2013-14 RECORD: 40-31-11, 91 points (fifth in Central, wild card; lost to Ducks, 4-2, in first round)
VITAL SIGNS: 2.82 goals per game (10th); 2.72 goals-against per game (17th); 15.9 power play pct. (23rd); 81.4 penalty kill pct. (21st); shootout record: 4-5 (24th)
NOTABLE ARRIVALS: C Jason Spezza, RW Patrick Eaves, G Anders Lindback, RW Ales Hemsky
NOTABLE DEPARTURES: RW Alex Chiasson, LW Ray Whitney, C Dustin Jeffrey
PROJECTED DEPTH CHART
The tenth overall pick in the 2013 draft had his share of highlights during his rookie season, scoring 14 goals and 24 points in 79 games, but he struggled to adapt to North American-sized ice, players and life. With a full season on his resumé and plenty of veteran forwards to help speed up Nichushkin's adjustment, Ruff has high hopes for the big Russian, who could hit his stride early on and never look back.
PREDICTION: 100 points; third in Central