Maine Hockey Journal

Central Scouting highs and lows for local players

One of the highest movers in the NHL Central Scouting final rankings was Scarborough native Jacob Rutt, who moved up to 149th when the rankings were released earlier this month.

Rutt, who is a University of Maine recruit in 2011, was rank 209th among North American born skaters in the mid-season rankings.

“I am pretty honored, but obviously it doesn’t have too much importance,” stated Rutt. “Obviously there’s still a lot of work to do to achieve my goals to play in the NHL.”

“(I need) to get bigger, faster, and stronger.”

“He’s getting better every month,” said New Hampshire Junior Monarchs Head Coach Sean Tremblay. “I am sure a lot of the (scouts) took note of that. Some of the guys just look at his raw potential.”

Rutt, who committed to Maine back in January, had 10 goals and 11 assists in 41 games with the New Hampshire Junior Monarchs this past season.

“I am going to be training and get on ice whenever I can,” Rutt added.

Tremblay knows if Rutt doesn’t get drafted it’s not the end the world.

“I almost like to see him not get drafted, if he’s going to be a late round kid,” Tremblay said. “I think three (or) four years at Maine, I think what he will become, he will have ten teams begging for his services.”

Billett not ranked by Central Scouting

The Eastern Junior Hockey League’s goaltender of the year was Kennebunk native Brian Billett. In his second season with the Monarchs, the Boston College recruit led the EJHL with a 1.92 goals against average and a .943 save percentage with a 21-2-3 record.

Despite being ranked the 16th goalie ranked by NHL Central Scouting in the mid-season rankings, he wasn’t ranked at season’s end.

“Central Scouting is just a guide they give to the scouts,” Tremblay said. “I think Central Scouting sometimes doesn’t make a lot of sense.”

Billett played injured this season, which might have hurt his final ranking.

“I think that scared a couple of guys at Central Scouting,” Tremblay said about Billett’s injury. “At the end of the day, when the season is on the line, Brian Billett had a 95 save percentage.”

“Not only did he play through the playoffs with a broken finger that happened in practice right before our quarter-final game, he basically walked in every rink holding a jacket over his hand to hide the cast.”

NOTES: Another player from Maine, Garnet Hathaway, moved to the 110th ranked player in the final rankings for North American skaters after being ranked 173rd at the mid-season rankings. The Kennebunk native spent this season with Phillips Andover Academy. He’s committed to Brown University for either the 2010-’11 or 2011-‘12 season.

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