Brandon Tanev is fast. Outside of that, it is hard to see why the Winnipeg Jets see Tanev as someone who is an important contributor to their bottom six. He is not though. While his brother, Chris, is a key contributer to the Vancouver Canucks defence, Brandon does not hold the same talent as Chris. That is a shame because the elder Tanev is a really talented defenceman for the Canucks as long as you are not relying on points to judge his game. Anyways, back to Brandon; acquiring him only cost a contract spot and while signing him from Providence University where he spent four years.
First of all, Tanev is a 25 year old rookie meaning he is in his prime already. His prime is four points in 54 NHL games. This is not a young player adjusting to the NHL, this is a player in his prime playing well over his head. This is a problem if the Jets want to improve year to year as Tanev will not help them accomplish this.
Where do we begin here? Brandon Tanev is not just bad, he is most likely one of the worst forwards in the NHL. When healthy he rarely broke 45% CorsiFor. He should not be in the NHL. This is not like Joel Armia who does not drive possession or kills penalties effectively, he just kind of exists on the ice and makes the Jets worse when he is on the ice. However, Paul Maurice loves him because he is a fast skater and appears to be doing things whenever he is on the ice.
More than anything, Tanev being in the Jets lineup falls directly on Maurice. Maurice felt like Tanev brought more to the Jets than Marko Dano or Joel Armia for stretches. There should be questions directed at Maurice for why he thinks Tanev is more effective than a player like Dano. What does Tanev do that is important to helping the Jets win? Yes, he can skate fast, but skating fast does very little unless you can handle the puck and make plays. Brandon Tanev is not a NHL player by any measure, yet he was included in the Jets lineup 52 times. It is an indictment of a coaching staff more than anything. Tanev was offered a NHL contract and he rightfully took it. He made the Jets and played to the best of his abilities. It is not his fault he is not a NHL-calibre player.