Nashville Predators Captain Roman Josi stuns at IIHF World Championship

Preds captain Roman Josi put up 12 points in 10 games for Switzerland, tied for fourth-most in the tournament and claiming the silver medal.
Switzerland v Czech Republic - Final - 2024 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Czechia
Switzerland v Czech Republic - Final - 2024 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Czechia / Eurasia Sport Images/GettyImages

Although the Nashville Predators’ postseason didn’t necessarily go as well as most had hoped, it did allow captain Roman Josi a chance to play for his home country of Switzerland during the IIHF World Championship, and allowed him to secure a silver medal at the end of the tournament.

Josi was named a finalist for the Norris Trophy at the end of the regular season, a product of another phenomenal offensive and defensive season for the veteran captain. He had what most people would call the “hot stick”, so getting to continue his hot streak in worlds was huge for his game. 

Not only was this a good opportunity for him to play, but he was also able to reunite with former teammate and now Winnipeg Jet, Nino Niederreiter. The two played on the Preds together for quite some time, so this reunion was certainly exciting for the pair. When each of them scored, more often than not the other assisted on the goal. Their chemistry on the ice was stronger than ever, and they were able to help lead the team to a silver medal.

Before announcing that he was going to be attending the tournament, New Jersey Devils captain Nico Hischier was named captain of team Switzerland, but upon learning that Josi would be attending after being eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Hischier turned down the captaincy and gave it to Josi.

Hischier had previously stated that he grew up idolizing Josi when he was playing as Josi was another strong Swiss player playing in the NHL. Hischier voiced that if he were ever to play for his home country with Josi that he would be sure that Josi got the captaincy over him, so the decision for Josi to become captain this year was quick and to the point.

Josi follows up successful NHL season with strong showing at IIHF World Championship

After the first five games of the tournament, Josi led all skaters in points, and for a defenseman in a tournament full of offensive power, this was quite the feat. He continued the hot streak that he had at the end of the NHL season, and helped Switzerland take a commanding lead in the standings. 

Josi ended up finishing fifth in the tournament in points, and was first among defensemen in points. After the gold medal game, Josi finished with three goals and nine assists for a total of 12 points in just 10 games played. Not only did he average more than a point per game, but the captain tallied 38 shots on goal in just these 10 games, as well as finishing with a +4 rating. 

This tournament and winning the silver medal is huge for Josi’s confidence heading into next season, as there is sure to be a lot of changes during the off season and the start of the 2024/25 regular season. If Josi can continue to produce at the rate that he did during this tournament, it is sure to be another Norris caliber season for him.

This tournament was also proof that if paired with the right partner and other forwards that Josi is capable of leading other players to success as well. His pairings and leadership during training camp will be something that will be very key to watch for general manager Barry Trotz and head coach Andrew Brunette.