Jeff Carter led the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in both goals and points in 2002-2003 and was a member of the gold medalist Canadian team at the under-18 WJC. The Flyers picked the player slightly higher than his projected draft rankings, passing up more hyped Guelph right wing Dustin Brown.
The Greyhounds struggled for much of the 2002-03 season and Carter got off to a slow start. He also struggled in the post season as well, putting up just a pair assists and a -5 rating in four playoff tilts. Nevertheless, Carter impressed scouts and his coaches by the way he continually worked hard all season at both ends of the ice. He finished with a team high 35 goals and 71 points in just 61 regular season games.
He played midget hockey in London and junior B in Strathroy before moving up to Sault Ste. Marie.
Read Hockey's Future's April 2004 interview with Carter here.
Carter's intriguing combination of size, speed and hands give him the potential to be a solid offensive contributor at the NHL level.
He has an arsenal of different shots and good hand-eye coordination. A mature young man with strong work habits, as he fills out, the lanky pivot should be able to add strength to his assets, although he is not an especially physical player.
For his present level of play, he already is a responsible defensive player, a good faceoff man and a strong forechecker. Neverthless, Carter should further refine these areas and add to his offensive game as he gains additional experience.
If he stays healthy, could be a very good NHL player. The muscle will come with age and his all-around stats should follow suit.
This lanky pivot is well on his way to becoming an impact player. That’s not to say he is ready to be a star now, but without a glaring weakness, Carter has a fairly complete game. He just needs to keep on doing what he’s doing and add some muscle to his 6’3 frame and the orange and black will have themselves a worthy successor to their high profile centers.