Steblick does an early top 60

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by Hiishawk, Apr 5, 2005.

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  1. Hiishawk

    Hiishawk Registered User

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    I've seen about 55-60 of the guys on this list- some of them numerous times, some of them for just a couple of games. So, in making this list, I'm using my own impressions and combining those with what I've heard from respected sources to make a ranking. This will undoubtedly change after the World U 18s soon- I'll make a final ranking after that.

    1. Sid Crosby- Likely first-day pick. Has possible pro potential.
    2. Jack Johnson- The only stud DF this year.
    3. Gilbert Brule- A FW version of Johnson.
    4. Benoit Pouliot- I'm a believer. The guy does it every time I see him. HUGE upside.
    5. Bobby Ryan- When he's on he can be a near-unstoppable force.
    6. Carey Price- Dominance continues into the playoffs
    7. Tuuka Rask- The other elite goalie. Ahead of M. Schwarz IMO.
    8. Anze Kopitar- Kept up his level in the higher Swedish league. Great upside.
    9. Guillaume Latendresse- Are we seeing the real Latendresse now? If so..top 10.
    10. Kendal McArdle- Up with a bullet. Has the mental game and big-time skills.
    11. Marc Staal- Looks ready to burst into an elite-level DF.
    12. Jack Skille- NHL style power winger.
    13. Alex Bourret- Fun to watch. Height shouldn't hurt him.
    14. Niklas Bergfors- Best Swedish prospect in a while.
    15. Ryan O'Marra- Not as bowl-em-over as Skille but with a better scoring touch.
    16. Marco Zagrapan- One of the slickest playmakers, puckhandlers.
    17. Ryan Stoa- Enticing combination of size, grit and skill.
    18. Devon Setoguchi- All-weather player with intensity. Coaches will love him.
    19. Ryan Parent- Another coaches' fave. Will be a steady NHL DFman for 15 years.
    20. Denis Istomin- The obligatory home-run hitting Russian hotshot.
    21. Luc Bourdon- Plays a mature game- seems to have NHL adaptability.
    22. Ondrej Pavelec- Watch him at the U18s. He's not that far behind Rask.
    23. Matt Lashoff- Shows potentail and talent in all 3 zones.
    24. Jakub Vojta- When he's on he's better than Kindl. Can be dominating if inspired.
    25. Slava Trukhno- Gotta love the skill and the enthusiasm.
    26. Teemu Laakso- Elite skills but MUST gain strength.
    27. Mikko Lehtonen- Must gain consistency but plays pro-style game.
    28. J.P. Levasseur- He hasn't done anything when I've seen him, but others...
    29. Brian Lee- Couldn't get a good read on him at WJCs. Difficult to rank.
    30. Andrei Zubarev- The most consistent- and creative/active- Russian DF.

    31. Scott Jackson- The closest thing to a stud WHL DFman this year.
    32. Adam McQuaid- The OHL version of Jackson- even better defensively.
    33. Dan Bertram- On the bubble. U18 performance will determine much.
    34. Alex Vincent- Nice size- has lateral movement issues.
    35. Mathieu Roy- Dominant player on a bad team. No glaring weaknesses.
    36. Martin Hanzal- Very smooth for a big player but must use size/intensity better.
    37. Jakub Kindl- Yeah, I know. He just hasn't done it for me this year.
    38. Risto Korhonen- Rugged and tough but not much puck sense.
    39. Ray Macias- Elite skater and often inspired player. Big upside and downside.
    40. Chris Durand- Looks like a player but didn't show polished play as expected.
    41. Michael Blunden- Up and down pro-style but lacking imagination and finish.
    42. Oscar Bartulis- Very, very steady and mature if unspectacular.
    43. Vladimir Karpov- Mystery man could be a big sleeper. Hard to gauge.
    44. Justin Abdelkader- I have never seen him but he's a recent riser.
    45. Michael Sauer- This all depends on how his recovery holds up.
    46. Marek Bartanus- Loads of skill- a real teaser. Needs consistency.
    47. Dan Ryder- Reminds me a little of Mike Richards.
    48. Steve Downie- Superpest wants to win and always tries to find a way to do so.
    49. J. P. Paquet- Doesn't stand out but is steady. Not an elite skater yet.
    50. Vladimir Sobotka- Exciting buzz-bomb with skills. Has the pizzazz to combat size.
    51. Radek Smolenak- Not the smoothest guy but he has eyes/hands/leg strength.
    52. Jeff Frazee- Keeps turning in top-notch peformances under pressure.
    53. Blair Jones- Very consistent pro-style winger with no big weaknesses.
    54. Chris Lawrence- Like Vojta- when I've seen him he's been inspired. But others..
    55. Viateslav Buravchikov- Steady but must assert himself more.
    56. Marc-Andre Gragnani- Smart, skilled and getting better with each game.
    57. Mattias Hellstrom- Made great strides- has begun to break out.
    58. Andrew Cogliano- I have doubts as to how well his flash will translate to the NHL
    59. Brendan Mikkelson- Unsure. Neither elite DF skills nor elite puck movement.
    60. Vitali Anikeenko- Big upside if the toolbox comes together.

    On the bubble-
    Mathieu Aubin- Elite vision but is he a perimeter guy?
    Chad Denny- Keeps improving both skating and decision-making.
    Anton Skorkyh- Big Russian starting to round of the rough edges.
    Perrti Lindgren- Has found puck-patience, vision and scoring touch recently.
    Sebastien Karlsson- Pro-style player with breakout potential.
    Tomas Kudelka- Very inconsistent but can wow you on occasion.
    Matt Niskanen- I have no idea. Highly regarded by many.
    James Neal- On the rise. Consistent pro-style winger who may break out.
    Patrick Davis- Nice skater still putting the toolbox together.
    Richard Lelkes- Power forward but lacks the intensity and decisiveness to excel.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2005
  2. Predatore

    Predatore Registered User

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    I think Swedish #1 defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson deserves to be "squeezed in" among the top 60. His team/coaches recently commented, saying he is a top 5 defenseman in the world in his age group. I am not going to comment on that, but having seen him several times this season I would be surprised if there are 60 + kids more likely to get drafted before him.

    As for Hjalmarsson's international play, he was voted top defenseman in the U18 World Junior Cup earlier this season and also Sweden's top defenseman in U18 Compuware Cup held in Ann Arbour held in November. He'll be a key player for Sweden in less than 2 weeks, when the U18 WJC begins.
     
  3. Hiishawk

    Hiishawk Registered User

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    Yes, I've been hearing good things about him recently- he certainly seems to be Sweden's top DF prospect this year. When I saw him earlier in the year he looked a bit hesitant and indecisive (in both directions). But I'll hold off ranking him in the top 60 until I see how he does at the U18s.
     
  4. Spectacular_Bid

    Spectacular_Bid Registered User

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    No T.J. Hensick?
     
  5. Seachd

    Seachd Registered User

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    Great list. I can't wait to see some of these guys at the U18s.
     
  6. pei fan

    pei fan Registered User

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    That assessments a little ambitious isn't it. ;)
     
  7. markov`

    markov` Registered User

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    :biglaugh:
     
  8. Legionnaire

    Legionnaire Kill! Jeff, Kill!!!

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    That's the first thing I noticed as well.
     
  9. ZombieMatt

    ZombieMatt Registered User

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    All in all an interesting list, with a few things I noticed from the Q that are a bit different from what I've been hearing.

    In terms of Latendresse, barring a collapse at the U18, his playoff performance has cemented himself a top ten pick, and maybe even among the top five-six. Although that depends a lot on how much teams want to pursue goalies.

    Interesting that you have Oskars Bartulis so high, considering he told me he really doesn't expect to go until very late in the first day (of course, he doesn't know where he's going to be picked, I just find it interesting that his expectations are quite a bit lower).
     
  10. Hiishawk

    Hiishawk Registered User

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    A coupla points.

    I don't watch many NCAA or USHL (or equivalent) games- it is the blank spot on my travelling and responsibility schedule. But I've heard a few people say that Hensick really hasn't stepped it up this year and that he's a bit too much on the periphery. He didn't excite me much at the WJCs either- and if Hensick isn't being exciting he's not a top 60 guy.

    As for Bartulis- I know that I have him higher than most but his very strong adaptation to the N. American game, all-around steadiness and intelligence make him look like a 19 yr old out there. He's the kind of guy that coaches and teammates (especially goalies) love. I've been watching him for 3 years and he seems to step up to every level and challenge effortlessly.
     
  11. ChemiseBleuHonnete

    ChemiseBleuHonnete Registered User

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    They do that every year.
     
  12. Form and Substance

    Form and Substance Registered User

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    Why d'you list Marek Zagrpan as Marco? Is that his nickname?
     
  13. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger 2 is better than one

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    Well, Hensick did lead his team in scoring (one of the top scorers in the country), was a Hobey Baker finalist (top ten at least), and was producing down the stretch, so I don't know how people can say his play took a downward turn. As for staying on the outside, I saw several Michigan games, and despite his smaller size he was right in the fray.
     
  14. Legionnaire

    Legionnaire Kill! Jeff, Kill!!!

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    Exactly.

    The kids got great speed and vision. He's not afraid of the rough stuff, but it's not his forte. Skill wise he should be a first round pick, though I don't think he will be due to his size
     
  15. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger 2 is better than one

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    If Bertram's a 1st rounder than so is Hensick. That being said, I can see him going somewhere in the 2nd round.
     
  16. BobMarleyNYR

    BobMarleyNYR Registered User

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    The draft is deeper... I could see Hensick falling toward the end of a top 80.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2005
  17. Rabid Ranger

    Rabid Ranger 2 is better than one

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    No, this draft isn't deeper. It's a good year for North Americans, but a pretty bad one for Europeans, in particular Russians. Hensick isn't likely to drop past the 2nd round.
     
  18. Spectacular_Bid

    Spectacular_Bid Registered User

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    I like Hensick but I can see him going late second but probably more likely third round. Although he is VERY skilled and a super dynamic player there are some flaws in his game. Hensick plays as an individual, very rarely will he use his wingers. Most of the time he trys to beat 2 or 3 guys up the ice then take a shot. Sometimes this works other (like the the World Juniors) it doesn't. Also, I think this kid has some attitude problems. I saw several games this season where I thought he gave up on his team. I really thought he cashed it in against Colorado College when it came down to crunch time, I was really disapointed. The skills are obviously there, no question this kid can skate and score. I think the big question is can he become a team player?
     
  19. monster_bertuzzi

    monster_bertuzzi registered user

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    Gauthier should be top 60 at least.
     
  20. pei fan

    pei fan Registered User

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    Actually I think Steblick knew he was being funny when he posted it so your laugh
    should go to him.I just happened to notice it ,that's why I gave him the wink smiley.
    You were being funny?Right Steblick?But then again you never can tell on this board.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2005
  21. czechhockeyfan

    czechhockeyfan Registered User

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    Vojta ahead of Kindl? IMO no way, both are high risk/high reward prospects. I know Kindl has tough season in OHL but Vojta also haven´t lived up expectations this season. Vojta has excellent skills but his attitude and intensity are really doubtful.
    Absolutely agree with you on Hanzal and Kudelka and I love Pavelec but don´t think he should be that high. However U-18 championship could change it.
    Lelkes won´t be a player and Bartanus could be but probably won´t IMO.

    Still I really appreciate your own opinion and willingness to give your view. It´s always fun to read your thoughts.
    It´s commonplace people has different opinion on various things which lots of people on this board don´t want to realize.
     
  22. markov`

    markov` Registered User

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    I was actually laughing at the steblick quote, but quoted your message, sorry.
     
  23. FearTheFlyers

    FearTheFlyers Registered User

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    Great..Pouliot ahead of Ryan again..I don't understand it.
     
  24. monster_bertuzzi

    monster_bertuzzi registered user

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    Neither do I. Pouliot is a 1986 to boot.
     
  25. Hiishawk

    Hiishawk Registered User

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    A few more points.

    Yeah- the Crosby comment was clearly tongue-in-cheek.

    I know that having Vojta ahead of Kindl is a surprise. I also noted that Vojta has been inconsistent. But- dammit- every time I've seen Vojta this year he's been a world-beater, the best player on the ice. And everytime I've seen Kindl I keep making the same note- great practice-style skills but the mental game is not there. So, yes, the subjective part of my rankings (my actual viewings) is coming into play here. Bartanus, like Vojta, I seem to have seen only on good days- I know that he has an inconsistency rep too.

    Pouliot ahead of Ryan? Yeah- not by much, but I'll stand by it. Both have good size, excellent hands, elite vision, scoring touch. But Pouliot is so silky smooth on his skates- unlike Ryan- and consistent. And although he's an 86 his rise over the past season or two is amazing.
     
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