Colton Sissons’ first trip to Smashville

Colton Sissons takes in his surroundings for his first career home game as a member of the Nashville Predators. (Photo Credit: John Russell/NHLI via Getty Images)

It might not have been the longest stint but, in three-games, Colton Sissons achieved his dream of playing in the NHL. His call up to the Nashville Predators came during a run of injuries taking out the team’s forward group left and right. At the time of his first ever NHL recall he was leading the Milwaukee Admirals in points and goals scored: 28 points (16 goals, 12 assists). It was three-games. How did the first-year pro handle himself?

Sissons was able to play his first career NHL in front of his family in Winnipeg as the Predators finished their Western Canada road-trip against the Jets (game highlights). Just like his debut with the Admirals this season – he treated the fam with a first-career point. He managed to produce a secondary assist playing with the same hockey smarts we’ve become accustomed to seeing in his forty-two games with the Admirals.

He made a smart play defensively to stir this play forward and then, no nonsense, cycled the forecheck behind the net. Paul Gaustad made a brilliant play to win the puck and dish it off to Nick Spaling for the goal. Being that Sissons played on the fourth line in each of these three-games with the Preds – that’s all you could ask for. Nothing flashy. Just smart.

In that first career game he played a total of 14 shifts and logged 10:49 of ice time. Of that ice time – all of it came at even-strength. He had 2 hits, 1 shot, and went 1/4 (25%) in faceoffs.

This is what he had to say after having played that first career game in the NHL:

In his next game he made his home debut in Nashville while taking part in a thriller of a game against the New Jersey Devils (game highlights). The Predators came back in the final seconds to tie the game and then won it in overtime. It was all jolly exciting, but Sissons didn’t entirely take much part in it.

In his home debut he had 11 shifts and played 5:06 of ice time. No one on the team had few shifts. No one on the team played lesser minutes. In his first AHL game he scored his first AHL point (an assist).

In his first NHL game he scored his first NHL point (an assist). In his second AHL game he scored his first AHL goal. In his second NHL game he earned his first NHL penalty (two-minutes for holding). …not quite as parallel as I was hoping for after the first game.

Despite a game where he wasn’t on the ice that much – he did manage to take 4 faceoffs in the home debut: 2/4 (50%).

His third game with the Preds would be his last before being reassigned on Sunday (Roundtable story). It was another road game for Nashville – this time in St. Louis. He did manage more shifts and ice time than the previous game, 15 shifts for 8:00 minutes, but he still had the least shifts and playing time of any Predator.

He did earn another plus in the plus/minus department, being on the ice for Paul Gaustad’s goal, to bump up his NHL total to +2. He also rang a shot off the post in the first period – nearly scoring his first career NHL goal (game highlights). Again, despite the time on ice, he was productive again in limited faceoff work – winning 3/4 (75%) of his faceoffs in that game.

He’ll make his return to the Milwaukee Admirals Wednesday night when the team squares off with the Hamilton Bulldogs. There is no doubt his addition to the Ads will be a massive boost. Whether or not it is a truck stop for him in Milwaukee before the Predators play in Minnesota the next day is another question. If that’s how it shakes out – it’s a win-win. Sissons plays extra minutes with the Admirals and then travels back to help out the Predators and their banged up forward group without missing any time between either club. We’ll just have to wait and see how that story plays itself out after Wednesday’s game.

What is your impression of Colton Sissons’ first rodeo in the NHL? Positive? Negative? Did the team use him in his best capacity or the only capacity they had open due to the injuries? Can we expect to lose him again after Wednesday’s game?

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