On the Clock: Leon Draisaitl
ISS Ranking: 6
Weight: 204 lbs
In a nutshell
A product of Germany, Draisaitl netted 105 points (38-67-105) in 64 games with the Prince Albert Raiders this past season. He has good size and great on-ice vision. He played against men at the 2014 World Championships and didn’t look out of place. Comes from a hockey family as his dad, Peter, had an 18-year pro career in Germany, while also appearing in three Olympic Games, one World Cup of Hockey, and seven World Championships before hanging up the skates to become a coach, which he has done the last 13 years.
Been there, done that
Just 18-years-old, Draisaitl has already represented Germany six times on the international stage. He had five points in five games at the 2012 World Under-17 Challenge, 14 points in 11 games over the course of two World Under-18 Championships, 12 points in 12 games at the past two World Junior Championships, along with four points in seven games at the 2014 World Championships.
Central Scouting’s Peter Sullivan told NHL.com that Draisaitl is a “miniature Jaromir Jagr with a Doug Gilmour-type intensity.” The names Anze Kopitar and Joe Thornton also have been floated around. An Anze Kopitar-type player seems to fit the bill. Like Kopitar, Draisaitl isn’t lightning fast, but he has good hockey sense, can put up points, while also playing a 200-foot game.
Word on the street
“Leon is a big centre who is smart, can make plays and can impact the game in multiple ways. He’s the type of centre who is coveted by many NHL clubs because of his combination of size and skill.” – TSN’s Craig Button (Jan. 23, 2014)
Good fit in Vancouver?
Draisaitl is definitely a good fit for the Canucks, but who knows if he will be available at six. Watching him in the WHL this past season, he often made things look easy. He may be ready to step into the NHL right away, and with his size and hockey sense, he could play a third-line role to start, while spotting time in the Top 6 and power-play.