The 21-year-old winger has just one goal and four assists in his last 21 games for the Blackhawks.
Chicago Blackhawks forward Alex Nylander will be a healthy scratch on Tuesday night against the Calgary Flames in favor of Dylan Sikura. Nylander has struggled with consistency all season long, and Sikura is due for a game after sitting out in each of the last three contests.
Through 40 games, the Blackhawks are likely a bit disappointed with what they’ve seen from Nylander. There are times where he looks capable of being a strong top-six forward, and then there are moments where he looks like an AHL player.
For example, Nylander looked terrific on the second line with Patrick Kane in the Blackhawks 4-1 road win over the Jets on Dec. 19. Nylander found the back of the net less than a minute into the game, and he also picked up a primary assist on Kane’s goal in the third period. It was arguably his best performance of the year.
Now, fast forward to Sunday’s 3-2 victory in Columbus, where Nylander played just 7:21 and had only two shifts after the first period. Coach Jeremy Colliton kept the Swedish forward on the bench for the entirety of the third period with the game on the line. He was too much of a liability that night to play significant minutes.
“We’re just looking for him being sharp all the time, because when he’s sharp, he helps us,” Colliton said about the decision to scratch Nylander. “If he can find a way to do it nine out of 10 shifts instead of two out of three, then we’ve got a hell of a player.”
There’s a lot of truth behind that statement from Colliton. It’s easy to notice Nylander’s skill with the puck at times. He has the talent and ability to become a game-changing player. If he can become a consistent point producer for the Blackhawks, they’re going to be a lot more lethal offensively.
Hopefully, Alex Nylander will have a better second half of the season after struggling mightily through the first 41 games.
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