Sam Reinhart was the second overall pick in the 2014 NHL Draft. He was the first big piece the Sabres added in their rebuilding process. Just a year ago the 21-year old was considered one of the promising young core pieces moving into the future.

Now, a year later, he’s being talked about as an under-achieving top draft pick who can be used as a trade piece to acquire a defenseman. When you look through the numbers a few misconceptions appear to be feeding the idea of Reinhart being a replaceable player.

Draft Year

The 2014 NHL Draft was considered be a weaker class. Especially when you compare that to what followed in 2015 and 2016. Nonetheless as a second overall pick in a weak class or not, that label follows you throughout your career.

In Reinhart’s case, three years removed he’s being labelled as a disappointment by some for not being one of the better players in the draft class. While he may not be the second best player in his draft year. Reinhart is still one of the top players selected in terms of production.

He’s fifth in total points scored behind Leon Draisaitl, David Pastrnak, Nikolaj Ehlers and Aaron Ekblad. Reinhart has also played fewer games than those four players, except for Ehlers. He also ranks fifth in assists with 50 and tied for third in goals with 40. Reinhart’s .54 points per game also have him tied for sixth among all players in the 2014 class.

Down Season?

In today’s age, where the highlight reel plays are all over the internet on a daily basis. The lack of those types of plays in Reinhart’s game hurt him in the eyes of some. He’ll have a special play here or there throughout the season, but won’t make fans jump out of their seats on a consistent basis. Then you get to the end of the year and look at the numbers. Reinhart will quietly have amassed between 40 to 50 points.