Thread: Derek Stepan
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02-02-2013, 11:08 AM
NYR Sting
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A lot of good points being made over the last few posts. Stepan's statistical production is not complaint-worthy, but he's yet to become the player that I was hoping to see based on his play in college. He was a dominant player at Wisconsin. He controlled the play, and he's not doing that yet here. IMO, it is a combination of skating and mental tenacity. For any basketball fans, I'd like to draw the comparison to Brook Lopez: a talented and skilled offensive player who simply doesn't assert himself enough to be as good as he should be.

I flat out adored Stepan in college, he was one of the smartest players in the country. He played that way in international competitions as a junior-aged player, as well. I'm still not seeing that in his NHL performance. That doesn't mean, however, that enough time has passed to give up on the kid. He's too good. The potential is too high. I would consider trading him only in a deal that brought a similarly-aged center with playmaking skills that would qualify as a clear upgrade.

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