Nashville Predators: Midseason Grades for the Young Guns

(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /
7 of 9
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)
(Photo by John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images) /

Kevin Fiala: 21 years old

If you’ve been to a Nashville Predators game this season, chances are you’ve heard at least one teenage girl yelling “Baby Kev” towards the ice at some point. It’s not far off; at just 21 years old, Fiala is the youngest player on Nashville’s regular lineup.

His performance has made him absolutely deserving of the ice time. In his 41 appearances, he’s produced 26 points from 10 goals and 16 assists – good enough for fourth-best on Nashville’s roster.

His biggest storyline this year has been his inclusion on the revamped second line, featuring Kyle Turris and Craig Smith. Acquiring Turris has paid off mostly through the production of the two wingers.

Let’s take a look at Fiala’s five-on-five possession numbers:

12:26 55.09 57.46 59.48

Far and away, these are the best numbers from anyone in this group of players. Certainly, he enjoys very little responsibility in the defensive zone, but that’s fine as long as he can produce. His Fenwick percentage is beaten only by his two linemates, and he has the single best high-danger chance percentage on Nashville’s roster. It’s an incredible feat for the youngest guy on the bench.

After a sluggish start to the season, likely compounded by memories of his gruesome injury in St. Louis, Kevin Fiala has exploded back onto the scene. Opponents would do well to keep an eye out for the Swiss kid in future games.

Midseason grade: A+