Sometimes this is not your year. It happened. And, as they said, next year will always come.
Next year is now one of the few people eligible to participate in the 2021 NHL draft. They have been eliminated in the previous seasons and are still waiting for their draft dreams to come true. Whether it is an injury problem, a size problem, a lack of perfect skill development or physical maturity, or any other number of red flags, sometimes potential customers need to show a little patience to finally wear an NHL hat and jersey.
NHL 2021 draft: Pay attention to five sleepers
This year, like any other year, there will be a large number of players-often referred to as draft overage players-who will finally realize the next step in their hockey dreams. And there is no shortage of talents among them.
Below is a summary of five over-aged candidates who are likely to see their names selected as early as possible in the July 23-24 draft.
Over-age players in the 2021 NHL Draft
Janis Moser, D, Biel-Bienne (Netherlands)
FC Hockey Ranking: 133
In the 2021 draft, there may be no safer over-age player than Moser, who is in the final year of the draft. He also has the most development time.
The 21-year-old player was promoted to the captain of the Swiss top professional league EHC Biel-Bienne and has made great strides in qualifying for the past two seasons. He scored 30 points (9 goals, 21 assists) in 48 games this season and represented the Swiss team in the 2021 IIHF Men’s World Championship.
“Moser is a reliable defender who has good skating skills and improved his offensive skills,” said FC Hockey scout Dennis Schellenberg. “He played a very safe and reliable game in his own area and made no mistakes.”
This is not always the case with Moser. He also represented Switzerland in the 2019 International Ice Federation Men’s World Championship. Considering his game two years ago, it is not surprising that Moser was not selected.
“His style of playing is not outstanding, because his passing is safe and reliable in his own area,” Schellenberg added. “This does not necessarily attract people’s attention immediately.
“On the other hand, I have to say that in the past two seasons, his offensive ability has been greatly improved, he began to assume more responsibility for the ball, and began to grow into the team leader.”
With some of the problems in his game corrected, Moser is a strong candidate, chosen as one of the most mature prospects in the draft, and a candidate who has a rapid impact at the NHL level.
“Moser is a more responsible player who will take over the game when the critical moment of the game arrives,” Schellenberg said. “His offense at EHC Biel this season is very strong and has improved his game to a new level. Level.”
Ethan Cardwell, RW, Surahammars (HockeyEttan)
FC Hockey Ranking: 89
Cardwell is one of the young players in the 2020 NHL draft, only two weeks away from participating in the 2021 class. Therefore, it is not surprising that he needs a little extra time to better finish his game.
Caldwell completed the 2019-20 season on the heater of the Barry Colts of the Ontario Hockey League, but it was he who completed the 2019-20 season in Sweden with HockeyEttan’s Surahammars IF this season, which really made Caldway Er has the opportunity to realize his NHL draft dream.
FCHockey scout Dylan Galloway said: “In a deeper draft like 2020, I think it’s difficult for some more players to stand out.” “In my opinion, I think Cardwell deserves a late draft last year. Right, but his game does have some problems, which makes it understandable that the team wants to see him exercise before drafting him.”
After scoring 27 points (9 goals, 18 assists) in 18 games, Cardwell showed ideal progress. He showed a fast-paced game, which made life difficult for his opponents, and was also very effective in the Swedish professional league, albeit at a low level.
“Cadwell is a fast and aggressive forward, and it looks like he can play a cunning hockey retrieval player in the bottom six of the NHL team,” Galloway said. “I also think that Cardwell may be killed by a penalty kick from the NHL because of his speed and his aggressiveness when dribbling the ball.
“The 2021 draft is not as in-depth as previous drafts, and I think the team may consider re-entering more frequently than in other years.”
Xavier Simono, C, Drummondville/Charlottetown (QMJHL)
FC Hockey Ranking: 238
Like Moser, Simoneau is entering his third round in the NHL draft. Unlike Moser, Simoneau failed to overcome his biggest question mark to date: size.
“No matter how much weight Simono adds to his body, he always maintains a 5-7 level, which troubles some NHL teams,” FCHockey scout Andy Lehux pointed out. “Even though he showed above-average skating skills and completely dominated the opponent’s race in the competition, people believe that he will have difficulty adapting to the next level.
As a favorite over-age candidate of many scouts before the class, Simono continues to prove that he can play high-intensity, offensive and creative games at the QMJHL level. Scoring has never been a forward’s problem. He scored 37 points (10 goals, 27 assists) in 27 games in 2020-21 and 89 points (28 goals, 61 assists) in 61 games last season. ).
Lehoux suggests that productivity and willingness are there.
“Simono is a dynamic, competitive and talented playmaker. He is willing to do anything that will put his team in a good position to win,” he said. “The captain of Drummondville leads by example, 110%, 100% of the time.
“There is absolutely no guarantee that Simono will be selected this year, because his size is the main focus of the team, and he has obviously not grown a bit. In other words, his incredible leadership and skills have been gained this season. Fully show that this should attract the attention of many people. Simono deserves to be selected, as he has done in the past two years.”
Josh Dogan, RW, Chicago (USHL)
FC Hockey Ranking: 72
Perhaps no overage person has shown greater season improvement than Doan.
As the son of Shane, the mainstay of the former Coyotes team, the young Doan has accumulated 70 points (31 goals, 39 assists) in 70 games and helped guide the USHL’s Chicago Steel team to the Clark Cup championship. Compared to his only 14 points (5 goals, 9 assists) in 45 games in the 2019-20 season, this is a remarkable leap.
“Doan had difficulty producing offense in his draft year, and he was not very big, and because of his size, he was not very effective,” FCockey scout Dylan Krill revealed. “During the offseason, Dogan grew and added more weight, which benefited him a lot. To be able to win more hockey matches and become a very reliable defensive forward, he added more in the game. Skills, which enable Doan to make contributions and generate points on a stable basis.”
Body size (6-1 and 183 pounds), willingness to improve leading to large-scale skill development, coupled with a natural understanding of the game, should make Doan the focus of most NHL teams in the 2021 draft.
“Doan is a two-way winger, every shift brings skills, competitiveness and responsible decision-making,” Creel said. “He has played with the mentality of a professional player. He understands what it takes to play a full 200-foot game.”
James Hardy, LW, Mississauga (OHL)
FC Hockey Ranking: 99
The 19-year-old player will become an interesting over-age player on the second day of the draft. He is not suitable for the 2020-21 season, which makes him a wild card on draft day.
“Unfortunately, Hardy cannot participate in any league this season,” Galloway said. “But the variability of this draft and the almost complete previous season review may give the NHL team more confidence that Hardy has surpassed some other first-time qualified people.
“Hadi is likely to be selected in 2020, and I think it makes sense to give him a chance in 2021.”
He played well in the 18-year-old season of the Mississauga Steel Heads, scoring 63 points (34 goals, 29 assists) in 59 games. Hardy is known for his high level of athleticism and offensive ability, he looks like a rookie who needs more time to develop and fine-tune his game.
However, apart from a short stop at the PBHH Invitational in Erie, Pennsylvania in May, Hardie didn’t have much track to show any improvement.
Nevertheless, according to Galloway, the main body of work still exists.
“Hadi is a hard-working winger. He showed above-average offensive abilities during the draft season, but if he develops to his limit, he can become a deep offensive winger for the NHL team,” he said . “His open skating needs some improvement, but I think his ability to work in tight spaces and edge work is a better asset for his offensive aspects of ice hockey.
“As a smaller player, I think Hardy needs to improve his overall skating ability and the ability to predict the movement of his teammates in the offensive zone. His offensive skills were very active in the second half of last season, and I think if he can prove that it is more than just It’s a winning streak and he may be sold out later in the 2020 draft.”
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Aaron Vickers is hockey.