Nieto has been demoted to the Sharks' fourth line, reports Curtis Pashelka of the Mercury News. Nieto is still an important penalty killer, but with just six points and one even strength goal in 19 games, the team is turning to other sources for offense. Nieto's demotion isn't likely to be permanent, but not only is he struggling, opportunities are being taken away from him.
Nieto scored his first even strength goal of the season in Friday's win over Detroit. With three goals and three assists in 16 games, Nieto's totals are disappointing. Making matters worse is that just one of his three goals is at even strength. That's a red flag that things aren't going right. The other two were an empty netter and a shorthanded goal
Nieto popped in a shorthanded goal in Saturday's loss to Dallas. It's Nieto's second goal of the year. He hasn't had the kind of impact he had last year for San Jose. That his second goal of the year is coming down a man says a lot about how little you can count on his offensive production this season.
Nieto had an assist, a shot and a hit in Wednesday's loss to Nashville. Nieto's production has been close to what was expected preseason, with a goal and three assists through nine games. What's lagged has been the shots. He has just 13 in those nine games.
Matt Nieto suffered a fractured foot in the final few weeks of the regular season, CSN Bay Area's Kevin Kurz reports.
Rank Among Leaders
Last 7 Games
|3 Year Avg||69||10||16||26||-7||1||0||2||2||4||61.5|