Brooks Laich suffered a groin injury during the 2013 lockout that has changed the trajectory of his career. The former 20-goal scorer now struggles to play a full schedule and struggles to justify his 4.5 million dollar cap hit. After an operation this spring, there are now two futures waiting for Laich: a return to glory is one. The path of Tom Poti is the other.
By the Numbers
|16.9||Average time on ice per game|
|48.0%||Shot attempt percentage during 5v5|
|45.5%||Goal percentage during 5v5|
|7.6%||On-ice shooting percentage during 5v5|
|92.5%||On-ice saving percentage during 5v5|
It seems to me like fans have turned on Brooks Laich. I can see why. His possession numbers have plummeted in the post-Boudreau era, his scoring isn’t even a shadow of what it once was, he can’t stay healthy, and when he is in the game he’s dragging other players down.
Of all those things, which are his fault?
Laich went down at the end of November– after many weeks of playing hurt on the disastrous Black Hole Line. Laich came back in the new year and lasted through the middle of March, when he could no longer play through it. He went under the knife, ending his season and snatching back a glimmer of hope that he might someday return to form.
I don’t want to labor over Brooks’ 2013-14 stats too much, but in hindsight they weren’t all that bad– at least not when compared to the dismal team around him. And that he was able to nab 15 points is pretty impressive considering how thoroughly jammed up his crotch area was.
I’m wary of believing Brooks’ woes are behind him, but if his surgery went as well as he said it did, and if the team can return to the simple, steady offensive push of years past, I truly do think Laich would see a renaissance. Let’s hope so. If not, that contract is on the books through 2017.
Brooksy on RMNB
- Brooks scored a big one in his final week of the season, late in the game. Fans went NUTS. One of my favorite posts of the year.
- Back in December: “I’m kind of in a holding pattern. That’s really as much as I can divulge right now.” I would’ve made groin/holding jokes if I weren’t so bummed.
- It was a concern all season. He got benched in February for “tightness.”
- Aaaand he had a hip flexor thing back in September. Jeez. It happened on the first day of training camp, which is just an awful omen. Worse than the 2006 Omen remake.
- I had no idea who Julianne Hough was before this. Sorry, Elliott.
- On meeting Julianne by way of a guy even more attractive than Brooks, wtf.
- Fedor totally nailed Brooks on his illegal uniform. Book ‘em, Dano.
- One of Vanity Fair’s best dressed players. Life is weird.
- Somewhat off-topic, but too good to skip: RMNB Investigates: what beer is Julianne holding? I, for the record, do not approve.
- R.I.P. the Black Hole Line and what that would mean for Troy Brouwer.
- Mistreatment of Brooks Laich was a big part of my case against Adam Oates.
“Dude, my bad.” But is it truly your bad, Brooks?
Uhh… that’s it on the GIF front. Kinda slim pickins. Stupid groin.
Did I get it wrong? Do you believe Brooks is the architect of his own decline? Either way, do you think he can turn it around? Who do you like Dancing with the Stars this season? And did you even see the Footloose remake? ‘Cause I didn’t.
Read more: Japers Rink