Not every player has a quick rise to the NHL. Actually for most it’s quite a bumpy road. But despite everything Blues forward Ty Rattie has gone through, his chance to shine is now. To understand the full journey Rattie has taken you have to go back to his junior days.
The first signs of “hype” began in the 2009-10 season, where at the time Rattie was playing for the Portland WinterHawks of the WHL.
Opening his time with the Winterhawks in 61 games, Rattie put up 37 points. In the postseason that year, 2009-10 he did quiet down a bit but this was just the beginning of his dominance. The following year, Rattie’s production went up to 79 points in 67 regular season games. This level of play even reached another peak with back to back 100+ point seasons in the WHL. The Calgary native was a true sniper at the junior level, winning multiple awards in various seasons including leading the league in most goals in the postseason (2011-12) along with being the overall points and goals leader in the playoffs the following year in 2012-13.
The second round pick in the 2011 NHL Draft made the jump to the AHL after those two incredibly strong seasons.
Ty Rattie Has A True Chance To Shine
Sure there are prospects every season that find ways to have high point totals in junior and eventually turn into “busts.” This wasn’t the case for Rattie as there was a ton of excitement with the St. Louis Blues were a team on the rise. Vladimir Tarasenko made the move from the KHL to the NHL and despite a shortened season in 2012, his stardom was already showing. Rattie looked to be a lock for a top-six forward spot with Tarasenko and company.
His first season in the AHL played out as if Rattie didn’t realize there was a transition from junior to pro. In 72 regular season games Rattie racked up 48 points. Out of the 48 points, 31 of them came by the way of goals. He went on being the leading goal scorer that season for rookies in the AHL.
AHL Success Hasn’t Translated to the NHL…. YET
So at this point you may be wondering, “why isn’t Rattie a full time Blue?” The answer to that question is complicated. For the past three years Rattie has been a sniper at the American league level. In that exact same time frame, he’s played just 25 games for the Blues. Yes that’s correct, the once highly hyped right winger has only played 25 NHL games.
For Blues fans and writers who cover the team the Rattie puzzle has been a curious one. Could it be that he came just a little too soon? During his breakout years half the league was trying to become the next incarnation of the Los Angeles Kings. But now the league gives plenty of opportunities to smaller players like Tyler Johnson, so that isn’t the case. Does he just not fit the Ken Hitchcock system for the Blues? This one could be somewhat valid as Hitchcock often does ride players that fit into certain roles. At the same time, when things aren’t working Hitchcock hasn’t been afraid to shake things up in the past.
Blues Make a Comittment to Rattie
Maybe there isn’t one sole reason why things haven’t panned out just yet for Rattie. The term bust can’t even be used as his body of work at the NHL level is so brief. But this season there’s a new wrinkle to the Rattie story. Blues management gave him a one year/one way deal for $650,000.
More important than the money is the one way commitment. It shows that the patience Rattie has shown over the years has finally paid off. The opportunity to show he is ready for the big stage has arrived. Along with the fact that the Blues’ head coach for next season is also behind the bench as an assistant, Mike Yeo. A new coach means new system, and everyone will start with a clean slate. Many can complain that Rattie has never been given a fair shake and that’s true, he really hasn’t. It really did look at one point as if Rattie would never wear the Blue note on a consistent basis. That still may be the case but it won’t fall on the blame of management.
Destiny is now finally in his hands.