New York Rangers NHL Draft target Aatu Raty

By Forever Blueshirts
Rangers draft
Aatu Raty (Finnish IHA)

The NHL Draft Lottery will take place on June 2. The Rangers will have a .5% chance of winning the first overall pick and a 1.1% chance of getting second overall. If they were to win it, the absolute mayhem that will follow should be epic.

As far as top draft picks go, Owen Power (D) is number one per NHL.com. The Rangers are likely to stay put at 16 and if that’s the case they need to draft whatever center is available to them, or attempt to trade up a few spots to get him.

New York Rangers NHL Draft target Aatu Raty

They say you draft the best player available in the first round no matter what. Well I am here to tell you there’s a what and it needs to be addressed.

The Blueshirts need to draft a center at all costs. They are simply overloaded on the wings and defense. Currently in the organization’s best prospect in the middle is Karl Henriksson and that simply will not do.

Aatu Raty is a pivot who is 6-2 and weighs 185 lbs. Depending on who’s rankings you look at, he’s anywhere from around 10 to 20. If the Rangers hold the 16th spot, Raty should be on their target list to draft.

The 18 year-old plays for Karpat in Liiga which is Finland’s top league. He is in essence a boy among men and that needs to be considered when you realize he only has six points in 35 games. What is promising is his size, speed, and skating ability. He’s fluid on his skates and also has great playmaking vision.

Being Finnish is also a benefit, especially with Kaapo Kakko already in the fold on the Rangers. In a day and age where managing the salary cap is a major factor in building a consistent winner, a steady influx of highly talented prospects is a must.

Aatu Raty scouting report

new york rangers nhl draft
Aatu Raty (Liiga)

When it comes to Raty’s scouting report, I look to none other than Steve Kournianos. Here’s an excerpt of his analysis at his website from January.

The younger brother of Arizona sniper prospect Aku Raty, Aatu is bigger, faster, and plays at a higher pace at the center-ice position while also displaying a noticeable level of determination and physicality. He has game-breaking potential, ideal size, and quickness for his frame, thus earning him the privilege of consideration for first overall. With only a few games under his belt to start the 2020-21 campaign, Raty has yet to take off in the manner we’ve seen previous top-pick candidates accomplish in the early going. Still, he was centering the top line of Karpat’s loaded under-20 squad in between stints with the A-Team and showing a well-rounded game in all three zones – both on and off the puck.

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