On Tuesday, the New York Islanders officially assigned prospect Aaty Räty to the AHL. And fans are pumped. As they should be.
In 41 games with Jukurit of the Finnish Liiga. Räty put up 40 points. Combined with the single point he scored in six games with Kärpät, Räty's 41 points on the year ranked him 14th in the league. Remember, the Finnish Liiga is a pro league. Räty, as a 19-year-old was playing against men, and was one of the league's top players.
The young center went from an extra with Kärpät to a top-line player with Jukurit. To think he went 52nd overall is wild.
New York Islanders assign Aatu Räty to the AHL
In just a single season in the prospect pool, Räty vaulted himself to the very top of the list. His 40-point season translated roughly to a 32-point season in the NHL.
Usually, with prospects coming over from Europe, there's a concern about how quickly they'll adapt to the North American game. That's not a concern with Räty.
The 2021 second-rounder already plays a North American game. Under the coaching of Olli Jokinen (Jukurit head coach), Räty learned not only how to take a faceoff, but how to control the middle of the ice, be tough along the boards, and how to play a stop-and-go game.
That doesn't mean Räty is ready to go with nothing to work on. He's still young and has to make a few modifications to his game (and work on his skating a bit), but he's already got a huge leg up on most prospects coming over from Europe.
That's why fans are pumped. Räty comes to North America with a ton of promise. Not to be a franchise-altering player, but to potentially be an impact player at the NHL level sooner rather than later.
Bridgeport play on Friday and Saturday, Their final regular-season games in 2021-22.