the puck was bouncing all over the place, he was lucky to even get a shot off
Agreed, 100%. The puck was bouncing the entire way down the ice and when Scotty finally settled it down he was right at the goalie Howard, who had read the bouncing puck and came out of the paint to prevent Nichol from making any type of deke. With that bouncing puck, had Nichol actually made a deke of any sort, there was a high probability of the puck bouncing again and dribbling into the corner.
An unfortunate end to a great bounce of the puck to start the play, but the only option Scotty had at that point was to try to shoot the puck straight through Howard, which is exactly what he attempted.
Scott Nichol may not score much, but he gives up even less.
When Nichol is on the ice (at even strength), the Preds score at a rate of 3.15 goals per hour of icetime, while only giving up 1.51 per 60 minutes when Scotty is out there. He's not directly responsible for a lot of that offence, but by making hte safe play, keeping the puck in the offensive zone by getting it deep and not giving it away at the blueline on a regular basis, and getting it out of the defensive zone, it allows the other players on the ice create more offence.
For comparison's sake, the Preds as a team score 3.21 goals for every 60 minutes Erat is on the ice at even strength, and 3.13 goals for every hour Legwand is out there. Nichol gives up less than both, but he's also not on the ice against guys like Henrik Zetterberg or Paul Kariya as much either.
He's not flashy, and he won't bring you out of your seat with his skill, but he's incredibly effective, and the fact that he's doing it without putting up loads of points means he's never going to break the bank when he's helping you win hockey games.