Tage Thompson: Why the Sabres' late-bloomer has suddenly broken out

Each prospect has his own development pace. For some, the road to the NHL is a slow ascent, for others, it consists of peaks and valleys, and for a few, the climb is steep and early. And then there's Tage Thompson, who is making an unusually late push for stardom at 24. 

Prior to this season, the 6-foot-7 forward had never scored more than 18 points at the professional level, not in the AHL or the NHL. At his age, his low numbers suggested that he would become a complementary piece in an NHL lineup, not its top scorer. 

But this season, Thompson is proving that sometimes all a player needs is an opportunity and an extended look in a prominent role to figure out his game.

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NHL Buffalo Sabres Univ. of Connecticut NHL Jeff Skinner Tage Thompson
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