Despite having the second-least amount of ice-time by any Nashville Predators player, Rocco Grimaldi still made a huge impact on Saturday night’s game two, which is why he deserves more opportunities to play.
Rocco Grimaldi did not find out he was going to play on Saturday until after practice that morning, when the Nashville Predators told him he will be taking the place of Brian Boyle, who was going to miss that game with an illness.
After learning of this, Grimaldi had to prepare for the game rather quickly, as he had done some extra work at practice and now had to regain energy for a crucial game two against the Dallas Stars.
Despite this situation, and the fact that Peter Laviolette only gave him just under ten minutes of ice time, he looked like one of the best players on the ice that night.
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He looked faster than everyone else, he played harder than everyone else, and that paid off early into the second period when he received a beautiful pass from Austin Watson and tucked it past Ben Bishop to tie the game at one goal a piece.
Grimaldi was arguably the Predators best player 5 on 5, and didn’t get that much ice time because of the fact that there were nine penalties in this game, while he does not get any ice time on special teams, but I think that should change.
Now that Wayne Simmonds looks like he will be week-to-week due to a knee injury suffered in last night’s game and Brian Boyle will also be week-to-week because he had an appendix procedure, Grimaldi will likely be staying in the lineup for the foreseeable future, so why not put him on the power play.
The Nashville Predators power play is 1-for-9 in the first two games of their first round series against the Dallas Stars, and it desperately needs a shakeup, so why not try putting Rocco in.
Mikael Granlund has gone absolutely cold and has been on the first unit all series, so there is an obvious spot for him, even if the Preds decide to promote someone from the second unit while placing Grimaldi on that second unit in Granlund’s spot, there could be an obvious spot for him.
Grimaldi is a guy who can push the tempo of that power play up, as he is a high energy guy, and can also shoot the puck fairly well, as we’ve seen from him at a small sample size, as he looked very good at points during the regular season despite only potting five goals in 53 games.
Even then, he wasn’t given the opportunity to play a large amount of minutes during the regular season, but when he did play he always looked great.
If given more ice time, the 26 year old Grimaldi could possibly make a huge impact on this series, and potentially beyond for the Nashville Predators, as his game was made for the Stanley Cup Playoffs.