The Nashville Predators are starting to heat back up on offense.
One of the reasons for the great offensive play recently is captain Roman Josi.
However, while Josi has been in the spotlight, Ryan Ellis has been quietly putting up impressive numbers. He has seven points in the last four games, including a great game-winning goal in OT against Boston. If Ellis can keep producing at this pace, I believe he will be a key factor for this offense going forward.
— AtoZSports Nashville (@AtoZSports) December 22, 2019
Through 35 games, Ellis has tallied six goals and 22 assists. He is only one goal and 13 total points away from his totals from last season. A season which saw him post a career-high in points.
The 5-foot-10 inch defenseman was one of the primary goal-scorers during Nashville’s incredible Stanley Cup Playoff run in 2017. He scored five goals during all 22 games in the tournament. He also lit the lamp 16 times during the regular season that year, the most goals of any Predators’ defensemen.
However, since that season, the goal scoring just hasn’t been there for Ellis. He missed about half of the 2017-18 season but still managed to scored nine goals. Those numbers dipped last season where he only totaled seven goals in all 82 games. That was his second-lowest goal total since becoming a full-time starter.
To me, it felt like Ellis lost some of the goal-scoring magic he had during the incredible playoff run, but I think he is starting to get some of that magic back.
Since P.K. Subban was dealt to the New Jersey Devils in the offseason, this is exactly what the team has needed from Ellis. As a whole, the top six forwards have been in an offensive slump, lately, so this production from the blue line is exactly what the team needs to spark the offense.
Ellis’ offense is exactly what Nashville needs to get them back into the playoff picture. The scoring will come back for the forwards, there is too much talent there to stay cold. If Ellis can stay hot once those forwards start scoring more, I think the Nashville Predators will be far more dangerous than they were during their Stanley Cup run three years ago.
PHOTO CREDIT: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports