This is Ron Hunt. He taught me the value of “HBP” many years ago. Although I didn’t understand the idea of adding it to OBP (the Baseball Guides listed total bases on balls, intentional base on balls, and hit-by-pitch in the miscellaneous section but there was no OBP. Even SP was in the second section) Ron Hunt sure got on base a lot and that was a good thing.
If hockey had a hit-by-pitch category the annual leader would be Mathieu Roy. He’d lead in hit-by-boards, accidental falldowns, putting yourself in an awkward position and times having your career stall due to untimely events.
Mathieu Roy has 10 fingers, 10 toes. After that it’s a blur.
The Oilers have waived Roy in order to send him down and he is not happy. Who in hell can blame him? He’s a solid defenseman, in fact I’d go so far as to say that Mathieu Roy is underrated by everybody, even his own organization. The Flyers have been losing defensemen by the day and could pick him up so most fans are hoping he doesn’t clear waivers.
In fact, so is the brass. Quoting the GM “there’s part of us that hopes he’ll be claimed, for himself, and the other part is we’d like to be able to keep him as depth” and despite how good that sounds it can’t be encouraging when your bosses are cheering for you to leave.
Roy is one of 5 Oiler picks from 2003 to make the show. Marc Pouliot, JF Jacques and Roy were all selected from the QMJHL that season and each has had all kinds of strange injuries along the way. All of them have had their careers affected but there are examples in NHL history of young defensemen getting their injuries out of the way early and then going on to many successful seasons in the NHL.
There aren’t a lot of them, though.