Before we dive in, I will say up front that I’m not personally disappointed in Stützle’s performance so far this season. For a 19-year old playing on a team that is yet to achieve a fully functional roster, the kid has really shown a lot. His 5 points, and no goals, in 11 games may on the surface seem to be cause for alarm but it doesn’t take too many viewings to see that his skillset is on display almost every night. He makes creative plays that turn into great scoring opportunities on a consistent basis. He’s not afraid to take risks, and on the rare occasion he’s made a mistake he’s been diligent in backchecking and helping to erase the errors.
I do believe that great players make the people around them better but to be fair, there’s also a limit to how much more scoring can be wrung out of his regular linemates. Any expectations that he would magically turning this team around with minimal support are unfair and unrealistic.
Many fans will resort to the fact that he’s only 19 years old as a defense of his slow start but I don’t think his age is the issue. Stützle doesn't look lost, he doesn’t look like he can’t keep up with the game, he doesn’t look physically overmatched; but he does look frustrated at times. One might be able to make a decent case that he should be simplifying his game a bit.
So with all this being said, there are great expectations for a reason: is it too early to wonder why he has yet to pot a goal? Even with all of the little things going mostly right, he was ultimately taken with the third overall selection to produce goals. At what point should that pressure start to build?
So the question is, do you think there’s a reason for concern with Stützle? Are you expecting him to be performing better or will things come when they do? Are his struggles explained by his linemates? Let’s hear in the comments below!
What is driving Stützle’s slow start?
This poll is closed
He needs better line mates
Lack of confidence
May need a stint in the AHL
He’s fine, the flood gates will open soon