As the NHL season draws nearer we will issue our predictions as far as how many points we think each Islander player will score. Today we start with the top 6 forwards:
photo courtesy of http://longisland.newsday.com/sports/
1) John Tavares
After averaging just under a point per game last season we see no reason why Tavares can't do the same in this shortened season.
2) Matt Moulson
After being a Lady Bing finalist last season and getting yet another season of 30 goals, I think Moulson has another solid season and is again in the conversation for the Lady Bing trophy.
3) Brad Boyes
After struggling badly the last few years, playing on Tavares right wing will revitalize his career and possibly lead to another one year extension similar to PA before last season.
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4) Kyle Okposo
After struggling early on last season leading to being a healthy scratch for a few games, Kyle really finished the season strong last year achieving his first 20 goal season. He should build on that in this shortened season and put up some solid numbers.
5) Frans Nielsen
Over the last few years Nielsen has cemented himself as one of the better two way centers in the league. In this shortened season I think Nielsen will hold true to the expectations he has set for himself over the last few years. However, if Ryan Strome makes the team as the second line center, we should expect a small dip in production from Nielsen because of decreased ice time at the third line.
6) Michael Grabner
After struggling last season, I think Grabner will recover a little bit in this shortened season. However, I don't expect him to return to the 30 goal pace that he put up as a rookie.
Guys who could see time:
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1) Ryan Strome
*These stats reflect a 48 game season for Strome*
After the dominance Strome has shown in juniors this season and the good world junior tournament he had it wouldn't be a shock if he makes the team out of camp. At this pace he would put up slightly less points then Tavares put up in his rookie campaign.