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14 hours ago, Locke Lamora said:

I think folks are really going to be surprised at how superior a player/prospect Jack is as compared to Olli. Rathbone’s effortless pivoting on his skates is going to serve him so well on offense, and perhaps even more importantly, defensively.

Jack's going to be great...but so is OJ...they have different skills in some areas but they both will be getting it done better than half our D. right now...

 

Even Edler who has had a better than average season is only better at body checking and the PK....these 2 are much better at the PP and outlet passes and even OJ is a better skater up and down the ice....

OJ needs playing time and another year of working on getting his hips loosened  up after those surgeries...his pivots are the only thing holding him back.

 

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2 hours ago, Rollieo Del Fuego said:

Jack's going to be great...but so is OJ...they have different skills in some areas but they both will be getting it done better than half our D. right now...

 

Even Edler who has had a better than average season is only better at body checking and the PK....these 2 are much better at the PP and outlet passes and even OJ is a better skater up and down the ice....

OJ needs playing time and another year of working on getting his hips loosened  up after those surgeries...his pivots are the only thing holding him back.

 

And OJ just needs to keep on staying healthy.  I'm so happy that he's gone two years now without any major injuries, after spending four years in and out of surgeries.  

 

I'm going to side with the professionals here when it comes to his development, and if they are holding him out for fitness reasons then so be it.  He still gets to practice with all the NHL guys day in and day out. 

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20 minutes ago, VancouverHabitant said:

And OJ just needs to keep on staying healthy.  I'm so happy that he's gone two years now without any major injuries, after spending four years in and out of surgeries.  

 

I'm going to side with the professionals here when it comes to his development, and if they are holding him out for fitness reasons then so be it.  He still gets to practice with all the NHL guys day in and day out. 

I think the plan might have been to showcase Benn and trade him tomorrow...it might still work out that way...but all this Covidiosy is going to make it difficult.

 

When OJ was in he played better than any D. we have whose initials aren't QH...he was mistake free ( made one error in all that I noted ) ...he still can't pivot to well but another year of working on it should get him to league average at that skill as well.

 

We are going to have a really strong D. by the end of next season and moving forward...!

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20 hours ago, stawns said:

what's the point of denigrating one player to boost another.  OJ is clearly going to be a very good dman, at the least, and it looks like JR will be as well.  Shouldn't we be happy to have them both instead of running one of them down?

Didn’t necessarily mean to denigrate OJ. Not as high on him as some though not suggesting he’s approaching bust status like Thomas Drance does....I think he will be a serviceable d-man, perhaps even beyond solid. I just happen to think that Rathbone could be spectacular. Highlights of Jack in just his first 6 games in Utica reveals a skill set that is special.  And having a D-man with a BOMB shot from the point is something we have been missing for a long time. We all love Quinn but his shot is still a muffin.

 

My main point in bring Olli into the discussion is that, in my opinion, these two prospects are not on the same level as I’ve seen many suggest. But of course I’ll be happy if they both burn brightly on our back end for the next decade.

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On 4/9/2021 at 4:51 PM, SID.IS.SID.ME.IS.ME said:

He’s so smooth and has exceptional vision and passing accuracy.

 

I remember one of his Prep School games, he dropped below his own goal line, under pressure from two forecheckers, ducked around the net, and lobbed a perfect pass to hit a teammate in stride at the other blue line, for a breakaway and goal. It was really something.
 

He’s done similar things at all levels, but that Prep School game was when my eyes really opened to just how good Jack could be one day. 

Yeah, that was a great play, but as I recall he made two great passes like that in that game - behind the end line, near the corner on the right side of his own net to a winger streaking up the left side, and hit him on the stack at the opponent’s blue line. 

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16 minutes ago, Junkyard Dog said:

Is Rathbone playing in all situations? PK/PP??

Number one D on PP, and first line even strength. Not so much on PK. Cull appears to be developing Rathbone like he did Rafferty. Rafferty, by the way, had numbers like Rathbone last season till Brogan got hurt, At that time he was more than a point per game and had a gaudy +/-. Toward the end of that shortened season, Rafferty was logging big minutes on both special teams, closing out periods, closing out games, and finished at +17, bested only by his defensive partner, Brisebois at +21. 
 

There was wild speculation on this site that Rafferty couldn’t defend, yet an analyst that follows Utica noted that he hadn’t seen Rafferty get beat all last season. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Rafferty killing penalties by season end - probably at first when we are short handed and losing by two or more near the end of a game - that was how Cull introduced Rafferty to the PK. They were already losing, were short handed and needed a couple of goals. The main caveat to that however, is that Rafferty is a bigger guy than Rathbone at 6’2 200, to Athbone’s 5’11 190.

 

Another guy to watch, and who was playing very well just before the Covid lay-off was Woo, looks like he may need another game to get hi# game back after the layoff.

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33 minutes ago, Ray_Cathode said:

Number one D on PP, and first line even strength. Not so much on PK. Cull appears to be developing Rathbone like he did Rafferty. Rafferty, by the way, had numbers like Rathbone last season till Brogan got hurt, At that time he was more than a point per game and had a gaudy +/-. Toward the end of that shortened season, Rafferty was logging big minutes on both special teams, closing out periods, closing out games, and finished at +17, bested only by his defensive partner, Brisebois at +21. 
 

There was wild speculation on this site that Rafferty couldn’t defend, yet an analyst that follows Utica noted that he hadn’t seen Rafferty get beat all last season. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Rafferty killing penalties by season end - probably at first when we are short handed and losing by two or more near the end of a game - that was how Cull introduced Rafferty to the PK. They were already losing, were short handed and needed a couple of goals. The main caveat to that however, is that Rafferty is a bigger guy than Rathbone at 6’2 200, to Athbone’s 5’11 190.

 

Another guy to watch, and who was playing very well just before the Covid lay-off was Woo, looks like he may need another game to get hi# game back after the layoff.

OJ was known for his PK abilities. So it’s nice to see that he’ll probably be a role player for us. Maybe Rafferty gets another chance before the end of the year to prove his mettle. 

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5 minutes ago, Junkyard Dog said:

OJ was known for his PK abilities. So it’s nice to see that he’ll probably be a role player for us. Maybe Rafferty gets another chance before the end of the year to prove his mettle. 

In Utica, OJ got lots of PP time in his first year, and was effective, not as good as Rafferty, but good non the less and a few years younger. His D play in his first year sucked and sucked in his second till they got him healed up physically. He is not smooth at making that pivot to the left, but has improved dramatically in that regard, and his work on the PK was a positive. Always a strong part of his game is his outlet pass.

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Just now, Ray_Cathode said:

In Utica, OJ got lots of PP time in his first year, and was effective, not as good as Rafferty, but good non the less and a few years younger. His D play in his first year sucked and sucked in his second till they got him healed up physically. He is not smooth at making that pivot to the left, but has improved dramatically in that regard, and his work on the PK was a positive. Always a strong part of his game is his outlet pass.

Heard OJ was a proficient shot blocker last year as well. 
 

I am hoping we was able to hit the gym/ice get faster with all this time off. The good qualities he brings will be amplified to a greater degree once he is quicker. 

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