NY Islanders Plus/Minus for 2023-24: Oliver Wahlstrom needs to have an explosive year

New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils
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The most obvious attribute of Wahlstrom's game is his elite shot, which is why many fans want him to play next to Mat Barzal on the first line. The Portland, Maine native has a deadly one-timer that is both hard and accurate, along with a great snapshot entering the offensive zone on the wing. New York's power play was notably bad last season, and part of the reason was the lack of a "shoot first" threat from the top of the left circle. Wahlstrom can do just that and should get plenty of time on the man advantage next season whether it's on the first or second unit because of his shot.

The former Boston College Eagle also has plenty of edge to his game that makes him more of a power forward than just a sniper. That could have been influenced by former head coach Barry Trotz during his time on Long Island, or it could just be a part of Wahlstrom's fabric at the pro level. His checking ability is good for his 6'2 204 pound frame, but he is not afraid to get into a scrap at all to defend his teammates. Most fans remember his dominating fight over former Flyers defenseman Tony DeAngelo when the game was pretty much over and emotions boiled over from Philadelphia. He's even gotten into it with PK Subban in the past, showing he is not afraid of established veterans either.

Wahlstrom agreeing to play a prove-it deal should give him plenty of motivation entering the 2023-24 season. When he was drafted, scouts talked about his upside being a 30-goal scorer and even more in the NHL, and the talent is certainly there for that to happen still. If he can find a way into the top six, specifically Barzal's line where he can dish him the puck, then Wahlstrom should be in for a great comeback season.