Louis Belpedio

Aaron Vickers

The top U.S. defenseman at the U18 tournament in April, Belpedio’s game really solidi ed in the second half of the season and he is a riser for it. Belpedio is a very strong two-way player, with excellent offensive skills and awareness, as well as the ability to work as a shutdown player in his own end. Belpedio is a superb skater with tremendous foot- work and fluidity in his stride. He is powerful and balanced on his edges, and is superb when it comes to stopping and starting to quickly edge his way around pressure or to work his way in from the point with the puck. He is intelligent and cerebral at both ends of the ice, and is able to make strong plays with and without the puck. He does a great job at cutting the ice in half on forwards coming down the wing, and he steps up effectively to take away time, space and options. He closes players out with his physicality and can easily force a man off the puck with his strength. He also uses an effective defensive stick and takes away the slot on the PK. Belpedio handles the puck well on offense with above-average stick skills and good hockey sense. He makes a good first pass out of his zone and supports the offense well from the point, pinching at good times and getting involved. He has a hard wrist shot, but needs to work on getting it through to the net. Pretty solid on the PP as he is more of a shooter than puck mover. (May 2014)