Austin Watson



Austin Watson, RW/LW

Shoots: R

Height: 6-3

Weight: 187

Born: 1992-01-13

Hometown:  Ann Arbor, MI, USA

Drafted: 2010 by Nashville Predators, 18th overall







June 2017 — The Predators drafted Watson in the first round of the 2010 NHL Entry Draft with the 18th overall pick. After seven years in their system, the 25-year old center helped his team to reach the Stanley Cup Finals. During the regular season he scored five goals and 17 points in 77 games, where he was used more in a defensive role as his defensive zone start percentage for this season (70.9%) would suggest. Injuries in Predators line-up bumped Watsons’s average time on ice up by a couple of minutes, in the playoffs and gave him a bigger role.

In the playoffs he scored four goals and nine points in 22 games. His shooting percentage was unsustainably high at 14.3%, way up from his NHL career average which is 6.0%. Watsons’s most valuable asset is his 6’4” frame that he threw around at will in the playoffs, jumping his hits per game average from 1.85 in the regular season  to 4.8 in the playoffs. It’s doubtful he can maintain such an increased rate for a full season, but to see him being able to land somewhere in the middle, would be a nice boost for his fantasy value.

22 games is a small sample size, but Watson was able to elevate his game when it mattered the most. Niko Salminen


April 2016 – Watson made the jump to full time NHLer this season, playing in 57 of the Predators 82 games. Watson finished the season with three goals and 10 points. Despite now being an NHL regular, Watson has seemingly settled into a depth role. It's unlikely he'll ever be a consistent top six forward and he has been passed on the Predators depth chart by younger and higher potential options. Consider him a longshot to be relevant in fantasy hockey. Donesh Mazloum

June 2014 – Watson showed solid improvement in his second AHL season increasing his goal and point totals. He finished second in goals on the Admirals with 22 and third in points with 46. Barring any offseason free agent signings, Watson will battle for a spot on the Predators for the 2014/2015 season. With stiff competition from other Predators prospects such as Forsberg, Jarnkrok, and Beck; Watson may need another year of seasoning in the AHL before he is ready for full time duty. Austin Watson has good potential but he is a player who excels defensively and his abilities in those areas could potentially pigeon-hole him into a more defensive role.  The opportunity to develop into a ‘Ryan Kesler-type’ of player who does it all definitely remains.  David Bolland is a player who compares well to Austin Watson and he will certainly have fantasy value at the NHL level.  Austin Watson will become a forward who will earn plenty of ice time in the NHL as he does not have too many glaring weaknesses. Donesh Mazloum


June 2013 – While he didn't blow away the competition, Watson showcased his underrated and improving offensive skill set in his first full pro season. He led the Admirals in goals with 20 and finished third in points with 37. Watson also scored his first NHL goal in a six-game stint with the big club. With improving offense, good size and already stellar defensive awareness