I saw an interesting snippet today while perusing The Hockey News' Future Watch 09.
Stefan Legein is back in hockey now.
For those of you who aren't aware of this young man's story, Legein made headlines late in the summer, claiming he had quit hockey. The decision was so questionable that it sparked debate for a good month or so before quieting down.
Now the young right winger is back, playing for the Syracuse Crunch of the AHL, and although he's still looking for his first point through 9 games, he's gained enough attention and shown enough potential to get back to #8 of Columbus' top 10 prospects.
Another NHL prospect who recently went through this sort of ideal was current Providence Bruins center Dan Ryder.
Last season, Ryder left the Quad City Flames 6 games into the AHL season, claiming he needed to take some time to think about his commitment to the game.
Ryder didn't return for the rest of the season, and his game has struggled since returning this season. Despite 9 points in 19 games with Quad City, he was sent down to the Las Vegas Wranglers of the ECHL for 4 games, where he went scoreless, and then was traded and has gone scoreless in 4 games with Providence.
Unfortunately, this probably won't be the last time a young prospect with enormous potential questions their commitment to the game. And while it would be wrong to try and force the prospect in question back into the game, one can't help but feel somewhat more depressed at seeing someone with so much promise throw it all away because of a commitment issue.