As I’ve mentioned on twitter, the ’98 born (CHL rookies) players are fantastic group. After watching the U17 camp in Calgary, I wanted to take an early look at Canada’s 2015 Ivan Hlinka team and the 2016 NHL draft. Honestly though, it’s too soon. I’ve seen some of these players over 50 times and others only three times in 51 minute games. Putting a full lineup together this early isn’t fair, but I’m confident these players will most likely be on the team. In no specific order;
LW – Tyler Benson #1 Vancouver WHL. Powerful skater, great offensive instincts, and plays with a physical edge.
C – Adam Mascherin #2 Kitchener OHL. Ridiculous hands and scoring ability.
C – Michael McLeod #5 Mississauga OHL. Fantastic skater, makes good plays with the puck, exceptional on face-offs.
RW - Tyson Jost BCHL. Pure goal scorer. Lead 17Camp with 8 points in three 51 minute games. Might go NCAA route.
C/RW - Nolan Patrick #4 Brandon WHL. Strong on the puck. Good offensive skills. Played RW at U17 camp but is more of a center.
LD - Sean Day #4 (2013) Mississauga OHL. Phenomenal skater. Likes to rush with the puck a lot.
LD - Jakob Chychrun #1 Sarnia OHL. Good defender with size. Very mobile. Might play for USA?
Other players that stand out and will likely make the team include; C Sam Steel, C William Bitten, C Brandon Saigeon, LW Travis Barron, D Dante Fabbro, and D Luke Green.
As for goalies, I’m terrible at evaluating them. There were 12 goalies invited to the U17 Camp. Samuel Harvey and Stuart Skinner were solid considering who they were up against. But like I said, I’m far from a goalie guru.
I’ve also been hearing a lot of hype about the Fins available in 2016. And it’s legit. 2 Big forwards with excellent scoring ability.
Jesse Puljujari http://www.eliteprospects.com/player.php?player=152117
It’ll be interesting to watch most these players in November at the U17 Challenge and throughout their rookie season’s in the CHL. Obviously, a lot of things can change in the next year, but this looks like a fantastic group of players. If the 2015 NHL draft is supposed to be ‘deep’, well, I think 2016 might be even ‘deeper’. The top 10 picks look outstanding and there are at least 15 other ’98 born Canadians with tons of skill and potential.