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12-06-2011, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Stealth JD View Post
He just doesn't seem like he's got that one or two special elements to his game that will allow him to seperate himself and become more than 'just a guy'. He's got offense... but hundreds of junior kids have had that before and couldn't become NHL' his skillset so outstanding that it will make up for weaknesses in other areas? The coaching staff obviously thought highly of his offense during training camp...but he's not going to make it as a one-trick pony...unless that one trick is Brett Hull-like.

I just dont get excited about junior hockey stats because I've seen enough kids fail to develop the rest of their game and instead hang their hopes of stardom on scoring...and when they bring their game up a notch against full-grown men who can actually skate backwards and play defense or try to score against a goalie who actually knows what he's doing, more often than not it's not as easy as it was in junior hockey.
I'm getting the impression that you haven't seen much of his play. His offensive talents aren't what I would consider "ordinary", nor are they really recent developments (i.e. a product of relative age, or a possible fluke). He's had very notable offensive talents for quite some time. (He was drafted #2 behind Nugent-Hopkins in the 2008 Bantam draft). I think he's a small step below Schwartz overall in that area, but that's mostly because Schwartz's hockey IQ and vision are better...not because Schwartz has the higher skill level. IMO Rattie has true "plus" puck skills, and above average passing, shooting, and vision. I haven't seen him enough to nail down exactly what I think of his hockey IQ though. Sometimes it looks great, and sometimes it looks like he's trying to force a bit too much. It's hard to tell if that's going to be a chronic "problem" down the road, or if he's simply pushing boundaries when he thinks he can get away with it with the intention of simplifying his game appropriately as the quality of competition increases. He seems like an intelligent kid, so I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt for now.

The only real "weaknesses" to his game that I see are universal to almost every prospect. He needs to develop physically, which he'll do as long as he puts in the time and has the desire, and he needs to work on his play without the puck. Usually, that's also simply a question of time and desire. For what it's worth, I've never heard anything that questions his work ethic, but I don't have any firsthand knowledge of that either.

I understand why you're not willing to give him much credit for his accomplishments to this point, but I'm fairly confident that he'll be moving up your personal rankings smartly as time goes on.

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