You can follow the series here: Michael Amadeo, Riley Smith, Jonas Rundberg, Keegan Colsar, Robin Lehner, Alex Petrangelo, Nolan Patrick, Shea Theodore.
Today’s player is Jake Leschyshyn
Although it may not have been the case, Jake Leschyshyn played half of the Vegas Golden Knights in 2021-22. As an AHL call-up stormed the lineup due to injuries, Leschyshyn was far from noticed, but he showed a glimpse of his potential with the Golden Knights. Put two goals and six points.
Chechen has had an almost identical season to fellow silver jockey Jonas Rundberg. But to be honest, I was expecting more from Leschyshyn. A second-round pick in 2017, Leschyshyn was drafted in the same year as Nick Suzuki, Cody Glass, Erik Brannstrom, and Nicolas Hague.
He is by no means a top favorite, but he could have broken it more offensively in 2021-22 rather than seemingly going through the motions in the fourth line with limited ice time. He also struggled on point-to-point, finishing the season 46% on point.
It’s been a strange season for Leschyshyn. If you add up every transaction he went through at 21-22, the 23-year-old was transferred 40 times last season. He was one of 10 players to make their NHL debut with VGK at 21-22. But he has played more matches than Mark Stone, Jack Eichel and Max Priority.
There was a stretch in November where it appeared that the summons would provide a consistent offense. Paul Cotter and Jonas Rundberg scored their first goals in the National Hockey League against the Minnesota Wild. Two days later, Lischen followed the first goal and made the decisive pass against the Canucks.
The only other game I can remember where Leschen made a big impact was on March 24th against the Nashville Predators. He failed to score, but was strong on the puck’s ball with three shots on target despite the absence of both teammates as Nolan Patrick and Brett Howden left the match.
At 23 years old, Leschyshyn still has plenty of time to develop into an NHL player. While he has struggled to emerge as an NHL player at 21-22, having Leschyshyn in the system doesn’t hurt the Golden Knights in any way. With some NHL experience now under his belt, Leschyshyn will be looking to take the next step in 2022-23.
Depending on Nolan Patrick’s status, Leschyshyn will likely be the fifth or sixth best in the Golden Knights. With a healthy lineup full of hope for next season, Leschyshyn will have to fight for a place on the list that is not guaranteed for him.
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