This weekend’s NHL entry draft should be worth keeping an eye on for local hockey fans.
Four prospects with Halifax ties are candidates to be selected in the seven-round event on Friday and Saturday in Los Angeles.
Florida Panthers scout Paul Gallagher of Cole Harbour gave Metro a rundown of local players to watch for.
G Mathieu Corbeil, Halifax Mooseheads
His stats have been ugly playing on one of the worst junior teams in the country. But his gigantic six-foot-six frame is impressive and some scouting services have him ranked as high as early in the second round.
Most consider him a big project who could deliver big rewards.
“He showed great improvement in the second half,” Gallagher said. “His quickness, strength and work ethic have to come up to another level for him to (realize his) potential.”
D Konrad Abeltshauser, Halifax Mooseheads
The six-foot-three Abeltshauser came over from Germany and stepped smoothly into the QMJHL at age 17. He logged 25 minutes a night while collecting 25 points in 48 games.
“He’s a very good passer with good vision and he moves the puck well,” Gallagher said. “On the power play, he gets the shot on net. He’s adapted to the North American game really well.”
Abeltshauser is ranked as high as the second round and as low as the last round.
LW Stephen MacAulay, Cole Harbour/Saint John Sea Dogs
The six-foot-two 180-pounder was a key cog on the checking line of one of the country’s top teams. He projects as an NHL role player who can kill penalties.
“He’s a defensive guy who brings good work ethic,” Gallagher said. “He gives you a good effort most nights.”
MacAulay will receive late-round consideration.
D Sawyer Hannay, Halifax Mooseheads
The six-foot-four 190-pounder was among the QMJHL’s fighting and penalty minute leaders at age 17. He has been compared to New Jersey Devils defender Colin White, although his foot-speed needs work.
“He knows his role,” Gallagher said. “He makes a good first pass and anybody who takes advantage of one of his teammates has to deal with him.”
He’ll be considered for selection in the later rounds.
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