Former Ottawa Senator, Nick Foligno Off To Incredible Start


April 15 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Columbus Blue Jackets left wing

Nick Foligno

(71) is congratulated for the his game winning overtime goal by teammates center

Ryan Johansen

(19) and right wing

Jared Boll

(40) against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. The Blue Jackets defeated the Avalanche 4-3 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

At 27-years old, former Ottawa Senator Nick Foligno is having a career year. Foligno is on a Columbus team that struggled mightily in the early going but has turned things around. Injuries were what caused the struggles and now with Boone Jenner and Brandon Dubinsky back frorm injury this looks like a team that can contend.

Through 28 games this season, Foligno is sitting comfortably at 27 points. His previous career high is at 47 points while he was in Ottawa. Yet, one might attribute his success to superstar centreman Ryan Johansen.

Johansen is tied with Foligno for points. After a 63 point season last year and a contract hold-out, Johansen is on pace for a career year at age 22.

Foligno attributed to Johansen?

Taking a look at Foligno’s WOWY’s we see that he has spent a majority of the season with Johansen, and that has had an impact. Foligno has 374:50 minutes of 5v5 ice time this season, where Johansen has been with Foligno for 250:39 of those minutes.

As we see, Foligno and Johansen have some impressive numbers when they are playing together. Foligno and Johansen both average over a goal per 20 minutes of ice time together. When Foligno is apart from Johansen he is at 0.644 G20. A number quite different than the figure with Johansen.

Foligno clearly generates more when Johansen is on the ice. Foligno averages 3 more CF20 with Johansen than without Johansen. Foligno also sees a positive CF% with Johansen and a negative one without. The impact is clear, Johansen is a great player and affects Foligno’s play — but it goes the other way as well.

*Foligno represented as 3rd green column*

As seen here, when Johansen is away from Foligno it has a drastic impact on his game. In the 148:47 minutes apart from Foligno this season, Johansen has been ripped apart. With a GF20 at 0.134 and a GA20 at 1.210, the impact is gross. Compare that to the 1.197 GF20 with Foligno and that’s a big change.

Looking at Corsi, we see that Johansen without Foligno is not a good thing. At 43.9 CF% Johansen would be among the league worst if you take a look at his stats without Foligno. The chemistry between these two is evident.

Foligno’s Future 

Foligno has been an impact player for Columbus this season, no question. What makes things interesting is the fact that he is a UFA this upcoming off-season. Foligno’s advanced stats are impressive, leaving him a two-way force to be reckoned with.

At 27-years-old, Foligno has more than a few years of good hockey ahead of him. Assuming he stays at the pace he’s playing at he could be cashing in after a career year. With players like Benoit Pouliot getting 5 year/$4mil deals, only NHL GM’s can determine what Foligno’s worth is. 

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That being said, with a scarce crop of UFA’s one has to think that Foligno is looking for a career deal. A deal greater than 5 years, at an AAV of far over 4 million is not a stretch for Foligno who seems to have stepped into the top 5 of this years UFA’s.

Foligno was traded from Ottawa back in 2012, when a 1-for-1 deal seemed to benefit Ottawa immediately. The impact of Marc Méthot in the shortened season cannot be denied, but since that year Méthot has taken a step back. Either due to injuries or Ottawa’s poor performance as a whole.

Méthot is another free-agent to be and is looking for north of 5 million, the contracts handed out to these two will be great. And Foligno has the opportunity to cash in on what looks to be a massive deal.