The next man up has been one of the Predators' most underrated weapons for the past few seasons. In return, David Poile locked up Colton Sissons for the next seven years last July.
The Vancouver native recorded the best numbers of his career in 2018-19, notching 15 goals, 15 assists, 35 takeaways, and 52 blocks while maintaining a +20 on-ice rating. Sissons has slipped a bit this season, having recorded only 15 total points since the season pause on Mar. 12. However, Sissons was out with an injury he sustained in the Dec. 27 against Pittsburgh for basically the entire month of January, missing 12 games in the process.
Sissons was drafted 50th overall by the Preds in 2012, but his notoriety in Nashville mainly came after his hat trick in Game 6 of the Western Conference Final in 2017, effectively sending the Preds to their first Stanley Cup Final in franchise history.
The one that got away, though, was Sissons' almost-goal (it was definitely a good goal) in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final. But we don't have to talk about that one.
Among Preds' players who have skated in over 50 games this season, Sissons is tied with Nick Bonino for the best shooting percentage on the team, at a 17.3 percent success rate. Outside of that measure, Sissons has struggled to generate offense all season, especially since returning from injury on Jan. 30. His nine goals rank 12th on the team, and his six assists outpace only Dante Fabbro, Yakov Trenin, Jarred Tinordi, and Yannick Weber.
Sissons' 0.2 offensive point shares are third only to Fabbro's 0.1 and Dan Hamhuis' -0.3 for the lowest on the team (50+ games played). Again, Sissons' lack of production can be somewhat chalked up to January's injury gap, but it doesn't exactly justify the fact that the forward has only two goals and zero assists since Jan. 30.
If the 2019-20 season were to be officially declared finished today, Sissons would have halved his production from 2018-19. He steadily climbed up from 10 points in 2016-17, to 27 points in 2017-18, before topping out (so far) at 30 points last season.
Not much additional credit can be given to Sissons on the defensive front. His current -2 rating and 45.4 percent Corsi rating are, thus far, the worst of his career. On top of that, Sissons' on-ice save percentage (oiSV%)- a metric that accounts for a goalie's save percentage while a specific player is on the ice- sits at a career-low .884.
Suffice it to say, Sissons is in the midst of a very unspectacular season on all fronts.
GENERAL EFFECTIVENESS AND TEAM INFLUENCE
Sissons' seven-year commitment to the Preds solidifies him spending his prime years in Nashville and, hopefully, winning a Stanley Cup as well. Primarily, his contract length shows his loyalty to his teammates above all else. To the fans, Sissons will always be known as the Duck Slayer.
In addition to sharing British Columbian roots with four other Preds teammates, Sissons spent three seasons in Milwaukee honing his game with the likes of Austin Watson, Viktor Arvidsson, and Filip Forsberg.