Phil Di Giuseppe: 2016-2017 By the Numbers
- Age: 23
- NHL Seasons: 2
- Games Played: 36
- Scoring: 1g-6a-7pts
- Ice Time: 12:17 all situations, 11:47 ES, 0:29 PP, 0:01 PK
- 5-on-5 States: 53.9% CF, 27.6% GF
- Contract Status: Entry Level Contract, Restricted Free Agent 2017-2018.
Making the Grade
For Phil Di Giuseppe, beginning the 2016-17 season in Charlotte as a Checker was surely a disappointment. After spending 41 games in the Hurricanes lineup in 2015-16, and chipping in with 17 points (7 goals, 10 assists), he undoubtedly was hoping to earn an opportunity to begin to solidify a spot on the 3rd line in Raleigh.
That never happened in 2016-17. Although Di Giuseppe did not have to wait long for his first call-up, playing his first game on the season’s inaugural road trip while in Edmonton, he did have to deal with spending more than two months mid-season in the AHL and ultimately only skated for 36 games in the Hurricanes lineup this season.
While active for Carolina, there was a noted difference in the game of Di Giuseppe, in terms of his willingness and eagerness to play more with the body. While last season he seemed to flash scoring touch and skill at times, this season it seemed as though he was trying to earn his way on the roster consistently by bringing the physicality which most feel is something the Canes have lacked at various times in recent history. While only scoring one goal would certainly be considered a disappointment, at least his goal had an impact. His OT tally on December 4th provided Carolina with their lone goal in a rare OT victory over Tampa Bay.
For Di Giuseppe, expanding his game in the area of physical play is certainly a welcome addition, but for a Hurricanes team that often times finds itself starved for scoring, a healthy balance of skill and will is required. It is hard to crack an NHL roster as a fourth line player when that roster is already cluttered with fourth line caliber talent. For Di Giuseppe to begin to establish himself in Carolina, he must regain some of the scoring and creative touch he flashed a season ago (admittedly, mostly while playing with offensive leader Jeff Skinner, but still), while also maintaining a high level of intensity which is so needed in Raleigh. 2016-17 was not a step forward for Di Giuseppe, but if he hopes to hang around Raleigh, 2017-18 must be.
How do you grade Phil Di Giuseppe’s 2016-17 season?
This poll is closed
A - significantly outperformed expectations
B - outperformed expectations
C - met expectations
D - underperformed expectations
F - significanftly underperformed expectations