NHL Predictions: How Will Last Year's Top Rookies Fare in 2011-12?

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NHL Predictions: How Will Last Year's Top Rookies Fare in 2011-12?
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The sophomore slump is one of the most predictable phenomenons in the NHL. Players explode onto the scene as a rookie by surpassing even the most wild expectations, only to take a bit of a step back the following year.

There are several possible explanations for this.

Perhaps their respective coaches note the outstanding play and decide to heap on the responsibilities during the second season.

Maybe defenders become more privy to the skaters as offensive threats and take their presence on the ice much more seriously.

Scouting reports circulate around the league by this time, and weaknesses are noted and exploited.

Whatever the reason, the league is littered with examples.

Consider Steve Mason in Columbus, who is still making a living because of the talent and promise he showed two seasons ago. Tyler Myers experienced a bit of a slide during his second year as a pro—the list goes on.

So what can we expect from the top 10 scoring rookies from the 2010-2011 season this year? Will this crop of sophomores face recession, or break the mold as a whole?

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