Draisaitl, Reinhart the cream of the NHL-drafted center crop in the WHL

by Glen Erickson
on
Leon Draisaitl - Kelowna Rockets

Photo: Kelowna Rockets forward and Edmonton Oilers prospect Leon Draisaitl has played in 13 playoff games for the Rockets, scoring six goals and 13 assists while posting a +9 rating (courtesy of Marissa Baecker/Getty Images)

There are many different kinds of centers – those who primarily excel offensively and those who contribute in other ways to the success of their respective teams. One of the biggest challenges across major junior hockey is taking into consideration the versatility of many top forwards. It is not uncommon for the best players down the middle to take a few turns on the wing on a regular basis. Read more»

Off The Radar: Trio of international skaters, Kootenay standout, and oft-injured goaltender push for NHL attention

by David Hahn
on
Ahti Oksanen - Boston University

Photo: Boston University junior forward/defenseman Ahti Oksanen was ranked 66th among European skaters for the 2012 NHL Draft, but was never drafted (courtesy of Richard T. Gagnon/Getty Images)

Front offices in the National Hockey League withhold many secrets, none that garner more speculation than why respective member clubs pass on draft-eligible players. Whether it’s concerns over size, injuries, production, or their interest level in playing in the league, there’s always an opportunity for a player to overcome those shortcomings in order to earn a chance the second time around. Read more»

Prospect Faceoff: McDavid vs. Nurse, more intriguing prospect matchups

by David Hahn
on
Connor McDavid - Erie Otters; Darnell Nurse - Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds - Prospect Faceoff 4/29/15

Photo: Likely future NHL teammates Connor McDavid (L) and Darnell Nurse (R) are going head-to-head for the right to move on to the 2015 OHL Championship series (courtesy of Aaron Bel/OHL Images and Terry Wilson/OHL Images)

In the final Prospect Faceoff for the 2014-15 season, we feature a matchup too good to be true, as Connor McDavid looks to close out the OHL Western Conference Final against Darnell Nurse and the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds. Meanwhile, the semi-finals continue in the WHL as top prospects collide. In the AHL, two forwards clash in a make-or-break Game Five. Read more»

Prospect Impressions: Aho wins Liiga for Karpat, U18 highlights, more from the CHL

by David Hahn
on
Anthony DeLuca - Rimouski Oceanic

Photo: Rimouski Oceanic forward and 2015-eligible Anthony DeLuca has scored nine goals and 14 points in 12 playoff games that is poised to move on to the QMJHL championship series (courtesy of Francois Laplante/FreestylePhoto/Getty Images)

In this week’s Prospect Impressions, a Finnish forward scores a dream goal to win the Liiga championship for his team. In the QMJHL, a pair of forwards score overtime winners of their own in clutch situations. The U18 World Championship has wrapped up, but two draft-eligible forwards had big performances in the final opportunity to raise their draft stock. The OHL playoffs are in the semi-finals, and one lesser-known Buffalo Sabres prospect is in the mood to win. Meanwhile, a former OHL forward has transitioned into the AHL successfully, paired up with a fellow forward who faced similar questions about his game. Read more»

(Video) 2015 U18 World Championship: Auston Matthews, Forward, and Evan Sarthou, Goaltender, USA

by Chapin Landvogt
on
Auston Matthews - Team USA - 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship

Photo: Team USA forward and 2016 prospect Auston Matthews totaled 18 points in 12 games while competing for the U.S. teams at the U20 and U18 tournaments this season (courtesy of Chapin Landvogt)

Team USA received contributions from all over the lineup in their march to a second consecutive gold medal at the IIHF Ice Hockey U18 World Championship. But one U.S. player stood out a little more than the others, a player whose name will soon be bandied about in much the same way that the names McDavid and Eichel have been discussed over the past few months. Read more»

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