There are few prospects more polarizing in the NHL than Vancouver’s Jake Virtanen.

Whatever your opinion, what’ll matter to Virtanen is that of his coach. And Travis Green sounds pretty confident that Virtanen can still grow into a solid NHL player.

“Some people think being sent down to the AHL is a big demotion but I think it was a great learning situation for him,” Green said in an appearance on The Playbook on Sportsnet 650. “I thought the year was good for him.”

Virtanen, the sixth-overall pick in 2014, appeared in 55 games for the Canucks during in the 2015-16 season as an 19-year-old. But after only 10 games last year, he was demoted to the Comets. He finished the year in the AHL, scoring nine goals and 19 points in 65 games while unknowingly auditioning for the new Canucks head coach, who was the boss in Utica at the time.

While the points don’t jump off the page, Green says he thought Virtanen was “snake bit” and could have scored 20 goals in the AHL.

“But for me it wasn’t about whether he was going to score or not score,” Green added. “It was about what he learned about himself and how he had to play the game.”