|2012 - Patrick Kaleta||34||1||0||1||-4||67||0||0||0||34|
Contract: $1.25 million cap hit through 2014-2015.
Report Card for 2012: 5.38 out of 10
Introduction: It was pretty much a lost season for Patrick Kaleta, who continued his trend of missing large chunks of games due to injury, appearing in just 34 games. Kaleta also found himself on the couch again, continuing to be the poster boy for the NHL's suspension policy, after cross checking Brad Richards in March. Worse still, Kaleta reacted poorly when he was designated as a healthy scrath at one point, saying he was "pissed off", which prompted Ryan Miller to say he needs to "grow up". So, yeah. Cool season, bro.
Key Stat: ONE GOAL, on 34 shots. That's good for a 2.9% shooting percentage. I know, he's not out there to score goals, but at one point early in Kaleta's career he at least showed the nose for grabbing a goal here or there (especially shorthanded) and showing better instincts on when to pick and choose his spots than he did this year.
Thumbs Up: He's at least affordable, with his $1.25 million salary not presenting too much of a detriment to the team. He also lead the league by a long shot in penalties drawn per 60 minutes for players with over 20 games played. He's always at or near the top of this category, which leads to more power plays every year for Buffalo.
He also remains a great penalty killer and has shown more of a willingness as his career has developed to block shots and to fight when the situation calls for it. At this point, Kaleta is a known commodity. It's up to you to decide whether or not you consider him a value to the team.
Thumbs Down: That shooting percentage ranks him dead last on the team for anyone that took more than 15 shots. We're not short on guys with "heart" on this team ("Heart" in this case meaning "Pretty bad at hockey"), so Kaleta will need to carve some sort of extra value on this team for me to look at him as any more than a below average hockey player who is there to carry the hometown banner.
He also had a down year in hits, thanks to yet another injury that only allowed him to play 34 games. At this point in his career, you can only bank on 50-60 games per season from Kaleta. Is that enough for what he brings?
Voting: Using the good old grade system of A, B, C, D, F, with A representing a great season, C an average season, and F a very poor season, grade Pat Kaleta on his performance this season compared to the expectations you had for him.