Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Post World Junior Thoughts on Sam Reinhart


Before the World Junior tournament kicked off way back in 2013 I promised some folks I would let them know my thoughts on Sam Reinhart once the tournament was finished and I never got around to doing so. Since the Buffalo Sabres could very well be drafting Mr. Reinhart if they get the chance to pick first overall, I figured the fine readers here at SabreNoise might be interested in this as well.

Going into the tournament I wasn’t to high on Reinhart and heading out of the tournament my opinion didn’t really change much on the potential first overall pick and after the tournament he fell to 4th on the Central Scouting list just behind Aaron Ekblad.

While Reinhart had a decent tournament on a line with Connor McDavid he wasn’t a game changer at all during this tournament.

Reinhart finished the 7 game tournament with 2 goals and 5 points but left Sweden empty handed along with the rest of his teammates. McDavid is the type of player who can make the players on his line better, a Sidney Crosby for lack of a better comparison, sure he’s just 17- was 16 throughout the tournament- he still has that skill and talent and Reinhart could have been a lot better.

Now it’s hard to criticize just one player on a team full of guys who didn’t show up, but when you have a chance to win gold for your country, be drafted first overall and are playing with McDavid you have to have a better showing than Sam Reinhart did.

Reinhart wasn’t exactly bad throughout the tournament, he had a decent tournament considering how poorly Team Canada played but he didn’t stand out in any way. He just fit in with the rest of his teammates who left their effort back with their junior teams, he did nothing to try and power Canada forward and for lack of a better term he lacked intensity. There was no extra effort to help Canada get into the gold medal game and was in no way or shape a game changer which is what the Buffalo Sabres need going forward.

The Sabres need a guy who is going to score, go the extra mile and never give up- much like a Zemgus Girgensons with more scoring ability. In the World Juniors Sam Reinhart was not that. He may be dominating in the WHL but against other top notch prospects from the OHL, QMJHL and Russia, Reinhart just looked average. Even his elite play making ability seemed to vanish

Both Reinhart and Ekblad- who was also nothing special throughout the World Juniors will have a chance to redeem themselves as they captain both teams for the CHL top prospects game tonight.

On a team that seemed to be out of sync and a mess from the first game it’s tough to blame Sam Reinhart for just “fitting in.” His lack of intensity and extra effort leaves something to be desired as Canada and Reinhart left the World Juniors empty handed once again.

What did you think of Sam Reinharts performance during the World Juniors? Did he impress you or leave you wanting more?

Tags: Buffalo Sabres Draft Sam Reinhart

  • Melissa Kania

    Just a note, McDavid isn’t 16 – he’s 17.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Thanls for pointing that out- forgot he has an early birthday!

      • wolfdoctor

        He turned 17 two days ago.

        • Caitlin Campbell

          yup I didn’t realize when his birthday was

  • wolfdoctor

    Sam Bennett might be the better choice. His ppg rate is higher than Reinhart’s and he is doing it at a younger age (7 1/2 months younger).

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Sam Bennett is a player I haven’t put much stock into but will definitely have to look into now that I’ve seen the scouting ranks- but I thought I heard he is injured…

      • wolfdoctor

        Bennett had put up 20 points in his last 9 games, the last game on January 11th in which he suffered a groin injury.

        • Caitlin Campbell

          ah thank you- seems like a decent little player will have watch him closer

          • wolfdoctor

            Ha ha. I guess 6 feet, 181 pounds is considered little in today’s game. Reinhart is 6 feet 1 inch, 183 pounds. Dal Colle is 6 feet 2 inches, 172 pounds. Draisaitl is 6 feet 1 inch, 209 pounds. These are according to Elite Prospects.

  • Vic Soga

    Reinhart started with McDavid but ended up with Laughton and Horvat. Hard to judge as he was playing right wing. We will see tonight but he does play small.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Playing small is a big worry for me if I’m the Sabres we don’t need small forward who get beat up all we need bigger forwards who can score and dominate

  • Dano

    Sam Reinhart ..

    Reinharts stock bottomed out and hes not in the top 3 rankings ( for now ) from the Jan 7th mid-term Central Scouting rankings.

    I’d rather Bennet BUT Bennet isnt a natural centerman, something Buffalo desperately needs.

    EkBlad was ‘ ok ‘. At times I thought it was Mike Weber wearing the kids sweater.. I can see why his stock went down a bit.

    Something I saw in McDavid. The kid has talent! MASSIVE amounts of it! Passing the puck to himself off the back of the net then trying to center it.. Pretty fancy! Hes quick! He has moves! BUT! He doesnt keep his head up! He might be the next version of Lindros with all the concussions. Time will tell.

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Of the Centre’s available I’d probably go after Dal Colle kid seems to know himself and his game fairly well and he could turn into another Girgensons type.
      Well hopefully McDavid will learn how to keep his head up like Crosby had to with his concussions; McDavid has buttloads of talent would be a shame to see it go to waste

      • wolfdoctor

        Dal Colle has tailed off since his hot start. It should be interesting who the Sabres end up drafting.

        • Caitlin Campbell

          I’m actually very excited to see what direction the Sabres go in- can’t wait till the draft

          • wolfdoctor

            Well, the draft is something we have to look forward to.

  • Joe

    The lack of intensity for team canada can be blamed on coaching much like buffalo was at the beginning of the season. That being said itd be hard to judge a players talents if they arent motivated to play and if reinhart ended up at wing isnt he a natural centerman? That can really throw a player off their game.

    Side note meone know where we can watch that game tomight?

    • Caitlin Campbell

      Prospect game I believe will be featured on sports net

      • Joe

        Thank u

  • jimbobv2

    How many draft eligible players are difference makers at the WJCs?

    The WJCs are rarely a place where a draft eligible player jumps out at you. Sure, guys like Crosby can do that and Reinhart isn’t that kind of prospect. But, Reinhart probably was the best draft eligible forward at the tournament.

    Just as Ekblad was likely the best draft eligible defenseman at the tournament.

    Bennett & Dal Colle didn’t even make Team Canada….

    • Caitlin Campbell

      That’s a fair point but I was still expecting more out of Reinhart just my opinion I still remember the Team Canada days of Eberle and Tavares and Hodgson and Toews- now those guys were difference makers

      • jimbobv2

        Hodgson & Eberle never played in a WJC before they were drafted.

        Tavares didn’t carry the mail in 2008 in his pre-draft WJCs.

        Toews didn’t carry Canada in 2006.

        Again, a player being a difference maker at the WJCs prior to being drafted is extremely rare and expecting Reinhart to be that good was unreasonable, IMO.

        And it’s not like guys like Bennett or Del Colle were going to do more if they had gotten their shot.

  • Justin Tosczak

    Although not his best hockey- he played a decent tournament… I think your praise is much to high on McDavid, as he was the one causing the most problems on team Canada… Not saying he isn’t going to be an elite, just that he was the plug on that line during the tournament..