82 GP, 30 Goals, 20 Assists, 50 Points
Grade – C+
End of the Year Awards
- Craziest beard award (seriously, have you seen it?)
- Wait, he scored on that shot? Award.
- Elite Fortnite player award.
- Shooting. Laine possesses an elite shot, one of the best in the game, scoring 36, 44 and 30 goals in his career. Elite accuracy, high velocity, and quick release. While seeing a dip in shooting percentage (12.2) he still boasts a 15.9% career shooting average.
- Point production. Yes, Laine did see a dip in points, however he still scored 184 points in 237 games. Laine isn’t going to be a perennial 50 point forward, he’s too good.
- Above-average Hockey IQ. Laine possesses an elite sense of the game and how it folds out around him, which plays into how he is able to find lanes to shoot the puck with elite prowess.
Areas to improve
- Skating. Laine needs to work on his foot speed, his speed is average at best, and his stride is ineffective. If he finds a way to become faster and use his big powerful stride in a more effective manner, he will take his game to another level.
- Drive. On a team that boasts a blue-collar work ethic, Laine lacks the same drive. He needs to obtain that extra gear, once again if he does his game becomes more dynamic.
- Easily rattled. Laine’s confidence is easily rattled. It, unfortunately, became a focus in his season, it is fully believed that he got into his own head and psyched himself out.
It’s hard to pinpoint a single moment in the season that Laine came unraveled. His second-half was atrocious, his first-half was something out of an NHL video game on easy. Laine still scored three hat-tricks in the month of November, 11 goals in four games, 30 goals on the season. This is nothing to scoff at. I fully believe this past season was an anomaly, a season with an asterisk next to it. I believe this because Laine’s shooting percentage was down, and his points per 60 took an odd drop. It all comes down to him regaining his confidence and finding his game again.
Next Season Linemates
Next Season Projection: 43 goals, 31 assists, 74 points
Joel Hawreschuk is a contributor at Overtime Heroics. You can follow him @JHawreschuk
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