The Airdrie, AB native aims to establish himself as a bonafide top-six player in the NHL with opportunity aplenty at right wing with the Oilers
Ahead of the 2018-19 season, EdmontonOilers.com is taking a look back at the '17-18 individual performances of the Oilers in our series 'Roster Redux'
EDMONTON, AB - Ty Rattie is training this offseason with opportunity as a motivator in the build-up to what could be a career year.
The 25-year-old winger began the 2017-18 season in the AHL with the Bakersfield Condors where he amassed 43 points (21G, 22A) in 53 games before ending the year on Connor McDavid's right wing, recording nine points in 14 games.
Not a bad place to be, right?
A prolific scorer with the Portland Winterhawks in the WHL, the Airdrie, AB native aims to establish himself as a mainstay in the NHL after re-signing with the Oilers in April on a one-year deal.
"We wanted to have a look at him because we thought at one point he would get into our lineup, and he did," Oilers President of Hockey Operations and GM Peter Chiarelli said of the forward during his end-of-season media availability. "He's a very cerebral player and he moves the puck well."
Speed, combined with a willingness to shoot the puck, allowed Rattie to slot in comfortably alongside McDavid and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins near the end of the season.
There was instant chemistry.
"I think he fit in well, and also with Nugent-Hopkins being up there you have three very cerebral players that recognize the need to move the puck quickly," Chiarelli added.
But with serviceable speed and skill at the NHL level came a defensive game expected of a player with less than 50 NHL games under his belt. Extra reps in the AHL with Bakersfield allowed Rattie extra time to iron out issues in his own zone before making the jump.
"He had a pretty good year in Bakersfield. It was a one-dimensional year," Chiarelli added. "We delayed bringing him up as his defensive game for the longest time in Bakersfield struggled."
Rattie's offensive potential was on display against the eventual Western Conference champion Vegas Golden Knights on April 5 with a standout goal and assist performance, including the game-winning tally.
Upside and opportunity were big factors in the NHL Network naming Rattie and fellow Oilers right wing Jesse Puljujarvi in the top-10 of the NHL's 2018-19 breakout players.
"Obviously you want to contribute, especially on that line with those guys you want to play up to their speed and not hold them back," Rattie said in his post-game interview. "You have to shoot the puck and be a shooter on that line."