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, Tomas Fleischmann.
Contract Status: 2008-09 salary of $725,000; RFA after 2009-10
Age (as of October 1, 2008): 24
NHL Seasons (including 2007-08): 1+
2007-08 Regular Season Stats: 75 games played, 10 goals, 20 assists, -7, 18 PIMs
Key Stat: Fleischmann gave the Caps eight double-digit goal scorers (not including the trade deadline acquisitions).
Surprising Stat: Fleischmann had five points (2G, 3A) in the five games in which he got more than 16 minutes of ice time.
The Good: Fleischmann obliterated his previous career highs in goals and assists and had the fourth best shooting percentage of any forward on the team who played the whole season for the Caps, as well as the third best takeaway-to-giveaway ratio on the team, behind only checking centers Boyd Gordon and David Steckel. Flash's monthly point totals increased in each of the season's first five months (before falling off the table in March), and he scored two huge goals in the last five games of the regular season - an OT winner in Tampa and the game's first goal in the season-ending must-win against the Panthers.
The Bad: Fleischmann's minus-seven rating was tied for third worst on the team and he (we?) suffered through goal-less droughts of 14, 13, 13 and 10 games. Fleischmann drew a woeful (for a "skill" forward) 0.4 penalties per sixty minutes of ice time (by comparison, Gordon drew twice as many), had the fewest blocked shots of anyone on the team who played more than 23 games (and he played 75) and only 26 hits (Chris Clark had two fewer in 57 fewer games). This overall lack of physicality made him more or less unplayable in the postseason.
The Vote: Rate Fleischmann on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential for the season - if he had the best year 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 year you could have imagined him having, give him a 1.
The Questions: What role do you see Fleischmann playing on the 2008-09 Caps? Healthy scratch? Top six winger? Trade bait? What will it take for him to earn a 10 rating 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.