Film Study: 3 Trade Options to Replace Brendan Nichtern

By Nick Zoroya

Apr 26, 2023

With Brendan Nichtern moving to the Military Inactive List, we’re taking a look at three trade options to help the Chrome’s attack unit. Through conversations with Chrome LC Head Coach Tim Soudan it is clear to me that he would prefer to keep the players currently on his roster, meaning the likely solution is to trade away a pick. With this year's draft being defense heavy, it would make sense to trade a pick for a proven offensive player. 

Nichtern provided the attack unit with a shifty presence at X who was as likely to score (1.6 goals/game) as he was to find a teammate for an assist (2.2 assists/game). When looking at potential replacements we’re searching for a righty attackman who can dodge from X, finish when open but able to draw the double and find the open man. All three of these candidates can fit that mold to some degree.

Asher Nolting

One of 6 attackmen currently on the Cannons roster, the 2022 All-Star jumped on the scene during his rookie season but a lot has changed this offseason. His new coach, Brian Holman, made big moves this off-season bringing in veteran attackmen Marcus Holman and Matt Kavanagh. These roster moves make Nolting’s future unclear with more competition for playing time than ever. 

Nolting is similar in skill and role and what he loses in speed he makes up with power. The biggest drawback to his game is that he often tries to do too much, resulting in 31 turnovers compared to 23 points. Nichtern also had turnover issues (33) but he made up for them with 38 points. If he can make the jump in year two, making quicker decisions that lead to less turnovers and more ball movement, he would be a definite asset to the Chrome.

Ryan Drenner

Unlike Nolting, there is no doubt that Drenner will find the field no matter who the Cannons bring on board. He has proven time and time again that it doesn't matter where you put him on the field he can produce. Drenner spent the majority of his career as an attackman before moving to more of a midfield role for the Cannons in 2022. Moving to the Chrome would allow him to retake his natural position at attack and remain a great option coming out of the box when Nichtern returns. 

While his focus has been on goal scoring, he has similar speed and athleticism to draw a double and hit the skip or through pass. Drenner isnt a prototypical X attackmen, so adding him to the mix would mean Dylan Molloy and Logan Wisnauskas behind the cage more often than they did last season.

Jules Heningburg

There was a rumor before the 2022 season that Heningburg wanted to move on from the Redwoods. His talent is undeniable but the team has so many offensive weapons it can be hard for a guy like him to not be THE GUY. Currently the ‘Woods roster has 14 offensive players and Heningburg is playing midfield. A trade for a high draft pick could be beneficial for everyone.  As a 3x All-Star I’d expect the Chrome would have to move a early round pick this year and next to pull off this deal. 

Heningburg is the closest thing to Brendan Nichtern that the Chrome can hope to get. His production split is similar and moving back to attack full time would increase his output. The other options on this list are good, but Heningburg is best suited to break down a defender. 

With draft day coming soon, it will be interesting to see what, if anything, Coach Soudan decides to do.

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