Sunday, June 07, 2009

Ulmer, Stefan - D - Spokane WHL

Stefan Ulmer / Spokane Chiefs WHL

D-R / 5-9.0, 160 / 01-Dec-90

Skating: 65 / Skill: 60 / Sense: 55 / Compete: 55 / Tough: 40

Strengths: Excellent skater and has a good shot. Good skill. Competes.

Weaknesses: Awfully small. Struggles a bit to be effective in his own end.

Very good skater with excellent lateral quickness, and good stop-starts. Really underrated PP skill - moves the puck smartly and quickly and has pretty darn good shot velocity. Okay moving the puck out of his own end but is not really much of a puck rusher.

Thinks the game well at both ends, but his size hurts his physical effectiveness inside his own zone. Doesn't make many bad plays in the d-zone, but really doesn't make a lot of good ones either. I do like his consistent effort level - his head is always in the game and wants to win. Really stepped up after the Cowen injury and was playing his best hockey at the end of the season and in the playoffs.

Summary: You just wish this guy was bigger - even just 6-0 would be fine. Small guys can make good offensive d-men in the NHL, but he's just a slight notch below where you'd want his offensive ability to be for a blueliner this size. Even so, I'd really want to grab this guy with anything after about 160th overall pick. Even if he only ends up running your AHL team's power play or is the occasional taxi squad fill-in, it's not a bad guy to have in any organization.

Draft Day: Probably won't get a look before the 5th in any case, but I think there's enough interest that he'll go.

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