As the regular season inches closer, day by day, the time has come to predict and begin to take a look at what the Caps and their fans can expect from each player on the roster. Today’s player is speedy winger Jason Chimera, who will begin his second full and third total season with the organization in the fall.
Recap of Last Season: To say Chimera struggled with consistency over his 10 goals and 16 assists would be an understatement. He was either great or awful on offense, as he saw time on all four lines, but really struggled on defense pretty much all season, where his -10 rating on 81 games was the worst on the team. His speed and ability to hit a little made him useful for Bruce Boudreau pretty much every night, but it certainly was not anything near his best or what he expected from himself; he made that clear following the end of the season. For my full post-season analysis of Chimera’s 2010-11, click here.
Expectations for this Season: Expect more of the same from Chimmer this upcoming season. There are going to be stretches where he looks great and there are going to be longer stretches when you literally wonder what he is doing on the ice. Again, his speed and little bit of hitting will make him useful to BB on almost a nightly basis, but his one-dimensional game and stone hands will prevent him from taking his game to anything significantly higher than it is right now, regardless of what he thinks.
Playing Time: Third line; second line, fourth line. I think Chimera will start the season on the third line and should stay there for the most part barring a slew of injuries or someone overtaking him on the depth chart from below. I don’t expect him to see top ice time again like he did last year; the Caps have more wingers now so they don’t need to try that experiment again (plus it was a disaster the first time).
Projections: 77 GP, 10 G, 17 A, -8 rating, 14:12 ATOI.
The next season preview will feature winger Joel Ward.