Discussion in 'NHL Draft - Prospects' started by DaveG, May 24, 2011.
continues from here:
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Red Deer Rebels, WHL: Part II
Red Deer Rebels, WHL
C (LHS) | 6' 0" | 164 lbs | Stats
Born: April 12, 1993 | Burnaby, BC
Fnl: 1 | Mid: 3
Chief Scout Stu MacGregor's Take
Scouting Report: "He's got high-end skills, vision and hockey sense."
Projection: "A first-line centre."
Best Case Scenario: "Very good first-line centre."
Concerns: "I don't think it's size. It's physical strength."
RNH and Matters of Size
"Will he get big enough? Will he get strong enough to play in the NHL? I don't know if size is an issue in terms of height, but he will have to get stronger," MacGregor said. "He's six feet and half-an-inch, that's what Central Scouting has him at. The issue is, is he going to put on enough poundage to handle the rigors of the NHL?"
That's a question that's been asked about a lot of players who turned out just fine, as in Hall of Fame fine, like Wayne Gretzky and Joe Sakic and Steve Yzerman, who were all scrawny, pencil-necked kids as NHL rookies. Of course, just mentioning three of the greatest players to ever lace on skates draws a groan from MacGregor, as you'd expect.
"I've never been one who likes to compare players, especially when you get to Gretzky. Like, come on," MacGregor said. "Yzerman was drafted at 155 pounds. Sakic wasn't very big either. I'm not comparing this guy to those guys because they're hall-of-famers, but remember these guys are 17 and 18 years old.
"The question is, can he put on the weight that gives him the strength and power? Those guys did, so obviously it's not impossible to do that. Now, is it possible for him to do that?"
Obviously, it's tough to say for sure with an 18-year-old. Fitness programs and diet aside, Nugent-Hopkins should put on size naturally as he matures. He has an older brother who is the same height and his father is shorter. Both are "thicker," according to MacGregor.
I'll get into what MacGregor had to say about other aspects of Nugent-Hopkins game later in this series, but my read is he puts other attributes ahead of size when it comes to this player. "He's got great hockey sense and he's got great skill," MacGregor said.
Craig Button's 'Joe Sakic' Quote
"He makes everyone around him better," NHL Network analyst Craig Button said. "He reminds me of Joe Sakic in this thinking and ability. Sakic was one of those guys where it didn't matter what type of game you were playing. You always knew you could count on Joe Sakic and you knew he'd made a play and make a difference, and I feel exactly the same way about Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. In my mind, it will take an enormous effort by another player to unseat Nugent-Hopkins as the No. 1 prospect heading into the Draft because I think he's a star in the making."
Central Scouting Quotes
"A couple of people high up in the Oilers' organization -- and I'm not naming names -- said Hopkins has the best vision on the ice since No. 99 (Wayne Gretzky)," Central Scouting's Peter Sullivan, who mainly scouts WHL prospects, told NHL.com. "That's the highest compliment you can get, but also another thing is the way Ryan competes. He never takes a night off and he works as hard in his own end as he does in the offensive zone. It takes a special player with special skills to be able to do that."
B.J. MacDonald, who also specializes in scouting players from the WHL, agreed. "I think Hopkins will be prolific because he's one of the few this year where he consistently beat players 1-on-1," MacDonald told NHL.com. "He's the only guy in the draft this year who can do it consistently. I always kid other scouts and say he's got the biggest gap in the league because when he swings out of his own zone with that puck, everyone else just backs up because they don't want to get beat by him -- that gives you a little indication of his talent.
From the Edmonton Journal just yesterday...
What do they all have in common?
1. They are all top centres this year
2. They are 6'0" and smaller
3. They are less (in most cases substantially less) than 200 lbs
RNH is 6'0.5" and 165-170lbs and turned 18 last month.
oilers have a tough call. they desperately need a center and d-man. centers are a rarity i'd go with rnh
1 month until RNH is an Oiler, can't wait.
Stu MacGregor has said Larsson probably won't be a #1 D, while RNH will likely be a 1st line C. I'm convinced we're taking Nugent-Hopkins.
These words do not cut it when describe players for the #1 pick.
centers with less than 1.6PPg being drafted #1 are so rare. love his points from PP ratio and points from goals ratio. right there with other draft greats. daigle, bonsignore, kelly, Stefan, niinimaki.
This guy is a can't miss prospect.
Well, he is.
Bonsignore was incredibly lazy with no work ethic. I doubt he'd be anywhere near the top 10 with modern scouting.
I was at the draft when the Oilers took Kelly and the chants of Doan literally turned into a collective WTF.
The fans knew these guys were bums, unfortunately Sather was oblivious. Stu as a scout is vastly superior in every way to what the Oilers were doing in the early 90's.
Did you watch any of the players you listed actually play hockey? We get it, you are extremely biased in your hate towards RNH , you've made this all too clear. Why even read this thread, just move along.
I dont know what these three have to do with RNH, none of them were ever ranked #1 in their draft year let alone the consensus number 1 by the majority of scouting services.
I wonder what other players we could compare him to?
Enjoy kicking a cat before you go to bed, crying into your pillow with confused tears of anger.
RNH will be in the NHL next year, he's working way too hard in this offseason to not be. We already know he has the skills to play in the NHL, the only concern with him is if he will gain more weight and become strong enough. When the Rebels got eliminated, RNH weighed 165 and has put on 7 lbs since then. He weights 172 now and is going to continue putting on weight and getting stronger.
Whether RNH makes weight before camp or not, he still won't play in the NHL. Gaining weight in 3-4 months doesn't guarantee much strength. I work out 5 days a week and yes I do put on weight, but it's mainly water, fat and yes a bit of muscles. You cannot gain much muscles in that span of time and I assume the strength he's getting from are from muscles, not fat and water. So what if he makes 180 by camp, none of is quality weight. It's just excess weight and will only make him slower. I'd rather have the best RNH and if that means having him go another year of development in jr then so be it, rather than having Gagner 2.0.
im not sold on him, but i am sold on larsson hope oilers make right decision.
So I guess Kane as well wasn't ready to make the NHL when he was drafted? RNH's game is very similar to Kane's in the sense that he is very agile and could make the play and avoid the hit all at the same time, something that Datsyuk can do as well. The biggest concern is that he isn't big or strong enough to play in the NHL but if he gets to 178 and the way he plays, I don't think he will have any problem handling the NHL. Patrick Kane is still 178 and he has played 82, 80, 82 and 73 games in four seasons. If Kane can handle the NHL, I'm sure RNH can as well. Also before you get into the argument that he is a center etc. RNH has very good body positioning, Datsyuk isn't the strongest guy but his body positioning and his ability to steal the puck away from his opponents is something that RNH does. Now I'm not saying RNH will be as good as Datyuk but he's a mix of Datsyuk and Kane IMO.
Kane's core strength is stronger than RNH. Look at the way they are built. I rather play it safe and wait another year so he can come into the NHL solid 180-185 than a 180lbs RNH who's carrying lots of water. He'll be too slow and he'll get crushed. Nothing personal just looking at what's best for him and the Oilers long term.
I don't think Kane's core strength was that much stronger then RNH when he got drafted and played in the NHL but fair enough you have your opinion, I have mine. I think he makes the team right out of camp and highly doubt he gets sent down.
You mean WAS stronger?
Prove what you are spouting off here. Like what do you even mean by "look at the way they are built"?
And for the record, Stu M told me to my face that he hasn't seen a player with that type of vision since 99. Not passing skills, but the ability to see hits coming before they arrive and the ability to get out of the way like nobody he's seen in a long time.
Watch RNH, you'll see it.
So do you want to forfeit the pick?
Lets not forget that Stu doesn't like to make player comparisons and it seems like he doesn't speak in absolutes. If he says RNH is "likely" going to be a #1 center, he probably believes it's going to be the case. However, he can't see the future so why would he put that kind of pressure on the team's future prospect and make it seem like it's a lock?
I watched Seguin a lot in junior and I've seen RNH play a handful of games. From what I've seen and then heard/read, RNH is a better prospect than Seguin and a better fit to play with Hall. On paper we should be getting the 2nd best player to be drafted in the last 2 years.
I think he's referring to RNH's extreme ectomorph build, which is a good point that he makes IMO. Kane was a little bit stockier in his build, not quite as scrawny. I don't even know if Turris was as scrawny, RNH is one thin dude.
I still think he makes the Oilers next season, due to his agility and vision in avoiding hits, but I still reckon that canovin makes some solid points.
I don't see Sakic in RNH.... Sakic had a wicked shot and was a natural goal scorer. RNH is not that. RNH reminds me of a Brad Richards except much better skater. IMO RNH is nowhere near ready for the NHL next year. He needs another full year of strength training and needs to be more consistent for a whole season
Kane's core strength? Kane has been in the league for 3 years now and has gained maybe 5 lbs.. he barely touches the weights in the off-season.
Well, it's highly likely after what their head scout has said about RNH, but you'll never know until it's announced at the draft. There is always a chance that something happens (trading down, changed view on the prospect etc.). I think the combine is gonna be very important for the prospects because it's a very difficult draft to predict.
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