NHL Draft prospect rankings: Luke Hughes, Jesper Wallstedt head the head 32 of 2021 class


The hockey season is peaceable younger, but that hasn’t stopped eyes drifting to the offseason and the 2021 NHL Draft.

While the draft dates of July 23-24 are seeming much less and much less likely by the day, NHL teams and scouts are diligently working in preparation — and this year, teams include their work lower out for them better than standard.

Some gamers include but to play a single sport. Of us which are suiting up include viewed regular stoppages to their season. And in a lot of circumstances, scouts aren’t even allowed in the rinks. That’s one obstacle. One other is solely making sense of this draft class. Not like previous years, there is now not any consensus No. 1 total snatch. There isn’t even a consensus high-10. Add all of it up and it is going to manual up to a extremely moving draft day, whereas many as ten potentialities could perchance per chance moreover very well be the one to hear their title known as first.

At FCHockey, scouts poured over tapes to manufacture out how they’d improper the high potentialities in the 2021 NHL Draft.

(Rena Laverty/USA Hockey’s NTDP)

NHL Draft 2021: Massive board, player rankings

1. Luke Hughes, D, US-NTDP (USHL)

The third Hughes brother could perchance per chance very well be the second of the trio to hear his title known as first total. The left-handed defenseman is extremely mobile with fetch puck abilities. One of many draft’s youngest, Jack and Quinn’s brother is moral six days anxious of being eligible for 2022.

2. Jesper Wallstedt, G, Lulea (SHL)

While this class has been referred to because the “draft of the defender,” don’t sleep on this year’s goaltenders. Wallstedt, leading that charge, has taken on a initiating goal in the SHL and is inserting up among the crucial becoming numbers in the league. His textbook ability matched with his poise build him in a category with Panthers prospect Spencer Knight and Predators future netminder Yaroslav Askarov.

3. Owen Energy, D, College of Michigan (NCAA)

Within the event you mix Energy’s 6-5, 214-pound dimension with his surprisingly highly effective skating, you pick up a player that will likely be demanding to pass up. A Hobey Baker nominee, he has had a fetch freshman campaign for the Wolverines.

4. Simon Edvinsson, D, Frolunda (SHL)

Indulge in Energy, Edvinsson is a tower on the back stay, standing at 6-4, 185-pounds. He’s also a fluid skater that is agile on his toes. His imaginative and prescient of the ice and circulation of the puck ought to peaceable observe him as a fetch, puck-transferring defender on the next stage.

5. William Eklund, C, Djurgardens (SHL)

No longer handiest has Eklund carved out a high-six goal with Djurgardens, but he’s been a consistent producer on the team. His team play, offensive instincts and imaginative and prescient include thrust him into the conversation as a high-3 player in this class.

6. Brandt Clarke, D, Barrie Colts (OHL) on mortgage with HC Nove Zamky (Slovakia)

With the uncertainty surrounding the OHL season, Clarke has taken his talents in one other nation to Slovakia the build he’s been settling in well in opposition to skilled competition. But one other tender-skating defenseman with an ability to trot the puck up the ice in a bustle, Clarke’s sparkling-hand shot needs to be highly coveted come draft day.

(USA Hockey)

7. Matthew Beniers, C, College of Michigan (NCAA)

Beniers has been among the freshest names by assignment of the 2021 draft. He’s exploded out of the gates in his NCAA profession and helped Team USA to a gold medal on the 2021 IIHF World Junior Championship. His elite competitiveness and two-intention play include shot him to the head of this class.

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8. Kent Johnson, LW, College of Michigan (NCAA)

Basically the most creative player in this class, Johnson is but one other Michigan Wolverine that has been shooting scouts’ attention. His ability to trot through visitors and originate space for himself is second to none in this community and will trot a protracted solution to guarantee that his high-10 option.

9. Dylan Guenther, LW, Edmonton Oil Kings (WHL) on mortgage with Sherwood Park Crusaders (AJHL)

While some OHL and WHL gamers include found lots of countries to play in, Guenther stayed dwelling in Canada and has conducted moral four games this season in the AJHL. Aloof, his strength, skating, and total play fetch him among the safest bets in the draft.

10. Fabian Lysell, LW, Leksands (SHL)

If there’s somebody in this class to sing Johnson by assignment of creativity, it’s Lysell. He never affords up on a play and is constantly pushing the tempo. Lysell is ready to originate space for himself and his teammates and, on high of that his two-intention sport, is sneakily underrated.

11. Aatu Raty, C, Karpat (Liiga)

While Raty hasn’t held on to the No. 1 consideration that he had coming into the season, the middle is peaceable among the becoming forwards in this class. His playmaking and puckhandling are excessive-stay, and he’s also had some seems to be on the Liiga stage. Seeing how his pattern hasn’t progressed as anticipated has triggered some pause, but there are peaceable about a moving tools in his field.

12. Mason McTavish, C, Peterborough Petes (OHL) on mortgage with EHC Olten (Swiss League)

McTavish has handiest moral hit the ice in one other nation after making an attempt ahead to the OHL season to initiating, however the younger prospect confirmed sufficient final season to showcase true probably. He never takes his foot off the gas, has immediate edges and plucky puck abilities. Once he gets settled into his novel atmosphere, McTavish ought to peaceable originate to point out his abilities.

13. Zachary Bolduc, C, Rimouski Oceanic (QMJHL)

Bolduc’s persistence on the ice is steadily a huge motive he gets drafted better than anticipated once draft day rolls round. He exudes self belief, with sparkling bustle and a two-intention ability to match. The centerman can fetch his intention through defenses and discontinue offenses, making him a fetch candidate for the head potentialities out of the QMJHL.

14. Zachary L’Heureux, C, Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)

L’Heureux is a vitality forward through and through, who can fetch the most of his strength to fetch battles and give protection to the puck. He has surprisingly soft fingers for his form of play and a finishing ability that can purchase attention. He’s got a bit of of a mean move that has led to two suspensions this season, but he could perchance per chance existing to be a serviceable forward on the next stage.

15. Chaz Lucius, C, US-NTDP (USHL)

While the COVID-19 pandemic has been the first motive on the back of most gamers to now not skate up to now, Lucius has been facing a lower-body harm that has saved him out of the lineup. An analogous to McTavish, his old seasons largely weigh in on his ranking. Highlighted by arguably the becoming shot in this class, Lucius is an shimmering player who is aware of pick up to the fetch and pick up the puck over the design line. 

16. Carson Lambos, D, Winnipeg Ice (WHL) on mortgage with JYP U20 (U20 SM-sarja)

One other prospect that has long previous in one other nation for ice time, Lambos hasn’t had the top probably of adjustments to European play but he’s been getting increased opportunities — alongside with enjoying in the Liiga. He’s a well-rounded rearguard that is extremely fetch on his toes.

17. Corson Ceulemans, D, Brooks Bandits (AJHL)

Making the AJHL have to-undercover agent hockey for NHL scouts, Ceulemans hasn’t hit the ice a whole bunch due to the league now not being ready to make a selection up going. He’s conducted moral two games this season, but between these and final year, there’s no questioning that he’s a man amongst boys. His bodily presence and offensive prowess build him head and shoulders above the competition.

18. Brennan Othmann, LW, Flint Firebirds (OHL) on mortgage with EHC Olten (Swiss League)

Taking part in with McTavish in Switzerland, Othmann arrived with EHC Olten earlier than his OHL peep, allowing him time to resolve in and excel in the league in opposition to males. His sparkling shot is complementary to his competitiveness and fearlessness making him now not a straightforward player to play in opposition to.

19. Cole Sillinger, C, Treatment Hat Tigers (WHL) transferred to Sioux Falls Stampede (USHL)

Sillinger stayed in North The united states and simply headed south to the USHL to make a selection up in some sport action. He’s mercurial shown why he’s such a foul player, exhibiting off an elite shot, unpleasant playmaking and ability with the puck. He’s among the offensively dynamic potentialities in this class.

MORE: Hughes, Sillinger among high 10 draft-eligible potentialities in January

20. Nikita Chibrikov, RW, SKA-1946 (MHL)

Seeing games in the MHL, VHL, and KHL this season, Chibrikov has catapulted over his countrymen because the head Russian prospect in the class of 2021. A truly fetch skater with excessive-stay playmaking, Chibrikov is relentless on the puck provider and in any admire times making an try to make a selection up it to his team.

21. Xavier Bourgault, C, Shawinigan Cataractes (QMJHL)

An older player in this class, Bourgault has the boldness in his sport to fetch help watch over offensively, something that is been paying off for him in his three seasons in the QMJHL. He has a pure offensive ability with a plucky shot and the ability to dish it out making his persevered pattern promising.

22. Francesco Pinelli, C, Kitchener Rangers (OHL) on mortgage with HDD Jesenice (AlpsHL)

One other OHL in one other nation mortgage, Pinelli is peaceable getting located in Slovenia. Between final season and his transient ice time this year, he’s shown that he’s a knowledgeable, shimmering playmaker that has room to proceed to toughen. Gentle on his toes, he performs a extremely unruffled sport with immediate processing. In a now not original year, it’s now not demanding to think Pinelli popping up draft boards.

23. Brett Harrison, C, Oshawa Generals (OHL) on mortgage with KOOVEE U20 (U20 SM-sarja)

When Harrison is on the ice, his toes appear to never discontinue transferring as he drives the offensive or is racing to backcheck. He’s adjusting well to his Finnish league, enjoying at over a point-per-sport tempo. He has a bodily edge to his sport, however the fingers and ability to be a threat in all eventualities.

24. Simon Robertsson, RW, Skelleftea J20 (J20 Nationell)

From his excessive-stay motor to his three-zone consciousness, Robertsson has the adaptability to be effective no matter how he’s utilized. He’s demanding on the forecheck, agile on his toes, and an total shimmering player, which explains how he got his first fashion of the SHL at moral 16 years obsolete.

(Getty Photos)

25. Stanislav Svozil, D, HC Kometa Brno (Czech)

Svozil has been making a title for himself in most modern years on the global because of his fluid footwork and abilities to read the play. If given a gap, Svozil can burn defenses — an ability that he build on point to on the 2021 World Juniors. He suits the mold of the novel-age, mobile defender extremely well.

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26. Isak Rosen, RW, Leksands (SHL)

Getting a protracted undercover agent on the SHL stage this season, Rosen has taken this replace and bustle with it. An explosive skater, Rosen can blow previous males in among the becoming leagues of the enviornment. Regardless of his smaller body, there’s no nervousness in his sport, and he’s in any admire times in the mix of things. He has promising ability in all three zones, which ought to peaceable translate well to the next stage.

27. Vladislav Lukashevich, D, Loko Yaroslavl (MHL)

Taking part in in the MHL, Lukashevich shows a uniquely evolved and worn sport for his age. His defensive sport is extremely impressive, but he’s now not paralyzed to leap up in the frenzy to originate an offensive chance. He could perchance per chance moreover now not include one trait that stands out as elite, but he’s a excessive-stay, all-eventualities rearguard.

28. Logan Stankoven, RW, Kamloops Blazers (WHL)

One other player that has but to play a sport this season, Stankoven’s 2019-20 season is sufficient to help scouts wrathful. From his fetch shot to his spurious mobility, the Blazers forward is a play-driver. Seeing the strides that he’s taken in the previous year shall be important to well peg his projection down, but from what we’ve viewed of Stankoven, he’s a prospect with plenty to love.

29. Benjamin Gaudreau, G, Sarnia Sting (OHL)

Gaudreau is extremely athletic, and his rebound help watch over and glove hand stand out as strengths. He in any admire times seems unruffled and smooth between the pipes. Seeing just a few goaltenders hear their title known as in the key round is uncommon, but when there’s a year to pause it, it’s 2021.

30. Oskar Olausson, LW, HV71 (SHL)

With some fetch showings in the SHL this season, Olausson has persevered to upward thrust up draft boards and garnered first-round discussion. He’s a fetch skater, utilizing crossovers to navigate the just zone and enter the offensive zone. He oozes offensive abilities — from his passing to his shot and his ability to originate space for him and his team.

31. Matt Coronato, LW, Chicago Steel (USHL)

If there is one player in this class, up to now, who has finished all the pieces they have to pause to build themselves on the blueprint, Coronato takes the cake. His point manufacturing leads the league, and he’s finished it with a excessive-tempo sport, sparkling positioning and plucky team give a boost to.

MORE: Coronato’s point move longest in USHL historical previous

32. Sebastian Cossa, G, Edmonton (WHL)

A third goalie in 2021? It be now not as loopy because it sounds. Cossa has but to suit up this season but used to be among the WHL’s very most attention-grabbing in 2019-20 with moral six legislation losses on his resume. He is an imposing netminder who instructions his crease and shows dynamic lateral circulation.

For FCHockey’s fat checklist of the head 100, click on here.

Josh Bell is a scout and the director of instruct material for FCHockey.

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