Mika Zibanejad
Mika Zibanejad is stupid overrated. Zibanejad couldn’t find the back of the net if it hit him in the face. (Jared Silber/NHLI via Getty Images)

Mika Zibanejad Is Stupid Overrated

Trey is a hockey guy now. Get over it. Slowly but surely, the hockey brain is coming back. Let’s start here; Mika Zibanejad couldn’t score a goal right now if it smacked him in the face. Zibanejad might be the most overrated player in the NHL.

Zibanejad, 27, has one goal and two assists in his first 13 games this season. Keep in mind, the Swedish forward was drafted 8th overall in my fantasy hockey league. I’m sure that number isn’t too far off from the general consensus. NOT GREAT.

Worse yet, the Rangers as a team can’t find the back of the net either. New York is posting an 11.5 percent success rate on the power play. The Rangers are the 6th lowest scoring team in the NHL. A lot of that has to do with the struggles of Zibanejad.

This is the same guy that scored 41 goals in 57 games. Was it just a fluke? His +/- for his career is -33. Sure, that doesn’t mean everything. However, Zibanejad has only had two real productive years. He was mostly just a guy for the Senators for a long time.

Keep in mind, Zibanejad was the same guy that was traded along with a second round pick by Ottawa for Derick Brassard and a 7th round pick. Obviously, not a great trade by the Senators. However, other elite players in the league would have never been dealt for that kind of package in the first place. Imagine someone like Jack Eichel or David Pasternak getting dealt for that? Wouldn’t happen.

The truth of the matter is, Zibanejad’s overall skill has been wildly overstated. What are his elite traits? Does Zibanejad have the speed of Connor McDavid or the pure slap shot ability of a Alex Ovechkin? NOPE. All players are going to have some bad puck luck. This isn’t luck. The pucks aren’t on net or in deep.

The Rangers’ top center has notched 0.38 xG/60 at 5-on-5 strength. That number is DEAD LAST on the team for all forwards. Only 19-year-old Alexis Lafrenière ranks ahead of Zibanejad in terms of his 4.32 iSCF/60 at 5-on-5. Zibanejad isn’t even firing pucks at the same rate. His 2.6% shot rate speaks to someone who is hesitant out on the ice.

Pavel Buchenvich and Chris Kreider have been the most common line mates for Zibanejad this season. If Zibanejad played with the top line of Colorado, Boston, etc, maybe his numbers are a hell of a lot better. All due respect to Buchenvich and Kreider, but neither are goal scoring monsters.

The only thing Zibanejad is good at right now is winning rock, paper, scissors. Anything else when it comes to hockey, he loses to Brad Marchand.

Zibanejad doesn’t carry an egregious cap hit earning an average base salary of $5.3 million. The Rangers center will hit unrestricted free agency in the Summer of 2022 at the age of 29. He’s done enough to command a lucrative pay day but also has shown he can’t carry you to even relevant playoff success. Furthermore, we have now seen prolonged cold streaks where you would have thought the guy was locked away in witness protection.

Hey, Mika Zibanejad. It’s time to wake up. Do something. For a player that was picked in the top 10 in a lot of fantasy drafts has flat out tanked. Zibanejad has earned the most overrated hockey player on the planet tag for the moment.