Nathan MacKinnon

Darren Walker

MacKinnon, the top forward prospect in the 2013 NHL Draft, is a nifty blend of speed, skill and sense. His skating ability is top notch and while he’s not a rocket, MacKinnon has a good first step and above-average top speed. He’s always in control of his feet and his low center of gravity makes it hard to knock him off the puck, even at top speed. He can change speeds or lateral direction in the blink of an eye causing some defenders to lose some apparel if they try to keep up to him. He is very strong on his skates, with an imposing lower frame showing very impressive balance. MacKinnon is very creative in the offensive zone and oozes confidence with the puck on his stick. He’s very aggressive and likes to initiate contact and will dish out bone-rattling hits on occasion. He is very physical along the boards and often comes out with the puck in those 50/50 battles. MacKinnon’s shot is already NHL-ready and his release is very quick and often fools goaltenders. His shot is complimented by great vision and an ability to make a very strong accurate pass that consistently nd his teammates tape. He displays great offensive anticipation, consistently creating chances in the offensive zone for himself and his team- mates. He shows improved offensive hockey IQ this season, showing the ability to make quick, accurate decisions with the puck even at top speed. (May 2013)