Originally written on Hockey Fan Land  |  Last updated 11/18/14
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins delivered a brilliant effort in his rookie campaign -- even though his season was ultimately cut short by 20 games due to injury. Still, when the dust had settled, he had mustered 52 points in 62 games -- all as an 18-year old. His sophomore year wasn't nearly as productive though, as he managed just four goals an d 20 assists in 40 games.  Those 20 assists aren't bad, but the Edmonton Oilers need more from the talented youngster if they plan on finally making their way back into the playoffs next season. And they just might get it. Nugent-Hopkins is wrapping up his 2012-13 season early to get his left shoulder fixed surgically this would mean he'll be out for close to six months.  So how could this possibly be good news? As it turns out, the shoulder has been bothering Nugent-Hopkins since he was playing junior hockey for Red Deer. It's not like this is an injury that just popped up, and it makes sense that having a fully healthy shoulder next year can only help his numbers go back up. In fact, skeptics simply need to look a little further down the Edmonton bench at Taylor Hall, who was in a similar situation a year ago at this time. He got his shoulder fixed, and has managed to stay on the ice more this season while averaging over a point per contest (45 points in 41 games thus far). As an Edmonton Oilers I'm optimistic that RNH will yield similar results to Hall’s after the recovery process is complete. Nugent-Hopkins is a vital piece to the franchise having him healthy for the rest of his career will only benefit the Edmonton Oilers. One who watches all the games as I do, could easily see that there was something seriously wrong with this player all year.  Many hockey experts  believe that when Nugent-Hopkins is fixed his 100 point potential will show. We all know what  a difference players with that ability can make for a hockey team. If these are to be the results I am willing to wait for a full recovery. 
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