Player Preview: Zach Bogosian

Zach Bogosian has had his fair share of criticism and praise throughout his career. After beginning his NHL career with nine goals in 47 games making many believe he had the potential to be the team’s go-to blue liner. Fast forward to today and Bogosian is simply an overpaid second pairing defenseman.

It’s not a bad thing.

I have mentioned that Bogosian is not worth his contract and it would have been wise to have waited a few more seasons before signing him to a long-term deal. Still, Bogo is a serviceable defenseman and has seen time on the top pairing with Tobias Enstrom. If he can stay healthy, and that is a big if, then there’s nothing wrong with cheering the feller on.

PERFORMANCE

Bogosian extra skater

Bogosian’s Corsi numbers suggest that, while he is being out shot while on the ice, it’s not by a wide margin. Bogosian spent time playing with rookie Jacob Trouba and number one d-man Tobias Enstrom throughout the season and those are the two most likely partners this season as well.

Bogosian seems to have lost his offensive abilities and has turned his focus to defending. Let’s hope he doesn’t have any more gaffes like this one below…

Poor guy… I had that happen to me in a beer league game and I felt awful. Can’t imagine doing that in the NHL.

Nonetheless, mistakes happen, and Bogosian doesn’t make many that noticeable. 

Bogosian has not played a full season, or even close to a full season since his sophomore year, so it’s hard for him to gain any ground in his development. He’s an NHL defenseman, but if he is ever to become the guy the Thrashers thought they selected behind Drew Doughty and in front of Alex Pietrangelo, the time has to be now.

EXPECTATIONS

Bogosian will be expected to play top-pairing minutes likely at the beginning of the year, and should he stay in that position, points can be expected to follow.

This is a guy who has scored as many as 10 goals in one year, as well as 30 points in one year. He can bring the offence, but if he finds himself lining up with (his likely partners) Enstrom or Trouba (both of whom drive more of the offensive play) then Bogosian will find himself staying back and taking less chances offensively to stall his production.

An increase in the plus/minus department would be a nice addition, but with Corsi and Fenwick and (insert fancy advanced stat number 37) taking over for analytics, it may be better to ask Bogosian to increase possession numbers.

As far as statistics go, don’t bet on Bogosian producing big numbers, and don’t hope he plays a full season. It could happen, but i’m not betting my pillow on it. I’ll ballpark him at 64 games (and that’s being generous) scoring six goals and adding 17 assists.

MAJOR QUESTIONS 

1.    
Do the Jets (Thrashers) want a do-over at the
2008 NHL Entry Draft?

Hindsight is 20/20, but I always find
looking back at drafts fascinating considering some of the mishaps. On draft
day, everyone knew Stamkos would go one, but there was speculation at which of
the many intriguing defenseman would go in the next few slots. The Kings would
take Drew Doughty before the Thrashers selected Zach Bogosian. The kicker is
that the defenseman to follow include Norris candidate Alex Pietrangelo, the
similar Luke Schenn, Calder Trophy winner Tyler Myers, Norris Trophy winner
Erik Karlsson and up-and-coming Jake Gardiner. That answers the question in
itself.

2.    
What does Bogosian have to do to stay healthy?

If anybody knew the answer or had a secret
potion, I know they would use or do it. The fact of the matter is, Bogosian is
a 24-year-old band aid, and when bones break and muscles strain, it’s more than
likely to happen again. Some players have been able to shed the label by changing
their off-season routine so that may be Bogosian’s best option.

3.    
If Bogo stays healthy, can he up his game?

Being a top five pick in an NHL draft usually
means you have something special in you. I don’t think Bogosian is going to
turn out to be another fellow third overall pick in Cam Barker, but it’s
getting harder to believe he can be a much better than his draft pedigree
suggests. Now six years into his NHL career, Bogosian will likely settle in as
a 20-30 point defenseman that can play decent defense on a bubble playoff team.

  • SavardianSpinorama

    Good article, tough but fair. It points out how he’s not fulfilled his “star” contract but reminds us he still has room for improvement. Hope he becomes that dman we all want him to.