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09-28-2012, 01:24 PM
  #61
Dasachtach
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From Willy Palov from the Halifax Herald.

10. Anthony Duclair, Quebec Remparts: The high-flying winger posted 66 points in 63 games as a rookie last year and will get first-line and top power-play duties this season. Duclair is also surrounded by numerous big-time players in Quebec so he’ll get more than his share of secondary assists.

9. Ben Duffy, P.E.I. Rocket: The Lower Sackville native is clearly the most dangerous threat on the rebuilding Rocket so he will have a defensive shadow just about everywhere he goes this year. However, he faced that obstacle last year and still managed to post his second straight 80-plus point season.

8. Matthew Bissonnette, Bathurst Titan: As part of a line with Zach O’Brien and Sebastien Trudeau last season, Bissonnette finished 10th in league scoring. He is now 20 years old and once again has O’Brien as a linemate.

7. Jonathan Huberdeau, Saint John Sea Dogs: The 19-year-old’s place on this list comes with a huge asterisk. It’s possible the NHL settles its labour dispute and Huberdeau is recalled to the Florida Panthers. They’ve already made it clear he will be on their team if there is a season so he might be on borrowed time in Saint John. But if the lockout isn’t resolved and the NHL season is cancelled, Huberdeau automatically becomes the Q’s best player.

But even in that situation, there are reasons why he might have a hard time making it to the top of the scoring ladder. Most importantly, he will certainly miss time because of the world juniors. But he is also Saint John’s only major scoring threat this year so he will get even more blanket defensive coverage. Those two factors will impact his production.

6. Mikhail Grigorenko, Quebec Remparts: Grigorenko finished eighth in the scoring race as a rookie last year but only appeared in 58 games because of the world juniors. He will operate in a similar framework this season, but is a year older and better.

5. Nathan MacKinnon, Halifax Mooseheads: MacKinnon is in the conversation with Huberdeau as the best player in the league but may also miss about 10 games because of world juniors. If he makes the Canadian team and is gone for a month, his numbers will suffer.

4. Brandon Hynes, Bathurst Titan: The overage sharpshooter finished seventh in the 2011-12 scoring race while with the Victoriaville Tigres. He replaces Trudeau on the line with O’Brien and Bissonnette so expect him to pick up where Trudeau left off.

3. Alex and Allain Saulnier, Moncton Wildcats: I’m going to take two for the price of one here because the 20-year-old twins are inseparable in the way the Sedins do everything together with the Vancouver Canucks. The Saulniers have a better supporting cast this year so should get more room to manoeuvre.

2. Jonathan Drouin, Halifax Mooseheads: The sensational 17-year-old started his sophomore season like a man possessed and I really don’t see him slowing down. With the way he’s playing, there’s an outside chance he could get an invitation to the world junior tryout camp. But Team Canada doesn’t usually like to have too many young players on the team so he’s a big long shot to make the final roster. That should make Drouin available for almost all of Halifax’s games, especially since he doesn’t play the kind of game that makes him susceptible to injury.

1. Zach O’Brien, Bathurst Titan: The highly skilled Newfoundlander finished second to Gourde with 101 points last year so I don’t see why he would take a step backwards as a 20-year-old this year.

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