Five Tough Questions: Lines, Streaks, and Votes
We passed around the bucket of knowledge and got some more opinions. Marya, Caroline, and Anish answered the bell.
Firstly, a big thanks for the participants. The art of hot takery in the realm of hockey may be flooded, but these individuals put forth their normal superb efforts. Honestly, we're pretty blessed to have this level of depth in our staff to be able to get knowledgeable people to do this kind of thing. So enjoy, and cheers to all.
1. If you had a vote for the Norris trophy, who would you say is the most deserving 30 games into the season?
Caroline: I know. I'm biased. But Roman Josi really was a very reasonable write-in candidate last year, and he has earned himself a nomination this year and he deserves some legit recognition. I know Norris voting is basically who scored the most and that's it, but I'm going to stick to the award's true definition (best all around) and give it to Josi. Compare the TOI of the other top five defensemen in scoring (Josi is 5th) to Josi: 5th in PP time, 4th in EV time, and 1st in PK time (and 1st by a LOT - the next guy (Brent Burns) has almost 15 fewer PK mins than Josi). And yet despite being asked to kill so many more penalties than all of the other top-scoring defensemen, Josi is still 5th in scoring. You want to know who is truly the best all around defenseman in the NHL today? It's Roman Josi.
Marya: Josi gets my vote, not just because I’m a raging homer, but I feel like he really has been MVP of the team this season, bringing it in all situations. Honorable mention to Drew Doughty.
Anish: If I were to vote by typical Norris voting standards, I would vote Erik Karlsson. But what people often forget is that the Norris isn't the award for best offensive defenseman, it's the award for best all around defenseman. So with that being said, my vote is split between John Klingberg and Roman Josi (I had to go with a homer pick). Both of those guys have proven to be invaluable to their team so far in this season. And let's be honest, how could any voters not vote for Roman Josi after his sweet dangle that embarrassed Erik Karlsson?
2. Viktor Arvidsson is carving out a role on the team in the absence of Colin Wilson and Gabby Bourque. How many remaining games does Arvidsson play for Nashville this year? (Percentage)
Caroline: Arvidsson has been great. Assuming he keeps playing like he has been, I'd be happy if he was around for 100% of the remaining games. It's still kind of a small sample size, but I think I might prefer Arvidsson over Gabby Bourque.
Marya: Two thirds, I’d say. He can slot in for injuries on every line, although I really like the Arvidsson-Mike Ribeiro-Craig Smith construction.
Anish: I have mentioned in many of my recaps that I think Arvidsson is going to be something really special for the Preds. Colin Wilson is going to be an every night player barring injuries. I think Arvidsson and Bourque will alternate night in and night out. I would say that Arvidsson plays in 50% of Nashville's remaining games. But it wouldn't surprise me if he plays in upwards of 65%-70% of the games left.
3. We’ve seen a rough start to the year for Colin Wilson, who just returned from his LBI. How many points will Wilson finish the season with? (Currently has 9)
Caroline: I've always been kinda hopeful-from-a-distance about Colin Wilson, but I have never been (and am still not) convinced that he will suddenly start putting up 50+ points like I know lots of people think he can. I say he's good for 30-ish points this year and I highly doubt he has a repeat of last year (42).
Marya: 30, hoping for the over. If the rest of the offense can bring it, it should bolster his numbers. Otherwise I don’t have lot of confidence.
Anish: Wilson has been an enigma for this team. He shows flashes of brilliance and then follows it up by going cold. Injuries are never easy to comeback from, and considering his already slow start that he was having, I would guess that he will probably end the season around the 25-30 point mark. Here's to hoping that I am completely wrong on this one.
4. The Golden State Warriors finally lost a game, after starting the year on a 24 game win streak. Patrick Kane’s point streak finally ended. In your mind, what was the more impressive streak? And as a bonus, what is your favorite sports/hockey streak in history?
Caroline: The Golden State Warriors is more impressive. I do not like Patrick Kane. Bonus: I did some brief research to see if there were any impressive NHL streaks I didn't know about, and I found one I can't resist sharing. In the 92-93 season, Ottawa lost 38 consecutive away games. That's ridiculous. How does that happen?
Marya: Unpopular opinion, but Kane’s scoring streak continues to impress me. With the scarcity of scoring, and the fact that a lot of people want to rearrange the way assists are being handed out, because this is "too easy", it really underscores how difficult it is to string together the combination of skill and luck to accomplish this.
Anish: As much as I want to say that the Golden State Warriors streak, I have to say that Kane's was the more impressive of the two. I only say this because individual streaks are much harder to hold on to these days than team streaks. It is hard to continue scoring points night in and night out when you know the entire opposing bench is going to be trying to shut you down for the entire game.
As far as my favorite streak, I would have to say Wayne Gretzky's 51 game point scoring streak. I mean just think about how ridiculous that streak is for a second. Patrick Kane has come the closest among active players currently and he only made it half way to Gretzky's number. It's mind blowing to think someone could score a point in 51 straight games.
5. Can Calle Jarnkrok hold on to the 1C position until the trade deadline or longer?
Caroline: The biggest complaint I have about Calle Jarnkrok at 1C is that he's not putting up the kind of points I would want from a true 1C, but he is playing well, especially considering that he was just kinda tossed up there, so I think he sticks around.
Marya: I doubt it. But I also said he wasn’t getting powerplay time, and he did the very next game, so the odds look good for him. I see Fisher slotting back in whenever he returns (which I get the feeling won’t be any time soon).
Anish: Ahh, the million dollar question. I think he will at least hold on to that position until the trade deadline. I even think he could possibly hold on to it a little bit longer if they continue to create chemistry together. Jarnkrok and Forsberg are friends off the ice and have chemistry on the ice. It's a matter of if they can both find a way to mesh with James Neal. So far, I would say they have done a good job creating chances and wreaking havoc on opposing defenses.