Nic Petan was lucky enough to have his first practice with the Toronto Maple Leafs in their awesome St. Pats gear ahead of their St. Patrick’s Day game. Now, let’s try predicting Petan’s future with the Leafs.
Feast your eyes, Toronto Maple Leafs fans! That’s your newest Leafs in your sickest gear you’ll see any NHL team don this season.
Petan, who will wear 19 on the Leafs this season, looks like a good fit for the Leaf’s third/fourth line this season, and is also looking stylish in the green and white St. Pat’s gear.
The fourth line, Petan’s eventual home, was booming against the Buffalo Sabres on Monday night. This was thanks to Tyler Ennis’s speed and veteran presence, Frederick Gauthier’s hands and size, and Trevor Moore’s intensity and skill. Safe to say, Petan won’t have an easy road to winning ice time.
With little sustained opportunity in Winnipeg, especially this season, Petan wasn’t able to get a run of games to fulfill his potential. Out of the draft, though, he was viewed as an elite prospect.
“an offensively gifted with high-end skating skills. While his size might prove detrimental, he pals a ‘big’ game and relishes physical play. He has a quick release and is a slick passer.”
They continue on to describe his game as gritty and physical, as he uses his size to gain leverage and create pressure situations. He is projected as a skill-based two-way bottom-6 forward.
It’s clear, Kyle Dubas is prioritizing players who can play this style of hockey. Speed reliant, skill players who tire out opponents not through physicality, but unrelenting pace.
Season Predictions for this year
Petan fits this NHL build perfectly. In the remaining 20 games for Toronto I expect to see Petan in no less than half of these games, so let’s call it 15 games played in Toronto before the playoffs start. He’ll get some late PK time, I believe, as well as some off chance PP time too so he’ll get a good chance to produce.
By seasons end, I give Petan 4 goals and 7 assists for 11 points in 15 games. Babcock has rewarded his depth lines with increased ice time when his big guns aren’t going and Petan can capitalize on this. I think the odd man out becomes Connor Brown, as well, with Trevor Moore continuously impressing.
Not a bad start for Petan, who could end up being a long-term solution for the cap crunched Leafs in 2019/20 and beyond!