From Backstrom to Steckel, we're taking a quick look at and grading the 2007-08 season for every* player who laced 'em up for the Caps during the campaign (and is still with the team) with an eye towards 2008-09. Next up, Sergei Fedorov.
Contract Status: UFA; 2007-08 salary of $6.08M
Age (as of October 1, 2008): 38
NHL Seasons (including 2007-08): 17
2007-08 Regular Season Stats: 68 games played, 11 goals, 30 assists, -5, 38 PIMs (18gp, 2g, 11a, -2, 8 PIMs for Washington)
Key Stat: Fedorov won 57.98% of his faceoffs for the Caps during the regular season and 54.6% in the playoffs.
Surprising Stat: Fedorov's point totals have dropped in each of his last four seasons.
The Good: Fedorov finished the season ranked 12th in the League (and third on the Caps) in faceoffs at 55.6% and gave the Caps a legitimate second-line center to take some of the pressure off Nicklas Backstrom and spark Alex Semin once he arrived. Feds was an outstanding penalty-killer and part-time decent power play quarterback for the Caps and a tremendous leader and mentor, especially to the Alexes (this was most clearly visible in Semin's playoff efforts). Once Fedorov was moved to the top line during the playoffs, his offensive numbers took off as he had a goal and three assists in the series' final three games. Without question, Fedorov is still a brilliant passer and an one of the smartest hockey players you'll ever see - if this was all the Sergei Fedorov Caps fans will get, it was a treat.
The Bad: Now, a lot of this has to do with the playing the bulk of the season for an offensively-challenged Columbus team, but... Fedorov had the second-worst points-per-game total (.60) of his illustrious career in 2007-08, and even his points-per-game for the Caps (.72) would rank as the third-worst season-long rate of his career. His 11 goals were the second-lowest total of his career, his thirty assists were his third-lowest total, and he had the fewest shots per game of his career, the second-worst shooting percentage, and the second-worse plus/minus - all of the above coming in the least amount of ice time per game he's seen in his 17 years in the League. Since the lockout, he has missed time with injuries to his groin (13 games in 2005), back (2 games in 2006), shoulder (6 games in 2006), elbow (3 games in 2007) and hip (1 game in 2008) and a concussion (13 games in 2008).
The Vote: Rate Fedorov on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential for the season after he was traded to the Caps - if he had the best 18 games you could have imagined him having, give him a 10; if he more or less played as you expected he would, give him a 5 or a 6; if he had the worst 18 games you could have imagined him having, give him a 1.
The Question(s): Potentially an unrestricted free agent come July 1, should Fedorov be in the Caps' plans for 2008-09 and if so, in what role? If he is back, what will it take for him to earn a 10 next year?
If you've missed any of the previous 2007-08 Rink Wraps, click here, get caught up, and vote - polls will stay open for a while.
* And by "every," we mean every one who played more than just a handful of games.