3 – Scott Ratzlaff channeling his inner-Devon Levi
When the Sabres drafted Scott Ratzlaff, I immediately knew that there would be size comparisons to Devon Levi. Ratzlaff is just 6’0 tall, so don’t expect those comparisons to end any time soon unless he experiences a growth spurt.
Ratzlaff was also outstanding for the Seattle Thunderbirds in 2022-23, and if he takes the next step, he could generate something close to Levi-like numbers this season. Last year while in a timeshare, Ratzlaff had a GAA of just 2.15 to go along with five shutouts. His 0.918 save percentage is also something that jumped out, and it was a far cry from the 0.904 he accrued in 2021-22.
This isn’t to say Ratzlaff will go in there and look like a Devon Levi clone. But he already has identical traits to the Buffalo Sabres goaltender, like overall quickness, per his Elite Prospects profile.
Overall, we want to see a successful tripleheader, but if Matt Savoie and Zach Benson give us a strong preview, along with a new-look Jiri Kulich outmuscling opponents, then this will be a fun few days. And if Ratzlaff puts on a show in the crease, then he could give Sabres fans everywhere even more reason to keep tabs on the WHL this year.
(Statistics provided by Elite Prospects)