The annual CHL Top Prospects Game is fun for fans, but all business for players.
Current draft eligible prospects can be measured while playing against their peers and draft talent hounds can assess these high-end kids in a best on best crossover of the CHL leagues format.
There are always a few kids that really stand out at these events and not always the top rated kids either.
The 2015 event was a very one sided affair as Team Orr took it to Team Cherry to the tune of a 6-0 victory thanks in large part to the trio of Connor McDavid, Travis Konecny and Timo Meier.
But they aren’t the only ones to shine.
Travis Konecny, Forward, Team Orr (Ottawa, OHL)
The MVP of the game never stopped moving his feet and was a puck hound all game. He showed off his crackling wrist shot and lightning quick release scoring twice. Konecny even made a statement with his physical edge by finishing checks and destroying Team Cherry’s Chaplik with a solid shoulder-to-chest hit in the neutral zone.
Connor McDavid, Forward, Team Orr (Erie, OHL)
The top dog in the draft was his usual self seeing lanes and driving to the net with his speed and quick stick work. He was instrumental in his lines offensive impact and again showed everyone that it does not matter the level of play, his game will stand out.
Timo Meier, Forward, Team Orr (Halifax, QMJHL)
The big power winger showed off his excellent playmaking ability and soft touch with the puck as well as a very hard shot that found twine. His size allowed him to control the puck on the cycle before dishing off to his highly skilled linemates.
Liam Herbst, Goaltender, Team Orr (Ottawa, OHL)
The big goaltender has had his setbacks, with hip surgeries and rehabs being the focus over the past couple seasons. His size, focus, quick legs and sound positioning were all on display this game as Herbst was out to prove that he needs to be in the conversation where goaltenders are concerned for the 2015 NHL Draft.
Thomas Chabot, Defense, Team Orr (Saint John, QMJHL)
The smooth skating rearguard was constantly pushing the puck up ice and when given the opportunity skating it up as well. He joined the attack deep in Team Cherry’s zone and impressed with his composure and vision with the puck.
Ivan Provorov, Defense, Team Orr (Brandon, WHL)
Provorov was all over the ice making things happen with blocking shots, skating the puck out of his zone, pinching in deep in the attacking zone and laying a big hit to separate the puck from a Team Cherry forward.
Lawson Crouse, Forward, Team Orr (Kingston, OHL)
His speed and power were on full display as he was a beast on the forecheck and was looking to create his own offensive opportunities. His size and reach were hard to handle and he was also impressive on the cycle as well as coming back deep in his own zone to backcheck.
Vince Dunn, Defense, Team Cherry (Niagara, OHL)
Showed off his vision and accurate passes. Looked good moving the puck up ice with long stretch passes and skating it himself. Had some trouble when he started to get too cute with drop passes but overall his skill was impressive.
Matt Spencer, Defense, Team Cherry (Peterborough, OHL)
Played simple and sound in his defensive positioning and possessing solid instincts on when to join the rush and when to hang back. He showed that while he might not be as flashy as some of the other defenders in this game that he can play a strong two-way game.
Brendan Guhle, Defense, Team Cherry (Prince Albert, WHL)
His skating allowed him to join the rush on numerous occasions and retreat into coverage depending on the situation. His shot was also strong. Guhle had some issues in defensive positioning chasing the puck too often.
Mitchell Marner, Forward, Team Cherry (London, OHL)
Hand skills, slippery skating and incredible vision were on full display but he lacked chemistry with this linemates. He had some dangerous looks but unfortunately took the opportunity to pass off to unsuspecting teammates instead of burying his own chance.