Thursday, August 21, 2008

Prospect Watch 2008: Erik "Who Are You?" Reitz

NHL.com sez:

Erik Reitz -- He spent the entire 2007-08 season in Houston before joining the Wild for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The Wild were so thrilled with Reitz's play that they rewarded their sixth-round pick from 2000 -- who just finished his sixth campaign in Houston -- with a one-way contract for next season. Reitz, who's 6-1 and 215 pounds, had 34 points and 99 penalty minutes in 49 games for the Aeros.

"He was the best defenseman on the ice in the games I saw. He finished the year with us in the playoffs," Thompson said. "We intend for him to be one of our defenseman this season. He has a good, solid two-way game. He's a feisty guy. He can shoot from the point. He's physical. He's a good player."
Ms. Conduct sez:
You don't think "thrilled" might be a bit of an overstatement? Then again, with the skanky level of player loyalty (to everyone but Gabby) the team has demonstrated this summer, the fact that he got a contract at all says they were at least "really really happy." Well, that and he came really cheap.

Anyway, Reitzy. Get this: I've never been to an Aeros game where Reitz wasn't on the roster. That's a long ass time to be in the AHL and not get a cuppa, my friend. But he did finally get his shot and he did play solid in his few minutes on the ice. I'm glad he was rewarded for his patient time here in Houston and I hope he knocks 'em dead in Minny.

But do I think he will for sure? I dunno. He spent a lot of last season battling injuries because he does play a pretty physical game. Fortunately, they signed him early in the off-season so he's hopefully been able to rest easy and recover from last season and train for next season appropriately.

Of course, the other thing is that I don't even really consider him a prospect any more. He's not OLD but he's not one of the "yutes" anymore either. I think he's either going to be good enough or he's not and we'll know it pretty quickly. The frosted side of me thinks he's going to rise to the occasion. The wheat side of me says thinks he may not be fast or durable enough. As I often say, the truth is probably going to be somewhere in the middle.

Bottom line: He's a good hockey player who's hard to intimidate, doesn't take any crap off anybody, and, while he's not a "tough guy," he'll drop the mitts without a whole lot of hesitation. He just needs to bring HIS GAME to the NHL and make the most of this chance.

3 comments:

Life_As_A_Redhead  August 21, 2008 at 10:55 AM  

I for one am wishing him luck. Cuz I really like the guy.

elise  August 21, 2008 at 2:43 PM  

Possible translation:
Thrilled = Two of our guys are out (Schultz and Foster), you have energy unlike the older guys, and fans don't hate you as much as they hate Skoula

But good for him...I've been wondering for awhile when he would make it up here.

Ms. Conduct  August 21, 2008 at 4:21 PM  

Good point, Elise.

I wish him all kinds of well. He's a really nice guy and my kind of hockey player (gritty!).

Poor Skoula...

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