As I said earlier in the Hendrix Lapierre thread, we talked to Martin Pouliot (a scout of the Washington Capitals) last week and asked him a lot of questions for our latest episode of the TSLH Podcast. I tried to translate all the information. I’m francophone so sorry for my english but I think it is understandable. You can listen to the french episode on our youtube channel, spotify, speaker, apple podcast, etc. The coaches has their word to say in the trades. When there is a player that does not fit in the line up, he can ask the GM to find another player. After that, the GM asked his pro scout for a list of name that fits the coach’s needs and he uses that to contact other GM. Usually, the GM, scout, coach, etc. do not speak (to source, journalist, etc.) about the trade market and the names that are in it. When there are rumours, most of the time, they are false or a way for the teams to manipulate other GM. There is a code that is respected by everyone. It is to protect you (scout) or other players, gm and coaches from embarrassment. Skating is the easiest thing to upgrade for a prospect but after 24 yo it is more difficult. Hockey IQ, hands and scoring abilities are inner and cannot be teach. However, sometime it is the only thing that prevents a player to succeed in the NHL, so it is not easy to ignore skating problem at junior level. Usually, for the early round in the draft, there is a consensus for the picks. After that, the GM and head scout make the decision. During the season, regional scout can invite the head scout to see X player and try to convince him to select him in the later round. So when you have a team that takes a lot of player from the same junior league, you can understand that the scout from that league has the confidence of the head scout. For Martin Pouliot, the more you draft from different league, the better you are. In addition, the more you have a homogenous philosophy between the scouts, the better you are too. The NCAA should revised the 4 years rules before loosing an unsigned player. The CHL is clearly disadvantage. The pandemic changed the way scouting is done. There is more video right now. For some team, when everything will be normal, they will use more video. For other, it will be : back to the rink. It depends a lot team by team. We can think that there will be some gems that were not draft in 2020 because of the pandemic and the lacks of exposure. We’ll see. For the last decade or so, the Capitals always had a chance at the Stanley Cup. It happens because of a full reconstruction. They develop their young players well and they were lucky at the draft. A lot of player fell to their pick (like Kuznetsov). Because of Ovechkin, they could select them and they came over. It happened for key players in their system. Maybe that a new reconstruction of their team will happen in a near future but he did not really said that clearly. BPA at the draft is always the best thing to do. It gives you assets that you can use to trade if you need it. The second part of a season is important for the scouts because the hockey is more difficult. The pandemic had an effect on that this season and it s***. Hendrix Lapierre was high on the head scout list. He contacted his team on many occasions during the year to know how he felt. They really wanted him and are happy that he is a part of the team. World junior will be difficult for Canada. All Europeans are playing right now and will be more than ready for the tournament.