Return Of The King
Ryan Ellis, Batman to Josi’s Superman, was robbed of his best season ever. Had the Winter Classic incident never happened then he would have undoubtedly surpassed all of his career highs.
With the shortened season now ended, Ellis sits four assists and three points shy of his career-best. With eight goals this season, he would’ve more than likely passed that career-best as well.
The Predators had a pretty decent season going before Ellis was injured, but still had some issues. After his injury, the issues turned into panic. The defensive core struggled enormously in his absence.
With Ellis out, the defensive lines were shifted drastically. Josi was usually paired with Yannick Weber, which shifted every other defenseman away from their usual partner. Needless to say, the team was glad when Ellis finally returned.
It is not by chance that Ellis’ return coincided with the Predators’ surge in gameplay. The team missed Ellis, and it showed on the stat sheet.
If Josi wasn’t captain of this team, then Ellis should be. His gameplay is always top-notch, and he delivers consistent results. He’s a strong leader and is vital to this team.
Ellis and Josi make a great tandem, arguably one of the best defensive pairings in the NHL. Hopefully, Ellis, along with Josi, can help propel this team forward and prepare them for what is to come when the playoffs start.