There is a long history of players receiving a late call to participate in the BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game, then taking full advantage of the opportunity to make a huge impression. Brayden Point of the Moose Jaw Warriors has a chance to be “that guy” this week in Calgary.
Added to the Team Orr lineup last week as a replacement for injured forward Sam Bennett of the Kingston Frontenacs, Point has deep hockey roots in Calgary. He played two years with the Calgary Bisons AAA bantam program before one productive campaign with the Calgary Buffaloes AAA midgets where he collected 41 points in 32 games as a rookie.
Point followed up that season in the Alberta Midget Hockey League by making an enormous impression when he joined the Warriors for the WHL playoffs. He played in 14 games during the 2012 post-season just a couple of weeks after celebrating his 16th birthday, scoring seven goals and adding three assists. Moose Jaw battled to the Eastern Conference final series against the eventual WHL Champions, the Edmonton Oil Kings.
Point checks in at 5’9" and 160 pounds, a diminutive right-handed shooting centerman. Like many juniors of his physical stature, it is not a new concept t o play with and against bigger players. Point has tremendous balance and the ability to spin off checks. In Moose Jaw this season, he leads a struggling young Warriors team with 19 goals and 22 assists in 42 games. During his first full season in the WHL, he collected 57 points in 67 games.
He is a key offensive contributor, a building block in Moose Jaw. Among 1996-born WHL players, he is tied for third in scoring with Jake Virtanen (2014) of the Calgary Hitmen, behind only Connor Bleackley (2014) of the Red Deer Rebels and John Quenneville (2014) of the Brandon Wheat Kings.
Point is 53rd in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings and is also among HF's top 10 WHL draft-eligible prospects. According to Central Scouting, Point is “an excellent skater who brings a big scoring touch, he’s smart and skilled and he’s able to find ways to contribute. He plays a competitive game and is always involved for the puck.”
Tonight in Calgary, Point will start play alongside Virtanen and Clark Bishop of the Cape Breton Screaming Eagles, teammates of his on the gold medal-winning Team Canada at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament held in the Czech Republic and Slovakia.
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