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Spencer Machacek Re-signs With the Jets: What Should We Expect?

Frederick Breedon - Getty Images

Oh, were you expecting Evander Kane?

The Winnipeg Jets have signed restricted free agent Spencer Machacek to a 1-year 575M contract. Machcek burst onto the scene at the end of last season and flashed all sorts of upside, recording 2 goals and 7 assists in 13 NHL games. Despite his extended look from the big club, he still lead the team’s AHL affiliate, the St. John’s Ice Caps, in scoring. Not a bad year all in all for Spencer.

What else do we know about Spencer? Well he is 23 years old, he was drafted by the Thrashers in round 3 (#67th overall) in the 2007 Draft and is considered to be one of the Jets top 10 prospects by just about everybody.

Here are some scouting reports:

Hockey’s Future:

Machacek is the prototypical, two-way winger with the size and strength to cause opponents problems in their own end. At the same time, he plays a responsible game in his own end of the ice. He described himself to HF as a "gritty guy, two-way player. A grinder who goes to the net and gets some greasy goals."

Hockey Prospectus:

The Good: Machacek is a very hard-working player with a very desirable physical game. His work ethic translates to moderate defensive value as he has what one NHL source calls a "never quit attitude" on the ice and stays with his checks well.

The Bad: Machacek's skating is simply okay, as while he has decent agility, his top gear is below average. He doesn't look awful at any one thing, but his offensive creativity and decision-making also are slightly below average.

Projection: He could be a bottom-six winger.

So, where will he play?

I believe Mach is destined for a bottom six role in the NHL. Sure he led the Ice Caps in scoring, but his 50 points were only enough to rank him 53rd in the AHL. He isn’t and never will be an offensive dynamo. He could however produce at a decent rate for a 3rd or 4th line player. Factor in his age and there isn’t a ton of room for growth.

So you think his late season production was unsustainable?

I do. Spencer Machacek was arguable the luckiest player in the NHL last year. When he was on the ice (5 on 5), 26.3% of all shots by any Jets player resulted in a goal. That is INSANE!! For comparison sake, Sidney Crosby had an On Ice Shooting % of 15.17, which may also be unsustainable and Steven Stamkos led all regulars with 12.93%. Let’s look at the numbers!


Corsi Rel QoC

Corsi Relative

Corsi On

On-Ice Sh%


Off Zone Start %










The Numbers Say Spencer Machacek:

  • Led the entire flipping league in On-Ice Sh% and Point per minute. That won’t happen again.
  • Was extremely sheltered. Off Zone Starts and QoC were among the most favorable on the team.
  • Was not great from a possession perspective; in fact he was among the worst on the team.

What kind of production should we expect from Spencer?

The Jets’ increased depth will make it hard for Machacek to put up many points. Assuming Evander Kane signs, it will be really tough to crack the 3rd line and a 4th line role isn’t a given. In a regular third line role, I could see Mach putting up 25-30 points. The more likely scenario, is that he lands spot on the 4th line. In this type of role I could see him putting up 15-20 points over the course of the season. What kind of numbers do you think he will put up?

Video Bonus: Fight of the Year

Kudos to @WeibeSunSports on the contract details.