Victor Bartley Season Review: There's nothing fancy to the rookie's game, which is OK.
The rookie proved to be an adequate presence as a third pairing defenseman when called upon.
|5-5 Pts/60||CF%||CF% rel||Sh%||Sv%||PDO||Pen +/- per 60|
Bartley's season had little flair to it, which is exactly how it should be. Though he was fringe defenseman to start the year, he managed to suit up for a career high 50 games. Early, he and Mattias Ekholm were trading spaces in the press box. It became almost a coin flip as to which one you would see. By the end of the season, with Michael Del Zotto firmly checked into the doghouse, Bartley found himself on the second pairing with Seth Jones.
With the type of player he is, no one is ever going to see Bartley light the world on fire. That's not a bad thing, no one is expecting him to. Even though he had one of the worst shot attempt differentials on the team, the rookie did what he needed to do. However, what was questionable was how he was getting a sweater instead of the aforementioned Del Zotto. Sure, MDZ seems to have something going on with his coaches wherever he goes, but given the chance to put him or Bartley on your second pair, who would you choose? Yeah.
It can't be anything other than the first goal of his NHL career. Just look how excited he is.
The Road Ahead
Bartley is still young and getting used to the trials and tribulations of the NHL. He'll never be counted on to score goals, especially if he's paired with someone like Seth Jones or Ryan Ellis. With a player like Bartley, the less you notice him in a game, the better he's playing.
With Ellis, Del Zotto and Ekholm all RFAs right now, Bartley's future has a bit of a question mark to it. If all three players are retained, he could continue to bounce around the lineup, sometimes being the seventh defenseman. However, if one or more are traded or not re-signed, he could see a more permanent roll in the bottom three.
How would you grade Victor Bartley's 2013-14 season?