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35 WHL players named to NHL Central Scouting ‘Players to Watch’ list

WHL Network
Marc Smith/DiscoverMooseJaw

 

Calgary, Alta. – NHL Central Scouting issued its preliminary ‘Players to Watch’ list for the 2019 NHL Draft Monday, with 35 Western Hockey League players making the grade.

NHL Central Scouting identifies players with a rating system that includes four categories.  The ‘A’ rating indicates a first round candidate, a ‘B’ rating indicates a second or third round candidate, and a ‘C’ rating indicates a fourth, fifth, or sixth round candidate. A ‘LV’ rating indicates Limited Viewing of injured players who have not had sufficient viewings to be categorized.

With a strong crop of draft-eligible talent, seven WHL players were given “A” ratings, including Lethbridge Hurricanes forward Dylan Cozens, who is in a three-way tie for the WHL scoring lead with 10 points (5G-5A) through four games. Also making the top grade were forwards Kirby Dach (Fort Saskatchewan, Alta. / Saskatoon Blades), Nolan Foote (Engelwood, Colo. / Kelowna Rockets), Peyton Krebs (Okotoks, Alta. / Kootenay ICE), and Josh Williams (Langley, B.C. / Medicine Hat Tigers). Making the top grade as defencemen were Bowen Byram (Cranbrook, B.C. / Vancouver Giants) and Matthew Robertson (Sherwood Park, Alta. / Edmonton Oil Kings). All seven players who earned “A” grades helped lead Hockey Canada to a golden performance at the 2018 Hlinka Gretzky Cup in August.

Five WHL players earned “B” ratings, including goaltender Taylor Gauthier (Calgary, B.C. / Prince George Cougars), who earned one of the three “B” ratings awarded to goaltenders across the entire Canadian Hockey League. 23 more more captured “C” ratings.

In total, 19 of 22 WHL teams are represented in the ‘Players to Watch” list. The Kelowna Rockets lead all WHL member Clubs with five players on this year’s initial list, followed by four for the league-leading Edmonton Oil Kings. The Saskatoon Blades are close behind with three while the Everett Silvertips, Lethbridge Hurricanes, Portland Winterhawks, Red Deer Rebels, Regina Pats, Seattle Thunderbirds, and Vancouver Giants each have a pair of players named to the list. Nine WHL teams have a single player ranked on the list.

The breakdown favoured WHL forwards with 17 of them named to the list, with 12 defencemen, and six goaltenders also appearing. Six players selected in the 2018 Canadian Hockey League Import Draft by WHL teams also found themselves earning recognition, with second overall selection Vladimir Alistrov (Mogilev, Belarus / Edmonton Oil Kings) appearing on the list.

2019 NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING PRELIMINARY ‘PLAYERS TO WATCH’ – WHL PLAYERS

PTW Last Name First Name Team League Height Weight Pos
A BRYAM BOWEN VANCOUVER WHL 6’0.5″ 194 D
A COZENS DYLAN LETHBRIDGE WHL 6’3″ 181 C
A DACH KIRBY SASKATOON WHL 6’3.5″ 199 C
A FOOTE NOLAN KELOWNA WHL 6’3.5″ 190 LW
A KREBS PEYTON KOOTENAY WHL 5’11.25″ 180 C
A ROBERTSON MATTHEW EDMONTON WHL 6’3″ 201 D
A WILLIAMS JOSH MEDICINE HAT WHL 6’1″ 194 RW
B KORCZAK KADEN KELOWNA WHL 6’2.75″ 192 D
B MALYSJEV EMIL SASKATOON WHL 6’3″ 187 D
B MUTALA SASHA TRI-CITY WHL 6’0.5″ 195 RW
B ZAYTSEV OLEG RED DEER WHL 6’0.75″ 186 C
C ALEXANDER JACSON EDMONTON WHL 5’9.25 178 D
C ALISTROV VLADIMIR EDMONTON WHL 6’1.75″ 175 LW
C BARLAGE LOGAN LETHBRIDGE WHL 6’3.75 202 C
C BURZAN LUKA BRANDON WHL 6’0″ 184 C
C FAIRBROTHER GIANNI EVERETT WHL 5’11.75″ 194 D
C HAMALIUK DILLON SEATTLE WHL 6’2.75″ 190 LW
C HANUS CLAY PORTLAND WHL 5’9.5″ 166 D
C KOPE DAVID EDMONTON WHL 6’3.75 170 RW
C LANG MARTIN KAMLOOPS WHL 5’10.75″ 163 LW
C LEE JAKE SEATTLE WHL 6’1.75″ 216 D
C LUDVIG JOHN PORTLAND WHL 6’0.5″ 196 D
C MORRISSEAU KOBY REGINA WHL 6’2.5″ 212 C
C SEDOV NIKITA REGINA WHL 6’1″ 186 D
C THOMSON LASSI KELOWNA WHL 6’0″ 188 D
C TOPOROWSKI LUKE SPOKANE WHL 5’10.75″ 179 C
C TOPPING KYLE KELOWNA WHL 5’11.25″ 185 C
C TRACEY BRAYDEN MOOSE JAW WHL 6’0″ 177 LW
C VAN DE LEEST JACKSON CALGARY WHL 6’6.25″ 222 D

Goaltenders

PTW Last Name First Name Team League Height Weight Position
B GAUTHIER TAYLOR PRINCE GOERGE WHL 6’1″ 193 G
C ANDERS ETHAN RED DEER WHL 6’0.75″ 172 G
C BASRAN ROMAN KELOWNA WHL 6’1.5″ 195 G
C MAIER NOLAN SASKATOON WHL 5’11.5″ 173 G
C MINER TRENT VANCOUVER WHL 6’0.5″ 182 G
C WOLF DUSTIN EVERETT WHL 5’11.5 156 G

Players have been identified using the following criteria:

  • A Rating — Indicates a first round candidate
  • B Rating — Indicates a second or third round candidate
  • C Rating — Indicates a fourth/fifth/sixth round candidate

• LV (Limited Viewing) — Injured players who have not had sufficient viewings to be categorized.

For the complete list, CLICK HERE.

About the Western Hockey League
Regarded as the world’s finest development league for junior hockey players, the Western Hockey League (WHL) head office is based in Calgary, Alberta. The WHL consists of 22 member Clubs with 17 located in Western Canada and five in the U.S. Pacific Northwest. A member of the Canadian Hockey League, the WHL has been a leading supplier of talent for the National Hockey League for over 50 years. The WHL is also the leading provider of hockey scholarships with over 350 graduates each year receiving WHL Scholarships to pursue a post-secondary education of their choice. Each season, WHL players also form the nucleus of Canada’s National Junior Hockey Team.

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