Who's this guy?
Position: Right Wing
Weight: 210 lbs.
Born: August 5, 1988 in Winnipeg, MB
History: Drafted in the 4th round (111th overall) by the New York Rangers in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. Claimed off waivers from the New York Rangers on October 4, 2011.
What'd he do?
Weise had another quiet year with just three goals and three assists in 40 games. It was an improvement over his four goals and four assists in 68 games last season, but even with a full season, Weise wouldn't have made much more of an impact. His +/- rating of -7 was tied for last on the team with Zack Kassian and Andrew Alberts, so essentially what that means is when Weise stepped on the ice, bad things happened.
So was he any good?
For a fourth liner, this is kind of a loaded question. Obviously a fourth liners role will be limited with the team, but Weise was still able to bring a physical presence to a team that often had trouble matching up with opponents physically. In what is more of a silver lining than anything, two of Weise's three goals were game-winners for Vancouver. Weise was often the odd man out on the fourth line, struggling to find his role as the season went on. Overall, his physical presence was probably his most valuable attribute to the team.
What'd we like?
On February 15 against the Dallas Stars, things got real chippy real fast. We all love a good hockey fight, but who knew we'd be rewarded with three fights in three seconds, one of which Weise was involved with. He may not score much, and he may not have won this fight, but he did cap off one of the more entertaining moments of the season.
Against the Nashville Predators on February 22, Weise makes a very heads up play in front of the net to break a scoreless tie in the 3rd period. Not a bad way to score your first goal of the season.
Here's another one of Weise's goals. This one was pretty nifty, coming off an impressive pass from Jordan Schroeder to give the Canucks a 3-0 lead over the St. Louis Blues. Great stick work handling the puck to put himself in position for the goal.
We've shown two of his goals from this season, so we might as well show the third. Now, this was really more of Jason Garrison scoring and Weise just happening to be in the right place at the right time. But when you only have seven goals in three years, you learn to take what you can get.
Cool. So what did we hate?
That +/- rating of -7, that's what we hate. When you're a fourth liner, time on the ice isn't guaranteed like it is for guys like the Sedins, Kesler or Burrows. So when you're on the ice, and the other team is scoring, well it doesn't take a genius to figure out that something needs to change. He's just not one of those guys who is going to be a scoring threat, so there's no blame we can place there. Because people will look at other ways that a fourth liner can contribute to a team, a poor +/- rating is one of the more frustrating statistics.
So what now?
Last summer, the Canucks signed Weise to a 1-year, $615,000 contract. Now, the fourth line winger is a restricted free agent, so he'll be one to watch this offseason. He brings a certain toughness that could be valuable to a number of teams needing more of a physical presence deeper in their lineup. If the Canucks do wind up losing Weise, his toughness will be missed, but it also wouldn't be the end of the world. It's a tough life being a fourth liner.