David Cotton

Aaron Vickers

Cotton is a big, two-way forward who dominates with his size and reach. He is a menacing forechecker at this level, intimidating barreling down on the defense, trying to breakout the puck. He gets big, using his long reach to cut off lanes and is able to get on defense quick, causing them to change directions and try a different option. His defensive play is notable as he is well positioned and pressures the points very well. He is on top of the opposition when they have the puck, but smartly backs off to support the defense when needed. We loved his communication in the defensive zone as he conducted traffic out there with all his talking. It is great to see his confidence, leadership and understanding of that side of the puck. While his straight line speed is fine for this level, it does take him a few extra strides to get going and he does take incorrect routes all over the ice. Despite having a nice size, he also tends to avoid contact whenever he can. We do like his ability to look off the pass and unleash a quick, deceptive shot. Has some skilled hands and can handle the puck. Makes simple, not overly creative passes, but does so with good accuracy. The big center is a conundrum as one game he looks like a competitive two-way center, working his tail off at both ends, and then the next game you wonder why you even made the trek to go watch such a lost-looking kid. (May 2015)