Coming into the 2018-19 NHL campaign, one of the big stories was whether or not the Washington Capitals would suffer from the dreaded ‘Stanley Cup hangover’ (both literally and figuratively). Five games into the season, they’re a respectable 2-2-1 and scoring an average of four goals a game. So, I think it’s safe to say that things are going alright for the Caps so far.
One thing that wasn’t talked about before the puck dropped was the old ‘Stanley Cup finalist hangover’. Now, some of you may argue that nobody was chin-wagging about it because it’s a term that’s never been explored. Well, if that’s the case, take a look at the Vegas Golden Knights.
Only a few months removed from one of the greatest inaugural seasons in the history of professional sports, the boys in gold are 2-4-0. With Max Pacioretty added to the roster in the offseason and Shea Theodore locked up long term, it was thought that they would be even better than they were last year. In fact, oddsmakers in their very own backyard pegged them as 11/1 favourites to win the Cup.
So, I ask the same question that legendary singer and songwriter Marvin Gaye did so many years ago, “what’s going on?”
Well, one of the issues has been the fact that William Karlsson hasn’t scored yet. The one they call ‘Wild Bill’ finished third in the league last season with 43 goals. He also wrapped up his 82 game campaign with a jaw-dropping shooting percentage of 23.4%.
Therefore, based on my math, his zero goals on ten shots so far equates to a shooting percentage that is 23.4% lower than last season’s. Based on the comments he recently made to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the 25-year-old isn’t too concerned, though.
“In Sweden, we call it the ketchup effect,” he said. “It’s like when you bang on the bottom of the bottle and get nothing, but eventually once some comes out it all pours out. Hopefully, we can get some ketchup effect.”
For those that understand new concepts best through visuals, I’ve provided a short little clip for you below – just picture goals instead of ketchup.
Best of luck getting the image of that man’s face covered in tomato sauce out of your head before you hit the pillow tonight.
In all seriousness though, the ketchup effect would be quite nice for Karlsson and Co. They’ve only scored 10 goals so far this season. That average of 1.67 goals per game puts them in a tie for 29th in the NHL. Last year, they averaged 3.27 in the regular season (fifth). They’re a team that needs the floodgates to open and the ketchup to start flowing.
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