Jun 30, 2013; Newark, NJ, USA; Kerby Rychel poses for a photo with team officials after being introduced as the number nineteen overall pick to the Columbus Blue Jackets during the 2013 NHL Draft at the Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

OHL Champions: Columbus Blue Jackets' Rychel Leads the Way

32 points in 20 games.  That was the contribution of Columbus Blue Jackets draft pick Kerby Rychel as he led the Guelph Storm through the OHL Playoffs, and eventually on to win the Robertson Cup as the OHL Champions. He scored two goals late in game five of the series, leading the Storm to win the Cup.

Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Rychel’s outstanding numbers  were not only a Playoff anomaly, however. He played 27 games with the Windsor Spitfires this season and registered 39 points there before being traded to the Guelph Storm in December. He played 31 games with the Storm, and put up an outstanding 51 points there. That brings his regular season numbers to 90 points in only 58 games this season. Add to that his numbers in the OHL Playoffs, and he totaled 122 points in 72 games this season. Some outstanding numbers, to put it lightly.

Rychel’s +/- numbers were off the charts, too. With Windsor this season he was +13, and he improved on that with Guelph, being +28 with them, bringing his season total to +41. That puts him second on the Storm’s roster for +/-, trailing only Scott Kosmachuk who was +52 in the regular season. Rychel was second in point this season as well, with 90 in the regular season, behind Kosmachuk’s 101.

Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Where he lead the team, however, was in the 2014 Robertson Cup Playoffs. In the post-season this year, Rychel was the Storm’s leading point-scorer with  32 and had the most assists on the team with 21. In the Playoffs he averaged 1.6 points per game and was +20. Add to that the fact that the Guelph Storm had not won the Robertson Cup in 10 years, and you have one amazing performance from the 19-year-old.

The Blue Jackets will need to keep an eye on Rychel’s development, because it looks like he is growing into quite the player. Hopefully he will continue to be outstanding in the OHL, and be ready for the NHL soon enough. I for one can’t wait to see him and all the other prospects at development camp this year. Jackets fans certainly have a bright future to look forward to.

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