|(Photo by: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)|
During a franchise record tying seven game losing streak, it is hard to find one player on the Nashville Predators' roster who has been "hot" as of late. However, there are plenty of players who are "cold".
Nothing has gone right as of late for the Predators. After losing Monday to the Vancouver Canucks, Nashville's playoff chances were shattered and now look forward to the offseason.
Points in the scoring department has been lacking as of late totaling on eight goals throughout their losing skid and being shutout three times. It isn't surprising because of all the injuries up front. Three of their top six scorers are out with injuries–Wilson, Bourque and Fisher.
|(Photo by: Jim Prisching/AP Photo)|
Cold: Jonathon Blum
With the offense being depleted as much as it has been, it is time for the Predators' offensive defensemen to not only help the forwards out, but also bail out Pekka Rinne for once. Jonathon Blum (seen on the right) hasn't followed that model and has become a waste of roster space. Blum, who is seeking full-time playing duty in the NHL, hasn't helped out his cause as he has been a -2 in the seven games and, most importantly, non-existent offensively.
Hot: Taylor Beck
Throughout the NBC Sports Network's telecast of the Predators vs. Detroit Red Wings game Sunday night, the play-by-play men were astonished at the skill this "guy named Taylor Beck" was. The 21 year old's spin-o-rama move around defenders has been quite the spectacle. Beck has definitely showed the coaching staff why he should return to the Predators next season.
Despite only scoring one goal, Beck has created, but failed to convert, on an unlimited amount of chances. With a -6 over the past seven games, hs defensive abilites need a little tweeking without a doubt. He has a bright future in the Preds' organization.
Cold: Craig Smith
Has anyone heard Craig Smith's name throughout this losing streak creating any offensive chances? He has been absent offensively, which doesn't bode well when attempting to make a case to give him more meaningful roles. Smith is pointless in his last eleven and has added only an assist in the past fourteen games.
The Madison, Wisconsin native, has to step it up at the end of the season in order regain Barry Trotz's trust.
Hot: Bobby Butler
Maybe the most underrated player on Nashville's roster right now is Bobby Butler. He is currently stuck on the fourth line, but should be seeing second line time in this injury riddled lineup. Every time Butler steps on the ice, there are two objectives; 1) Shooting the puck and 2) Getting a goal. So often will the the waiver claim produce scoring chances by putting the puck on the net.
For instance, his goal against Vancouver Monday was pure skill as Butler sniped Roberto Luongo blocker side.
Hopefully, David Poile sees to re-signing Butler in the offseason and play him on the third or fourth line.