Petry Gaining Traction

This is Jeff Petry. The young defender is enjoying a very nice start to this season at Michigan State. His boxcars (11gp, 1-9-10 +3) are excellent and a brief glance under the hood shows good things (reading game reports reveals he seems to be playing against the tougher opponents) and average things (that +3 comes on a team that is +11 right now at even strength).

Either way, Petry is a player who will show better in this winter’s top 20 (he was #7 last December but slipped all the way to #19 in the June ranking) and things are looking up. He won’t be the #1 defender on the list though, as nagging concerns about foot speed and coverage gaps remain.

While it is important to remember with these kids that their powerplay totals (especially the blue) won’t exist for several years once they’re in the NHL (if ever), Petry is building a nice resume in this department.

Petry’s powerplay numbers (0-5-5) and even strength numbers (1-4-5) are about equal at this point in time and those kind of PP totals 11 games into the season are very impressive. When Tom Gilbert was at the same point in his college career (third year, junior season) he went 5-5-10 on the powerplay and 3-4-7 at EVs.

Jeff Petry turns 22 in December, long in the tooth for a college player and not terribly far from free agency (he’ll have to sign a standard entry level college contract). I’m not certain of how much value their is in keeping him in college for another season. Whatever his negatives there appears to be enough positive for the Oilers to get things started as soon as possible.

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