The Steve Miller Band called him Space Cowboy.....well I call them turkeys! The players who absolutely and positively stink it up so rancid that even the others don't quite stink so bad. This new fantasy hockey column takes a look at the turkeys of the season so far and eventually will have the turkeys of the week.
There are many ways to define a turkey...three strikes in bowling...an awful season, week, or game...that sort of thing. I am talking about the latter as far as turkeys. Submitted for your approval are four of the worst of the gobbling persuasion. No pictures provided to protect the innocent and the guilty.
Dominik Hasek (G) -- Detroit Red Wings
A six time Vezina winner and two time Hart winner shouldn't be on this list...right? WRONG! When you have 10 starts and produce a 5-4-1 record with a 2.89 GAA and an eye popping .859 save percentage for the Red Wings...you better believe you are a turkey with dark meat! Yes he may be approaching the senior citizen part of his career but to go from what he was last year to this has to be very much a concern for the Wings.
Patrik Elias (LW,C) -- New Jersey Devils
This one just hurts for me to say but 11 points in 21 games for an elite forward and a 2 time Stanley Cup Champion just screams GOBBLE GOBBLE!! The funny part is that 3 of Elias's 4 goals are game winning goals but that 5.7% shooting percentage is just plain inexcusable for a guy who's career percentage is 12.6%. The frustration is evident at The Rock where Elias has been moved to Center in an effort to jumpstart his offense. As much as he makes, it must be nice to shoot wide like a turkey!
Andy McDonald (C) -- Anaheim Ducks
A Stanley Cup Winner last year and with the retirement of Selanne was expected to take the offensive lead in Anaheim. Many had him pegged as a top 10 Center...and I know a number of folks who drafted him pretty early. SO what does Andy do to start the season...11 points in 22 games. YEEEEOUCH!! So while Getzlaf and Perry have excelled, McDonald's shot percentage has declined by exactly half which has had a small role in Anaheim's slow start. No Game Winning Goals either..that hurts even more. Most Duck fans didn't expect this...that is most certain. He is definitely some decent turkey breast meat right now.
Thomas Vanek (LW) -- Buffalo Sabres
I was expecting more this season from Vanek...with the departures of Briere and Drury...Vanek was anticipated to carry the load. So far he really hasn't and that has showed in Buffalo's record. Four goals in 19 games for a 40 goal scorer is not going to cut it...excuses or no excuses. 54 shots on net isn't exactly top notch or elite either. You should see better numbers from this kid and maybe they will come but right now....he is playing like a roasted turkey wing!
So who is the grand turkey so far this season?
It is Hasek by leaps and bounds at least so far.
Next week it may just be someone else....at any rate if you have him...buyer beware!