Wednesday, January 18, 2012

First to 40

Ty Rattie's late third period goal against Tri-City on Monday gave him an even 40 on the season making him the first player in the Canadian Hockey League to reach that plateau this season. The St. Louis Blues second round pick has accomplished the feat in 43 games. The Portland Winterhawks have 27 games remaining in the regular season schedule so some quick math has Rattie on pace for an impressive 65 goals.

How's that compare to the other top junior leagues on the continent?

Medicine Hat's Emerson Etem is right behind Rattie with 37 goals in 39 games. The Californian missed some WHL action due to the World Junior Championship where he played for USA but didn't record a goal. Etem, a late 1st round pick by Anaheim, is on pace for a 63-goal campaign.

The OHL's leading goal scorer is Ottawa 67's forward Tyler Toffoli. He's off the WHL production having lit the lamp 34 times so far this year. The LA Kings prospect is one of just two OHL skaters to have 30 goals, Seth Griffith of the London Knights is the other.

Zach O'Brien leads all QMJHL snipers with 37 goals but he's played 45 games. Acadie-Bathurst teammate Matthew Bisonette is second in the Q with 33 goals.

By comparison, the top goal getter in the USHL is Kevin Roy (below) of the Lincoln Stars. The Canadian-born forward has 27 goals in 33 games, that's a pace for 49 should he play all 60 games for the Stars this year. Roy is eligible for the NHL draft again after not being selected in 2011.

Former Edmonton Oil King Mark Reners is tops in the AJHL with 34 goals in 42 games with the Brooks Bandits. A pair of BCHL forwards share the honor in that league with 33 goals; Paul De Jersey of the Prince George Spruce Kings and Bryce Gervais from the Penticton Vees.

Put into perspective, Ty Rattie's torrid goal production this year is quite remarkable and he's scoring at a greater pace than any junior player in North America (that I could find).

Hindsight is 20/20 but does Hockey Canada regret cutting Rattie from the World Junior team last month?

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