Our concerns with the Caps’ moves this offseason are well documented. But that’s not to say it’s all doom and gloom. There are plenty of reasons to be optimistic about this team, and some things that have gone well this offseason. One of these things is the re-signing of defenseman Dmitry Orlov to a six-year deal with a cap hit of $5.1 million per season.
According to Cap Friendly, the deal puts Orlov 41st among all NHL defenders in cap hit. If we approximate that each team carries seven defensemen, this puts Orlov’s cap hit in the 81st percentile among defensemen.
This is a good value for the Caps.
Over the last two seasons, 244 defensemen have played 500-plus minutes at 5-on-5. Bearing in mind that Orlov’s cap hit falls in the 81st percentile, here’s how his on-ice numbers stack up.
|Stat||Orlov (rank)||Percentile Rank|
|Points per 60||1.1 (12th)||95th|
|Goals-for percentage||58.7 (13th)||95th|
|Shot attempt percentage||54.1 (26th)||89th|
|Shot attempts against per 60||50.3 (33rd)||86th|
|Goals against per 60||2.1 (86th)||65th|
Orlov is at or near an elite level in four of the five categories. The goals-against stat supports some of the criticisms of Orlov’s defensive game, but if the weakest part of his game is still better than 65 percent of defensemen, that’s a strong weakness to have.
The Caps are coming back in 2017-18 with a depleted blue line and will need to rely heavily on Orlov. He’s being paid like a top-paring defensemen, but the good news for the Caps is that he’s worth it.
Headline image: Getty Images North America
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