There have been a few big surprises through the first quarter of the season. Starting off the surprise list has to be the player tied with Sidney Crosby for the league lead in points. Jakub Voracek coming off a season last year that saw him get 23 goals and 39 assists for 62 points playing in all 82 games for the Philadelphia Flyers he has amassed 7 goals, 22 assists for 29 points so far in just 20 games played. He is rated at +7 with 6 PIM, 1 PPG and 1 GWG in the first quarter of the season. Voracek is leading the league in assists and tied for the lead in points.
The next biggest surprise of the early season is St. Louis’s Vladimir Terasenko; the 22 year old has been lighting it up for the Blues in the early part of the season. Terasenko has amassed 12 goals, 11 assists for 23 points playing in 22 games. He also has a +15 rating, 11 PIM, 3 PPG and 2 GWG. This is coming from last years season; which had him get 21 goals and 22 assists for 43 points in 64 games. He has also boosted his line mate’s production as well playing with Jaden Schwartz and Jori Lehtera on the second line.
The rookie surprise for the season so far has to be Nashville Predator’s Center/Wing Filip Forsberg. Playing on the top line with James Neal and Mike Ribeiro, Forsberg is leading his team in points and the league in plus/minus. Forsberg had previously played in 18 NHL games prior to this season and had 1 goal and 5 assists in those games. This season he has 9 goals, 13 assists for 22 points in 21 games, he also has a +18 rating, 4 PIM, 2 PPG and 2 GWG. The next closest competitor for the rookie scoring lead is the Calgary Flames’ Johnny Gaudreau at 15 points (3g, 12a).
The biggest surprise on defense this year is leading the league in scoring by a defenseman, and no it is not Erik Karlsson, P.K. Subban, Duncan Keith or Shea Weber. The leading defensive scorer is Calgary Flames defenseman Mark Giordano having a career season with 6 goals, 18 assists for 24 points in 23 games. After piling up 47 points in 64 games last year with an injury shortened season he has come back with a vengeance. He is leading his team in points, and is sitting 5th in the NHL in the category. He also has a +11 rating, 17 PIM, 1PPG, 1SHG and 1 GWG so far this season playing with defensive partner T.J Brodie who is 3rd in defensive scoring (5g, 13a, 18points).
There have also been some negative surprises in the league this year where players have not lived up to their potential. One glaring example of this has been St. Louis Blues winger T.J. Oshie. He had 21 goals, 39 assists for 60 points in 79 games played last year, this year he has 1 goal, 2 assists for 3 points in 15 games played.