2007-08: Josh Shalla Appeared in 6 games without registering a point for the OHL’s Brampton Battalion. Spent the majority of the year playing for the OPJHL’s Bowmanville Eagles where he put up 26 goals and 11 assists in 46 games.
2008-09: Split the OHL season between Brampton and the Guelph Storm, posting 14 goals and 6 assists in 61 games. He also went scoreless in 4 post-season matches.
2009-10: Appeared in 68 OHL games for the Saginaw Spirit posting 32 goals and 33 assists. He struggled in his 6 playoff games, only able to manage 1 assist. Despite those solid numbers, he went undrafted in his first year of eligibility.
2010-11: Turned in a tremendous season for the Spirit with 47 goals and 25 assists in 68 games. He continued his strong play in the post season with 8 goals and 7 assists in 12 games.
2011-12: Shalla returned to the OHL’s Saginaw Spirit for a fourth season of junior hockey after being in camp with both the Predators and their AHL affiliate Milwaukee. Shalla skated in 53 games for the Spirit, missing time at the beginning of the year after being suspended for ten games for a hit on Kitchener’s Matia Marcantuoni. Shalla was the Spirit’s leading goal scorer with 40 goals and had 36 assists; finishing plus-17 with 27 penalty minutes. After getting off to a slow start, the Spirit finished third in the West Division and reached the second round of the playoffs. Shalla scored 4 goals with 10 assists and was plus-2 with 2 penalty minutes in 12 playoff games. He signed a three-year entry-level contract with Nashville in April, 2012.
2012-13: Shalla shuttled between Nashville’s AHL and ECHL affiliates in Milwaukee and Cincinnati in his first pro season. Limited to 10 AHL games with the Admirals during the NHL lockout, he ended the season appearing in 32 games with Milwaukee, scoring 3 goals with 9 assists, and was -7 with 4 penalty minutes. The Admirals finished second in the Midwest Division and lost to Texas in a first round playoff series. Shalla played in two playoff games and had 1 assist. Shalla led Cincinnati with 21 goals in 37 games and was -1 with 7 assists and 28 penalty minutes. The Cyclones finished first in the North Division and reached the Eastern Conference finals against Kelly Cup champion Reading. In seven ECHL playoff games Shalla scored 1 goal with 3 assists and was -5 with 4 penalty minutes.
2013-14: Shalla split his second pro season between Nashville AHL affiliate Milwaukee and the Cincinnati Cyclones in the ECHL. In 26 AHL regular season games with the Admirals he scored 2 goals with 2 assists and was minus-8 with 12 penalty minutes. Shalla was loaned to Cincinnati four different times during the year and scored 14 goals with 16 assists in 29 regular season games; finishing +20 with 11 penalty minutes. Cincinnati finished second in the North Division and reached the Kelly Cup finals. Shalla and Alaska Aces forward Nick Mazzolini led all playoff scorers with 11 goals and Shala had 6 assists — finishing +2 with 14 penalty minutes in 23 playoff games. Cincinnati lost to Alaska in six games in the Kelly Cup finals.
Shalla was a top scorer during his junior hockey days but has yet to have that same success at the AHL or NHL levels. He has the prototypical size of a power forward but does not play an abrasive style and has struggled to develop the all around game necessary to succeed at the pro level.
Shalla enters the final year of his original three-year deal with Nashville still very much of a mystery. His success during the ECHL playoffs suggests he could one day be an effective offensive presence and the new coaching staff in Nashville could be the spark that taps into his potential. He just as likely could be a career minor league scorer. He will likely start the season with Predators AHL affiliate Nashville and will be challenged to spend the entire year with the Admirals.