|5-5 Pts/60||CF%||CF% rel||Sh%||Sv%||PDO||Pen +/- per 60|
What would the Predators do without Shea Weber? He's continually one of, if not the most, relied on player in the organization. This year was no different. Weber was one of only two other defensemen (Erik Karlsson and Keith Yandel) to lead his team in scoring, putting up a career best 53 points. He also tied a career high with 23 goals, and only Craig Smith had more. 30 of his points points (12g, 14a) were amassed on the power play, which was one of Nashville's biggest strengths this season. Oh yeah, and he led the team in shorthanded minutes played with 205.
All of this on a team that was 19th in scoring, while having oodles of ice time against the opponents best players. It was enough to get him another bid for the Norris Trophy this season.
Perhaps one aspect of his game that may be worth keeping an eye on is how his teammates performed when he wasn't on the ice. For the last three years, Weber's teammates have had better 5v5 numbers when he's off the ice. Whether this is systems based, Suter based, or both, it shows the captain isn't driving the play as much as he once was. Maybe a more balanced offensive approach will even those numbers back out in the coming seasons.
I had more trouble picking one Weber highlight this season than with any other player so far. I ended up going with this game against the Devils for a few reasons. This was the second game between New Jersey and Nasvhille, and in the first the Preds got spanked 5-0. This one looked like it was going to be another loss, before David Legwand scored with 10.8 seconds left to force overtime. Weber's game-winner was also his second of the night, and that drop pass by Colin Wilson. *drools*
And, just because I like putting GIFs in my reviews and I hate Brad Marchand:
The Road Ahead
There's not a whole lot more to expect from the Captain than what we've been seeing him do. (Ideally, I'd like to see him drive possession just a touch more, though.) He's going to be at or near the top of the scoresheet, he's going to play big minutes against tough competition, and he's going to throw his gigantic frame around. He'll need to continue to be a mentor to the much younger defense corps that plays along side him, and help them develop.
It would also be nice to see some of the scoring pressure relieved from him as well. Peter Laviolette's system should be conducive to that, especially if he's preaching a more offensive game. Finally, we hope all the "Weber to Philly" rumors are going to die down this year, but that may be asking way too much.
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