Offseason Player Grades: Scott Wilson

Statistics (Regular Season)

78 GP, 8 G, 18 A, 26 PTS, 0 +/-, 32 PIM

Statistics (Postseason)

20 GP, 3 G, 3A, 6 PTS, +4 +/-, 11 PIM

Player Grade (B)

Last season, Scott Wilson came into the NHL and got a chance to play on Sidney Crosby’s wing.  Not so coincidentally, Wilson had quite a hot start to his NHL career, scoring goals like it was his job in the early going.  Many believed that of the “Wilkes guys” that were brought up last year, Wilson may be the purest goal scorer of them all.  I disagreed, and felt Sheary and Rust were both better finishers than Wilson, and at least based off of this year, I was correct.  Wilson did however produce 26 points in 78 games played this season, and mostly played a bottom 6 role.  He will likely be a mainstay on the Penguins’ bottom 6 forwards for the next few years, and can fill in when needed in the top 6.

Review

Wilson really began to establish his physical presence, especially in this years’ playoffs.  Anyone remember that 4 hit shift he had against the Senators?  It was absolutely crazy.  He played alongside Malkin and Kessel a lot and provided room for those guys by using his body and driving hard to the net.  I do not think the Penguins would ideally like Wilson in a top 6 role, however I would not be surprised to see his physical and gritty play continue into next year. He will be a pain to play against.

Preview

Next season, Wilson will almost for sure have a bottom 6 role locked up.  I would not be surprised if his offensive numbers dip ever so slightly, but I would also expect that hits and PIM will trend up slightly.  That said, Wilson is a great guy to have in the bottom 6 and has still shown promise in being able to chip in when he needs to.

Conclusion

Scott Wilson had a pretty solid year.  His numbers in the playoffs may not stand out on paper, but he ultimately brought a physical and gritty game which the Penguins definitely needed down the stretch.  Also after the previous 2 Stanley Cup parades, the dude knows how to “party hard.”

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