Week 4 NHL Rookie Report
This week we release our updated 2013 NHL Rookie Rankings, yours to download free. While most of the top-rated freshmen from the Regular Season Draft Guide remain at the top of the list, albeit with some reshuffling, there are a number of rookies who’ve moved up the list, pushing others down. If your rookie pick isn’t working out, consult our free update.
Now, let’s take a closer look at some of the big movers and shakers in our updated rankings.
Cory Conacher (TBL – L) We’ve written a lot about Conacher over the past few weeks due to his strong performance, so we will keep this brief. He was the AHL’s second leading point getter and top goal scorer last season, and he’s currently leading the NHL rookie scoring race in 2013. As part of the high flying Tampa Bay offense, Conacher has ample opportunity to rack up points. He’s our new #1. Tarasenko, Huberdeau, Yakupov and Marcus Foligno round out the top 5.
Tomas Tatar (DET – C) Tatar isn’t new on the list, but his position at #11 certainly is. While all the talk was about Gustav Nyquist coming into the season, Tatar has regained his lustre within the Red Wings organization. Tatar looked like he was going to be Detroit’s top rookie last year, but it didn’t work out. He’s been up with the big club for 6 games so far in 2013, and he has 2 goals and 3 points in the last 3 games. At 22 years of age he’s no youngster, so his time is now.
Drew Shore (FLA – C) Shore isn’t getting a lot of media coverage playing in Florida, but he’s doing well in a limited role. He’s another US college product who produced at a rate of 1.26 points/game in Denver in 2011-12.
JT Miller (NYR – C) While Chris Kreider hasn’t worked out yet for the Rangers this season, JT Miller has stepped into the void and posted 2 goals in 5 games. He was drafted 15th overall in 2011, and last year he was a point/game producer for Plymouth of the OHL. His sudden appearance in the NHL is ahead of schedule, and he’s one of the biggest movers on our board.
Brendan Dillon (DAL – D) While Reilly Smith is the Dallas rookie we’ve been tracking, Dillon has found a home as a member of the Stars' defensive core. 3 goals and 4 points in 15 games isn’t bad for a rookie blue liner.
Brandon Saad (CHI – L) After a very quiet start to the season, Saad has notched a couple goals in the past 5 games. The Blackhawks believe he can develop into an offensive weapon, and we sense that he will continue to trend upwards through the season.