Nick Robertson is fired up about the 2023-24 season, which should make Toronto Maple Leafs fans very happy.
Drafted 53rd overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, it wasn’t that long ago that Nick Robertson looked like the next great superstar for the Toronto Maple Leafs.
After coming off an unbelievable final campaign in the Ontario Hockey League, Robertson’s goal-scoring ability was talked about all through the hockey stoppage, as a result of the pandemic, and fans were ecstatic to finally see him play when the NHL resumed.
Although it was a small sample size, Robertson scored a goal during a short stint against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the “bubble” and his shot-release looked NHL ready. That excitement built for the 2020-21 season, but injuries have plagued him ever since and we’ve yet to see a full season of what he can do in the NHL.
Now that he’s a little more mature and much healthier, a 22-year-old Robertson seems prime for a breakout year and after seeing the lines made by Sheldon Keefe during Training Camp, it looks like he’s going to get a great opportunity to prove that he deserves to be on the big-club.
Toronto Maple Leafs: Robertson is Fired Up For 2023-24 Season
However, the biggest reason why we should all keep an eye on Robertson right now is because of what he told The Athletics’ Joshua Kloke this week. When speaking about the upcoming season, he mentioned the following:
"“I know my name isn’t what it used to be. I don’t give a f***.”In the long run, I know this is an important year for me…I didn’t want to miss training camp. It was a tough decision for me. It really was. But it was something I had to be mature about.” (Via: The Athletic)"
Obviously Robertson is speaking about how he used to be valued as one of the Leafs best prospects, but is now overshadowed by Matthew Knies, and others, so that’s clearly fueling him to play well this year.
I know that he only has three goals and seven points in 31 career NHL games, but I think we all need to look past the stats for him thus far and continue to believe in this player. Robertson has never been given a true opportunity to play top-six minutes and cannot play on the third or fourth line to be effective.
He’s a natural goal-scorer and his style of play won’t reflect well in the bottom-six. If Robertson is given legitimate minutes with other playmakers and goal-scorers, as well as an opportunity on the power-play, he has a legitimate chance to be effective.
Injuries are still a huge concern for him, but if he can stay healthy, he could be a difference-maker for the Leafs and someone who can provide legitimate offense, other than the core-four.
Robertson will be given a great chance to prove himself during Training Camp as he’ll start his preseason on the first power-play unit. I haven’t given up on this player yet and neither should you, as this could finally be the start of a long prosperous career with the Toronto Maple Leafs.