Hes 6th overall selection of the 2012 OHL Draft is a player that fits in well with the team that selected him, the Guelph Storm. Fabbri is a high skill centre who really brings one of the highest compete levels in the 96 age group in Ontario. He relies on both his high skill set and his determination to make an impact on the game.
Zach Leslie has always been a prospect that has intrigued me. Its not often that you see a player who has the offensive ability that he does on the back end. Dating back to his minor midget year in Ottawa and his year in the CCHL, Leslie continued to show good growth with his offensive game. In his first year with the Guelph Storm, Leslie has sown some really impressive growth. He has improved his positional play in is own zone to the point that it is now one of his strengths, which is not something that could be said about him two years ago. He still has room to grow with both his consistency as well as his strength. I think he has taken a lot of my peers by surprise this season, but I have to say I’m not that surprised by Leslie’s progression, and feel that he will be taken a lot higher then where NHL Central Scouting has him rated heading into the draft.
Kosmachuk is another graduate of the famous Toronto Marlboros of the Greater Toronto Hockey League. Drafted in the Ontario Hockey League by Guelph in 2010, he has shown a good progression thus far in his OHL career. In his first season he played a depth role on a team that had a deep group of forwards, and simply adjusted to the pace of play. He showed a good complete level, but didn’t really have an opportunity to show what he is capable of. This year, he has taken a more active role with the Storm, and has thrived. He is one of the offensive leaders on the Storm, and has really made a name for himself in the eyes of Scouts. He was invited to play with Team Canada at the World U18 Hockey Championships.
Finn is one of the biggest surprises for me this season. Dating back to his years with the Toronto Marlboros of the Greater Toronto Area, most people that I talked with (myself included), felt that he would be a smart positional defenceman who had some NHL potential, but more so as a bottom pairing, defence first defeneman. Last year he showed some signs of being more then that, however I needed to see more growth in his offensive game. This season, that growth has certainly present, and he has to now be considered as a potential first round draft selection for the 2012 NHL Draft. He projects out as an intelligent two way defenceman who has some interesting offensive upside.
Watling is a hard working two-way centre who shows some good offensive upside. He brings a good complete level to the ice every time he hits the ice, and is the type of player who is willing to do what it takes to win. He shows improving puck skills, and could be a late round NHL draft selection if a team sees long term potential in him.
Spencer Turcotte / Right Wing / 6’2″ / 203 / Feb. 17, 1994
Turcotte is a hard working, north to south winger who brings a bit of jam to the ice. He is willing to drop the gloves when need be, and is aggressive on the forecheck. He struggles with the offensive side of his game, and needs significant time and space to create offense. Not on the NHL Draft radar at this time.
Justin Auger / Right Wing / 6’7″ / 217 / May. 14, 1994
Auger is a personal favorite of mine. It’s not often that you see players with his combination of size, mobility and puck skills. He is a good skater who shows above average acceleration and mobility for his size. When he is confident and assertive, he has the ability to generate offense off of the rush. His progression throughout the year has been interesting, and he should be a mid to late round NLH Draft selection.
Brock McGinn / Left Wing / 5’11″ / 172 / Feb. 2, 1994
McGinn has had an interesting season. Missing a significant period of hockey with an injury, but when he was healthy he showed good progression in the offensive side of his game. He brought a good compete level to the ice every time I saw him, and was a good skater. Areas to work on include his three-zone play, as well as his core strength. He should be a mid round draft selection for the NHL Draft.
Scott Kosmachuk / Right Wing / 5’11″ / 182 / Jan. 24, 1994
Kosmachuk has shown good growth this year. He continued to play his strong, aggressive style, but this year he showed good puck skills and offensive abilities. He was good down low and along the boards, and effective at generating offense off of the cycle. He always seems to find open space in the offensive zone. He has some room to grow with his discipline level and his intelligence. He projects out as a 2nd round draft selection in the 2012 NHL Draft.
Matt Finn / Defence / 6’0″ / 197/ Feb. 24, 1994
The progress that Matt Finn has shown this year has been quite impressive. He has always been a smart defesive defenceman who showed some good offensive upside, but this year he really took some steps offensively. He has shown growth in his offensive abilities as well as his decision-making abilities, and most importantly his confidence. He has some room to grow with his mobility and footwork, but he gets the job done. Projects out as a 1st round NHL Draft selection.
Zack Leslie / Defence / 6’1″ / 171/ Jan. 31, 1994
Leslie has been flying under the radar all year. In his first season in the OHL, Leslie has shown enough ability and projectable skills that make him one of my dark horses for the NHL Draft. His mobility, vision with the puck and his ability to generate offense are impressive. He is a strong skater who shows good footwork. He has room to grow with his upper body strength, as well as his three zone positional play. He should be a mid round selection for the NHL Draft.