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  • Minnesota Wild 2012 Season Grades: Dany Heatley


    Did the Wild get the Heatley that puts up 50+ goals a season? Nope. But they did get rid of a cancer and brought in a guy more than capable of 30+ and a true leader in the room. Is that enough to secure him a place in report card heaven?

    Nathan- Career low in goals. Career low in points. Career low shooting percentage. But .. he was healthy all year. He worked his ass off this year, playing better in the neutral and defensive zone this season than he ever had previously in his career. Maybe, just maybe he's becoming a better all-around player now that his offensive skills are waning? Either way, I am a huge Dany Heatley fan as a result of this season. I wanted nothing to do with him coming in. He was lazy, huge ego, cancer, etc. etc. etc.

    Now, I don't know if it was the system, Mikko Koivu's influence or a change of heart, but this was an entirely different Dany Heatley. than anybody had previously encountered.

    Too bad he can't score 45 goals anymore. That's why he's here and has such a high cap hit. Expectations folks. Expectations. Mine will be different next season. Like I said, I'm now a Dany Heatley fan.

    Grade: D+

    He is also a big time leader in the room. Fans in San Jose and Ottawa may disagree, but players, coaches, the GM, and the owner all say he is, so I'll buy it. Is leadership worth $7 million a year in and of itself? Nope. But he is the first player that has been able to keep up with Mikko Koivu, and that has to count for something.

    He isn't perfect, and he isn't the Dany Heatley of old, but he is still a damn fine hockey player. Heaters gonna heat.

    Grade: B+

    I think the biggest quarrel I have with Heatley is that he didn't really make the team around him better. Not only was this a career low in goals in a full season, but it was also a big drop in assists to a career low as well.
    Also, 19 total points on the powerplay doesn't cut it for a guy who is supposed to be a premier PP guy. You can make the argument that the PP being bad is why Heatley didn't score powerplay goals, but I can just as easily say that the PP was bad because Heatley didn't score PP goals. It may end up being a "chicken or the egg" argument, but I'm going to go in the direction of the latter.
    Career low in goals, career low in assists, career low in shooting percentage...yeah, that's pretty much a failed season.

    7th highest cap in the league should produce more results. He shouldn't be slowed down by Koivu's absence, he should be able to carry the load in that event. Again though, clear improvement over Martin Havlat. Fletcher said he would do that trade again and I would agree with him every single time. Still, I expect much more from Heater next year.

    Grade: C

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