Mittelstadt best of the rest among eligibles

Austin Broad2017 Draft Center, NCAA, USHL

Photo courtesy Eden Prairie High

The 2017 NHL Draft is fast approaching with the first round set to kick-off at United Center in Chicago on June 23. Future Considerations has spent the season in rinks spanning the globe in preparation for Future Considerations’ 2017 NHL Draft Guide.

And, according to Future Considerations, these are the top-ranked players the 2017 draft has to offer from the US High School system, the AJHL and the NCAA.

Casey Mittelstadt, C, Eden Prairie (USHS), 6-1, 200, 11-22-1998
Mittlestatdt, fifth in Future Considerations’ Final ranking for the 2017 NHL Draft, had an amazing year at Eden Prairie High. Serving as captain, He scored 21 goals and added 43 assists in 25 games played at the high school level. Mittelstadt is a highly skilled offensive player, as evidenced by his 239 career points in 114 career USHS games. Mittelstadt also took his game to the next level and dominated play while suiting up for the Green Bay Gamblers of the United States Hockey League. During USHL competition, Mittelstadt scored 13 goals and added 17 assists for 30 points in 24 games.

Cale Makar, D, Brooks Bandits (AJHL), 5-11, 180, 10-30-1998
Makar, seventh in Future Considerations’ Final ranking, was amazing this year for the Brooks Bandits. Makar dominated Alberta Junior Hockey League scoring with 24 goals and 51 assists for 75 points in 54 games player. Makar won the AJHL MVP award for his outstanding regular season and continued his dominance into the playoffs, where he scored five goals and 11 assists for 16 points in 13 playoff games. He earned AJHL Playoff MVP honors along the way. Makar, one of the draft’s biggest risers, also made history at the RBC Cup by becoming the first player to capture the MVP and Top Defenseman award in consecutive seasons.

Ryan Poehling, C, St. Cloud State (NCAA), 6-2, 185, 01-03-1999
Poehling, 21st in Future Considerations’ Final ranking, had a good year in the NCAA. He scored six goals and added seven assists for 13 points in 35 games, and helped the United States win gold at the 2017 IIHF World Under-18 Championship. Poehling skated in seven games for Team USA and scored three goals and added two assists for five points in the tournament.

Jake Oettinger, G, Boston University (NCAA), 6-4, 210, 12-18-1998
Oettinger, 26th in Future Considerations’ Final ranking for the 2017 NHL Draft and the top-ranked goaltender, started 35 games for Boston University this season and posted a 21-11-3 record with a 2.11 goals against average and .927 save percentage. He backstopped BU into the NCAA tournament before falling to Minnesota-Duluth in the Regional Bracket. Oettinger was also named to the United States entry for the 2017 IIHF World Junior Championship and that went on to win gold, serving in a third-string role.

Luke Martin, D, University of Michigan (NCAA), 6-4, 215, 9-20-1998
Martin, 58th in Future Considerations’ Final ranking, had a strong first season at the University of Michigan. He had six assists and seven points while playing in all 35 games as a freshman. The best part of his game doesn’t land him on the scoresheet, though. Martin is a top-flight defensive defenseman, and he finished with a team-leading plus-2 rating on a club that featured five players with a minus-8 rating or lower.