A Look at Oliver Wahlstrom's Rookie Season

Asia's Tech News Daily

On June 22, 2018, in the moments leading up to the first round of the NHL Entry Draft, American prospect Oliver Wahlstrom was interviewed by the NHL Network. When asked to give a scouting report of himself, Wahlstrom put it simply: “Big body, big shot.”

A Look at Oliver Wahlstrom’s Rookie Season
© Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports Oliver Wahlstrom ice skating in full hockey gear

Later on, after the Islanders drafted Wahlstrom with the 11th overall pick, the NBC broadcast played some of his highlights alongside those of two of his player comparisons: Alex Ovechkin and Mike Bossy.

“The best shot in the draft, a natural goal scorer,” said Bob MacKenzie.

Wahlstrom first appeared with the Islanders during the covid-shortened 2019-20 season, playing nine games. Forget those nine games. Last season (2020-21) was Wahlstrom’s official rookie season at 20 years of age.

So how did the next-gen Alex O’Bossy do?

He did well.

Wahlstrom Stats

Playing just under 12.5 minutes per game — mostly on the third line next to J.G. Pageau — Wahlstrom put up 12 goals and 9 assists in 44 games. That’s a 22-goal, 40-point pace over a full season.

For a rookie assigned to a third-line role on a Barry Trotz-coached hockey team, where defensive responsibility takes complete priority over a risk-taking attack, I think that’s pretty good. Prettyyy, prettyyy, pretty good.

A closer look at the numbers on Natural Stat Trick (NST) yields some encouraging signs. On a per-minute basis, no Islander shot the puck more than Wahlstrom, and only Anders Lee scored goals at a higher rate.

Technically, Sebastian Aho did too (one goal in 40 minutes across three games), and while I’m not one to be technical, I am one to bring up Sebastian Aho at every conceivable opportunity.

Wahlstrom was at or near the top of many of the per-60 stats on last year’s team, like scoring chances, shot attempts, penalties drawn, takeaways and more.

Looking league-wide, of the 481 NHL players who logged as many minutes as Wahlstrom last season (544), only 18 shot the puck at a higher rate. Those 18 constitute many of the top goal-scorers in the sport (Matthews, Ovechkin, MacKinnon, Pastrnak, etc.)

If that’s not enough for you, Wahlstrom led the Islanders in Individual Points Percentage (IPP), which NST defines as “the percentage of goals for that player’s team while that player is on the ice that the player earned a point on.”

Translation: no one gets a bigger piece of the action than Wahlstrom. He’s the boss of the Islanders’ organized crime family. If goals are being scored, Wahlstrom wants in on it. Nobody eats if Wahlstrom can’t eat.

His defensive numbers were good, too, but Wahlstrom played over 80% of his even-strength minutes with Pageau. There just aren’t enough non-Pageau minutes to his name yet to isolate his impact on shot/goal-prevention.

As for the physical aspect of his game, the 6’2”, 205-pound Wahlstrom threw hits at a solid rate (eighth on the team in hits/60). More importantly, at no point did he look tentative, intimidated or unwilling to engage in physical confrontation.

If that’s still not enough for you, I really don’t know what to tell you. Your thirst for Oliver Wahlstrom stats exceeds the recommended level and you should seek professional help immediately.

Personal Observations

Wahlstrom’s first NHL goal came in his season debut in Washington. The puck bounced in off of two or three guys before going in (it’s hard to tell). “That’s a Ricochet Rabbit goal,” said Butch Goring, referencing a 1960s cartoon that, at most, one-third of one percent of the viewing audience had heard of.

His second goal, in his 12th game, came in-tight off a rebound against the Bruins. “Finally,” Butchie exclaimed, “a real goal!” Yes, it was a puck he shot directly into the net, but it wasn’t the type of goal we’d all been waiting for. It was an Anders Lee goal, not an Alex Ovechkin goal.

Wahlstrom’s third goal came a couple of games later in Pittsburgh. Does this remind you of anyone?

This is what we’d been waiting three years to see. “That was incredible!” said the Penguins announcer after Wahlstrom fired this laser beam one-timer past a hapless Tristan Jarry. “Wow, what a shot. That was at least 100mph, without question.”

Look at the face Nick Leddy makes to Bailey after the goal was scored:

A Look at Oliver Wahlstrom’s Rookie Season
© Provided by SB Nation

I thought Wahlstrom had already started to settle in by this point, but once he scored this goal, to my eye, his confidence visibly rose to another level.

Look at him later in that same game, on another power play, calling – repeatedly – for the puck:

I got a kick out of this. Look at this kid in his 20th NHL game trying to boss Josh Bailey around. That’s hilarious. He wants Bailey to give the puck to Leddy so Leddy can set him up for the one-timer. That’s what happened before, let’s do it again, I’m open, hey JOSH I’M OPEN.

Wahlstrom would add several more beautiful snipes as the season progressed. The following video contains all of his goals and other highlights from his rookie season.

I was impressed not just by Wahlstrom’s shot, but his ability to get his shot off under pressure. This is something young players can really struggle with when they first reach the NHL, even those touted as goal-scoring snipers.

Remember the Isles’ last such first-rounder? Michael dal Colle had high-end goal-scoring ability too, we were told. His “biggest asset is his big shot,” they said. And yet, in the four years since he first appeared with the big club, we’ve barely seen MDC’s shot. Because he can’t get it off. He’s not quick or shifty enough and he’s just not able to create that little bit of extra space that is the difference between a shot-on-goal and a shot-block.

Wahlstrom has those tricks in his bag. Little things like the way he contorts his body before receiving the puck or how he makes a subtle juke to change his shooting angle. He’s also a better and faster skater, with much better hands. This is why he has already scored more goals (12) than MDC (8) in 57 fewer games

I don’t say this to criticize MDC, only to explain what I think separates Wahlstrom. He is a sniper to the core. His shot is as advertised – elite at the NHL level – he knows it, and when he’s got a chance to shoot, he doesn’t pass it up. Kinda like Josh Bailey, except the opposite.

Offensively, I’ll be looking to see if he improves in two areas: (1) how he moves away from the puck to find open space where he can receive a pass, and (2) how he uses his body to shield checkers away in order to retain possession of the puck.

Looking Ahead

So what should we expect from Wahlstrom in his second pro season? That will depend in part on his role. With Jordan Eberle gone to Seattle, I know many of us were hoping for Wahlstrom to be given an extended look in his old spot on Mathew Barzal’s right wing.

Barry Trotz has spoken many times in the past about forward pairs he likes to keep together when shaking his lines up. Are there any two Islander forwards with a higher ceiling as a duo than Barzahlstrom? I think not.

One thing that has become clear, however, is that Trotz looks to balance out his forward lines rather than make them top-heavy. He’s not looking for the highest-scoring duo he can find. Remember, he’s the coach who separated one of the greatest forward duos in NHL history. When the Capitals won the Cup in 2018, Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom were playing on separate lines.

So as of now, it looks like Kyle Palmieri will be getting first crack at that top-line RW spot. He should fit nicely there. Palmieri has a very good shot of his own, and there were (a few merciful, Leo-less) moments in the playoffs where he and Barzal looked great together.

Also, it’s probably no accident Wahlstrom was basically kept attached to Pageau’s hip last season. It takes a while for a young player to gain this coach’s complete trust, and if Wahlstrom had it, he probably would’ve been put back into the lineup against Tampa in the playoffs when he was ready to play.

So, as much as I’d love to see it, I won’t be holding my breath waiting for a 13-to-26 connection this season.

Anyway, I like a Wahlstrom-Pageau-Parise line just fine. If Wahlstrom stays healthy all season and gets consistent power-play time, he should sleepwalk his way to at least 20 goals. And if he manages to get some extended run with Barzal? Sky’s the limit.

We’ll see how it plays out.

Bonus Content

Mathew Barzal scored some unforgettable goals last season. The through-the-legs beauty against Buffalo, the one-on-five, end-to-ender against Washington, the complete humiliation of Tony DeAngelo, etc. He also scored a couple of lame goals that were stupid and boring. I put them all in this video.

The Many Faces of Mathew Barzal

The joy Mat Barzal gets from scoring goals is evident by the faces he makes while celebrating those goals.

Now go shave.

Till next time.

Internet Explorer Channel Network
Asia's Tech News Daily
News Related


Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo, whose tenure included George Floyd's murder, will retire in January

Minneapolis Police Chief Medaria Arradondo, whose tenure will be remembered for his handling of the George Floyd murder investigation, announced Monday that he will retire in mid-January. © Elizabeth Flores/Star ... Read more »

Everton vs. Arsenal odds, picks: Soccer expert reveals Premier League predictions for Dec. 6, 2021

Arsenal and Everton both try to bounce back from rough midweek losses when they meet for an English Premier League match on Monday at Goodison Park. Arsenal (7-2-5) lost 3-2 ... Read more »

Lionel Messi about his infamous hormone cure as a child: ‘I had to inject myself every day'

When he was ten, Messi got the bad news. But he never doubted his future as a footballer. “I still remember that I had to check with my mom,” said ... Read more »

Calgary World Cup race not popular with many Dutch top skaters

At the last of the four World Cup competitions this autumn, the Netherlands still has to earn the necessary points at various distances to obtain the maximum number of starting ... Read more »

Canadians Smith, Campbell, Norman Jr., to play at World Darts Championships

LONDON — Jeff (The Silencer) Smith, Matt (Ginja Ninja) Campbell and John Norman Jr. will carry Canadian colours at the William Hill World Darts Championship starting next week in England. ... Read more »

This Major Bakery Chain's Tea Recipe Is Exploding In Popularity Right Now

With Starbucks and Dunkin’ having kicked off their holiday menus last month, holiday-themed beverages seem to be everywhere right now—from peppermint mochas to sugar-cookie-flavored lattes. The “hottest” beverage du jour, ... Read more »

Damian Lillard denies reports of growing frustration with Blazers

© Provided by Fansided Portland Trail Blazers point guard Damian Lillard laughed off reports that he is growing frustrated with head coach Chauncey Billups. For years, there have been rumors ... Read more »

Look: Big Change At Staples Center On Monday

© Provided by The Spun A general view of the Los Angeles Lakers arena. The exterior makeover of the Staples Center in anticipating of its imminent renaming to Crypto.com Arena ... Read more »

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander clears concussion protocol, available vs. Pistons

© Provided by Thunder Wire After being listed as out for Monday’s game against the Detroit Pistons, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has cleared concussion protocol and is available to play after a ... Read more »

Josh Giddey, Cade Cunningham represent a new age of NBA point guards

In an age of positionless basketball, the point guard position continues to evolve.  We went from floor generals to lights-out shooters, and now enter a new breed — the big guards. In ... Read more »

Damian Lillard lists Sixers star Ben Simmons as a top 3 perimeter defender

© Provided by Sixers Wire There have been plenty of rumors that have linked the Philadelphia 76ers and the Portland Trail Blazers since the end of the 2021 playoffs. The ... Read more »

Toyota to build new $1.3 billion battery plant in North Carolina

By David Shepardson © Reuters/ALY SONG Auto Shanghai show in Shanghai WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Toyota Motor Corp announced on Monday it is building a new $1.29 billion battery plant in ... Read more »

Rashad Evans returns from retirement, Tyrone Spong vs. ‘Bigfoot' Silva headlines Eagle FC debut card in U.S.

Khabib Nurmagomedov is stacking the deck for his promotion’s debut in the United States. Eagle FC — an organization owned by the former UFC lightweight champion — is set to ... Read more »

The Best Cardigans To Shop This Winter

Auto Rotation On Ann Taylor Plaid Jacquard Boyfriend Cardigan, $157, anntaylor.com Babaton Volta Cardigan, $138, aritzia.com Bare Knitwear Dusk Cardigan, $398, bareknitwear.ca Club Monaco Bouclé Cardigan, $199, clubmonaco.ca Frank And ... Read more »

Bears assessing QB Justin Fields' ability to face Green Bay

LAKE FOREST, Ill. (AP) — The Chicago Bears showed Sunday they struggle trying to beat good teams with veteran Andy Dalton at quarterback. The attention turns now to getting rookie ... Read more »

This social justice buzzword is Dictionary.com's Word of the Year

Dictionary.com has chosen a term new to its online reference service for its Word of the Year — a word that, it says, “acts as a powerful prism through which ... Read more »

Ben Simmons trade rumors: How 76ers star would fit with Trail Blazers' Damian Lillard

The Trail Blazers and 76ers continue to be connected. Last month, The Athletic’s Sam Amick reported that the 76ers have a list of “approximately 30 players” who would satisfy them ... Read more »

17 Covid-19 cases identified on New Orleans-bound cruise ship

The Covid-19 positive case count among crew and passengers aboard the Norwegian Cruise Line ship Breakaway has risen to 17, according to the Louisiana Department of Health. The ship disembarked ... Read more »

Most Dutch top skaters skip Calgary World Cup

Photo: ANP Most Dutch top skaters, such as Patrick Roest, Kjeld Nuis and Ireen Wüst, skip the Calgary World Cup race this weekend. In consultation with the long track selection ... Read more »

iPhone hidden feature: You can easily track a flight via text message

Absurdly long lines, unexpected baggage fees and abruptly canceled or delayed flights. It’s all a part of the holiday air travel experience, which has all been compounded, especially with news ... Read more »

The Home Depot Is Surprisingly Full of Chic Holiday Decorations & Gifts

© Image: The Home Depot; Design: Ashley Britton/SheKnows. When you think of The Home Depot, you probably think of it as your go-to for supplies like lumber or tools, but ... Read more »

Giants close to 5th straight losing season after Miami loss

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — As the losses mounted over the course of the season, the New York Giants could always look at the standings in the weak NFC and ... Read more »

Carlos Coronel signs with New York Red Bulls through 2024

Carlos Coronel isn’t going anywhere. © Provided by 90min New York Red Bulls v DC United | Scott Taetsch/GettyImages The 24-year-old Brazilian goalkeeper completed his transfer from Red Bull Salzburg ... Read more »

'Not getting on a plane any time soon': Deportation decision delayed in Broncos case

CALGARY — A decision on whether a former truck driver who caused the deadly Humboldt Broncos bus crash should be deported to India likely won’t be coming until the new ... Read more »

Joe Root's legacy as England captain will be defined in Ashes tour

© Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo This is where Joe Root‘s England captaincy will be defined. History will judge his leadership on this third crack at the biggest prize ... Read more »

QB Tua Tagovailoa is staying grounded despite Dolphins win streak

© File photo Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports The Miami Dolphins are rolling after securing their fifth straight victory by defeating the New York Giants on Sunday at Hard ... Read more »

Donte Williams emerges as Fresno State candidate, but not the top choice

© Provided by Trojans Wire The coaching carousel isn’t slowing down. Donte Williams is in the hunt for a new job. His status is very much up in the air ... Read more »

NFL world reacts to Urban Meyer's honest admission

© Provided by The Comeback While the Jacksonville Jaguars weren’t expected to be world-beaters this season, the hope was that Urban Meyer would inject something into the franchise to get ... Read more »

College football world reacts to Jeff Tedford report

© Provided by The Comeback Jeff Tedford built a solid reputation for himself as a head football coach in California. The Fresno State alum spent 11 seasons with the Cal ... Read more »

UTSA's Traylor scores another Roadrunners win as coach of the year

© Provided by mySA UTSA head coach Jeff Traylor hoists up running back Sincere McCormick (03) after UTSA defeats Western Kentucky the 2021 Conference USA Championship football game at the ... Read more »

NFL Coach Explains Surprise Offensive Coordinator Firing

© Provided by The Spun Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator Joe Brady speaks to Robby Anderson. The Carolina Panthers didn’t play on Sunday, but they managed to make the news anyway ... Read more »

Report: How Much Miami Is Paying Mario Cristobal

© Provided by The Spun A solo shot of Oregon Ducks football coach Mario Cristobal. Miami swung big and was rewarded for doing so. Mario Cristobal is leaving Oregon to ... Read more »

WFT Gets Encouraging Injury News On Logan Thomas

© Provided by The Spun Logan Thomas of the Washington Football Team carries the football and looks to gain yards Washington just got some much-needed good news on tight end ... Read more »

Oregon Athletic Director Is Not Happy With Miami

© Provided by The Spun A solo shot of Oregon Ducks football coach Mario Cristobal. Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens is far from pleased with Miami about the Mario Cristobal ... Read more »

Watch: Marcus Freeman's introductory press conference here

© Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports Yeah, his defense gave up a short field touchdown to break steak of 14 straight quarters. That was bound to happen, but what the defense ... Read more »

6 highest-graded Raiders from Week 13 vs. Washington

© File photo Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Nate Hobbs (39) reacts after missing an interception against the Washington Football Team during the second half of an NFL football game, Sunday, ... Read more »

Panthers HC Matt Rhule went outside 'comfort zone' in hiring Joe Brady

© Provided by Panthers Wire Carolina Panthers head coach Matt Rhule dared to be different, at least by his standards, when putting his band together to embark on a rebuild. ... Read more »

Jake Fromm possibly making first NFL start: NY Giants fans react

© Provided by UGA (Georgia) Wire Former Georgia quarterback Jake Fromm was originally drafted by Buffalo but was signed last week by the New York Giants off the Bills’ practice ... Read more »

Brent Venables Reveals He's Spoken With Caleb Williams

© Provided by The Spun Oklahoma quarterback Caleb Williams runs against Texas. Brent Venables is the new head coach of the Oklahoma Sooners, and he’s working quickly to get to ... Read more »

Pete Carroll: Seahawks all getting COVID-19 vaccination booster shots

© Provided by Seahawks Wire Competing in the NFL is difficult enough under ordinary circumstances. These days, teams also have to navigate a deadly pandemic, keeping their players and staff ... Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic