Player Profile will be a running column on questions and thoughts for the upcoming season. Individual players from each team will be highlighted in each post.
The rise of Gustav Nyquist is completely unknown to anyone outside of Detroit, MI. But, for the Detroit Red Wings he is a potential future star. A point per game player (at every level except for the NHL) Nyquist has proven to be a productive offensive player.
In the lock out shortened NHL season Nyquist finally got his first regular shot at playing in the NHL. At first he struggled trying to find his groove, but he soon found himself with fellow notable rookies Joakim Andersson, and Damien Brunner. They formed a third line that the Detroit Red Wings were sorely lacking before then. As the Red Wings entered the playoffs Nyquist became one of the team’s most important players even though the stat sheet didn’t show it.
Still coming into the upcoming season there are several questions about Nyquist and his position on the team. Last season the Red Wings didn’t have Darren Helm, Todd Bertuzzi, or Mikael Samuelsson, a group that would have formed the third line last season. There are still questions about all three of them, but it seems that the Red Wings are also going to be losing two important pieces from last season’s playoff run in Daniel Cleary, and Damien Brunner as well. Even with the additions of Daniel Alfredsson, and Stephen Weiss, the Red Wings are a team that needs a young spark to help them get over the hump.
If Nyquist is going to be anything at the NHL level he will have to prove himself this season. There are several things that Nyquist will have to do in order to ensure that he will be successful. He’s going to have to go into the corners on a regular basis, not many in the NHLers can be successful without going into the corners, and thus far at the NHL level Nyquist has been taken out of games easily when it gets physical. The other thing that Nyquist needs to do is to stop deking and trying to be pretty with the puck. He needs to go north to south and keep all the extra deking to a minimum.
If he can do those two things Nyquist can help cement himself as an NHL regular. But in order to do that he is going to have to earn a regular spot this season against one of the better forward line ups in the NHL today. Nyquist is completely capable of not only earning a spot at the NHL level, but he is capable of playing in the top six as well.
The rise of Gustav Nyquist is known by few, but for those who do know about him they see the potential there. Will he be a future star, or will he be another player that doesn’t reach his potential?
What do you think of Gustav Nyquist? Do you think he can make an impact this season? Let us know below.