C Leon Draisaitl - Prince Albert Raiders, WHL (2014, 3rd overall, Edmonton)
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11-29-2012, 08:24 AM
Hockey's Future Staff
Join Date: Jul 2002
Originally Posted by
Well in this thread he was already called a possible Top 15 pick and I´ve read some early players-to-watch lists and he was included in all of them. So right now I think he is definitly first-round talent.
Originally Posted by
Yeah, he's a first rounder right now in my mind.
I generally agree that it is looking real good right now, but there's lots of time before his draft rolls around.
In addition, who were the last Germans to go in the first round? Sturm and Goc, I believe. Both did extraordinarily well in the DEL at a young age. Both have been fine little NHLers in their own right, but neither has been a big time scorer.
The next most promising offensive players to come along out of Germany since those two have been Kuhnhackl and Rieder, yet they went in mid-ranged rounds. Like Draisaitl, they too went to Canadian Juniors, albeit Kuhnhackl first went after having been drafted (and staying in Landshut his draft season was something Tom later admitted was likely a mistake).
This could all mean nothing, but I interpret this last little bit of history as showing that NHL squads will, at this juncture, generally be careful/sceptical about drafting Germans with their first overall pick. Of course, if Draisaitl is an exception, he's an exception. They'll also be seeing lots of him over a two year span in the WHL and likely at all international tournaments (including the upcoming WJC). I can imagine that a huge 13-14 season in the WHL could prompt his status considerably. The scouts will naturally recognize whether he's first round quality, regardless of heritage. That is logo.
He had a real nice U-18 and there are certain aspects of his game and offensvie awareness that are very promising and honestly, seldom seen at this age from a European south of Scandinavia and west of the Czech Republic. Then again, it was clear that he still has much to learn and improve on. There's plenty of time for that. At this juncture, I think he'll slide into things 'draftwise' much like Denmark's Nicklas Jensen did, a young man widely considered to be the most talented player Denmark may have ever produced.
Definitely fun and something I hope the hockey press in Germany gives a good bit of attention to.
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