Nashville Predators: If the team wants to win, four players must step up…now

(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /
5 of 5
(Photo by Danny Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
(Photo by Danny Murphy/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images) /

Calle Jarnkrok

Opening statement: Let’s no longer speak of the off-season decision to protect Calle Jarnkrok. He is on the team and we must move ahead. The discussion is old.

With that statement made, Jarnkrok has to do something positive. Of course, is he a center or a winger? Once Nick Bonino returns, the second and third forward lines should be solidified. But, where does that leave Jarnkrok.

On pace to play every game this year – he played in 81 each of the last two seasons – Jarnkrok is below career averages on scoring. At his current rate, he will finish the year with 24 points. To complicate matters, his CorsiFor (45.6) is far below expectations.

The potential to perform is there. For two consecutive seasons, Jarnkrok acheived 30+ points. With 69 games left to play, the Predators must see the promise of scoring become reality. Tallying his 50th career assist on a goal by Josi versus San Jose was a good sign.

Is there more to come? All in all, the start to the season is better than last year. Well, at least in terms of record. We know it was the second half of the year that pushed them to the playoffs. Should the next few games go against the Nashville Predators, it will take a similar run. The Western Conference appears better this season.

Next: Shifting lines are killing offense

For success to be obtained, Jarnkrok and company must step up.