The NHL All-Star selections have officially been announced, and the Nashville Predators get just one player in. That player is their captain.
Roman Josi comes as no surprise getting into the NHL All-Star game, but the Nashville Predators getting just one player selected might be a surprise to some. The Predators have no shortage of talented players on their roster, but they find themselves in a bad spot in the standings.
As for Josi, this marks his third All-Star selection. His previous selections came in 2019 and 2016. It’s safe to say he has many more to come as he’s in the peak of his career and keeps getting better.
Last season the Predators got Josi and Pekka Rinne into the All-Star game to represent the Central Division team. Josi had a goal and five assists in the two games he played in last year’s All-Star game that now features a two semifinal games between the divisions. .
Josi’s incredible season so far
Josi is in the midst of having a career-high season in many categories including goals, points and assists. He needs just one goal to tie his career high of 15 goals, and we’re not even officially at the halfway point of the season.
So Josi getting in this season was a virtual lock. He’s starting to become one of the best defenseman in the NHL. He’s definitely the most dynamic with the way he skates and generates offense.
I’ve been saying since before the season started that Josi is primed for a Norris Trophy for the league’s best defenseman sooner rather than later. You have to put him firmly in the mix to claim his first career Norris Trophy if he keeps going on the pace he’s on.
Unfortunately the rest of the Nashville defense has been under scrutiny. Josi’s pairing with Ryan Ellis has been pretty solid, but the problem has been the two pairings behind them. Josi is doing everything he can to help carry this team offensively, but there’s problems aside from his career-best type of season.
Were there any snubs?
Honestly speaking, I can’t find any snubs on the Predators roster. Everyone is going to want to leap to Filip Forsberg, but there are others in the Central Division that are bigger snubs. As much as I love Forsberg, he’s been pretty ordinary this season. Not terrible, but not elite enough to get an All-Star selection either.
Viktor Arvidsson can’t be included because he missed so much time with injury. Perhaps he could’ve made a run at an All-Star selection if he had played the full slate up to this point.
There’s absolutely no way that Rinne or Juuse Saros was going to be considered for as a selection. They’ve been inconsistent and part of the glaring weakness of this team, but it’s a join effort with the defense being played in front of them.
Matt Duchene hasn’t made the All-Star game since 2016 and there was a lot of hype surrounding him as he joined the Predators over the offseason. He exploded out of the gate, but has cooled off since then and not done enough to get a selection.
Let’s see if Josi can dazzle again in the NHL All-Star Game and represent the Nashville Predators on the national stage. With the type of offense, speed and stick handling he brings to the game, this 3-on-3 format is perfect for him.
With how much talent is on this roster, it’s a pretty big disappointment for this team to get just one player an All-Star selection. None of the big stars are really sticking out or taking charge aside from Josi.
The NHL All-Star Game will be on January 25th from St.Louis and televised on NBC and NBC Sports Network, with the Skills Competition the day before.