Rhett Pitlick is a player that can impact the game with his offensive flair generating high danger scoring chances. He can contribute by playing up and down the lineup, and on the special teams.
Rhett is a fairly-middling player when it comes to hockey sense. He does well to read off teammates and get to the soft areas. From time to time he will drift out losing position taking himself out of the play. He tends to run out of real estate by overhandling the puck looking for 2nd and 3rd openings. He’ll have to work on making quicker decisions with and without puck as well as his movement especially along the wall. His passing can be easily telegraphed although he does see these plays he’s just not a high-end playmaker at the moment.
Pitlick is a powerful skater that looks like he’s always in top gear at all times. He has tremendous top end speed and great acceleration. Very good four-way mobility, agility and incredible edge work. His quick change of direction is smooth contributing to his elusiveness. He generates a ton of power through his first couple of steps.
Pitlick has decent velocity behind his quick snapshot or wrister. Certainly an area he could stand to improve if he is going to be a goal scorer at the pro level. His shot accuracy certainly makes up for his below average velocity. From the point of when he receives the pass to the release point is quite smooth. He adjusts his positioning and lower-body in order to have great accuracy. He can beat goalies cleanly with his accuracy when given ample time to survey the situation, mostly on the powerplay.
His puck handling abilities are exceptional. He’s extremely shifty and agile while moving at high speeds and possessing the puck. Definitely no shortage of highly skilled one-on-one plays from him. His lower and upper body are in sync all the time which contributes to his elusiveness. Without a doubt one of his best assets is puck handling and control.
Physically Pitlick will have to work on lower-body strength and balance. He can easily be knocked off stride or along the walls. He’s a diligent hard working forward that will never back down from any battle. You may outmuscle him but in the end his determination sometimes outweighs the physical disadvantage. The transition from the High school level to the USHL is certainly nothing to blink an eye too. Now making the jump from the USHL to NCAA is a whole other ball game and he’ll learn quickly that board battles and one-on-one plays won’t be as swift as they were in the top US junior hockey league.
Pitlick will be heading to the NCAA’s Minnesota Golden Gophers for the start of the 2020-21 season. More than likely that he will be there for the full four years as he’s more of a long-term project and not expected to make the jump to the pro’s anytime soon.