How do the top forwards this year compare to Shinkaruk and Lazar? Or any other top forwards taken this year from the WHL for that matter?
I think it will take a pretty big push by some of them to be considered as good as guys like Shinkaruk and Lazar. Is it possible? Absolutely, but it's an uphill battle. And there are also many candidates to be able to make that push.
And he was a 16 year old full-time, first-time starter in the WHL. That in itself is a big accomplishment. I think we'll see 25 or 30 wins from him this year and a much-improved sv% and GAA.
To be fair, he was thrown into that position because of how bad the Giants were this season.
But agreed, he has all the ingredients for an extremely successful WHL career over the next few seasons.
Has a full-year of experience behind a struggling team but will be playing behind a team with the 1st overall WHL pick, 1st overall CHL Import pick, and improved Geertsen, Houck and Morrison over the next couple of seasons. A better team, more experience and less pressure.
This information usually gives people who follow the NHL draft the first chance to see which players have grown over the summer, and how much they've grown, as they enter their draft years. That is no different for me as I look ahead to the 2014 NHL Draft. Below you will find a handful of players who cracked my preliminary 2014 NHL Draft rankings, breaking down their current height/weight when compared to last season's numbers.
Assuming this information is actually up to date and correct, there are a few interesting things to note.
- Virtanen jumping from 190 pounds to 210 is a pretty big leap. Keep in mind that his 190 weight was from this time last year, not the end of last season. 20 pounds might not actually be that much to put on for a 16-17 year old, so we'll see how he looks on the ice in exhibition and in the regular season.
- Point stands out due to a lack of adding weight. Gaining 5 pounds over a full calendar year is concerning, especially when he tops out at 160. That is, of course, assuming that these figures are in fact correct.
Where do you see Nogier right now? If you can comment.... I think he sits as a 3-4 rounder with upside to move into round 2 similar to Heatherington.
Also, is it just me or does there seem to be a lot more Draft eligible Euro's coming over this year? Seems like there are a lot of guys to watch for, Honka, Fazleev, Burkharts, etc, etc...
- I think that's fair for Nogier right now. I would probably call him a mid-3rd rounder right now, personally. It's a big year for him just because their will be so much opportunity for him in regards to minutes and special teams play. It could really help or really hurt him. I actually expected him to stick out more at camp last weekend, but we'll see where it goes from here.
- As for the Euro's, I totally agree. Honka is already off to a blazing start and Bukharts sounds like a beast. Glad they're both in my division.