For instance, defenseman P.K. Subban leads the NHL in goals by a defenseman (13), is third in the league in points for a defenseman (40) and is tied for the third-most power play points by a defenseman (18).
Let’s not forget that he also has 21 points in his last 20 games, is currently on pace for career highs in goals and points and is also the Preds’ leading scorer.
“I’m just trying to come out and do my job,” Subban said after the Preds 5-2 win against the Rangers on Saturday. “We have such a good team throughout the lineup. I said it earlier, whether we’re playing with the first line or the fourth line, we have guys that can put the puck on net and generate offense. I’m just trying to put the puck on net and keep it simple.”
Also intriguing is since Ryan Ellis’ return to the Preds lineup on Jan. 2, Nashville has surrendered just 23 goals – an average of 1.91 goals per game, which is fewest in the league during that span.
Oh, let’s not forget that the “JoFA” line has accounted for five or more points in back-to-back games. Since Filip Forsberg’s return, he has scored a goal and three assists in two games, while Ryan Johansen has four assists and Viktor Arvidsson has two goals and an assist.
“That line was incredible tonight, and last year too,” forward Kevin Fiala told Fox Sports Tennessee after the game. “They’ve been together for a long time and that’s just great for our balance and I think every other line has done a great job.”
“When you have guys like Fil and Joey and Arvi that have everything you want in a top line on a team – physicality, speed, skill – you’ve just got to be aware when they’re on the ice,” Subban added. “For them to go out and execute like that, right after (giving up) those (late) goals is pretty big for our team.”
I haven’t even mentioned that Pekka Rinne has won his last seven starts, posting a .945 save percent with a 1.55 goals against average with two shutouts. Additionally, Rinne now owns the second-longest shutout streak in Predators history with 171:47 of shutout hockey from Jan. 20-Feb. 3. Dan Ellis owns the franchise record with 233:39 without allowing a goal.
All off this to say that the Nashville Predators are playing arguably their best hockey of the season. They have won eight out of their last 10 games, earning points in nine of them.
At 31-12-7, the Preds sit in second place in the Central Division, behind the Winnipeg Jets with three games in hand on them and four on the third-place St. Louis Blues. The scary part is, they are about to get even better with the unexpected addition of former captain Mike Fisher.
The 37-year-old center led the team last season in faceoff winning percent (54.9), power play goals (seven) and hits (160), he led all forwards in penalty kill time and was fourth on the team in goals (18).
We keep hearing about this extra gear that Nashville still has. Well, we may be about to finally see it.