FC’s Draft Countdown – 25-21 Overall

Vrana 1 - Barbora Reichová (Sport)

In the days leading up to the draft, Future Considerations will count down its top-ranked prospects for the 2014 NHL Draft in prospect profile segments. 

Draft Countdown 30-26
Draft Countdown 25-21
Draft Countdown 20-16
Draft Countdown 15-11
Draft Countdown 10-6
Draft Countdown 5-1

To go even deeper into the draft class, pick up Future Considerations’ 2014 NHL Draft Guide, containing our ranking of the top-210 prospects, full profiles on 210 draft eligibles, a two-round mock draft, a glimpse at the 2015 NHL Draft and much, much more! Click HERE to find out more!


25. Jakub Vrana – W – Linkoping

The Czech Republic has been producing a number of highly skilled imports such as the likes of Tomas Hertl lately, and young Vrana projects in a similar mould. The shifty winger releases the proverbial “bullet” from his stick night in and night out, and not only from his forehand. No, Vrana can toss darts from both sides of his blade. Although being an offensive go-to player, Vrana doesn’t ignore his defensive responsibilities, sticking to his assignments admirably.

Unfortunately, Vrana’s passing game isn’t as elite has his shooting one. While he’s a proficient passer, his success rate varies from game to game, and you won’t often find him “threading the needle” or dishing physics-defying passes. The 6-foot, 170-pound Vrana also struggles with ‘bringing it’ every night, as shown in counting stats, only a goal and three points in 24 SHL games.


24. Jack Dougherty – D – NTDP U18

A pillar on the U18 NTDP program’s blueline playing out of the USHL this season, Dougherty’s stock remained consistent throughout the year, as did his play. The 6-foot-1, 185-pound defender strives in his own zone, employing a physical brand of hockey alongside an active stick to thwart opportunities against.

Dougherty also has the ability – and likes – to step up for the big hit. Although it’s not a glaring hole, Dougherty’s skating isn’t brilliant and that mobility issue may scare teams away come June. His creativity with the puck is another downside and a main reason he only managed five goals and 17 points in 51 games this past year.


23. Nikolay Goldobin – RW – Sarnia Sting

It’s as if the stereotypical Russian forward – fast, skilled and dynamic – was moulded after Goldobin. The 6-foot, 175-pound dynamo ripped up the OHL in his second campaign this year with 38 goals and 95 points in 67 games. He possesses a loaded stick, ready to fire at all times, and is geared with elite vision that allow him to execute incredible plays.

All facets of his offensive game are tremendously developed and already pro-calibre. Much like the Russian scorer stereotype goes, Goldobin’s “give-a-damn” meter seems to malfunction when he crosses his own blueline, and is his most glaring weakness.


22. Thatcher Demko – G – Boston College

The only netminder ranked within Future Considerations’ Top 30, Demko’s strong showing as a rare draft eligible in the NCAA earned him a spot on the chart. The big, 6-foot-4, 185-pound keeper controls his crease at all times and utilizes his size to make tough stops. His butterfly style covers the lower part of the net consistently, with his two gloves blocking and catching any incoming rubber at altitude.

Like all young goaltenders, Demko has the odd slip-up here and there and needs to work on his consistency to succeed at the next level.


21. Conner Bleackley – C – Red Deer Rebels

Built like a truck, plays like a truck, and knowing his rural Alberta roots, he probably drives a truck too. The 6-foot-1, 200-pound center earns every second of ice-time he plays with his tireless work ethic and acute attention to detail. He grinds with the best of them and if finds a second alone in an opportune spot, will introduce goaltenders to the quick release he has fitted on his heavy shot.

The captain of the Red Deer Rebels managed 29 goals and 68 points 71 games this season but isn’t a go-to offensive player per-se. Bleakley takes advantage of fortunate breaks rather than creating them and doesn’t possess elite skating ability to break away from defenders.


To go even deeper into the draft class, pick up Future Considerations’ 2014 NHL Draft Guide, containing our ranking of the top-210 prospects, full profiles on 210 draft eligibles, a two-round mock draft, a glimpse at the 2015 NHL Draft and much, much more! Click HERE to find out more!

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