: Larry Brooks:
Rangers feel Stepan is year away,McD ready
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01-10-2010, 08:38 AM
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: New York
Get the feeling the Rangers don't have a good handle on Stepan
Reading some of Clark's comments from a few days ago
Chosen in the second round of the 2008 Entry Draft (No. 51) out of Shattuck-St. Mary's prep school, Stepan has 22 points in 18 games as a sophomore this season at the University of Wisconsin.
"He's a very highly skilled guy with his head and hands," Gordie Clark, the Rangers' director of player personnel, told NHL.com. "We were hoping the body would have to mature and come along. He's a little ahead of the curve right now."
Clark said when center Derek Stepan was drafted in the second round in 2008, they were unaware of his leadership qualities. But as captain of the U.S. team, Stepan, who is attending Wisconsin, was impressive on and off the ice, and "that's a big plus for Derek and us."
Clark said scouts compare Stepan's playmaking skills to Craig Janney (563 assists in 760 NHL games) and Adam Oates (1,079 assists in 1,337 games). "I don't know if I'd put him in that category, but they can make a play at any time to win you a game and that's what he showed," he said. Stepan led all players with 14 points on four goals and 10 assists.
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