Traverse City, Michigan will be the first place Ty Rattie puts on a Blues jersey in a real game situation.
Blues Executive Vice President and General Manager Doug Armstrong announced Friday that the Blues will be participating in the 2011 NHL Prospects Tournament starting September 10 in Traverse City. The tournament will run for four days and features two divisions that include four clubs each. The Blues will be playing in the Gretzky Division along with the Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars and New York Rangers. The other division, named affectionately after Detroit Red Wings’ great Gordie Howe, will have the Buffalo Sabres, Columbus Blue Jackets, Minnesota Wild and, of course, the Detroit Red Wings.
The tournament is based off round-robin divisional play. Each team will face their division foes three times and the best team from each division will play in the Championship Game on September 14.
Along with announcing the schedule, Armstrong also announced the roster for the tournament. Five players selected in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft will be members of the Blues squad. The Blues first selection, Ty Rattie, will likely have all eyes on him.
Selected in the 2nd round, 32nd overall by the Blues, Rattie was rated 17th among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting prior to the draft. Rattie, 6’0” 167 lbs, was the fourth-leading scorer on the Portland Winterhawks of the WHL last season, scoring 79 points in 67 games played. He also added some punch in the playoffs, scoring nine goals and 13 assists in 21 games played. Rattie and the Winterhawks made it to the WHL Finals but lost to the Kootenay Ice in five games.
Rattie’s scouting profile states that the 18-year old possesses a very hard shot with the ability to release it quickly. His biggest criticism is that he plays on the perimeter more than he should, but has shown improvement in that aspect.
The real talent analysis will come in Traverse City when pitted against some of the best young players in the world.
A few other mentionable notes about the 2011 St. Louis Blues Traverse City roster:
- - Aside from Rattie, four of the remaining seven 2011 draft selections will be on the roster. These include defenseman Joel Edmundson (2nd round, 46th overall), goaltender Jordan Binnington (3rd round, 88th overall), forward Yannick Veilleux (4th round, 102nd overall) and forward Ryan Tesink (6th round, 162nd overall).
- - Jay Barriball (F), Stefan Della Rovere (F), Philip McRae (F) and Jake Allen (G) were all members of the Blues or Peoria Rivermen of the AHL last season and will be counted on to be key components in Traverse City. Their experience in the higher leagues will only be a valuable asset to their teammates.
- - Brock Beukeboom, the 19-year old defenseman acquired from Tampa Bay last season in exchange for Eric Brewer, will be seeing his first action in a Blues jersey. Beukeboom was a member of the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL last season, recording 8 points and 54 penalty minutes in 44 games.
- - The oldest member of the Traverse City roster is forward Jay Barriball. He is currently 24 years, 2 months and 25 days old. Barriball split time last season with the University of Minnesota and the Peoria Rivermen.
The full roster and tournament schedule can be seen at stlouisblues.com/traversecity.