2021-22 Season Review: Jeff Carter


Player: Jeff Carter
Born: January 1, 1985 (season 37)
Height: 6 ‘3 “
Weight: 219 pounds
Home town: London, Ontario, Canada
Shoot: right
Draft: 2003 NHL draft1st Round (11th overall) of the Philadelphia Flyers

Statistics 2021-22: 76 games, 19 goals, 26 assists, 45 points, minus 8, 38 minutes of penalty

Contract status: Carter would have been eligible for unlimited agency after this season, but the Penguins have re-signed him a two-year contract extension that will run through the end of the 2023-24 NHL season and has a salary cap of $ 3.125 million per season. .


Carter appeared in all seven playoff games for the Penguins, scoring four goals and an assist for five points total. This includes a two-goal effort in the Penguins’ 7-4 win in Game 3. In two postseason with the Penguins he scored eight goals, two assists and 10 points total. Along with his offensive production, he also drew attention for his collision with New York Rangers goalkeeper Igor Shesterkin at the end of the second game of the series.

Monthly splits

Through Yahoo!

Story of the season

It has been an interesting season for Carter with some ups and downs. He got off to a great start and finished with pretty solid numbers. If you had told me a year ago that the Penguins were going to score 19 goals and 46 points total in a full season from Carter in his 37-year season, I would have signed up for that in an instant. But when he really wasn’t scoring goals, there were some droughts in his overall game he wasn’t really doing much to lead the game. He played a big role at the start of the season when Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin got injured, but he looked pretty exhausted in the middle of the season. He rebounded with good playoff production, but once again the overall play was lacking at times.

Advanced 5v5 regular season stats

Data via Natural Stat Trick. The ranking is on 17 forwards of the team who qualified by playing a minimum of 150 minutes.

Courses Per%: 47.0% (16th)
Goals per%: 43.6% (17th)
xGF%: 47.5% (17 °)
% chance of scoring: 48.6% (14th)
High Danger Score Probability%: 48.8% (16th)
Ice Shot 5v5%: 7.5% (9th)
Ice savings%: 91.0% (12 °)
Goal / 60: 0.66 (12th)
Assist / 60: 0.90 (12th)
Points / 60: 1.57 (12th)

– This is where things begin to paint a rough picture for Carter’s season. His underlying numbers relating to ball possession and scoring chances are all among the team’s worst, showing how much trouble the team had controlling the pace of play when on the ice. He got to the point at the end of the season where his line was a hindrance to the offense and probably should have been relegated to the fourth line minutes.

His individual numbers of 60 for goals, assists and points weren’t all that great either.

Although he had very solid box score numbers, these numbers indicate he was one of the least productive and useful strikers on the roster during the 2021-22 regular season and playoffs.

This is not a great sign as he is ready to begin a new two-year contract extension in his 38-year season.


Having to play for half a season as the center of the second row, Carter’s competition has increased and his metrics of equal strength have decreased. He is still a player capable of scoring a lot and has been far more effective in special teams than his three-year average includes here, but he is probably better suited with a lighter load as he comes so close to his career than him.

Carter is one of the rare players to have scored more goals (418 in his career) than assists (398), so it’s no surprise to see his passing stats don’t track well. He is a unique player as a shooting center, but he shoots well and clearly still has a few hands to indulge the touch and scoring instinct that he has led to so many goals. Carter does not stand out in the neutral zone with entrances or exits, and at this stage of his career he probably needs wings who know how to carry the puck regularly.


Jeff Carter with a quick rolling goal against the Anaheim Ducks to open the scoring.

Jeff Carter exits the penalty area to score the winning goal in extra time against the Buffalo Sabers at the start of the season.

Jeff Carter with a goal at the end of the second period in Game 4 of the First Round series against the New York Rangers to extend the lead of the Penguins.

Bottom line

Carter was an outstanding addition to the 2020-21 NHL trade deadline from new general manager Ron Hextall and gave the Penguins exactly what that team needed in terms of third-row center and depth scoring. His 2021-22 season got off to a great start to continue that momentum. But things have cooled noticeably for him as the season progresses, especially in regards to his ability to lead a line and deliver that much needed scoring depth. If he’s not scoring goals, there’s not much here and it looks unlikely to change as he heads into his 38-year season. That two-year contract extension may seem like a problem for the future and a contract that didn’t have to be signed when he was.

Ideal 2022-23

At this point I don’t think Carter will be anyone capable of leading a line, but he still has a good shot and some finishing ability in the offensive zone. The best case scenario may be a better version of what we’ve seen this season: someone who could score around 20 goals and deliver some offense on the second power game unit. This may be the best we can hope for here.

Question to think about

Will Jeff Carter play the rest of his contract with the Penguins? This contract has a no-move clause, but at the age of 38 I could see a scenario where Carter retires before the end of the contract or perhaps has the last year redeemed. Beyond that, what exactly will his role be in this team? By the end of the 2021-22 season it was barely useful enough to be a third-line center, and there’s no way it should be an option for a second-line center in case Evgeni Malkin doesn’t sign again sooner. be an unrestricted free agent.


How would you rate Jeff Carter’s 2021-22 performance?

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