The last time I spoke with Jakob Silfverberg
about how his game was coming along, it was largely positive. His focus was on getting to dangerous parts of the ice to generate better scoring opportunities.
It has been a couple of weeks and the on-ice play appears to be progressing as he had hoped. Silfverberg looks much more assertive with the puck and is trying to generate as much as he can. He has recorded two or more shots in eight of the Sens last nine games and has consistently had over 20 shifts a game.
The learning curve is progressing as well as he had hoped.
"Yeah I feel like I'm getting closer and closer," said Silfverberg. "It's just a matter of getting to those sweet spots on the ice and I feel like I'm getting there in the game. I'm feeling better."
The best example may be when he scored his first shorthanded goal. It was a heads-up play to look off New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and score on the backhand after retrieving a puck deep.
At this point we all know about the wrist shot. It's quick and accurate and a little bit violent and you'd be hard pressed to find a goalie who wants to deal with it. It may seem less immortal after Evgeni Nabokov stopped it in Sunday's shootout, but it is there and it's only going to improve.
Some pointed out online that they knew Silfverberg was going to take the shot he did, especially after his recent success with the move in the 'skills competition.' In hindsight though, the shot was there, he just didn't get enough lift on it. The question now is whether or not he'll go back to the wrister next time the Sens need a shootout.
He has moves ready no matter what. It'st just a matter of what the goalie gives him.
"Yeah, I've got a couple. If the goalie comes out too far I might have to use a couple of the moves in my sleeve."
Obviously there is still a ways to go for Silfverberg's production to match his immense potential but the signs on the ice are encouraging. His key going forward is keeping his mindset in the right place.
"It's just a matter of keeping going and not being satisfied and just keeping your confidence at the right level"
For those of you who missed it, Jakob and Mika Zibanejad took a tour of Philadelphia on Friday and spent some time at the famous Rocky statue. It's well worth a watch to get a look at the Sens' wonder Swedes.