Oh man, two of my favroite prospects, tough call.
I'de take Ruutu though, Both players are both great two way players and they both hustle like he*l, but Ruutu just seems to play with more of a physical edge and I Like that, although Michalek has more skill. Very tough call, but i'll take Ruutu.
What everyone overlooks in Ruutu is that he has a world class work ethic. He refuses to be average.
Next time you watch him- watch how many pucks he deflects around the net. Then go read at how he never did it in the finnish league at all, saying that it wasn't part of the game.
He practices after practice deflecting pucks- every day. Because he has seen how successful that is in the NHL. Other than Calder, there isn't anyone better on the team at it now.
This is what Ruutu brings to the table. And why he will just get better and better.
I'm also firmly in the camp that we won't see the real Ruutu until he gets an offseason to get into NHL condition. That is the biggest thing about his knee. It still hasn't been a year since he tore it up...
I haven't seen enough about Michalek to comment on who's better.. But I can tell you this: the people that are dogging Ruutu all the time, will eat their words. The kid is a winner- and plays hockey as it should be played. What will he top out as... nobody knows. If I had to guess he'll be a 55-70 pt guy who will be as physical as anyone on the ice.
YOu said Ruutu has a great work ethic, well thats adzactly what Michalek has, he put on 15 pounds of muscle from the draft to training camp with hard gym time. Doug Wilson also said that " I've never seen anyone rehab this hard". Plus I think MIchalek may be even better defensivly then Ruutu.
But in a year or two Ruutu is going to be a ****** to play against, and his kind of play is a rarity these days, I like Ruutu.