Behind The Bench: Nick Palmieri
Born: Utica, NY, USA
Birth date: July 12, 1989
Height: 6’3” (191 cm)
Weight: 220 lbs (100 kg)
Position: Right Wing
NHL Draft: 79th overall by the New Jersey Devils in 2007
NHL Team: New Jersey Devils
Jersey No.: #32
National Team: United States
NHL Contract: 11/12
Cap Hit: $801,667
2005-06: Palmieri was selected by the Erie Otters in the OHL draft and put together a decent rookie season. He recorded 23 points (13 goals and 10 assists) in 68 games.
2006-07: In his second season with the Otters, Palmieri was the only bright spot for a team that sat near the bottom of the OHL standings all season. Palmieri recorded 45 points (24 goals and 21 assists) in 56 games and racked up 99 PIM’s. Palmieri led the Otters in goal scoring and would go on to be drafted 79th overall by the New Jersey Devils in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.
2007-08: Despite playing on one of the worst teams in the OHL and missing a large portion of the season with mononucleosis, Palmieri was still able to put together a good season. Palmieri recorded 46 points (28 goals and 18 assists) in 50 games with 122 PIM’s and an ugly -30 rating. His plus-minus rating is more of a reflection of the team than his defensive play. Palmieri finished his season with the New Jersey Devils’ AHL affiliate, the Lowell Devils where he recorded 1 assists in 9 games.
2008-09: Early in the season Palmieri was traded to the Belleville Bulls where he played as a secondary scorer. In 18 games with the Otters, Palmieri recorded 12 points (7 goals and 5 assists), after his trade, he recorded 29 points (20 goals and 9 assists) in 43 games. By the end of the season, Palmieri has recorded 41 points (27 goals and 14 assists) in 61 games with 116 PIM’s and a +6 rating. Palmieri got to play in his first OHL playoffs and excelled with the added pressure. He recorded 17 points (14 goals and 3 assists) in 17 games.
2009-10: Palmieri struggled in his first pro season with Lowell as he adjusted to the size and speed of the pro game. He finished his first pro season with a decent 36 points (21 goals and 15 assists). Palmieri was recalled in late January and had a 6 game stint with the Devils where he only recorded 1 assist. Palmieri finished the season with Lowell and played in the AHL playoffs, although Lowell was eliminated early, he recorded 4 points (1 goal and 3 assists) in 5 games.
2010-11: Palmieri started the season with the Albany Devils. He recorded 11 points (6 goals and 5 assists) in 26 games. Palmieri was recalled at the beginning of January, he got an opportunity because of the injuries and lackluster play of several roster players. In 43 games, Palmieri recorded 17 points (9 goals and 8 assists)
Palmieri is an imposing figure at 6’2” and 220 lbs. He likes to uses his big body to his advantage and drives to the net as if he were on a set of tracks. He is a hard body to move from the net and he can dish out some damage when he parks himself out front. Palmieri has good, quick hands and has good hand-eye co-ordination. Palmieri also has a solid shot and can do some damage from the circles or the slot. He has soft hands that allow him to be a creative passer and decent playmaker. Palmieri lacks top-end quickness and speed but is a strong skater and is tough to not off the puck. He is sound defensively and is willing to play physical.
Palmieri has the potential to be a good power forward in the NHL. He likes to initiate contact and has a goal-scoring upside that could make him a perennially 20 goal scorer. His development and his potential depend solely on how he utilizes his linemates in the future. He could become a consistent 50-55 point producing power forward in the league.
- 1st NHL Game – January 20, 2010 vs. Florida Panthers
- 1st NHL Point – January 20, 2010 vs. Florida Panthers (Assist on Travis Zajac goal)
- 1st NHL Assist – January 20, 2010 vs. Florida Panthers (Assist on Travis Zajac goal)
- 1st NHL Goal – January 9, 2011 vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (Empty Net goal)
NHL Regular Season: 49 GP, 9 G, 9 A, 18 Pts
AHL Regular Season: 104 GP, 28 G, 20 A, 48 Pts
AHL Playoffs: 5 GP, 1 G, 3 A, 4 Pts
OHL Regular Season: 235 GP, 92 G, 63 A, 155 Pts
OHL Playoffs: 17 GP, 14 G, 3 A, 17 Pts
WC: 6 GP, 2 G, 1 A, 3 Pts
Behind The Bench appears Monday to Friday only on puckpuckgoose.com.