Blake Wheeler

Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by Broadway Brett, May 16, 2004.

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  1. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    Blake Wheeler will be a first round pick, I guarentee it. He is in the same situation as Brian Boyle was last year, great talent, project, same level of competiton, early-mid 2nd round talents/projections, and going to GREAT colleges. Teams are going to be willing to take a risk on Wheeler late in the 1st, and probably TB will pick him. Mark my words: Blake Wheeler will be a first round pick.
     
  2. Alex Kovalev

    Alex Kovalev Registered User

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    Quite a bold prediction with all the hype hes been getting :rolleyes:
     
  3. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    I feel like that for some reason, he is drastically climbing up some teams boards, and a team will take him late in the 1st round, like Brian Boyle.
     
  4. JeSuisReine

    JeSuisReine Registered User

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    I will be absolutely shocked if he goes first round.....100% shocked....even with all his hype....I just cannot see him going first round.
     
  5. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    I guarenteed it and I will not back down from my guarentee.
     
  6. The problem with Wheeler is he's going against HIGH SCHOOLERS...
     
  7. chaachie12

    chaachie12 Registered User

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    true, but it would be one thing if it was Arizona HS, but it is Minnesota high school. Plus, he is doing it at 6'5" 200+ pounds...most that age, that size, are awkward and clumsy. He is smooth and flowing, should be interesting how he transitions to the U of Minnesota in 2 years.
     
  8. ttnorm

    ttnorm Registered User

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    That's true but there is some talent in that group. One of the teams that Wheeler's team (Breck) beat was Blake which has 3 players in the top 100 of all NA skaters in this year's draft. Further, Wheeler played for Team Acceleration which played teams like Shattuck St. Marys so there is some body of work for Wheeler to judge from.
     
  9. Still think high to mid 2nd round...
     
  10. pittengineer

    pittengineer Registered User

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    I would consider him with the Pens first pick in the 2nd round, but it depends on who falls out of the first round.
     
  11. sushinsky4tsar

    sushinsky4tsar Registered User

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    If Blake Wheeler has risen to a late 1st round pick, then I guess this is a really weak draft in that late 1st to 3rd rnd range. I'm not saying there's no chance he won't be the next Lindros, but realistically he's 10xs more likely to be a bust. He's just so darn raw and unproven to be passing up traditional late first round talents. I suppose it's posible, even likely that one of the teams with lots of early picks will take a gamble on him though.

    I don't even know how I'd feel about him at #42 to be honest. I would only invest a first if your system was so jam-packed with young talent at every position that you could afford to waste a pick on someone who has an outside shot of being a tremendous power forward.
     
  12. TMHUNH

    TMHUNH Registered User

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    The thing that is different between him and Boyle (and Mike Morris in 02) though is that Boyle was a senior and Wheeler is a junior. Teams may shy away knowing that he will be playing at the same level next year. It's not his fault because you can just go from high school to college without graduating, but thats why most HS juniors opted out. Teams knew that they would get to see how Boyle would do against higher competetion right away, where Wheeler is kind of in a lame duck situation, although will be joining a great program the next year and hopefully progress into a great college and pro player.
     
  13. Seachd

    Seachd Registered User

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    I noticed that Wheeler put up quite a bit more points than Boyle did. Did Boyle play in a better league?
     
  14. ttnorm

    ttnorm Registered User

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    That's a bit hard to say because the New England Preps (Boyle) rarely get out to play the Minnesota High Schools (Wheeler). Both levels are major feeders of NCAA D1 hockey. The New England Preps may have a bit more depth but that is debatable and may vary from year to year. Both are at least a cut below the standards of the US Junior Leagues (USHL, NAHL, EJHL).
     
  15. pittengineer

    pittengineer Registered User

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    Actually, Blake is considering leaving his hs to go play in the USHL this year. Dont know what route he has chosen yet though.
     
  16. PuckFan01

    PuckFan01 Registered User

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    "Raw"? The guy has size, a Lemieux like reach, he skates well and he has very good puck skills. If anything, the fact that he is a multi-sport athlete that hasn't yet focused 100% of his time on hockey just goes to show how good this kid could really end up being once he does play hockey full time. If he is "raw", I wish I had a team full of "raw" guys. You make it sound like he just laced up the skates two years ago and doesn't know how to play the game. :shakehead

    Wheeler was clearly better than any other player in MN last year. I don't think it was any coincidence that NHL scouts (and Wild GM Risebrough on occasion) flocked to the kid's games.
     
  17. Dr.Sens(e)

    Dr.Sens(e) Registered User

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    Actually, I think this plays in Wheeler's favour. The fact he is putting up such numbers and has dominated at this level while basically being a year younger than Boyle was when he was drafted (Boyle will turn 20 this December, and Wheeler is only 17), reallly works in his favour, as he is accomplishing more at a younger age.

    The bottom line is Wheeler is a bit of wild card that could probaby go anywhere between #20 and #45 and it wouldn't be a shock either way. Anyone making "guarantees" about when he will go or won't go simply has no idea how the draft works. Even if 5 teams have him in their top 15, it doesn't mean he will be a 1st rounder. And just because 5 teams have him #75 on their lists, doesn't mean he won't go in the top 20.

    All it takes is one team to have him as the next best player on the board when their picks comes around in the 1st round for him to be taken, and similarly, all it takes is one better ranked player to still be around over the first two rounds for him to keep dropping. To make guarantees suggests EVERY team doesn't have him in their top 30, or that EVERY team does have him in their top 30 - and this is just so unlikely given the drastic differences in ratings between scouts and teams.

    This is why you get guys like O'Sullivan going mid-2nd round, and a guy like Michael Rupp going top 5.

    Edited: fix grammar.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2004
  18. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    Wheeler is going to the U. of Minnesota next year. Brian Boyle went in the first last year, and he was playing against high schoolers, plus that draft was alot deeper than this one, so why wouldn't a team take a flyer on him?
     
  19. chaachie12

    chaachie12 Registered User

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    not sure if you meant after this next season, but Wheeler was only a Junior in HS this past season, he is a 2005 commit for the U of Minnesota.
     
  20. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    You sure? I read he is U. of Minnesota bound, after this year, maybe he's graduating early?
     
  21. Broadway Brett

    Broadway Brett Registered User

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    I looked it up, you're right, he's going to Minnesota in 2005. I still think he will be a first round pick.
     
  22. sushinsky4tsar

    sushinsky4tsar Registered User

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    Well in that case I guess he's ready to make the jump to the NHL for 2004/2005. Maybe "raw" wasn't the best use of terms. I certainly didn't mean anything derogatory by it. It's one of those words I associate (perhaps wrongly) with "boom or bust", unproven, markings of greatness, but not great yet. But obviously, high schoolers aren't going to be as polished as the other prospects in this draft. That's nothing against Blake. I'm not saying he's not world's better skill-wise than what he's going up against. The little I've seen of him was very impressive.

    But if you're team who absolutely must come away with a talent who will be contributing in the NHL, Wheeler probably isn't your guy.
     
  23. chaachie12

    chaachie12 Registered User

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    no you aren't too far off with the "raw" comment...I watched him several times this year, and he scores in a variety of ways, one being he is so much bigger than everyone else. Take those goals away becasue he won't be at the next level, or at least not as much. He has dominant, and sure fire first round, skills...what he must do is learn to play with fire and determination at all times. It seemed a few times last year when I saw him play he wasn't going 100%, he's not Vanek-like by any means, but he has gotten by on size for so long that his skill and work ethic have taken somewhat of a back seat. Sounds like he is done with football this school year, so he will focus on hockey 100%...this year, regardless of what leauge he is in, will be very telling. If he stays in HS there is ZERO reason he should pass last years numbers significantly.

    Of course, just my opinion.
     
  24. sushinsky4tsar

    sushinsky4tsar Registered User

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    Yep, I agree with you Chaach. If I knew Wheeler was a lock to be an intense, nasty, scrapping, gritty player (imagine Wheeler with Danny Irmen's heart and mean streak); then his stock would be a whole lot higher in my book. This combined with his size and scoring ability would be a scary thing.

    And like I said, I don't want to get too far into this, cuz I'm not going to pretend to have seen him play a whole lot (In fact zero at all live). But from what I did see, I can't say it's an automatic that he'll be that kind of a player. And don't get me wrong, he was anything but soft. And maybe if he starts playing against better competition in the USHL/U of M, we'll start to see some of that nastyness. But with that said, I thinks there's also a possibility that he'll be North America's answer to Christoph Brandner.
     
  25. That's pretty mean to say Sushi
     
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