November is the month for giving thanks. Every week we’ll feature some things related to the Nashville Predators for which to be thankful for.
For anyone who has yet to attend a Nashville Predators game in person, you are missing out on one of life’s little joys. Bridgestone Arena holds you and 17,000 of your closest friends, all rooting for the boys in gold.
Well, most of them. There’s always going to be haters.
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Over the years, we’ve been fortunate that the Predators front office has drafted and brought some very talented players to the organization.
The definition of the word elite is “a select part of a group that is superior to the rest in terms of ability or qualities.” It is also a word used to describe hockey players that excel in their sport.
The Predators are fortunate to have someone who has grown into an elite player and keeps getting better every year.
I am, of course, talking about Captain and Norris Trophy winner Roman Josi.
Josi by the numbers
The Predators chose Josi with the 38th pick in the 2008 NHL Entry Draft. He didn’t make his NHL debut until the 2011-12 season, where he participated in 52 games.
Throughout his career, Josi has played in 632 games and scored 413 points (109 goals, 304 assists). His career Corsi rating is 50.5, and hasn’t been below 50 since the 2013-14 season.
Josi became Captain of the Predators before the 2017-18 season after Captain Mike Fisher retired at the end of the 2016-17 season. Since then, Josi has led the team by example, both on and off the ice.
Josi had a stellar season in 2019-20. It was the best of his career, and one reason he brought home the Norris trophy.
In the shortened 69 game season, Josi tallied 65 points (16 goals, 49 assists). Had the season not been paused, he would have climbed even further. Last season, his Corsi rating hovered around 52.6.
During his career, Josi has been selected to participate in the All-Star game three times (2016, 2019, 2020). Last season, he was also selected to the NHL First Team All-Star, the first time he has received this honor.
Recently the NHL Network named its top 20 current defensemen. Josi came in at number two on the list, behind Stanley Cup MVP and Conn Smythe Trophy winner Victor Hedman.
Josi off the ice
Whether it is his puck handling skills, skating abilities, or the way he can put the Predators on his back and lead them to a victory, Josi is a force to be reckoned with on the ice.
Josi shines off the ice as well. He and his wife Ellie are very involved in the Nashville community and spend their time and money to help those in need.
In April of this year, the Josis donated $20,000 to Second Harvest Food Bank to help the homeless throughout the city. Josi is also involved in the Best Buddies program, which helps children with developmental disabilities.
You can also find Josi and the Predators visiting, either in person or on Zoom calls during the pandemic, young hospitalized children who have life-threatening diseases. Josi and the team are involved in helping our veterans as well.
Poile and the Predators awarded Josi a contract extension that starts next season. This contract will likely make Josi a lifetime member of the Predators.
We can all be thankful that we have an elite player like Josi on the Predators roster. He will undoubtedly go down in Predators’ history as the most outstanding defenseman of all time.
Once Josi decides to hang up the skates for the last time, I am confident that one day we will see a “59” retired number banner hanging from the rafters of Bridgestone Arena.