Leading up to the lockout-shortened season, we will be providing 2012-13 previews for each player. In no specific order, we continue with Patric Hornqvist today…
Patric Hornqvist continued to play his scrappy style of game that has allowed him to be successful in his young NHL career so far. He led the Predators in goals with 27 on the season, but finished with just 43 points, which was his lowest total of points since his rookie season when he only played 28 games. Hornqvist finished the postseason with one goal and four points in 10 games.
Hornqvist takes as much abuse in front of the net as anybody in the league does, and that was no different during the 2011-12 season. His ability to redirect pucks and screen the goalie is where he gets most of his goals from. He’s not a guy that has overwhelming speed or puck-handling skills, but he has found a way to be effective by simply being a nightmare for opposing goaltenders and standing directly in front of them.
Hornqvist also tied Shea Weber for the team lead in shots with 230. The next closest player to Weber and Hornqvist was Craig Smith with 172 shots.
Hornqvist left for Europe in the early stages of the lockout. He actually signed with Djurgarden in Sweden at first, and then played for HC Red Ice Martigny in Switzerland. He played 10 games with Djurgarden and had two goals and three assists. Hornqvist had seven goals and seven assists in nine games with HC Red Ice Martigny.
Hornqvist is one the most reliable players for the Predators. He’s defensively responsible and isn’t afraid to block shots. Offensively, Hornqvist is a guy that can create scoring chances around the net that nobody else on the team can create. His ability to screen the goalie and redirect pucks is among the best in the NHL. Having already been playing in games throughout the NHL lockout, expect Hornqvist to have a really good start to the 2012-13 season.