Nicolas Meloche
Image: CHL Images

Nicolas Meloche

Hometown:

Rosemere Quebec

Currently Playing In:

CHL

Birthday:

1997-07-18

Position:

D

Eligible for draft:

2015

Shoots:

Right

Drafted:

2015

Height:

6-3

Acquired:

2nd Round (40th Overall), 2015

Weight:

204 lbs.

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History

2012-13: Nicolas Meloche played for Saint-Eustache in the Quebec midget AAA league as a 15-year-old. He scored 9 goals with 17 assists and 58 penalty minutes in 38 regular season games for the Vikings. Saint-Eustache lost to Trois-Rivieres in a preliminary round series. Meloche played in one of four playoff games, recording an assist. He played for Team White in the Quebec Games, scoring 1 goal with 3 assists and finishing +6 with 10 penalty minutes. Meloche was selected by Baie-Comeau in the first round (15th overall) in the 2013 QMJHL Entry Draft. 

2013-14: Meloche made the jump directly from midget hockey to major junior, skating in 54 regular season games for Baie-Comeau and being named to the QMJHL All-Rookie team. He scored 6 goals with 19 assists and was +15 with 47 penalty minutes. The Drakkar finished first in the East Division and reached the QMJHL Finals, falling to Val-d’Or in a memorable seven-game series. Meloche had 8 assists and was +3 with 8 penalty minutes in 22 playoff games. He played for the Canada Quebec U17 team in the 2014 World Hockey Challenge,  scoring 1 goal with 1 assist and 4 penalty minutes in six games. 

2014-15: Meloche played for the Canada U18 team in the Ivan Hlinka Tournament in August and was the second-leading scorer amongst defensemen for Baie-Comeau despite missing the final two months. He scored 10 goals with 24 assists and was -3 with 99 penalty minutes in 44 games for the Drakkar before going down in January. Baie-Comeau finished fourth in the East Division and reached the second round in the playoffs. Meloche returned for the playoffs, scoring 4 goals with 6 assists in 12 games and finishing with an even plus/minus and 22 penalty minutes. He had 1 assist and was +6 with 6 penalty minutes in five games at the Ivan Hlinka Tournament as Canada captured a gold medal. He played for the QMJHL All-Stars in the Subway Series against Russia in November, scoring a goal and finishing +1 with 8 penalty minutes in two games. Meloche played for Team Orr in the 2015 CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game and was invited to the NHL Prospects Combine in June. He was ranked 40th amongst North American skaters in the Central Scouting final rankings and was selected by Colorado in the second round (40th overall) in the 2015 NHL Draft.

Talent Analysis

Meloche is a big, physical defenseman who can play an offensive style as well as mix it up in front of the net and in the corners. The 6’2”, 200-pound product might need to improve his skating a little to take full advantage of his size and stature, but he’s certainly already an imposing figure on the ice, and he knows it. He isn’t afraid to drop the gloves, and he plays a hard-nosed style of game.

Future

Meloche attended his first training camp with the Avalanche before returning to the QMJHL for the 2015-16 season. After starting the year with Baie-Comeau he was obtained by Gatineau in a trade in December 2015. Meloche will be given every chance to succeed once he graduates to professional hockey and is a highly-touted prospect in the Avalanche system.

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The Colorado Avalanche’s top five prospects are as good as any other team’s in the league but after fifth-ranked Nicolas Meloche the level of talent begins to wane and big question marks appear. The front office targeted defense as a weakness a few years ago, putting emphasis on improving that area at the expense of the forward group. The lack of success in the mid- to late-rounds has not helped the team’s situation.

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Prospect Faceoff returns to Hockey’s Future with a pair of recently re-assigned Philadelphia Flyers prospects kicking off their junior season in style. In Ottawa, Travis Konecny goes one-on-one against one of 2015’s breakout stars in Andrew Mangiapane. Another Flyers prospect recently returned to his junior team, Travis Sanheim, goes against a steady performer in Luke Philp. The QMJHL is already underway, and Toronto Maple Leafs prospect Dmytro Timashov’s playmaking abilities will be tested against Nicolas Meloche. Finally, the USHL kicks off their regular season this weekend and two late-round European prospects should see a lot of each other in a prime weekend venue. Read more»