by Forechecker on 10/01/08 at 01:31 PM ET
Is there a more controversial Nashville Predator than Jordin Tootoo? His penchant for dishing out big hits without apology puts him at the center of a firestorm at least a couple times each season, it seems. Unlike most other agitators around the NHL, however, Tootoo has recently developed into a more well-rounded player, and looks to provide some offensive punch to go along with his more traditional, physically aggressive fisticuffs.
Let’s take a look at Jordin’s offensive production since the lockout:
|Jordin Tootoo Production & Ice Time, Last 3 Seasons|
|GP||EV Pts/60||PP Pts/60||EV TOI/G||PP TOI/G||SH TOI/G|
Clearly, we’re not talking about a player with major ice time here, but as his game has matured, Barry Trotz has gradually increased his role on the team. This season, if Tootoo can continue doing a fine job goading opponents into taking penalties and stay out of the box himself (he was among the team leaders in Penalty Plus/Minus last year), he may well earn the opportunity to play alongside Jason Arnott or David Legwand, and could also get some power play duty as well. Jordin has a good shot and is developing a sense of where to set up while calling for the puck. One should also recall that in junior, Tootoo led his WHL team in scoring in 2001-2 and 2002-3 while piling up massive penalty minute totals as well, so it’s not like he can’t contribute offensively.
Tootoo is one of the most popular players in Nashville
Photo Courtesy Paul Nicholson
I’ve said before that huge leaps in player production are relatively rare, and require a combination of increasing player ability along with the opportunity (in terms of ice time and linemates) to put up greater numbers. If there’s one player on the Nashville Predators who is positioned to make such a leap, it would be Jordin Tootoo. Particularly in those fantasy hockey leagues that reward penalty minutes, Tootoo can be a useful late-round acquisition.
So for the official Forechecker’s Forecast…
|Forechecker’s Forecast, 2008-9 NHL Regular Season|
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