LOVELAND – It was absolutely a “goal-scorer’s goal”, a brilliant top-shelf-cookies snipe off the rush just as the second-period clock was about to hit all zeroes. Sampo Ranta didn’t even have a very big celly afterward either, acting like he’d been there too many times for that. Except, this was Ranta’s first goal of this season as a professional hockey player with two teams, spanning 16 games.
Ranta would have been excused for acting like a man just let out of a steam pit with a life insurance salesman trying to sell him a whole or term policy. But the kid from Finland, who played 10 games for the Colorado Avalanche this season before being sent to the Eagles, is still keeping his cool. Despite the demotion from the Avs, where he failed to score a goal or point in the 10 games, Ranta is ahead of the curve in his development to the pro game. It’s easy to forget he’s only been playing pro hockey for less than a year, after three years as a Minnesota Golden Gopher.