Mid-Season Prospect Power Rankings

  1. Nolan Patrick (WHL)

Yes, he has only played 6 games this year. Nonetheless, he is still our top ranked for good reason. Last year he posted 132 points in 93 games (regular season and playoffs) which is tremendous for a kid who was not even draft eligible. Playing at the desired centre position he has a versatile skill set to go with his large frame. His long reach and strength makes it extremely hard for players to knock the puck off him. He has great vision and seems to always find open teammates which results in lots of scoring chances for them. He has a quick release that fools goalies. Still developing in his own end, but can play some defence when he puts in the effort. Comparable-Jeff Carter

2. Nico Hischier (QMJHL)

Hischier was able to put his high-end skill on full display at this year’s World Junior Championship. A smooth, shifty skater that creates scoring chances every time he touches the puck. He has slick hands that can make even the best defenders (Charlie McAvoy wink wink) look silly. A dynamic shot that finds the back of the net more times than not. Not the biggest in size, but battles hard against anyone. Has great vision and playmaking skills, which makes his line mates better as a whole. As a rookie in the Q, the production is evident with 54 points in 33 games. Comparable-Nikita Kucherov

3. Timothy Liljegren (SHL)

An offensive defensemen that sees the ice entirely well and a great mover of the puck. He is an efficient skater with a long stride and is quite mobile. He will run the power play and has a great shot especially off the rush. Comparable-Kevin Shattenkirk

4. Eeli Tolvanen (USHL)

A Finnish sniper first and foremost. An elite shot with a devastating release that allows him to score every way imaginable. He is producing highly in the USHL with a creative, crafty offensive game. Comparable-Rickard Rakell

5. Gabriel Vilardi (OHL)

Another guy who has been hit hard with the injury bug. Vilardi utilizes his quick, heavy shot to create many scoring opportunities. He is a very clever player and sees the ice tremendously. He has a long reach and can shield the puck with ease. Comparable-Tage Thompson

6. Juuso Valimaki (WHL)

Valimaki has produced unbelievably as a defensemen in the WHL on a very good Tri-City team. Defensively, won’t amaze you with physicality, but is the best stick checker in the draft. Has a calm, patient nature that doesn’t rush plays, but develops them. Is an incredibly smart player and can transition the puck out of his end with ease. Comparable-Jake Gardiner

7. Lias Andersson (SHL)

Solid two-way forward that checks hard, but hasn’t flashed a high-end skill set yet. Possesses a quick, deceiving shot that can beat goalies. Above-average skater that uses it to play lockdown defence. Comparable-Travis Konecny

8. Kailer Yamamoto (WHL)

He may be small, but probably has the most amount of pure skill behind Hischier. Is very crafty with the puck and generates tons of offence. Comparable-Cam Atkinson

9. Nicolas Hague (OHL)

A giant kid that is tough to play against. Equipped with enough skill to stand point on a power play. Not overly skilled, but has a good shot and can jump into the rush. His skating is improving, but is still awkward of sorts. Comparable-Travis Hamonic

10. Elias Pettersson(SHL)

Another Swede with a good two-way game. Sometimes his vision and crafty hands dominate matches, other times he seems invisible throughout games. Not very strong as he is very lean, so he will need to continue to grow physically and mentally. A very shifty skater that anticipates plays well. Comparable-Jason Zucker

 

Just missed the cut: Maxime Comtois, Klim Klostin, Owen Tippett

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