|08/09 Regular Season||38||1||3||4||-15||2||11:08||0:30||40||14||20||10|
With the Flyers up against the salary cap again, many expect both Jared Ross and Andreas Nodl to fill out the roster heading into next year. Obviously, that may change since Ross is still an unsigned RFA, but as of today, it is quite possible both start the year in Philadelphia. While the team could do worse, Nodl does not appear ready for full time NHL duty yet. While he produced some good scoring chances, he did not produce enough results to stay with the club.
Nodl needs to improve his game overall, but his first priority should be improving his defense. The Flyers scored only 5 goals while he was on the ice and yet gave up 19. That -14 differential was tied for worst on the team with Daniel Carcillo. Considering how little he played, his 2.95 goals against per 60 minutes - second worst on the team ahead of Ryan Parent's 2.96 - stands out as evidence that his defensive game was lacking. Don't forget he was playing mostly with Jeff Carter and Scott Hartnell, who had a +19 and +12 differential respectively. Without showing offensive or defensive numbers, it was no surprise when Nodl was sent back to the Phantoms. Even in the AHL, Nodl posted a mere 6 goals and 14 assists with an even +/- rating in 39 games. If Nodl does make the club this year, John Stevens will have some problems fitting him in. Playing on the 4th line, while preferred over Riley Cote, does not help Nodl's development. Playing on the 3rd line won't fill the team's need for a defensive forward, and playing any higher has already proven to be ineffective, since he played with Carter and Hartnell last year. It will be interesting to see where Nodl plays, if he makes the club.
Throughout the season, he showed potential to stay in the NHL. He has the talent, but he just has to put it together. As Hockey's Future said, "Nodl has the talent to become a second line winger in the NHL, given his speed, skating, shot, and size." But they also said "It sometimes seems as if Nodl isn’t entirely aware of how good he really is." Until he realizes his potential, the Flyers won't be aware either.
As usual, videos after the jump.
Nodl's first career point.
A nice little pass off the boards.
Up next in our Grading the Flyers series: Andrew Alberts