Something I really wanted to do with this blog was to find time to "prospect" the prospects. I like most hockey fans, I have an interest in the young kids and like to make predictions on how their careers will turn out. I have had some hits and some misses. Finally, I will put into print, what I think and possibly make a huge ass of myself in the process. I am not going to always choose the obvious choices like Crosby (I think most knew he would do fine), but at the same time I am not too delusional to think that Jordan Smotherman is going to be a HOF player.
Matt Taormina is the first player I am going to go out on a limb on and I think for good reason. This kid was never drafted and very much reminds me of another undrafted diminutive defenseman with a knack for putting up points.....Brian Rafalski. Matt signed with the Devils last season and then proceeded to tear it up for the Lowell Devils finishing third in team scoring with 50 points. He moves the puck well and though he isn't the strongest defensively he for the most part isn't a liability either. Currently he is a minus 2 on a team that really is playing bad hockey and apart from a minor injury it doesn't appear that he will be leaving the NHL anytime soon. He is smart with the puck and passes it well on the PP. I believe when the Devils get their offensive issues worked out, he may put up about 30 points this season. I think he has much too learn much like Brian did in Europe but give him 2-3 years in the NHL and Matt will easily be a 40-50 point d-man in the NHL and for a kid who was never drafted that is quite an accomplishment.
Here is his 10-11 UD Young Gun RC. Currently I do not have any of his cards, but I am always looking, so if you have one to trade let me know and we can try and work out a deal. I see big things for Matt and maybe he could end up as good as Rafalski and should he miss that mark, the very least he will be a quality #3 or 4 defenseman for years to come.