Canucks News: D Troy Stecher Standing Tall in Rookie Season

Vancouver Canucks rookie defenceman Troy Stecher is one of a few bright spots this season.

With everyone healthy at the beginning of the 2016-17 season, it wasn’t surprising to see Troy Stecher sent down to the AHL Utica Comets. But, thanks to the Canucks’ regular injury luck, Stecher quickly became a regular on the Vancouver Canucks‘ blue line. The rookie even formed the top pairing with veteran Alex Edler, and saw plenty of power-play time.

With more than half of the season over, it seems fair to say that Stecher has lived up to the task.

On a team that struggles to score, Stecher is currently the highest-scoring defenceman with two goals and 16 points in 47 games. And this is just the beginning.

Standing Tall

Jeff Paterson (The Province) — Not a stretch to say Canucks’ rookie Troy Stecher is standing tall

Troy Stecher is holding his own in one of the best National Hockey League rookie classes in recent memory.

While the 22-year-old Richmond native isn’t going to steal any Calder Trophy votes from Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner, Patrik Laineor Matthew Tkachuk as rookie of the year, his point production is impressive when compared to his peer group — first-year NHL defencemen.

It is hard to deny that Stecher’s size hurts his defensive game. He struggles in board battles and can’t do much to move a guy like Milan Lucic when he is planted in front of the net. Plus, Stecher has had some general defensive struggles every once in a while, which is totally normal for a first-year D-man.

But, what Stecher has been doing offensively is great, and exactly what the Canucks need. An extremely agile blue-liner who can walk the line, distribute passes and get shots through to the net is something every NHL team covets. And over the next years, Stecher should only get better.

Defensively, the 22-year-old has looked promising in his own way. Due to the aforementioned physical deficiencies, Stecher needs to find other ways to succeed, and that is exactly what he is doing.

Stecher uses his speed and awareness to interrupt opposing attacks before they can really get started.

Despite that, the Canucks still spend a ton of time in the defensive zone where Stecher’s weaknesses get exposed frequently. But, he is showing all the tools to be successful.

And there is no doubt that Stecher will be an NHL regular for many years.

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