Nashville Predators Most Underrated – #82 Thomas Novak
After what Thomas Novak did last season, especially late down the stretch as the Predators made an improbable push for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, it is safe to say if he continues that caliber of on-ice ability, he will not be labeled as underrated for long.
Playing in just 51 games for the Predators during 2022-23, Novak had 17 goals and 26 assists after not making his season debut until December 19 in an impressive win over the Edmonton Oilers where he notched an assist.
To put it in perspective, Novak was third on the team in scoring while only playing in just over half of the games. Pretty incredible accomplishment.
Now to nitpick a little, Novak did have the second-lowest faceoff win percentage among all Predators taking at least 100 faceoffs. However, if he can find out a way to win more draws while continuing to play at the level he did last season, he will have the ability to be a top-six center on a lot of NHL rosters.
To make it even more impressive, Novak did all of this while only averaging 14:39 time on ice per game and only took four minor penalties. His eight penalty minutes were the lowest on the team among all players who played at least 40 games.
Only taking 93 shots on goals, Novak also led the team in shooting percentage among players who took at least 50 shots with a highly impressive 18.3 percent.
Novak may not be considered underrated for too much longer and isn’t among Nashville circles, but around the broad NHL landscape, he is still vastly overlooked.