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10-03-2010, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
Youre doing nothing but expanding on my point. People seem to be so distracted by a shiny new prospect that the ability to reason is being lost, so I'll try to take it slow for you.

Has Derek Stepan been one of the 23 best players in camp? Yes, no doubt about it. Im not arguing that, at all. What bewilders me more than anything else is that some people can watch hockey for years and years and not be able to look at the development of a player outside of that vacuuum. This team, from a talent standpoint, stinks by and large - especially down the middle. That makes Stepan (who seems to have the tools and the hockey mind to be a really nice player down the road) look even better.

But the truth is, while hes shown a gifted offensive mind in his handful of preseason games, hes also shown some deficiencies in his game that would ideally be handled with some additional seasoning in the AHL. This is the darker side of rushing a kid that nobody likes to talk about or just plain chooses to ignore. The two major ones are:

1. his skating. When the games start to matter and hes not playing against half of a JV squad, this issue will be exposed even more. Its something that can be easily corrected and worked upon down in the minors.

2. Hes looked quite overmatched in the nuetral zone, especially on the defensive side of the puck. The speed issue above plays a part in this for sure. Not to mention hes is trying to make a HUGE jump in competition level - something else a lot of people conveniently like to ignore because they're enthralled by a rare legit prospect coming up through the ranks.

The issue is really two-fold. First, people are excited about Stepan and they should be. Second, our roster is so bad that a hot-shot prospect looks even shinier.

Its still no reason to virtually ignore the flaws of his game and the development curve in general to rush him into the NHL. In fact, its selfish.

lol now you're just making **** up to try to justify your point.

IF/when he makes the team, he isn't being rushed. You can think that all you want but that doesn't make it so.

He hasn't been perfect, but theres no reason to believe that he can't improve on his deficiencies at the NHL level as he gains experience. Need I remind you that of all the players this team has developed in the past 4 seasons, almost all of them spent little or no time in the AHL. If you're worried about Steps being ruined, the last thing you should want is for him to go down to Hartford.

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