by PuckStopsHere on 12/10/13 at 12:11 AM ET
Last week I wrote about the AHL scoring race. Colton Sceviour of the Texas Stars (Dallas affiliate) had pulled into a tie with Travis Morin his teammate. Morin had been the early points leader, but he fell off the pace because he was called up to the NHL. Morin played three games with Dallas before being returned to the AHL.
The early season top contender to Morin's point lead had been Nikita Kucherov of the Syracuse Crunch (Tampa Bay affiliate). He has been called up to the NHL as well and remains on the Tampa Bay roster.
Another player has taken over the AHL scoring lead in Ryan Strome of the Bridgeport Sound Tigers (NY Islander affiliate). With 33 points, he has a three point lead over second place Colton Sceviour. Strome was the Islanders first round draft pick, fifth overall in 2011. He is a highly regarded young player who is seen as a strong NHL prospect. His chances of winning the AHL scoring race are low because he too is expected to be called up to the NHL soon. The Islanders have placed Pierre-Marc Bouchard on waivers, with the expectation that Strome will be called up to fill his roster spot.
Clearly the AHL scoring race has been strongly affected by NHL call-ups this season. The eventual winner will probably be a player who is not seen as a serious NHL prospect. Travis Morin is a candidate. He is 29 years old and failed in his early season try-out. There are several other players within a few points of the scoring lead who could take over the lead. The eventual winner will be good enough to dominate at the AHL level, but not be wanted for an NHL roster. He will likely be an older AHLer who has already failed at the NHL level. Ryan Strome may lead right now, but with his AHL days numbered, his lead will be short-lived.
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