He’s shooting 9.8% this season which is right in line with his career average of 9.3%, meaning this is no fluke.
Vrbata plays to win and shoots to score, and through those 19 games he’s one of the few Arizona players doing both.
His presence has been a bright spot on a roster of underachievers and role players.
As the team struggles to get out of it’s own way, the 35-year-old Czech native has carried the offense. Along with Max Domi and Jordan Martinook, the trio have been the only consistent lights on the team as the Arizona Coyotes have fallen to the bottom of the NHL standings.
Vrby provides value with his experience, as well.
While he’s clearly not washed up, he has seen and experienced a lot in the National Hockey League. The majority of the Coyotes’ roster has not. Having a steadying presence like Radim Vrbata is good for the youth, and it doesn’t hurt that he’s showing them that productivity isn’t limited to your twenties.
As the Arizona Coyotes seek to fill and fix a myriad of holes that have cropped up early into the 2016-17 season, management can rest assured once again that Radim will show up to compete and produce on a nightly basis.
It’s hard to project where his point totals might lie at the end of the season.
Like Max Domi, he is currently on pace for around 60 points which seems a little high given his lower assist totals and heavier reliance on goal-scoring for production.