Colin Long / Kelowna Rockets WHL
C-R / 5-10.75, 186 / 19-Jun-1989
Skating: 65 / Skill: 60 / Sense: 60 / Compete: 55 / Tough: 35
Strengths: Good playmaker. Underrated skater and has good top speed. Good work ethic.
Weaknesses: Slightly undersized and lacks strength. Slight tendency to be perimeter player.
Wow, what a difference one extra year makes with some players. Went from looking like a fringe junior player last year to being a pretty darn good NHL prospect now. Underrated skater. Has good top speed, but didn't really use it much this year. Pure playmaker with excellent vision. Some NHL guys questioned his toughness, but I saw him try to fight through a lot of checks. Loved Kelowna's #1 line this year - one of the all-time classic complementary lines that had the three key ingredients: playmaking (Long), finishing (Benn), and sandpaper (Leavold).
Summary: Skill like this gets really rare once you approach the 100th overall pick. I always like late bloomers, and this is definitely one.
Target/Want: Will get discounted because he's an '89. Shouldn't be - I would really argue for this player if he's still available with a 3rd or early 4th.