Islanders Ryan Pulock Starting to Put Up Points
It took some time, but New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock is adding offense to his game in 2019-20.
After getting an assist on Casey Cizikas‘s goal against the San Jose Sharks, New York Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock now has a point in his last three games. Add the two helpers he had against the Toronto Maple Leafs five games ago, and Pulock now has five points in his last five games.
It took some time, but the Islanders number one defenseman is starting to add points to his game. Through his first ten games of the season, Ryan Pulock had two points to his name. Over his next eleven games, Pulock added eight points.
A slow start isn’t something new for Pulock, he went through one last season. The difference now is that he’s heating up earlier. And that can only be a good thing.
2018-19 Start vs. 2019-20 Start
In 2018-19, Pulock didn’t start pilling up the points until game 31 of the season. From game one to game 30, Pulock had ten points on the season. A pace of 27 points over a full 82 game season.
It’s not like it was a big deal. At that point of the 2018-19 season, the Islanders held a 14-12-4 record and were third in the Metropolitan Division with 32 points. The Isles were winning and Pulock, the new number one on the blue line, wasn’t too far off from the 32 points he scored in 2017-18.
Over his next ten games in 2018-19 – games 31 to 40 – Pulock would score eight points. From game 31 until the final game of the season, Pulock would score at a rate of 0.52 points-per-game. He’d end the season with 37 points. Exceeding his previous career-high of 33.
Fast-forward back to this season and Ryan Pulock is heating up just like he did in 18-19. He’s just started a full ten games earlier. Pulock is starting to pile up the points as of game number eleven. Again, in his first ten games of the season, Pulock had two points. He has eight from game number eleven to 21.
With his ten points in 21 games, Pulock is on pace to hit the 40 point plateau. Something only 30 defensemen were able to achieve in 2018-19.
Along with Devon Toews, who is also on pace for 40+ points, the Islanders could have two 40 point defensemen in the same season for the first time in 22 years.
In 1997-98, defensemen Kenny Johnsson and Bryan Berrard each hit the 40 point plateau with 40 and 46 points respectively.
Combined, Ryan Pulock and Devon Toews carry a $2.7 million cap hit. That’s 2.64 percent of the New York Islanders cap. In a salary-cap world, it’s wildly important to get as much value as possible from every dollar. Pulock, and Toews, is giving the Islanders that value.
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Ryan Pulock is the number one blueliner on the number one defensive core in the NHL. And after a slow-ish start, Pulock is starting to put up points, making the Isles blueline not only the best at keeping goals out, but it’s making them dangerous offensively as well.