Con : Vanishing Acts
Filip Forsberg, Nashville’s leader in both goals and total points during the regular season appeared to be swallowed whole by gaping cracks in the ice, completely disappearing from play when he entered the game. The rising Predators star scrapped together only 4 points (2 goals, 2 assists) through 14 games, and registered a dismal -11 plus/minus rating.
Here is the time where the quote should be inserted about the best players needing to step up with the season on the line- San Jose got it out of Couture, Pavelski, Burns, and it made the difference in the series. But there are a couple of asterisks here for Forsberg:
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One, he has before proven his ability to perform under playoff pressure, netting a hat trick against Chicago in his rookie campaign last year. But more tellingly, news has surfaced that Forsberg was playing through injury during Nashville’s playoff run (as addressed in this article), which was almost certainly a factor in his declined play.
Center Mike Ribeiro on the other hand, served as a healthy scratch for two games after failing to perform up to standards. The 50 point scorer was 3rd on the team in assists and 6th in total points during the regular season, rounding out a deep center core as a threatening playmaker.
Whether it was matters of age or effort, Ribeiro only managed two assists through twelve playoff contests and had become a liability both on the defensive end of the ice and through committing costly turnovers. Though improving his play to a degree after his return from the scratches, the center has only one year remaining under contract, a combination of situations which serves to cast a shadow over his future position in Nashville.
But what does one call the opposite of a Vanishing Act?
Next: Pro: (Re)Appearing Act?