I hear music! We should expect a quality center for a decade and then a half of one beyond it. We should expect Jason Arnott’s career numbers. We should expect a helluva player. Big, strong bull of a center who doesn’t look one damn thing like the other forwards who have been taken high in previous seasons. McCurdy called him a nose tackle today, and with those hands, if he can keep up, music!
- MacT on picking third: “I’m not devastated by it, that’s for sure. It’s very debatable which players will be the best players over time. I didn’t want to drop back to No. 4. That was the important thing.”
SCORING BY DISCIPLINE: EVENS
NHLE: Leon Draisaitl (WHL) 15-25-40
- Red Line: Huge German centre is tenacious in puck pursuit with his relentless forecheck often creating chances for linemates. Dominates the game down low with outstanding puck protection. Constantly outthinks the opposition and knows where his outlets are at all times. Has learned to use his size to carve out space for himself and effectively separate opponents from the puck. Strong hockey sense in all three zones leads to good positioning. Traditional playmaking centre finds ‘mates with crisp, accurate passes. Intelligent, two-way, classically schooled centre. Outshone Reinhart in head-to-head action against Kootenay.
- ISS: Draisaitl could be one of the biggest wildcards of the entire draft. There is no doubting his talent. He has good size, great puck skills, strong understanding of
possession and puck management and could be considered an elite playmaker with the puck on his stick. He can at times remind of the likes of Getzlaf, Jagr,
Thornton and Malkin but he can also fall off the radar very quickly. When he is on, he can be nearly unstoppable and can absolutely decimate opposing defensive
structures and goaltender’s confidence. He could be a steal wherever he is selected but will need to add some further maturity and consistent scoring punch if he
is ever to meet the potential he has shown in flashes up to now.
- Corey Pronman: Draisaitl is a great passer who can beat defenders with skill, puck protection, determination or his shot. I’ve heard some scouts suggest him as a top-3 pick, but I’d like to see him get quicker before I put him in that range.
- Craig Button: Leon is a big centre who is smart, can make plays and can impact the game in multiple ways. He’s the type of centre who is coveted by many NHL clubs because of his combination of size and skill.