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08-23-2011, 02:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Goldthorpe View Post
You misunderstood, it's the other way around. He won't be a bust because he played in the Q as a 20-years old. What we're saying is that his development will become suspect if, as a drafted player and especially as a first round pick, he can't crack a pro league at 20. The vast majority of drafted players who make it to the NHL played in a pro league at 20.

If he's in camp this september, healthy, and shows he can't compete for a pro spot, and sucks so much he needs to go back to junior, it will means his development curve is clearly behind where it should be. Fortunately, it would be very surprising if this happens, as Leblanc hasn't shown any problem in playing against men in Harvard, and should make the transition nicely.
I don't think that he can't crack Hamilton's line up, I think he can but I also think he would be better served by going to the Q. Its just about how I view development.

I think by him going to the AHL this year, it pretty much seals his fate of a 2nd line centre / 3rd line centre. I think either way, he's going to take 2 full years to make the NHL. But I see him going to the Q as an opportunity to work on tapping some offensive potential. I don't think he can get the confidence and quality of linemates to do that in the AHL this year.

He's going to be cognisant of the fact he's coming off a shoulder injury, playing in his first pro league against better people, its just an uphill battle. He'll do fine but imo he'll do fine because he's a solid two way player and this will reinforce those skills, I just am hoping for more and the way I see for him to have a chance at a bigger offensive upside is by playing against the weaker competition and hone his play reading abilities and fine tuning some of the offensive skills.

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