Despite the Anaheim Ducks overall failure as a team, Jakob Silfverberg had one of his best seasons to date.
Going into the 2018-19 season, there was a lot of speculation that Jakob Silfverberg would be utilized as a trade chip at some point during the season. He was one of the only players that would end the season as a pending UFA that was not extended prior to the season. At the age of 28, he still had a lot of promise; there were several teams the Anaheim Ducks could have entered trade talks with that would have been a great fit for Silfy.
Nevertheless, no one could have guessed that JS33 would have been one of the more consistent players for the Anaheim Ducks during such a horrible season. While he had been known as one of the mainstays on the shutdown line with Andrew Cogliano and Ryan Kesler, getting out from underneath them, especially to start the season, allowed him to prove that he was an asset worth keeping.
When Ryan Kesler came back into the lineup, and Randy Carlyle reunited the shutdown line, Silfverberg was still playing decently, but it was clear that being put in a position where he was relied on defensively was really holding him back. He had a lot more offensive upside than previously thought, and it wasn’t until Cogliano was traded, and the shutdown line was… shutdown, that he was really given the opportunity to truly thrive.
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Silfverberg had 24 goals on the season, a personal record for the forward. While his best overall season (pointwise) came in 2016-17, he still managed to score 6 more goals than anyone else on his team. He would have had his highest season pointwise, however, if he would have stayed healthy and not been put back on the shutdown line on November 1st.
When he was separated from both Cogliano and Kesler, he registered 31 points in 40 games. Those totals would have put him on pace to have a 64 point season, making him the leading point-getter on the Anaheim Ducks for the 2018-19 season.
Nevertheless, Silfverberg had far from a perfect season. Despite having one of the better seasons on the team, he was still really streaky when it came to producing points. He was really hot and cold, having moments when he scored consistently and also going several games without registering any points at all.
Still, he earned his shiny new 5-year contract and he will be a great leader going forward. Bob Murray really needed his players to step up, and there were several points during the season where Silfverberg was the only one who answered the call. He may not be rewarded with a position as one of the Ducks alternate captains, but he will still be influential to the younger players on the team, and they should definitely take notes.
Final Grade: B
What are your thoughts on Silfverberg’s 2018-19 season and his 5-year extension? What grade would you give the veteran forward? Let us know by leaving a comment in the comment section down below!