Tyler Johnson Still a Good Fit for the Bolts?


The +/- statistic is frequently maligned, and for superior explanation. It leaves a great deal to be preferred due to the fact it is effortlessly skewed by components outside the house of a participant&#8217s management. With that in mind, while, it can be utilised to see very simple traits on a group. So even though the usefulness of the +/- may possibly be questionable, it even now lets for a superior jumping off stage when there’s a distinct abnormality on a group.

Element of the Tampa Bay Lightning’s powerful start off to the season has been their outstanding 5 on 5 engage in, highlighted by the actuality that only two players have a rating below -2. One of these players is Andrej Sustr, who is admittedly on his way out.

The other participant, even so, is Tyler Johnson, who is a face of the Lightning franchise. Whilst Johnson has not appeared like his ordinary self due to the fact injuring his wrist in the 2015 Stanley Cup Ultimate, his engage in this 12 months has been specially lackluster. This sluggish start off begs the question… where by does Johnson, and his newly signed seven-12 months contract, match into the Lightning roster?

Major the New Period

Johnson has deep ties to the Lightning&#8217s resurgence as a aggressive franchise more than the final 5 a long time. He was a chief of the Norfolk Admirals group that won 28 straight game titles en route to the 2011-2012 Calder Cup. Just after breaking into the NHL, he represented new hope for a franchise that had shed the two greatest players in its’ background in considerably less than a 12 months.

Tyler Johnson

Tyler Johnson labored his way to becoming a franchise face of the Lightning. (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

Johnson didn’t disappoint either. His vocation took off with Ondrej Palat, as the two earned rookie of the 12 months nominations in the 2013-14 season. The upcoming 12 months they have been paired with Nikita Kucherov to form the famed Triplets line and was a big participant in the Lightning’s operate to the Stanley Cup Ultimate. He even has the Lightning’s lone hat trick in the playoffs, a bit of shocking trivia provided some of the players who came right before him.

Can&#8217t Halt Progress

If the start off of the season is any indication, Johnson has grow to be the odd guy out on the Lightning’s roster. In a great world, he slots in as the #2 center behind Steven Stamkos. This provides the group a solid just one-two punch down the middle, as Stamkos is a prolific scorer where by Johnson is extra of a speedy playmaker who can rating on his possess or dish it to just one of his linemates to set them up for a purpose.

In considerably less than a 12 months, Brayden Issue has forced Tyler Johnson out of his ordinary part with the Lightning. (Kim Klement-Usa Nowadays Athletics)

The problem is, Johnson has been supplanted. Heading into the 12 months, Brayden Issue took more than as second line heart and hasn’t appeared again. So far, Issue has been just one of the Lightning’s most dynamic players, where by Johnson has been largely invisible. Outdoors of a couple of nicely-timed powerplay targets, he has only had a marginal offensive impact on a group that is acknowledged for offense.

Turning out to be the Depth Center

This is partly thanks to the change in Johnson’s part on the group. As a base-pairing heart, he plays a considerably less offensive sport, using a great deal extra defensive zone faceoffs than right before. He also sees considerably less time on the ice in standard and is no longer paired with his fellow Triplets which will hurt any participant&#8217s figures.

Ondrej Palat

As longtime linemates, Ondrej Palat has found considerably of his achievement in the league appear with Johnson as his heart. (Rick Osentoski-Usa Nowadays Athletics)

For the Lightning, this is not automatically a worry correct now. Acquiring a participant like Johnson for depth is what most groups would aspiration about. Inevitably there will be accidents, so having a participant with a long time of chemistry alongside Palat and Kucherov will only aid the Lightning. Also, if the group is genuinely a Cup contender this 12 months, they will want scoring outside the house of their leading 6 to have them when the leading traces inevitably interesting off.

Agreement Talks

The serious worry for the Lightning is Johnson&#8217s new contract. Whilst it is affordable with a $5 million cap strike, it clocks in for the upcoming seven a long time. As a second line heart, this would be a manageable cap-strike provided Johnson&#8217s part with the group. Nonetheless, if he plays on the base traces, this lengthy contract will have a destructive impact. When players like Issue and Kucherov want pay raises, the Lightning will want to distinct cap space.

Tyler Johnson

Inspite of his sluggish start off to the 12 months, Johnson has ample talent to obtain his form right before the conclude of the season. (Adam Starvation-Usa Nowadays Athletics)

The superior news for Johnson and Lightning followers is that their when disregarded heart will not be moved at any time before long. Even if his quantities aren’t wonderful to start off the season, they don’t want to be. There will be a time when Johnson returns to his old form and he will help the Lightning gain game titles.

Until then, the group will have to hope that he can obtain his form and add in his new part. It may possibly not convey him to the All-Star sport, but it can be just as important a part as his times with the Triplets.

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