Five Players to Watch on NHL Central Scouting’s List
The National Hockey League's Central Scouting department released it's annual Players to Watch List for the 2017 NHL Entry Draft on Tuesday morning, and the list of more than 200 players included five members of the Owen Sound Attack.
Players were graded using A, B, C, and LV ratings where an 'A' rating indicates a 1st round candidate, a 'B' rating indicates a 2nd or 3rd round candidate, a 'C' rating indicates a 4th, 5th, or 6th round candidate, and 'LV' indicates a prospect who has had limited viewings.
Owen Sound's Nick Suzuki, Markus Phillips, Jonah Gadjovich, Maxim Sushko, and Trenton Bourque were all rated in the initial Central Scouting list, with Suzuki and Phillips both garnering 'B' ratings.
Coming off of a standout rookie season that saw him be the only 16 year old in the OHL to notch 20 goals, Nick Suzuki is looking to continue his upward trajectory in his sophomore OHL season.
After scoring the aforementioned 20 goals and adding 18 assists in 63 games in 2015-16, Suzuki has already scored once and added another assist in the Attack's 1st four games of this season. The 5'11', 185lbs centreman was also a member of the gold medal winning Team Canada White at the 2016 World Under 17 Challenge and represented Canada at the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament this past summer.
Joining Suzuki in the 'B' rating category is Attack rearguard Markus Phillips, who is enjoying a breakout start to his 2nd campaign in the OHL.
After scoring just three times in all of 2015-16, Phillips - who captained Team Canada at the Ivan Hlinka - has already found the back of the net three times in Owen Sound's first four games of 2016-17. The 6'0, 210 lbs defenceman also captained Team Canada Red at the World Under 17 Challenge last fall.
First year import for the Owen Sound Attack, Maxim Sushko, has yet to find the back of the net for the Attack in three appearances this year, but is a top NHL prospect thanks to having amassed 70 points in 49 games played in the Belarus Tier II professional league over the past two years. Picked 11th overall in the KHL's rookie draft in 2016, the Attack used their 29th overall pick in the CHL import draft to snatch up the Belarussian sniper.
Jonah Gadjovich makes his debut in the NHL's Central Scouting rankings as his 3rd year in the OHL begins. A late birthday made Gadjovich ineligible for the 2016 NHL Entry Draft, but the power forward will garner some looks thanks to his physical play and what looks to be increased offensive production. After scoring 18 goals and adding 15 assists in his first two years in the OHL, Gadjovich has already scored twice for the Attack in 2016-17.
The final player to make the Central Scouting Players to Watch Ranking for the Attack is Trenton Bourque, a draft re-entry candidate.
Acquired from the Sudbury Wolves in early December of 2015, Bourque has 90 games of OHL experience and has 10 career assists in the league. The 6'2, 201lbs defender is beginning his first full year with the Attack and will look to prove himself as a solid two-way defender ahead of the draft.
For a full list of all players ranked in the NHL Central Scouting Players to Watch list, visit here: https://www.nhl.com/info/nhl-central-scouting-player-rankings