Jesper Bratt has been lighting it up for the New Jersey Devils.
The 19-year-old from Stockholm has five points, including three goals and two assists, in just two games thus far. That puts him at the top of the rookie scoring leaderboard, which may not seem like much given that he’s just played two games and it is entirely too early to make any grandiose assessments.
But still, the winger has been impressive and has been making headway in a multitude of categories.
Bratt has one power play point, three shots on goal and is a plus-4. He’s been seeing almost three minutes of ice time on the power play and has found time on the Devils’ top line with Taylor Hall and Pavel Zacha.
The book on Bratt is strong, but he’s not exactly a shoe-in for top-tier production just yet. He’s well within the top 50 of most fantasy leagues, which is saying something, but it really is too early to tell if he’s going to keep up this level of production.
But seriously, he looks to be something special.
Bratt is the first player in franchise history to produce five points in the first two games of his NHL career. He somehow slipped to the sixth round in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, despite producing big numbers in Sweden as a 17-year-old, and the Devils took a chance.
Bratt signed a three-year deal with New Jersey to start the season and was a long shot to make the team in the minds of many scouts, but an impressive preseason showing changed things. And now that the 2017-2018 season is underway, he’s making a run for it.
Along with his scoring upside, Bratt’s ace in the hole seems to be his play on the penalty kill. He scored a shorthanded goal against the Buffalo Sabres and set up Jimmy Hayes for another shortie against the Colorado Avalanche. He’s a big part of why the Devils have scored 10 goals in two games this season, too.
Bratt may be a small player in stature, but he’s strong on the puck and has a pretty wicked shot. He’s able to get it off quickly and puts a lot of mustard on the rubber, which makes him beneficial on the power play. His speed with and without the biscuit makes him an asset on special teams, as he’s already shown.
It remains to be seen if Bratt spends the whole season with New Jersey or heads down for some conditioning, but right now he’s more than earning his keep.