Strengths: A two-way threat every time on the ice…he has decent speed and good overall mobility…plays with a hard edge… will take the puck to the net and battle for any rebounds once there…has good vision and nice hockey sense… makes plays with the puck and can place the puck on his linemates' stick with a pin-point pass...has a good shot and mixes it up well...is aggressive on the forecheck and pressures the puck carrier effectively disrupting offensive flow...finishes his checks and plays a strong defensive game...will pay the price by blocking shots or taking a hit...is solid in the faceoff circle and makes himself an outlet for his defence...plays with a high level of intensity…has a good quick stick in both zones…plays with a mean edge and loves to play the body.
Weakness: His size is not as big as you would want from a player playing his type of game…he also has a bit of a limited offensive upside at the next level…not a lot of glaring weaknesses.
EJ McGuire of Central Scouting was just on NHL Live to talk draft for a bit. He thinks ten Swedes could go in the first two rounds. That doesn't seem out of the question. The top eight European skaters in Central Scouting's final rankings are Swedish and another Swede in Robin Lehner is the top-ranked Euro goalie.
After that, there's a pretty good drop-off to the third tier of forwards and things become less clear-cut. At Red Line, we view slick and edgy pivot Louis Leblanc and highly skilled, but small playmaking winger Jordan Schroeder at the top of this group. Leblanc plays with a fiery edge and employs a high speed, up-tempo style. He's got a great first step burst and an extra separation gear, and we love his mix of passion and puck skills.
My good friend Vitya Koreshkov said he thinks Dima Orlov is gonna be a force and sees Kirill Polozov as one of the most underrated European in the draft class.
Why I find that significant?
Eleven years ago he said [loosely translated] "Pasha [Datsyuk] is gonna show up everyone". I laughed at him. Not very smart in retrospect since I'm never gonna hear the end of it. Prior to their respective drafts he boasted about our very own [Sasha] Semin and [Misha] Grabovski.
Of course he also had a ton of faith in Koltsov, Kaigorodov, and Glazachev, so I'd say he's 50-50 (he also called Ovechkin but I don't think that counts). So, going by his record, Orlov is gonna tear up the league and Polozov is gonna stay in the KHL.
Does anyone think that Carter Ashton has a chance of being around when we pick?
he'd have to slide a little I would think just perusing mock drafts and what not. every draft there are those that slide....getzlaf slid a ton his year..most publications had him going as early as in the early teens. i believe richards fell due to his lack of footspeed.
On another topic there was a thread, I think the combine thread, about how a prospect who does not do to well with his conditioning or just not as much of a gym rat can actually boost standings as teams try to project how much a prospect could improve versus a prospect that is ripped and in great shape might not have as much upward potential as they might have maximized what they could have achieve by being workout rats.
That's 19 that should be off the board by 24, barring the pleasantly unexpected. After that you've got Ferraro, Shore, Holland, Ashton, Palmieri, Klingberg, Budish, Morin, Werek, O'Reilly, Rajala, Panik, de Haan, Elliott, Leddy, Despres, Erixon, Tatar and Caron that should go in the later stages of the first into the early second. For the most part it seems like anyone from that group could go as high as 20 if a team really likes the player. Some, like Panik, could slide further down perhaps and some like Ferraro, Holland, Ashton, Shore, Budish and de Haan could jump up and go in the teens. But there's not a huge gap at that point from what I can tell. For that reason, trading up five to ten spots or so should be a priority if possible...but that (at least perceived) jumble between 20-40 still offers some real quality young talent and overall the first three rounds seems like it should offer strong depth. As always, there are a number of intriguing mid-to-late round types...although not a ton in the way of real physical, crash & bang type players.
Some notes from Gare Joyce on the combine. I tend to think of the interview process as the more important event at the combine, getting a good read on the character of the player (albeit in a sort of rapid-fire snapshot).