Goldipucks and the Three Skaters: Batherson, Lindholm & Labanc

Rick Roos


Welcome back to Goldipucks and the Three Skaters, a play on words of the Goldilocks and the Three Bears story. Here though, instead of there being three bowls of porridge, I cover three skaters and declare one too hot (i.e., doing unsustainably better than he should), another too cold (i.e., doing unsustainably worse), and a third “just right” (i.e., producing where he should be). In addition, I also assign each a rating of 1-10, indicating just how hot (rated 7-10, where 10 is the most unsustainably hot), or how cold (rated 1-4, where 1 is the most unsustainably cold), or how “just right” (rated 4-7, where 5.5 is the most “just right”) he is.

For almost half the players in the NHL, their season is nearly over. In an effort to help you not forget about them in the upcoming months, this week I'm covering three players on teams currently not in line to make the playoffs: Drake Batherson, Elias Lindholm, and Kevin Labanc. As per usual, be sure to pause for a moment before reading on, to see if you can surmise which of the three is too hot, who's too cold, and who's just right, and then find out how many you guessed correctly.

Drake Batherson (stats for him and the other players are current through May 2nd games)

After dominating at the AHL for two seasons to the tune of 62 points in 59 games during 2018-19 followed by 54 in just 44 contests in 2019-20, and looking not out of place in his NHL cameos during those two seasons (collectively 19 points in 43 games), Batherson has finally has spent an entire campaign in the NHL; and on the surface, the results have been pretty solid. The question is whether, at 22, he's just scratching the surface, or if perhaps he might follow in an unfortunately long line of players who thrived at the AHL level but could not cut it once called upon to strut their stuff with the big boys? The good news, especially if you're a Batherson owner, is data and metrics suggest he'll be a strong if not elite