Thursday, December 11, 2008

Stepan Out

Guess Derek Stepan hates to be left out of the fun as the Ranger's 2008 2nd round pick wanted to get his turn as our Prospect Park Prospect of the Week.

Stepan earned the first of what we believe will be many a POW for his efforts last week in helping his Wisconsin Badgers jump into first place n the WCHA thanks to a weekend sweep of Alaska-Anchorage. What a turnaround for the Badgers who started the season 0-6-1 and entered their holiday break 9-7-2.

Stepan is a huge part as to why the Badgers are where they are today as no matter where Stepan has been used in the Badger lineup, Stepan has been effective. This past weekend there was Stepan centering the 3rd line and posting a 1-3-4 weekend.

The freshman from Hasting, Minnesota has been exactly as advertised as an offensive player. You are not going to outskate him and if you blink then Stepan will blow right by you. You will see a player who has 3 speeds: fast, faster and seeya and we think he can get faster as his first step when he arrives in New York will be the best on the roster.

What we did not expect was that despite his being on the smaller side (6' 176), Stepan is a lot stronger than expected. His goal on Friday evening was because Stepan set himself up in the crease and nobody could move him.

We expected a finesse game from Stepan but the power side of the him was totally unexpected but a very nice extra. Now Stepan and his Badgers get to enjoy their holiday break but we leave him with an early holiday present as the Prospect of the Week.


Chris Doyle (2008 5th), we are sure is very happy to go scoreless the leading scorer among Ranger prospects at 16-27-43; Doyle's Prince Edward Island Rocket broke a 6 game losing streak with a 5-2 win over the Halifax Mooseheads.

Doyle had a very quiet game with just 2 shots on goal, losing his only 3 face offs but he did have 2 "good" hits. We wonder if the Rocket will decide as to whether or not to move Doyle as part of a rebuild if they do not show more improvement over the next couple of weeks?


Finally the weekly CHL Mosail Mastercard Top Ten came out and just the Brampton Battalion (Evgeny Grachev 2008 3rd) are in the poll this week. The Battalion fell to 10th in the poll after losing a couple of games.

Medicine Hat (Tomas Kundratek 2008 3rd) fell out of the polls after just a one week stay.

(Derek Stepan courtesy of the Rangers/NHL)

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