Del Zotto Quietly leading Team in +/- (among the league leaders)
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12-31-2011, 10:33 AM
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Join Date: May 2007
Originally Posted by
Unless NHL.com's stats are off, Del Zotto led the team in icetime tonight, playing 28:11, with Girardi second at 24:35, and Callahan third at 24:04. This is a promising sign for the kid, and for keeping Girardi fresh.
He's played as well as any defenseman in the league since Thanksgiving. He got 14 points and +18 in those 17 games (and let's not forget that for an offensive guy, he's very physical). That's easily All-Star quality play.
So it makes sense to give him a lot more ice. Let's see if he can handle it. If so, we have be seeing something very special blooming here. I am still a little skeptical about him turning into a first pair defenseman in the short-term, but not tremendously so in the long-term.
Though he took longer than most fans here expect of first round draft picks, which is preferably to make the NHL at 19, but no later than 20, and immediately play like a 7 year veteran without any hiccups, MDZ is looking like one more of the gems the team drafted.
May this serve as a lesson to all those who every June claim that our draftee will be in the NHL in 2 years and will immediately play at his max potential. Even great prospects who look amazing in their very first preseason don't normally get to their max potential without hiccups.
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