The Dallas Stars went big with Jamieson Oleksiak on Friday night in round one and stay big in round two with 6-foot-3, 212 lb Brett Ritchie of the Ontario Hockey League.
Ritchie is only 17 years old and like Oleksiak, probably still growing. He's a large right shot and at best seems to project into what Dallas Stars fans will most readily recognize as a James Neal type player: A big, physical power forward with size and skill to match. What's not to like about that?
#20 / Right Wing / Sarnia Sting
July 1, 1993
|2010 - Sarnia Sting
21 goals in 49 games might not be a lot but Ritchie's season was shortened and hampered both by a year long bout with mononucleosis that caused him to miss a month and sapped his energy throughout the season. He received considerable criticism for lack of effort before it became apparent that he was ill.
Scouts want him to use his size more to his advantage around the net and also in the hitting department, but at only seventeen years of age he has plenty of time to do that. He has been overshadowed with the Sarnia Sting by Nail Yakupov who is expected to go very high in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, and it's a name we'll hear a lot as we continue to track the progress of Mr. Ritchie with the Sting, where he will no doubt return next year.
Having played in juniors before he was drafted, Ritchie will be required to play in at least four seasons total with the Sting before being able to transfer to the AHL, so he is a few years away for sure from Cedar Park. He's only 17, so he has some time.
Please join us in welcoming burgeoning power forward Brett Ritchie to the Dallas Stars organization.