After seven seasons in the NHL, Predators center Ryan Johansen surely knows that the importance of the preseason pales in comparison to that of the regular season. It might be useful for the rookies, and other young guys, to develop their skills and mentally adjust to top-level game speeds, but it won’t quite have the same impact for him as it might have at one point. Because of this likelihood, when Johansen scored the overtime game-winning goal against the Hurricanes on Sunday, he did more than just act like he had been there before.
Of course, there is a chance that this didn’t have anything to do with elderly cynicism and it could have been a planned celebration. Johansen did have time to think about it since it was his second goal of the game, and his teammate, Filip Forsberg, seemed to go along with it pretty well by marching right off the ice with him. It could also be that Johansen is just embodying what hockey fans everywhere are feeling and just wants the regular season to start already. The sooner he leaves, the sooner it comes. That’s how it works, right?