2014 NHL Draft Discussion: Part I
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10-24-2013, 07:39 PM
Hockey's Future Staff
Join Date: Jul 2002
Originally Posted by
Sidney the Kidney
This is a good highlight package of some of Bennett's work early on. His goal at 1:33 of the video was a thing of beauty.
McKeown's such a smooth skater. Very fluid both North/South, and moving laterally. He's also got a tremendous first pass, which has been a huge part of Kingston's transition game this season. And not that I put much stock in the plus/minus stat, but McKeown currently leads the OHL with a +21 in only 11 games. He's got to work on being stronger in front of the net, though. He's solid positionally, however.
Watson's got a nose for the net. He's got a high goal scoring IQ (the kind of guy who just seems to find those openings), and a high hockey IQ in general. But I think he's a lesser prospect than the other two because a]he's small, and not just short. His build is small. He's probably around 165 lbs., and that's after gaining weight in the off season, and b]while he's not slow, he's not exactly a speedster. So it's not like he can make up for his lack of size with explosive speed. Watson's probably a guy that will fall to the second round, unless someone takes a chance on him late in the first.
I myself belong to the Sam Bennett fan club. He stuck out at the last U18 despite being one of the youngest guys in the tournament (that, uhh, McDavid kid was even younger) and then was an absolute beast at the Ivan Hlinka MT. Don't know if there is a team out there who wouldn't love to add him to their system.
Just as complete a prospect as they seem to get.
McKeown seems to really hold his own, although I know nothing about how he's presenting himself in the OHL. Can't get a good read on his actual upside. I can say that at the Ivan Hlinka, he was definitely a safer, more controlled Dman than a one Mr. Ekblad, who had a number of surprisingly uninspired errors and flubs.
At the moment, I don't think Watson's results will convince scouts about long-term potential at a higher level. He's a guy who often doesn't stick out and well, I agree thoroughly with your take on him.
Oh, he'll get picked along the way. In fact, whoever grabs Bennett in round one may even see to it that they snipe Watson as well if he's still around in round 3 or 4.
As for the NYI, if they miss the playoffs and find themselves picking somewhere between spots 10-14, well, my suggestion would be to use some of that defensive depth in the prospect system to help move upwards in a swap of first rounders just to grab Bennett, who I think is probably hovering around spots 7-18 on a lot of teams' lists.
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