Gostisbehere, Lazar lead NHL’s 2016-17 All Healthy-Scratch Team

Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Shayne Gostisbehere. (Matt Slocum/AP)

Healthy scratches are unfortunate for the players sitting out but they happen on a nightly basis in the NHL.

However, when a star or everyday player is told to put on a suit, sit in the press box and watch his teammates it garners attention.

So far this season we seen our fair share of notable players left out of the lineup so we’ve compiled a 2016-17 All Healthy-Scratch Team.


Travis Konecny

Konecny, along with teammate Shayne Gostisbehere, who you can read about below, haven’t been great lately and Flyers coach Dave Hakstol left them out of the lineup Thursday against the Canadiens. Overall, Flyers fans shouldn’t worry about the development of these two youngsters.

“I’m happy with those two kids,” team GM Ron Hextall said. “There are learning curves, though, with young players that old players have been through. And they’re going through some ups and downs now.”

Curtis Lazar

Lazar missed most of training camp due to mononucleosis and it seems like he hasn’t yet gotten up to speed. He rarely gets more than 10 minutes of ice-time per game and only has one assist in 28 contests.

“It’s never fun being out, but we have some great depth here,” Lazar said. “There’s no point in me pouting or letting the emotions get the better of me. I did that sometimes before the all-star break. It’s about being a good teammate. Every time I am in the lineup, I have to be tenacious, hard on the puck and the shoot the puck a little more.”

His name has been floated out there in recent trade rumours.

Sam Bennett

The Flames forward is definitely in the midst of a sophomore slump and spent a game against the Predators in the press box. The fourth-overall pick from the 2014 draft has two points in the past four games after snapping a 12-game pointless streak.

Matt Beleskey

Beleskey had a terrible start to the 2016-17 campaign. He didn’t register a point until his 11th game of the season and was scratched back in November.

“We need better from him,” Bruins head coach Claude Julien said at the time. “We’ve done everything we can to help him out. I feel it’s not a bad thing to take a step back and watch a game, hopefully regroup in his mind and come back with the intentions of being in there every night. He’s a good player, and right now I think we’re getting a little bit more out of our role players than we’re getting out of him. So this is a decision based on performance, and this is what I’m going with.”

Beleskey scored two goals and had five points in November before suffering a knee injury in early December that kept him out of the lineup for six weeks. He has two assists in six games since returning from the injury.


Jimmy Hayes

Beleskey wasn’t the only notable forward Julien left out of the lineup this season. Hayes was scratched for seven straight games in January. Since returning to the lineup he has averaged less than nine minutes per game and hasn’t registered a point. Hayes was acquired from the Panthers in 2015 for Reilly Smith and Marc Savard’s contract. He had 25 points in 75 games in 2015-16 but only three points through 40 appearances this season.

John Mitchell

The centre has been an effective role player since joining the Avalanche in 2012 but this season hasn’t gone his way. Mitchell has been scratched multiple times this season. He has one goal, no assists and a minus-9 rating in 40 games.

Bobby Ryan

There was plenty of mystery surrounding this one. Ryan sat out of a 1-0 loss to the Capitals in early December. Sens coach Guy Boucher never gave a full explanation as to why Ryan was a healthy scratch. “There’s complex issues that don’t need to be said out here,” Boucher said.

Ryan added: “We had an issue that we dealt with and it’s dealt with.”

The forward has four goals and seven points in the 10 games since being scratched.

Mike Ribeiro

Ribeiro hasn’t played since Jan. 24 and reports have surfaced that the soon-to-be-37-year-old has requested a trade. According to the Associated Press, the Predators waived him Friday. He has four goals and 21 assists in 46 games.


Shayne Gostisbehere

The 2016 Calder Trophy finalist has been scratched several times this season.

His numbers are way down from last year which concerns coach Hakstol.

“I don’t see him pressing on the offensive side,” Hakstol told reporters.

Gostisbehere has also struggled in the defensive zone.

“I don’t know what to think of it right now,” Gostisbehere said after a recent 5-1 loss to the Hurricanes. “I’m definitely not happy. When we lose like that, it’s tough. It’s a team loss. You’ve got to change things up when you lose that bad. I guess it’s my turn. I could have done a lot better things defensively. It’s a learning curve right now.”

Sami Vatanen

The Ducks lost 5-3 to the Wild on Jan. 21 and Vatanen was minus-4 in that game. He was a scratch the following game. Considering Vatanen is one of the more talented young blueliners in the league this one was a surprise.

Frank Corrado

Corrado has been the clear-cut MVP of the scratch squad. The 23-year-old didn’t see any regular-season action until Nov. 12 and had a difficult time containing his frustration but was a pro about it.

“It’s one of those things where you have to do what’s best for the team and be a good team guy while the team’s playing well,” he said.

Corrado was waived Saturday.

Xavier Ouellet

The second-round pick from 2011 has developed slower than Detroit management would’ve ideally liked but he has still shown upside and he’s taking a positive approach to the situation.

“You got to be consistent,” Ouellet said last month. “I think the big thing in my game, I was scratched for a little bit and it was kind of hard. I worked really hard when I had a chance to come back, I just didn’t want to get out of the lineup. I prepared every game, and still do prepare every game, like it’s my last one and I want to help the team win and I think that’s what’s allowed me to play every night.”


Ondrej Pavelec

Pavelec was the odd man out early in the season as the Jets leaned on Michael Hutchinson and Connor Hellebuyck. Pavelec was recalled by Winnipeg in January and mid-January and has been their starter ever since.

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