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Overpaid Jokers in the NHL

Seems like every year when a player gets a big contract, a lot of those players never live up to all the hype. In fact some of them clearly show on the ice, they just want the money and to stay healthy.

Sadly, that’s when the term “overrated” comes into play. Just like life, sports is a gamble, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. GM’s gamble on players all the time, rewarding them with contract extensions, hoping they pay off in the end.

A lot of times, the term “overrated” is targeted to many skilled players, like Alex Ovechkin, Sidney Crosby and Dion Phaneuf. A lot of times, people target these skilled players because they are simply jealous they don’t play for their favorite team.

Here at Pucking Hockey we came up with a list of current overrated NHL players, whether you agree or disagree be sure to let us know by commenting on the article below.

This list is in no specific order, enjoy!

Vincent Lecavalier

Lecavalier was once a 50 goal scorer (52 in 2006-2007), a Rocket Richard Trophy winner, and hoisted the Stanley Cup with the Lightning. Well, it’s safe to say those days are over for him and the Lightning.

They had a remarkable playoff run last season, but making $7.7 million a year, this guy should have led his team to the Finals, and led the playoffs in scoring. At least that’s what the GM thought at the current time of signing Lecavalier.

31 years old, set to make $7.7 million until 2020 does not add up, and in fact one of the largest salaries in the NHL. When you have that big of a payday you should be in the top 10 of scoring, every season.

He’s a great player, brings a lot to the table, but with that big of a contract and never seeing his name in any top 10 stats category, you have no choice but to say he is overrated.

James Van Riemsdyk

JVR had a very nice showcasing in the 2011 NHL playoffs, but that’s it. He showed what his big frame could bring to the table, even though he shot the puck right into Miller’s chest with every shot. But that’s all this kid has done to earn a contract extension.

Currently making $1.65 million and set to make $4.25 million at the start of the 2012-2013 season, through 2018, is a hefty price to pay for a guy who has not shown what he could bring to the table.

So far this 2011-2012 season JVR has been rattled with injuries, has 11 goals and 13 assists in 42 games for the Flyers. And that’s not all, watch this kid play, as big as he is he should be plowing people over. Not skating away from the hitting part of the game, and not being the first player off the ice every shift.

I understand he is still young and still has a lot of playing time in the NHL, but until he improves his game, and stops avoiding hits in the corners, he will be considered overrated. It’s a shame for the Flyers; they could have dumped him off before the trade deadline, but now will be stuck with him at least until the offseason.

Alexander Semin

Do I need to get into details about Semin? Without Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom, Semin would be lucky to score 20 goals a season. H E double hockey sticks, even Ovechkin is even struggling with Backstrom currently hurt.

In his final year of his contract, currently making $6.7 million, it’s a safe bet to say, Semin will not be in a Capitals uniform next season. Especially with all the young talent on this Capitals roster team who shows up every game and wants to win.

And do I have to get into playoff details? Plain and simple, Semin doesn’t show up to play, either the pressure gets to him, or he misses Russia. Either way, I expect him to be in the KHL next season, or getting over paid by some bottom feeding NHL team.

Ville Leino

Leino had a great playoff run which helped the Flyers get to the Stanley Cup finals, tallying 21 points in 19 games. And to follow that up, in his first full NHL season, Leino recorded 19 goals and 53 points in 81 games.

Those numbers didn’t strike the Flyers organization’s hands to sign him to a big contract, and I don’t blame them. Sure the numbers look good, but his play was awful, turned over pucks almost every game. Made bad passes at the wrong time, when he could have shot the puck on net creating a scoring chance.

The Sabres signed Leino to a six year $27 million deal, along with many other bad signings. How does a player like Leino get this big of a contract after just playing one full NHL season, and only has 73 points in 163 career games?

Think that’s bad, in 52 games this season Leino has 4 goals and 14 assists. That’s a pucking joke!

PS – There’s a reason why the Detroit Red Wings didn’t keep him around

Scott Gomez

You’re going to think I’m lying but I promise you I am not!

$7.4 million a year, for the next two years, only has 21 goals and 87 points for the Montreal Canadiens. Oh and, in 34 games this season Gomez has 2 goals and 7 assists.

In my opinion one of the worst signings in the past decade and somehow the Rangers got out of the deal.

Like mentioned earlier, Gomez has 2 years left with the Canadiens unless they can cut a deal and trade him before the contract is over. Which will NEVER happen, he is costing the last placed Canadiens a lot of money for doing nothing more than skating circles and showing up a practice.

Either way you look at it, even saying injuries has held him back this season, the numbers and the salary does not add up one iota.

Rick DiPietro

Most NHL fans don’t even know who this guy is, considering he has not played more than 30 games since the 2007-2008 season.

Plagued with injuries the past 4 seasons, this year he was supposed to play all season. Well, that was until he took a punch to the face from Penguins goalie Brent Johnson, which led to him breaking his face.

Sitting on a 15 year, $67.5 million contract, pretty much makes him an Islander for life. Or at least a couch potato with these injuries.

Twice now DiPietro had the starting position in his favor until his injuries and the stellar play of Dwayne Roloson took him from under his nose. In my opinion, DiPietro will always be remembered as one of the biggest NHL criminals, never living up to all the hype.

Then again, Garth Snow should not be allowed to manage any NHL team, after this signing.

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Pucking Hockey
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