clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2022-23 Season in Review: Jeff Petry

The veteran defenseman provided flashes of his old self but still left many wanting a bit more.

NHL: New York Islanders at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports


Player: Jeff Petry
Born: Dec. 9, 1987 (35 years old)
Height: 6-foot-3
Weight: 209 pounds
Hometown: Ann Arbor, Mich., U.S.
Shoots: Right
Draft: 2006, second round, 45th overall, Edmonton Oilers
2022-23 Statistics: 61 games played, five goals, 26 assists, 31 points, 24 penalty minutes
Contract Status: Signed through 2024-25 season; has a cap hit of $6.25 million; contract contains a modified no-trade clause and a no-movement clause
Fun fact: Petry’s father, Dan, was a Major League Baseball pitcher, most notably with the Detroit Tigers
Hidden Stat: Tied for second most goals scored by Penguins defensemen during the 2022-23 season with five goals (P.O Joseph).
History: N/A - acquired by Pittsburgh Penguins in June 2022 in a trade for Mike Matheson

Monthly Splits

Jeff Petry - Monthly Splits
Yahoo! Sports

When looking at his season from a month-to-month perspective, Petry looked like a model of consistency. His “worst” month(s) came between December and January, playing just a combined 10 games over those two months. Injury played a role in that lack of playing time. More on that below.

Story of the Season

Into October, Petry began to prove his worth by first scoring a power-play goal and adding two even-strength assists in a 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 20.

By November, Petry stepped up the physical play, dishing out several multiple-hit games on Nov. 9, Nov. 11, and Nov. 30.

In a 4-3 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Dec. 10, where he also registered an assist, Petry departed the game with 1:51 left in regulation after suffering an upper-body injury, an ailment that would linger well into January and even land him on long-term injured reserve.

Once he returned, the veteran continued to be a source of assists and hits. He scored two goals in a 5-4 overtime win against the Tampa Bay Lightning on March 2, 2023.

Petry played in 10 games throughout March, scoring twice and adding three assists, but suffered another upper-body injury that would sideline the 35-year-old until the March 28 game against the Detroit Red Wings.

In the seven games he participated in during April, Petry closed out the regular season campaign by adding four assists in seven games played.

Petry’s upper-body injuries caused him to miss 21 games throughout the season, but again, when he was on the ice, he was never the worst thing in the world. Other defensemen received much more deserving criticism as the 82 games played out.

Regular season 5v5 advanced stats

Data via Natural Stat Trick. The ranking is out of eight defensemen who qualified by playing at least 150 minutes.

Corsi For%: 51.84 (4th)
Goals For%: 51.00 (3rd)
xGF%: 53.94 (4th)
Scoring Chance %: 51.85 (6th)
High Danger Scoring Chance%: 52.79 (5th)
5v5 on-ice shooting%: 8.72 (1st)
On-ice save%: 90.96 (7th)
Goals/60: 0.17 (5th)
Assist/60: 0.93 (2nd)
Points/60: 1.1 (1st)

Petry earned his reputation for the offense. And at least according to these metrics, the offense was delivered. He also tallied decent puck possession totals when looking at the Corsi For percentage.

Out of eight total defensemen, the on-ice save percentage is an eyebrow-raiser and, as you will see just below this, not in an overly good way.

Charts n’at

Let’s look at Jeff Petry’s season summary. The bulk of the right-hander’s ice time came with Marcus Pettersson, as Mike Sullivan continued to ice the Brian Dumoulin — Kris Letang pairing, much to the chagrin of the fandom.

Towards the end of the year, Petry began to develop chemistry with the young lefty P.O Joseph.

Petry occasionally saw time with the man advantage, but that big blue swath is even-strength ice time.

Even-strength offense in the offensive zone is, well, not good. You never want to see blue in the offensive zone when looking at these heat charts. Petry’s power-play offense was underwhelming, too.

Even-strength defense, however, proved to be a bit more favorable in Petry’s case, and the Penguins looked to be an ever-so-slightly better team while killing penalties with Petry on the ice.

Bang average. Probably the opposite of what was expected; Petry was decent defensively but had disappointing offensive impacts. These three-season rolling totals don’t exactly paint a promising outlook on what the future could hold.

Is Petry on the decline? Is the offense drying up? Both of these questions probably carry some weight. Remember, he is 35. It’s not outlandish to say the aging curve is starting to affect Petry’s game.

Good at skating the puck out, bad at holding his line or retrieving. While not necessarily good, the “holding his line” and “retrieving” parts would help explain the weak on-ice save percentage.

Decent defensive suppression in expected goals, but as mentioned above, the inability to hold his line and turn back in his own zone shows that teams were able to take advantage of Petry’s deficiencies.


Bottom Line

Jeff Petry was acquired to round out the top four and give Pittsburgh another viable right-handed, offensive defenseman. While he may not be the player he was five or 10 years ago, Petry will be relied upon as a source of offense from the backend along with Kris Letang.

Ideal 2023-24

No contract is ever immovable in the NHL. If the Penguins’ new general manager felt the team could be improved elsewhere and shedding Petry’s contract was a part of that process, Petry could be moved.

In all likelihood, Petry’s contract and the lack of effective right-handers on the blue line mean the Michigan man will return to Pittsburgh after his first year.

Could a revamped top-four look something like this: Pettersson—Letang; Joseph—Petry?


How would you grade Jeff Petry’s 2022-23 season?

This poll is closed

  • 0%
    (3 votes)
  • 14%
    (59 votes)
  • 66%
    (273 votes)
  • 16%
    (67 votes)
  • 2%
    (9 votes)
411 votes total Vote Now