33-Year-Old Right Wing – Free Agent
Justin Williams Contract Information:
Became an unrestricted free agent in July 2015.
Williams picked up two assists and went plus-4 in Thursday's 8-2 win over Edmonton.
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Age is determined on October 1st of each season.No Yes
Justin Williams: Past News Updates ( ▲ View most recent update )
RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
It took Williams a bit to find his scoring touch last season, but he managed to finish with 11 goals despite a prolonged slump to start the year. He figures to be back in a top-six role again this year and will probably play alongside Anze Kopitar on the Kings' top line. Expect another 60-point season.
Williams earned a spot alongside Anze Kopitar last year and made the most of his opportunity with 59 points (22 G, 37 A, 9 PPG) in 82 games. The chemistry he showed with Kopitar gives him the inside track to skate with Kopitar on the team's top line to start 2012-13.
Williams stayed healthy until a late-March shoulder injury and it resulted in his highest point total (22 G, 35 A) in four years. He needed offseason surgery, but is reportedly ahead of his schedule in his rehab. Williams should have a spot on one of the Kings' two scoring lines if he can stay healthy and could put up similar numbers again this year having Anze Kopitar or Mike Richards as his pivot.
Williams was enjoying a fine season (24 points in 33 games) with the Kings, skating alongside Anze Kopitar and Ryan Smyth, before breaking his leg in late December. He registered just five points in 16 games after the injury and clearly wasn't the same player. It was the third straight season that Williams has missed a significant chunk of games and it's getting harder and harder to ignore that fact. Watch his role closely this training camp. If he can regain the chemistry on the team's top line he could be in for a fine season but he could also be pressed for ice time by Wayne Simmonds.
Whether you want to classify Williams as “on the rise” or simply “due for a rebound” can be argued but either way he’s primed for a better season. He’ll get a chance to skate with Kopitar on the team’s top line in all likelihood and he’s now two years removed from ACL surgery. If the Kings have any thoughts about a playoff berth they’ll need Williams to return to his back-to-back 30 goal form of ’05-07.
He's a good bet to return to the 30-goal level he reached in back-to-back seasons before his knee injury. Assuming he's healthy, expect something on the order of 25 points on the power play.
The down side of last year's numbers is that Williams's power play productivity crashed and burned in the second half. He is fuly capable of a point-per-game pace, but the dropoff in the second half last year is ominous.
Williams will turn 25 on Opening Night, and has all the marks of a possible fantasy monster. He was the steadiest scorer on the Carolina roster in the last few months of the 2005-06 regular season. If he remains on a line with Rod Brind'Amour, he could push the 90-point mark (although 80 is a safer bet). His peak season, when it comes, will probably be something like 105 points with 15 or 20 power play goals.
Williams offers an excellent combination of size and speed, and will spend the season on one of Carolina's top two lines. Despite his youth (he'll turn 24 about the time they drop the puck on the new season), he has 258 NHL games under his belt. That's a lot, considering last season's washout. Expect something on the order of 0.6 PPG, perhpas more if he adds a few pounds of muscle.