Now onto the negatives.
"Jonny Boy" has not lived up to what he displayed during his fantastic playoff series in '08. He was really something else that year, even with Lidstrom lining up opposite him. Showing a unique sense of calmness to go with fantastic decision making, he looked to be another one of the Red Wings late draft pick steals. Unfortunately he has had a hard time living up to those expectations.
Throughout the '09 season Ericsson had a hard time finding his game, making errand passes that found teammates feet more than the tape of there stick. He didn't know how to use that huge body of his to push people around in front of the net and hardly pressed into players and forced the play from the boards. It was forgivable, at least on my end, knowing he had this untapped potential he had shown in flashes once upon a time. It was his rookie season, growing pains were to be expected.
Then, the 2010 season comes and goes. I can't say he looked as bad as his '09 season, but that also may have been my desire to see him take that next step. He was still below average. But at times I felt he was a serviceable number 5 man. I was hoping for much larger step towards his high ceiling.
That season earned him a 3.25 million dollar cap hit for 3 seasons. Whoah. Holland is paying a lot for potential here.
Ericsson's last 3 seasons:
08-09 - GP 19, G 1, A 3, Pts 4, -1
09-10 - GP 62, G 4, A 9, Pts 13, -15
10-11 - GP 74, G 3, A 12, Pts 15, +8
Well, I really hope he turns out to be a really smart, physical Brad Stuart type because he sure as hell doesn't look to put up the points. Seeing his plus minus go up +23 from the 09-10 season is a good sign. Especially with his point total only going up due to the number of his games played increasing. Hopefully this is a good sign and an upward trend for Jonny Boy.
Similar to his past numbers, with a small increase in points due to him getting some top 4 minutes throughout the season. This is a big year for Jonathan Ericsson as he has this looming cap hit and a sense of making Holland not look bad for giving out a huge pay day. Cross your fingers.
Aliens, man. Aliens.