After a quiet start to the season, Predators defenseman P.K. Subban is starting to become more comfortable as he adapts to Nashville’s system, writes Adam Vingan of The Tennessean. Subban attributes his slow start to having to think more than simply react to the play as it happens:
“When you’re not thinking, you’re just playing. I think that from the start of the season I was doing a lot of thinking, just trying to learn systems and build chemistry with my teammates. Every game that goes by, we build more and more chemistry. Every practice that we have, we learn more about each other. It feels as if it’s starting to turn.”
Subban acknowledged that he’s still getting used to playing a different role with Nashville than he had with Montreal:
“The way the team has been built, there’s a lot of skilled guys here. The styles are different. In terms of in Montreal, it was like I had to defend, but I was expected to drive offense. If I wasn’t scoring goals, it’s like, ’Why aren’t you scoring?’ Here, it’s a little different. It’s about producing offense. … It’s not about who scores the goal, but it’s about generating offense and influencing it.”
While Subban’s numbers aren’t quite where they’re used to being at this stage of the year (he has eight points in 14 games, good for a 46 point pace which would be his lowest since the lockout-shortened 2012-13 campaign), the team is enjoying a significant advantage in scoring chances, something the Preds pay very close attention to, while he’s on the ice by a count of 44-25.
Other news from Nashville:
- In an article from the Canadian Press, GM David Poile attributed Nashville’s early season struggles to a pair of factors, a newly-developing leadership group with the departures of Shea Weber and Paul Gaustad among others, as well as the struggles from several key forwards. Poile acknowledges that progress is being made on the leadership side as players adjust to new roles but that the latter is still a concern for the team: “For sure, to me we’ve been inconsistent and on an individual basis I think there’s individuals that can produce more than they’ve produced to this point”. Among those who aren’t producing as expected is Filip Forsberg who has just one goal so far and is in the first season of his new contract that pays him an average of $6MM per season.
- The team has recalled goaltender Marek Mazanec from Milwaukee of the AHL, notes Brooks Bratten from the team’s official site. The 25 year old got into a pair of games with the Admirals, going 1-1 with a 3.90 GAA and a .849 SV%. Nashville has not yet sent down Juuse Saros, suggesting they may be keeping three goalies up with the team for a little while.