Robert Nilsson: Goats Head Soup

Robert Nilsson can flat out play. On a team with a bunch of slick puckhandlers Kenta’s boy gives no quarter when it comes to making the wonderful play. The problem is that he doesn’t make enough of them, and further it doesn’t seem to be a concern. If running in place were a skill he’d be Gretzky.

  • Boxcars: 60gp, 11-16-27
  • Shots: 104
  • Plus Minus: -17
  • Corsi (Rel): 6.9 (4th among F’s)
  • GF/GA ON: 26-40
  • 5×5/60: 1.49 (5th among F’s)
  • 5×4/60: 3.15 (7th among F’s)
  • Quality of Competition: 13th toughest among F’s
  • Quality of Teammates: 2nd best among F’s
  • FO %: 33.3% in 3 FO’s
  • Offensive Zone Start FO %: 48.0% (6th easiest among F’s)
  • Cap Hit: $2,000,000
  1. What do these numbers tell us? His season mirrors Gagner’s quite closely at even strength. Both men played in butter (softer opponents, good linemates, average zone start) and delivered about the same offensively (Gagner with the slight edge). Both had nice Corsi numbers and both probably struggled somewhat due to flu and injuries to their linemates, so their offensive output is less than you’d expect from a player having this kind of season.
  2. How Could these numbers be better? There are times when Nilsson looks like he could be an impact player in the offensize zone, elusive and thrilling. His problem is inconsistency and defensive indifference which is a distinct difference between Gagner and Nilsson. Nilsson still cherry picks for crying out loud, in an era where even the skilled men have learned to pick up a shovel and carry some weight (Robert’s Dad Kenta wasn’t alone in the 80′s playing this style). We talked about some of these things in the O’Sullivan discussion, but Patrick actually played in tougher situations than Nilsson last season and I honestly don’t know which player represents the nadir of the forward group (hint: it’s a trick question, the winner is Jacques).
  3. What about a new kid line? Seguin-Cogliano-Nilsson? We covered this in the Cogliano post, but Robert Nilsson is 25 years old and I caught him cherry picking a few times this season (and I’m a fan). I don’t think you want him helping the “franchise.”
  4. Will they trade him? I think they will. The Oilers have so bloody many of these guys that it is probably impossible to properly grade them out. Is Nilsson a better player than O’Sullivan? What about Cogliano? Are any of them going to be better than Comrie next season? Cull the herd for crying out loud, let another team have a try.
  5. What’s the biggest surprise about the Oiler career of Robert Nilsson? That he’s still here.
  6. How important is Nilsson to the organization? He has negative value. They’re going to buy him out and then they have to tell his Dad they did it. Beauty.
By The Numbers

  • 07-08 5×5 per 60m: 2.37
  • 08-09 5×5 per 60m: 1.22
  • 09-10 5×5 per 60m: 1.49

By The Numbers
  • 07-08 5×4 per 60m: 2.66
  • 08-09 5×4 per 60m: 4.59
  • 09-10 5×4 per 60m: 3.15

Predictions Past 2009-10: 70gp, 11-19-30 (.429)
Performance in  2009-10: 60gp, 11-16-27 (.450)

Projected Role in 2010-11: After Oilers buyout, TC invite by the Rangers

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