate as 2010-11.

Ilya Bryzgalov – A huge concern for the Flyers. Bryzgalov is signed for big money until 2020 and in his first season in Philly has some of the worst goalie statistics in the league.

OK, your turn – go say mean things about players that are letting you down.

  1. abrienza428 - Jan 16, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    I think Staal is the winner out of your list

  2. tmjm621 - Jan 16, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    Leino. I think Buffalo got jipped big time

  3. flyersfandave - Jan 16, 2012 at 2:58 PM

    Bryz is a huge let down in Philly but a projected -37 takes the prize.

  4. nothingman20 - Jan 16, 2012 at 3:14 PM

    Has to be Bryz. He’s by far and away the most money for the longest number of years so if he doesn’t get his act together he’s going to kill the cap for a loooooong time.

    • drewsylvania - Jan 16, 2012 at 3:37 PM

      The best part is that we all knew this was going to happen.

  5. drewsylvania - Jan 16, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    In Boston, we’d be screaming about Joe Corvo if the team were suffering because of his lousy play.

    Funny that DiPietro isn’t on this list. Though maybe it’s because the expectations are so low now, and he’d be at the top of the list every year.

    • odj810 - Jan 16, 2012 at 6:50 PM

      what did you really expect from joe corvo? he cost us a 4th rounder and is our 6th defenseman. i think he’s been fine

  6. danphipps01 - Jan 16, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Staal’s been truly fucking awful, but so are the ‘Canes as a whole. There are a couple good players, but they can’t make it go on their own. Staal’s got like two good D and a hit-and-miss goalie behind him, so his -37 is at least partly explained that way. He’s still unforgiveably terrible for his enormous salary, but he’s on a lottery squad – how great could he possibly get when his team as a whole is that bad?

    That’s what makes it Bryzgalov. The Flyers are GREAT. Offensively, defensively, they’ve got a laundry list of All-Star candidates, Olympic players, NHL legends and up-and-coming superstars. Bryzgalov, meanwhile, is amongst the NHL’s worst goalies. Without the Coyotes’ defensive system to make him look good, he’s coming up short – and given that he’s signed to a Luongo contract, that’s absolutely unacceptable. He’s signed forever, and it’s at a huge annual value. Even without an NTC, that amount of money for his level of utter mediocrity would make him uttelry immoveable. He’s in Philly ’till the end, and if he doesn’t magically turn into a spectacular goaltender, this goes down as one of the worst contracts in recent memory.

    So, yeah, Bryzgalov’s the worst. Staal’s -37 is bad, but at least he’s on a shitty team in general and up for renewal sooner. Bryz is gonna be haunting Holmgren’s nightmares for years.

  7. taytay099 - Jan 16, 2012 at 3:54 PM

    Keith Ballard.

  8. jpelle82 - Jan 16, 2012 at 4:52 PM

    Lubomir Visnovsky…did anyone really think he was a top scorer? dont know if he should be on the list…he had a bunch of assists and pp points on a team that was scoring a lot of goals last year but has had no real consistency that would garner a top scoring title yet, he was never a difference maker, just an opportunist. gotta be staal though for most disappointing…although a month ago i would have said it was ovechkin.

  9. kantnockdahustle89 - Jan 16, 2012 at 4:59 PM

    This is a tough list. Leino was a scary signing because he was on a great team so maybe hes not as disappointing as the Sabres are stupid.

    Bryz still has time to gel with his team. It looked like the signing of Vokoun might have backfired on the Caps but he is playing out of his mind right now after struggling early.

    Staal is on a bad team and hes struggling. It wont last forever.

    Morrow is getting up there in age so maybe hes slowing down a little.

    Roloson also can use the age excuse. He really is old, not Morrow 32 old but a decade older in fact.

    Cammalleri may use Iginla to get his numbers back up.

    Sooo my vote goes to Kesler who has 0 excuses to use.

    • danphipps01 - Jan 16, 2012 at 6:42 PM

      Thing is, Kesler’s only having a slightly worse than average season by the numbers. Usually, he scores twenty-some goals. He’s had one forty-plus breakout and now everyone naively assumes he’ll do that forever. It’s silly. Of course he won’t. The bulk of his goals last year were power play capitalization with the Sedins. He’s never been a fantastic scorer at even strength. This is only slightly worse than typical and he’s still providing the solid two-way play the Canucks rely on from him.

      Contrast this with Leino, Staal and Bryzgalov, all around for a long time and significant values and all playing the most brutal hockey of their careers. You can’t even pretend there’s upside to a goalie near the bottom of the standings, an $8m forward on pace for less than twenty goals and a -37, or a winger competing with Scott Gomez for sheer inability to do the only thing he’s actually paid for.

      Speaking of, why in the fuck is Scott Gomez not up there, anyway?

    • ikillchicken - Jan 16, 2012 at 9:13 PM

      You don’t consider coming back from a devastating injury and missing training camp, pre-season and the first few weeks of the season an excuse?

      Kesler has been sub-par I agree but to say he has “0 excuses” is just ridiculous especially when you look at some of the rather tenuous ones you mention for other players. There’s plenty of room for improvement but plenty to justify his play so far as well.

  10. thatsdoinit - Jan 16, 2012 at 5:03 PM

    Kesler makes the most disappointing list and most overrated list?


  11. buffalomafia - Jan 16, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    They forgot Ryan Miller! He is on his knees more than my girlfriend giving me head! I mean the saying in Buffalo is Miller equals the high life & not meaning Miller beer! He gets beat up high all the time!

    Now Miller is crying csuse his wife works the west coast! Really?

    • teaspoon1731 - Jan 16, 2012 at 11:51 PM

      You’re kidding me right? That man has carried the Sabres for years. You get a new owner promising to spend money and do the team justice, and yet they still have zero defense. Zero! The let down isn’t the goalie, it’s the ownership for riding him for so long.

      And no, I’m not a Miller nor a Sabres fan. I’m a realist.

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