It goes without saying that when players are traded, stories are written that describe their careers, their styles, and their potential impact on the team they left and the team they join. But every player has a story on another level. Every player has something about them unique to themselves. That’s where we come in, with five random facts about the new players descending on Washington to help the Capitals in their stretch run.
- At Thanksgiving dinner – whether Canadian or American Thanksgiving – he is not likely to ask for seconds. Weber has one goal in each of his last five seasons, including this one.
- Since the 2011-2012 season, Weber has the third-worst plus-minus among defensemen (minus-64). One of the others – Justin Schultz – also was traded in the last few days (from Edmonton to Pittsburgh). Plus-Minus is a team thing, and boy has he played on some bad teams. Over those same five years, no team lost more games in regulation time than the Buffalo Sabres on which he played (186).
- When he was 15, Weber played for the Pittsburgh Junior Penguins (he was born in Pittsburgh). He recorded 109 penalty minutes in 28 games. Some folks learn early that there are guys not to be trifled with.
- Mike Weber was traded for a draft pick, but in one way he resembles just-traded Brooks Laich. We was the longest tenured Sabre at the time of his trade (just as Laich was the longest tenured Capitals at the time of his trade), the only player remaining on the current Buffalo roster from the 2007-2008 season.
- Mike Weber and Alex Ovechkin are already acquainted, having introduced themselves to one another with a series of "hockey handshakes" in a 4-3 shootout win for the Caps in March 2015.
- The Capitals are Winnik’s seventh NHL team. Here’s the drill… drafted by the Phoenix Coyotes where he played in 202 games, then the Colorado Avalanche (143 games), then the San Jose Sharks (21 games), then the Anaheim Ducks (124 games), then the Toronto Maple Leafs for his first tour there (58 games), then the Pittsburgh Penguins (21 games), then back to Toronto (56 games), and now to Washington.
- Winnik is one of five players since the 2004-2005 lockout to play in 84 regular season games in a single season. He did it in 2011-2012 when he appeared in 63 games for Colorado and 21 games for San Jose.
- Only one active forward in the NHL has appeared in more than 500 career games and has a lower career shooting percentage than Winnik (6.1 percent in 625 games). Florida’ Shawn Thornton has a career shooting percentage of 4.4 percent in 642 career games.
- Last season, Winnik got as many second-place votes for the Selke award as top defensive forward (one) as Andrew Ladd, just traded from Winnipeg to Chicago and thought by some to be the biggest prize in the trading deadline period, so there is that.
- In nine seasons, including this one to date, Winnik has never had one in which he was charged with more giveaways than he was credited with takeaways. His career ratio of takeaways to giveaways is 2.21-to-1.