Rangers Long-Term Depth and Needs
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08-01-2012, 05:08 PM
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Elmira NY
Originally Posted by
I have no particular problem with Skjei. I like the pick. My problem is with people in general overrating draftees.
If you go to any team's forum and ask them for their projection of their just-drafted second rounder, the majority opinion will be that the kid has a 50-75% chance of cracking the NHL, and he'll most likely be a 2-3 line tweener (a.k.a. average NHLer) or better.
In reality, only 20% of second rounders make it and only about 10% of them become tweeners or better.
Same with first rounders. A kid drafted around #15-20 has a 50-50 chance of cracking the NHL, and has only about a 20% shot of becoming a top-6 forward. Yet, 90% of fans expect these kids to become very good second liners.
Even 3-4 rounders who have a 5-10% chance of making it as low-end players (Stu Bickel types) are somehow penciled in as having a decent shots at being solid players. The last 3rd rounder of ours who made it was Dom Moore in 2000. Prior to him, it was Eric Cairs in 1992. Neither of them were earth-shakers.
The one argument for our draft picks is that our scouting staff seems to be doing a great job. Between 2004 and 2009, we had 4 of our 10 second round picks make the NHL, which is double the usual 20% rate. Nevertheless, the average 2nd rounder of ours failed to make it.
In the previous 10 years from 1993 to 2003, we had 11 second round picks and only 1 of them (Tyutin) made it. Yet, even as we kept striking out, our fans still would write that our second rounder will make the NHL in 2 years and become at least a tweener. Each time it was explained with a very confident statement of, "I don't care what happened in the past. I saw Copley or Inman or Baranka, and
am telling you that this kid is for real."
The spot where Skjei was drafted is somewhere between our old second rounders and our old first rounders because we used to either fail to make the playoffs or barely made it, so we drafted much earlier.
So yeah, do I like the Skjei pick? Yes. Do I hope he makes it? Definitely. Should we go around saying that a #28 (much less Nieves at #57) are any kind of a guarantee to make it? Absolutely not.
Let's have him, as you said, win us over first. Let's hope he'll become as good as Sauer or even Stepan (in terms of value, not style) and not the next Olver, Graham, Byers, Lafleur, etc.
You also have to look at what teams do with the players they draft. I mean why is it that the Islanders, Bluejackets etc. get high end draft picks every year and fail to improve. In part it's development--in part it's the quick fix moves trading them off, in part it's the veteran leadership they surround them with, in part it's rushing players who are not ready--yada, yada, yada.
The Rangers develop their picks fairly well. They're bringing in a kid or two just about every year. They fit them into slots where they can succeed.
I don't worry about Skjei--a defenseman with size and wheels who bases his game on his position might not turn into a real exciting player but it's a safe pick. A similar pick for us out of the second round of 2005 is Mike Sauer. Skjei's not as physical as Sauer but he's a better and faster skater. Both of them are stay at homes--make the smart play types.
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