The 2022-23 season was a rough one for Andrew Peeke. He was the only Blue Jackets defenseman to play over 70 games, which forced him to play farther up in the lineup than he probably should have, and it showed on the ice.
At five-on-five, Peeke's 745 on-ice scoring chances against ranked 10th-worst in the league, and his 67.28 on-ice expected goals against were 17th-worst, per naturalstattrick.com.
If you are a fan of plus/minus, Peeke wasn't any better in that category, as he finished with a league-worst -41 rating.
Just a brutal giveaway by CBJ's Peeke (#2) and BUF's Skinner (#53) makes a nice feed to Mittelstadt (#37) who's wide open at the left doorstep for the tap-in. #LetsGoBuffalo 4-2 #CBJ https://t.co/vrzo9DFIvL— Coby Maeir (@CobyMaeir) April 15, 2023
During last year's training camp, Peeke signed a three-year, $2.75M AAV extension that begins this season.
On the right side of the defense, the Blue Jackets will be entering camp with Peeke, Severson, Adam Boqvist, Nick Blankenburg, David Jiricek, and Erik Gudbranson all competing for spots in the lineup. While Peeke may have been a lock to be in the lineup a year ago, that isn't the case today.
At his best, Peeke is a reliable stay-at-home defenseman who plays on the second or third pair, which lines up with his current cap hit. If he plays to that capability, he should have no problem cracking the Blue Jackets' lineup. Another thing he has going for him is his durability, as the only two games he missed over the last two seasons were due to being a healthy scratch, so you can count on him to be available.
This is a big year for Peeke. Can he live up to his potential?