Rasmus Dahlin’s start to this year’s NHL season is nothing but impressive. He’s currently second in points by a defenseman, only behind Erik Karlsson, and has been the standout player for Buffalo Sabres together with Tage Thompson.
Dahlin was the number one draft pick some years ago, and it looks like he’s finally living up to the high expectations of him. With 29 points in 24 games, he’s a favorite to be nominated for the Norris Trophy.
But Dahlin isn’t just great in his offensive game. Since his debut in the NHL, he’s grown and gotten stronger. Last night showed a great example of that.
In the second period of the matchup between the San Jose Sharks and Buffalo Sabres, veteran forward Matt Nieto got absolutely flattened by Dahlin.
Dahlin is more known for scoring and assisting than laying out massive body checks, but he sent Nieto flying, and it sure got the fans riled up.
“I decided to hit him,” Dahlin said per NHL.com. “I hope he’s OK, it looked like he was OK. It’s part of the game.”
Dahlin didn’t want to talk too much about the hit, but his teammates did. After the 6-3 victory, some of Dahlin’s teammates were absolutely thrilled over Dahlin’s physical play.
“That’s one of the biggest hits I’ve seen in a while,” Mattias Samuelsson said.
“For how skilled he is and how talented he is, for him to him have that in his game too, it’s pretty impressive, and I think it gave us all a boost.
“… I mean, I don’t know how many players in the league are actually like that. It’s pretty special.”
Jack Quinn agreed.
“It got us fired up for sure,” he said. “That was one of the biggest hits I’ve ever seen.”
Rasmus Dahlin also ranks fourth among all NHL players, with an average ice time of 25:58.