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Well it did finally happen and another domino has fallen in another convoluted trade deadline as Mike Fisher was dealt today to the Nashville Predators. Ottawa gets a first round 2011 pick and a conditional 2012 pick. Clearly GM Bryan Murray is starting a fire sale of some sort and who knows how many other underachieving pieces will be shipped out of there. Clearly this is only just the beginning.
In what has been an off year for everyone and everything in Ottawa, Fisher did have 24 points as seen here. Thanks to Yahoo naturally and of course our friends from Hockey Database as always. Fisher’s numbers took a precipitous drop this year as did most players from the Sens. There are no trends to realize that Mike Fisher is normally a perennial 40-50 point guy who averages about 20 goals and 5-7 of them come on the man advantage per year. With the ever growing uncertainty over Matthew Lombardi’s injury, Nashville had to act quickly. By the way, Lombardi played all of two games before the concussion occurred. No one is certain if it is season ending or even career ending. As for Fisher, he is under contract for a couple more seasons at a reasonable cap hit.
If you throw out the 08-09 and 10-11 campaigns, Fisher averages a respectable 0.6 points per game while playing a pretty good two way game. Now he should not be confused with being a 30 goal scorer as his career high is 25 but he is in the prime of his career. It would not be a surprise if next year he came close to 30 or the year after perhaps.
We took a gander at Capgeek’s chart on Mike Fisher. He did sign a 5 year, 21 million dollar deal with Ottawa and has two full years left and part of this season. The cap hit is $4.2 million per year which is pretty reasonable for a player of his caliber. Nashville is able to stay at its self imposed cap number because of LTIR considerations which is good for them.
What will Fisher’s impact be for the rest of the season? Fisher is likely to be slotted maybe where Lombardi would have been. He should fit in pretty quickly with Coach Barry Trotz and his system. So with 27 games left, Fisher based on our numbers would put up about 17 points or 7 goals and 10 assists. The likely range based on the data is somwhere between 15 and 20 points with a +/- around a +3 to +5. Expect a slight uptick in shots on goal, hits, and blocked shots as he will have something to prove playing for a playoff berth as opposed to playing out the string.
Some will view the price paid as a bit much but this is the type of player that Nashville covets. Teams have won with “interchangeable parts” before and this has the potential for working out for fantasy owners as well. Mike Fisher will be a mid round fantasy option next year especially with his Power Play upside. Owners keep an eye on what he does for the rest of the season, you could be in for a pleasant surprise. Stay tuned.