Editorials

New York Islanders Player Grade: Brock Nelson

By Matt O'Leary
Apr 30, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA;Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Andrej Sustr (62) and left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) defends New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) during the second period of game two of the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 30, 2016; Tampa, FL, USA;Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Andrej Sustr (62) and left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) defends New York Islanders center Brock Nelson (29) during the second period of game two of the second round of the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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New York Islanders forward, Brock Nelson came out of the gate hot, but his production slowed down as the season wore on.

On paper it looks like Brock Nelson had a good year. This past year he put up 26 goals and was just two points shy of his point total from 2014-15. Although if you dig a little deeper, or if you watched the Islanders on a consistent basis throughout the entire season, you would know that a lot of Brock Nelson’s goals were from the first half of the year.

In 2014-15 Brock Nelson scored 20 goals on the season. It took him until the 79th game of the season to score his 20th goal on the year. This past year it took Nelson just 48 games to reach the 20 goal mark. At a pace of 20 goals through 48 games, that meant Brock was scoring in 42% of the games. If he continued at that rate he would have scored 34 goals on the season.

Unfortunately, Brock Nelson did not continue on that pace. It dropped significantly. Nelson scored just six goals over the last 33 games that he played during the regular season. With 6 goals through 33 games that dropped him to scoring in just 18% of the games, a significant drop off.

Nelson and Crew Failed to Step Up

Once he eclipsed the 20 goal mark Brock Nelson’s game dropped off tremendously. It was this lack of consistency that had Islanders fans so frustrated with him. The playoffs were no better. Brock Nelson had just one goal during his 11 game post season.

The Islanders were hoping for their young players to take a significant step in 2015-2016. Unfortunately the Islanders saw a lot of stagnant growth. Their young players, such as Ryan Strome and Anders Lee especially, didn’t live up to expectations. With Nelson it was a little different.

Brock Nelson didn’t really take a step forward, and you can’t really say he took a step back either. His point total was practically identical from the previous year. Although he put up 6 more goals, his play down the stretch is certainly a cause for concern.

Next: Kyle Okposo: Player Grade

Now many are conspiring to use Brock Nelson as a trade chip. I’m not ready to completely throw in the towel with Brock Nelson. He still has the potential to be a solid secondary scoring piece on this team. Nelson is still just 24-years-old and I think there is still room for growth there.

Final Grade: B

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