D-R / 5-10.25, 190 / 26-Jul-91
Skating: 65 / Skill: 65 / Sense: 50 / Compete: 55 / Tough: 35
Strengths: Excellent power play skills. Very good offensive hockey sense. Quick, agile skater.
Weaknesses: Often a downright liability in the d-zone. Lacks the strength to be physical at all. Doesn't quite have the speed to consistently carry the puck end-to-end.
Great offensive instincts and can really run the power play. Terrific at moving the puck inside in the zone. Great ability to sneak in down low. Excellent wrist shot and uses it almost exclusively. But that makes me wonder a bit about his slap shot - it seems like never really uses a good hard full wind up shot.
Very quick feet, very light on his skates. Terrific lateral agility allows him to skate the puck and create shooting lanes for himself. Good spins and turns make him elusive with the puck. Despite the very quick feet, his stride is a bit short, which hurts his top speed. Seems to need a little bit of time and space to carry the puck out of his own end.
Defensive zone play is regrettable and will have to improve. Lack of physical game hurts, but the bigger concern is that he just seems to not care much about what happens in his own zone. Takes so many risks jumping into the offense that he frequently leaves his partner having to deal with an odd man rush. Sometimes just looks mentally lazy and won't battle for pucks in the d-zone.
Can be put off his offensive game if you hit him - that's a serious concern, because you can be sure you're going to get hit at the pro level.
Summary: Looks like a power play specialist to me. I guess I should have him higher, given that I think he'll play. But I'd rather have players with some upside to play in all situations. And the disappearing act after he gets hit is a red flag for me. Almost certain to go much higher than I have him.
Draft Day: Everyone's snarkily predicting he'll go 32nd overall. Or 52nd. But I guarantee you there are more teams than just Tampa Bay who would like this guy somewhere in the 2nd round.