Future Considerations’ managing editor Aaron Vickers gives his thoughts on who from the 2012 NHL Entry Draft class left him impressed, who disappointed and who his sleeper is on draft day.
I make no bones about it. I am not a scout. I am not even going to pretend this fact. What I am, though, is smart enough to leave that scouting thing up to our wonderful staff of 19 and scouting director Dan Stewart.
Until now, that is.
After editing nearly a dozen of these ‘Scout’s Series’ features, I felt the overwhelming obligation to throw my two cents into the picture and instead of being the front piece for Future Considerations’ editorial side, I’ll put my neck out.
It’s difficult not to take the easy way out, so I’ll do so with Mathew Dumba. In almost every facet of the game, the Calgary product was impressive. He spent most of the season logging upwards of 30-plus minutes a game, and never once looked out of breath. In fact, Red Deer Rebels coach Jesse Wallin joked to me that they were going to try Dumba out for 60 minutes in a game to see if he could do it.
The best word to describe Dumba is explosive. He’s an explosive skater, he’s an explosive hitter and the adjective carries over to his offensive game. Though he’s already talked about as one of the best defensemen available in the class, the Rebels defenseman could emerge as the best blueliner to come from 2012.
And if he does become just that, expect Canada’s Ivan Hlinka and World Under-18 Championship captain to emerge unaffected. As good as he is on the ice, Dumba is equally as modest off the ice.
Which makes for one heck of a combination.
With each viewing, Coda Gordon of the Swift Current Broncos left me wanting just a little bit more but could never seem to deliver.
A standout rookie in the Western Hockey League, Gordon found the back of the net on a regular basis and put up a pile of points for the Broncos, but always left me wondering how he accomplished it.
Gordon isn’t the quickest of skaters and I sometimes question his offensive awareness. He wasn’t overly physical and dynamic wouldn’t be the adjective I’d use to describe him. He may have been the quietest 30-goal scorer in the WHL.
Now, that said, you don’t net 30 without knowing where to go. They aren’t pretty and they aren’t dynamic, but they count just the same. If Gordon is able to continue that trend of scoring boring, but many, goals at the next level, none of his other liabilities will matter at all.
Having seen nearly ever start he made over the course of the season, I have big expectations for Calgary Hitmen goalie Chris Driedger.
After being acquired in the offseason from the Tri City Americans, Driedger split goaltending duties with veteran Brandon Glover. When he got the opportunity to get between the pipes, Driedger impressed me with his athleticism and composure.
Did he struggle with inconsistency? Absolutely. Does Driedger have the personality to shake those inconsistencies off? Most definitely.
Which, with a little time and the right development, could make Driedger a starting goalie in the National Hockey League some day.