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2016-17 Rink Wrap: Jakub Vrana

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From Alzner to Winnik, we're taking a look at and grading the 2016-17 season for every player who laced 'em up for the Caps for a significant number of games during the campaign, with an eye towards 2017-18. Next up, Jakub Vrana

Tampa Bay Lightning v Washington Capitals Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Japers' Rink Player Card (click for a hi-res version; data via NHL.com, Corsica.hockey and Cap Friendly):

Vrana's Season, Game-by-Game (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Vrana and His Linemates (chart by @muneebalamcu):

Vrana's 5v5 Teammates and Competition (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Vrana's 5v5 Usage (chart by @muneebalamcu):

Vrana's With-or-Without You (via HockeyViz, explained here):

Vrana's Rolling Shot-Attempt (Corsi) -For Percentage (chart by @muneebalamcu):

Vrana’s Goals Against Replacement (GAR) Components (chart by @ChartingHockey, data by @DTMAboutHeart, explained here, Tableau here):

Previous Rink Wraps: None

Key Stat: Vrana earned four of his six points on the season, and all three goals, on the power play.

Interesting Stat: Peerless has a good one; go read it. He also tallied as many “shots tipped” in 21 GP as did Alex Ovechkin over a full season (7).

The Good: Drafted by the Caps with the 13th pick overall in the 2014 draft, Jakub Vrana has probably the highest offensive upside of any forward prospect in the organization right now. High hopes have been pinned on the 21-year-old, particularly with the impending departure of multiple free agents at forward and the ever-increasing spotlight on cheap, youthful talent driving NHL team success. He finished his 21-game stint with the big club just about dead-even in shots-for % at five on five, playing alongside Brett Connolly, Lars Eller, and, to a slightly lesser extent, Andre Burakovsky.

He showed good instincts on the power play, always in high demand, and more energy and aggressiveness than hesitation in his first few shifts of a game. The high-end skills he possesses were clearly on display, and are a solid foundation for developing the “200 foot game” the coaching staff demands.

The Bad: While starting off his NHL career with two or more shots on goal in four of his first seven games, he finished the NHL portion of his 2016-17 pro season with zero shots in five of his last seven. Such a decline is understandable – often expected – for a young winger playing at the highest level for the first time, as adrenaline fades and the rigors of NHL play take their toll. But that stretch of play was followed by a worrisome stretch of poor play in Hershey, at least in the view of its bench boss, Troy Mann, and no points in seven Calder Cup playoff games.

The GIF/Video:

The Vote: Rate Vrana below on a scale of 1-10 (10 being the best) based on his performance relative to his potential and your expectations 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 Discussion: Could Vrana fill a top-six role at some point next season? Would he be best suited to play a third-line role, with the level of competition that involves? Given his draft position and lack of high-end prospects in the pipeline, is the organization putting too much pressure on him? What would it take for you to give him a "10" next year?

Poll

How do you rate Jakub Vrana’s 2016-17 season?

This poll is closed

  • 1%
    10
    (1 vote)
  • 0%
    9
    (0 votes)
  • 3%
    8
    (3 votes)
  • 4%
    7
    (4 votes)
  • 12%
    6
    (11 votes)
  • 30%
    5
    (27 votes)
  • 28%
    4
    (25 votes)
  • 14%
    3
    (13 votes)
  • 4%
    2
    (4 votes)
  • 1%
    1
    (1 vote)
89 votes total Vote Now