The Pluses and Minuses of Drafting a College Player
Since the adoption of the 2005 CBA, NHL teams have seen more advantages to the drafting of college players. Not the least of these advantages is the increased time within which the team has exclusive rights to sign such players. Covered in Article 8.6(c) of the collective bargaining agreement, NHL teams generally have until August [...]
All draftees are prospects and some make it and some don't. I think that the stats bear out that major junior is the surer way to the NHL than the NCAA, but most players from the CHL don't make the NHL either. While first round picks that take either route make it much more often than late round selections, there are a lot of factors involved in that.
The story was meant to first quell some of the fans gloom and doom predictions about Kreider that have been extrapolated from the fact that he has chosen to remain in college for his junior year. Then its about the advantages and disadvantages of selecting an NCAA bound prospect. We all know that a CHL or European player can refuse to sign too and choose go back into the draft (which is how the Rangers wound up with Erixon in a last minute trade). It is just when they do so, the team has invested less time and energy into the prospect (its two years instead of four or five).
It obviously depends. The NCAA has been a good NHL track for hundreds of players recently, and is arguably the very best league at turning an undersized player (Gionta, Gerbe, Kariya) for the NHL game.
I don't think the team is going to suffer too much from Kreider's return. I also feel that if Kreider thought he was pro ready, he would have signed by now.
"I have something better than proof: I have anecdotal evidence."