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11-12-2012, 05:20 AM
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Originally Posted by That View Post
I've watched the last two Portland Winterhawks games and I've been very impressed with 3 of their draft eligible prospects.

Seth Jones is awesome. He simply does not make mistakes. He rushes the puck at all the right times. He breaks up plays at all the right times. He hits at the right times. He's such a smart player. Over the last two games I only remember one pass that wasn't tape to tape. His passes are crisp and very accurate. He has an incredible ability to hold the puck in the offensive zone. It's so hard for the opposition to clear the puck because he use his reach and speed to pucks that are far away and knocks down pucks in the air with ease. I also noticed that he doesn't shoot often, but when he does it's always on net. There was only two times that one of his shots was blocked. Jones has a great slapper, but his wrist shot is just as good. He has a quick release and it's very powerful, but he doesn't use it very often. He showed off his skating with some great rushes. He's a very good skater, lots of speed and very agile. One play that particularly stood out to me tonight was on a 2 on 1. Instead of sliding across the ice like most defenders do, he waited until the last second to make his move. He used his reach to block the passing lane and positioned his body in front of the puck carrier so he couldn't shoot. The player was forced to shoot the puck wide. A very smart play. Another play that stood out to me was last night, it was on a one-on-one situation that Jones read perfectly. The player tried to deke around him and he broke it up with his stick and then drove the player into the boards, while sending the puck down the boards. Jones only picked up one point over the two games, but it was a great goal. A slapper from the blue line. The goalie had no chance.

I know most of the talk is on drafting a forward, but I'd really like to draft Jones. Jones's style would compliment Subban's perfectly. The problem is both that both play on the right side. Jones did look very comfortable on the left side at various short periods of time though.

Someone else who really impressed me over the two games was Oliver Bjorkstrand. He picked up 4 goals and 1 assist over the two games. He looks very slight out there though, listed at only 5'11" 164 lbs. Last year at the WJC, I remember his skating looked kind of odd, but his technique looks like it's improved. He isn't the fastest guy out, but it works. I really liked how hard Bjorkstrand forechecked. At the beginning of the year he was playing fairly timid, but now he's playing with intensity. 3 of his 4 goals came from wristers in front of the net that the goalie really had no chance. He has a world-class release. His two goals tonight came from almost identical shot and at the same spot. Just positioned himself at the top of the slot and shot the puck as soon as he got it. His hands are pretty good too. My concerns with him are consistency and skating. While I mentioned his technique has improved, his acceleration is very poor. For consistency, he's not a threat every time he's on the ice. Sometimes he completely takes himself out of the play and doesn't engage at all.

Nicolas Petan is a great player too. He's only 5'9", but he's solidly built. I noticed that he's fearless on the ice. He's also great on the draw, he most the vast majority of them over the last two games. His assist tonight came off of a crafty play where he tipped the puck between two Kamloops players and created a 2 on 1. He's a really smart player who plays with a ton of energy. Petan is heavily involved along the boards. He battles it out and never gives up on the play. He possesses a high level of skill too. He's got incredible hands and dekes with his whole body. He has great vision too. He's a really good player. Could be a great later round pick.
Good report! I watched Jones 1 game at U18...first thought was Larry Robinson.

Petan has the numbers...32 points in 19 games as 17 year-old are good numbers.

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