2011-12 Year-End Review: Matt Hendricks

Photo credit: Bruce Bennett

This was the Matt Hendricks’ year. This was the year that he broke out of his small, specific role and became a real contributor. This was the year that he made NHL goalies and women everywhere swoon with his dazzling shootout moves. This was the year that the most significant story about him was not centered around a ghastly eye injury.

Heck, he’s even got an RMNB t-shirt now. If that’s not the big time, we don’t know what is.

Cap Hit: $825,000. Hendricks is signed through 2012-13, and will be UFA on expiration of that contract.

Milestones: Hendricks played a career high in both regular season and playoffs games, and also scored his first NHL playoffs goal and assist.

Best Moment: Sending Tim Thomas sprawling in the shootout, and then doing the same to Ilya Bryzgalov.

He also fought Rene Bourque for teammate Nicklas Backstrom, and also tried to teach Mathieu Perreault to fight, in case the team should need another cold, remorseless avenger.

I know that’s a lot of best moments. We’re considering changing this category to “Best Existence” in Matt Hendricks’ case.

Things We Said About Matt Hendricks:“Matt Hendricks + RMNB = <3″

Alignment: Chaotic Good

First Irrelevant Google Images Result:

Close enough.

Spirit Animal: Mountain lion.

Alternate Universe Superhero Identity: The Paralyzer

Team Role: Hendricks was expected to play on the fourth line, contribute some secondary scoring, and drop the gloves when it was needed.

Execution of that Role: Hendricks is another one of those who blossomed under the coaching change, fitting well into Hunter’s gritty, defensive system and slowly raising his value within the team from enforcer role to a vital shutdown player. He also wowed with his snazzy shootout move, going 5-for-6  in the skills contest, though his overall offense dipped sharply this year, which wasn’t exactly what Hendricks had wanted.

Postseason Performance: We’re pretty sure Matt Hendricks was given some kind of super soldier serum in the short break between the regular season and the playoffs, because the guy was on another level the moment the first puck dropped in Round One. He hit with a vengeance, excelled at faceoffs, killed important penalties, and even scored that crucial first goal in the Game Seven win against Boston.

Beard Rating: 

Hendricks cheated a little by starting to grow his beard before the postseason, but we’re going to call that confidence in his team. Four out of ten.

Likeliness to Return: Eight out of ten. Matt Hendricks is inexpensive, useful, and has become a fan favorite around here.

Usefulness in a Post-Apocalyptic Setting: Hendricks is tough, gritty, and knows how to get his hands dirty. We already know that he fishes and hunts in his free time — if we could ascertain that he knew how to use a halberd, he’d be a ten out of ten.

Other: We’d like to thank the guy who taught Hendy that move. We’d really, really like to thank him.

Overall Year-End Rating: Eight Good Sashas.

For statistical analysis of Hendricks’ season, see Japers’ Rink or Peerless Prognosticator.

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  • rhnpdx

    Brilliant, but using “irrelevant” along with anything to do with Christina Hendricks will get you 10 bad Sashas…

  • jennrubenstein

    and don’t forget extra super amazing bonus points for participation in the you can play project!

  • Liongirl92

    THIS. Love me some Hendy. All the girls do, you know!

  • David Haas

    Hi,

    I have a quick question about your
    blog, do you think you could email me?

    David

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    David, not sure if this is spam or not. Our address is thecrew@russianmachineneverbreaks.com

  • http://twitter.com/annielockyer Annie Lockyer

    Hendy shootout goals lift us up where we belong (where eagles fly and Timmy eats it on the way out of the arena), but let’s be real, that beard is booty. 2/10, tops, for growing what looks like a photoshop mishap on his face.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    girl needs herself an Emmy for the last couple weeks

    but I’ve been saying that since Our Mrs Reynolds…

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    amen

    That was a disaster, and I think Ana’s grading scale is deeply flawed. Next year there will be an auditing structure in place. No Beards Left Behind.

  • http://www.russianmachineneverbreaks.com/ Peter Hassett

    I hear this, but I do not quite understand it.

  • http://twitter.com/kickxdrumxheart Ana

    Did you see that supervillain goatee he had growing in the early part of the playoffs? Easily an extra point or so for that.

  • serpent

    Because Hendy is one great communicator. And we know that under all that seriously tough, go ,ahead and make my day exterior, there’s one big, huggable teddy bear of a he-man.

  • http://twitter.com/kickxdrumxheart Ana

    Indeed. Hendricks has that special quality about him that says “rugged, but will do the dishes.”

  • Rhino40

    behold the epic prow…

  • Rhino40

    Great Firefly reference…”Just one question…what is your real name?” (whack!).

    While I’m in segue mode: Space: Above& Beyond = another great show prematurely canceled by Fox in favor of drivel…