I also think he's a spark plug, as proven by his production on the games immediately after being called-up. He would have been a great call-up late in the Tampa playoff series last Spring, when the team could have used a "lift."
That being said, the 23 year old Perreault may very well end up back in Hershey at the beginning of this - the 11-12 season. There's simply too much competition, especially after the highly touted summer acquisition of Mattias Sjogren and the competition from highly prized youngster Cody Eakin.
Destiny may also not be on his side.
True that Mathieu Perreault has to clear waivers before being assigned back to Hershey (which his competition doesn't), but what concerns me is coach Bruce Boudreau's comments regarding Perreault - which he stated last season but recently rehashed in a Washington Post article:
For those of you who don't know, Boudreau was an accomplished professional hockey player - albeit mostly in the AHL. While playing pro hockey until the age of 37, he only suited up for 141 NHL games, totalling a not-too-shabby 70 points.
The parallel's between the two players are indeed glaring. Before the age of 23, Boudreau had already been called-up to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs for parts of 2 seasons, playing 55 games and amassing 13 goals. Mathieu Perreault, meanwhile, has played 56 games in his first two Caps seasons - scoring 11 goals.
What concerns me is that as long as Bruce Boudreau is coaching the Washington Capitals, Mathieu Perreault will always be - at least in Boudreau's eyes - a reminder of his own NHL career. His quotes do not lead me to believe otherwise. In other words, Perreault may be a player who will NEVER make the Capitals roster on a permanent basis.
Do I think Mathieu Perreault deserves a shot to be an everyday player? YES. But with Boudreau in charge it looks like Perreault may very well be an up-and-down (mostly down) player for quite a while.
What do you think? Is Perreault automatically & permanently in Boudreau's doghouse? Leave a comment and let me know what you think.