In anticipation of the Sharks’ 2014 NHL Draft selection, we will be highlighting the top 30 prospects over the next few weeks.
Name: Leon Draisaitl
Current Team: Prince Albert Raiders (WHL)
Jersey Number: 29
Weight: 209 lbs.
Hometown: Cologne, Germany
Leon Draisaitl had quite an outstanding hockey career before coming to North America – in just 55 games across two seasons for Mannheimer ERC U16, he scored 295 points (145G, 150A). That remarkable (and seemingly impossible) point total in such a short amount of time made him quite the commodity for North American junior hockey teams in the CHL who were eager to retain his services when he decided to come over from Germany for the 2012-2013 season.
Draisaitl was selected second overall (behind Ivan Barbashev) in the 2012 CHL Import Draft by Prince Albert. In his rookie season, the German native scored 21G and 37A for 58 points in 64 games. He was also plus-22 on the season. So far in his sophomore campaign, Draisaitl is on pace to exceed last year’s point total, having accumulated 18-33-51 in just 33 GP.
Draisaitl has been the best player on the German WJC U-20 team in the 2013-2014 tournament, representing his country as team captain. Future Considerations has this report on Draisaitl:
Draisaitl is a playmaking center who isn’t overly physical but uses his size effectively to shield himself and the puck. He has excellent vision and knows where his options are. He has soft hands and a steady stride, but his smarts are his most important asset.
Draisaitl is expected to be a top ten pick in the 2014 NHL Draft. The dynamic center who possesses an almost equal skill in goal-scoring and playmaking will be a target for most teams; he may even see his stock raise to become a top five pick.