by Forechecker on 10/07/08 at 02:09 PM ET
While Jason Arnott and David Legwand get most of the attention among Nashville centermen, Scott Nichol plays just as important a role in the team’s success. As a faceoff and penalty killing specialist, Nichol’s accomplishments are well-known. But his general even-strength play is worth some attention as well.
Nichol’s offensive contributions are pure gravy to the Predators
Photo Courtesy Paul Nicholson
Using the 5-on-5 advanced statistics from Behind the Net, we see that when Nichol plays, the Predators’ Goals For/60 Minutes stays pretty much the same (2.69 when he’s on, 2.66 when he’s off the ice), but the Goals Against drops significantly (1.98 when he’s on, 2.54 when he’s off). That, my friends, is a defensive center who actually helps win hockey games (cough, cough).
While those aspects of his game are obviously what matter most to the Predators, all you Fantasy Hockey maniacs will want to review Nichol’s offensive production:
|Scott Nichol Production & Ice Time, Last 3 Seasons|
|GP||EV Pts/60||PP Pts/60||EV TOI/G||PP TOI/G||SH TOI/G|
Now, a Points/60 Minutes figure around 1.00 is underwhelming; but again, that’s not what Nichol brings to the team. The real question with this diminuitive dynamo is when and how he’s going to get suspended. Last year, it was Montreal’s Patrice Brisebois who caught a cross-check to the face, earning Nichol 5 games in the stockade. The season before that Buffalo’s Jaroslav Spacek got an early Christmas present in the form of a sucker-punch from Nichol, who had just been run into the goalpost by the Sabres defenseman (that one got Nichol a 9-game suspension). So who’s going to be on the receiving end this year?
With that in mind, here’s the official Forechecker’s Forecast…
|Forechecker’s Forecast, 2008-9 NHL Regular Season|
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