Draft Prospect Profile: Joe Veleno

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    Eric Andrews

    Each day over the next month leading up to the 2018 NHL Entry Draft, held on June 22 in Dallas, we will be taking a look at the top 31 prospects avail
    [To continue reading full article, click here: Draft Prospect Profile: Joe Veleno]


    Here’s is mine:

    He is the biggest wild card of the draft class. He was the first 15 year old granted exceptional status to play in the QMJHL and is in his third season in the “Q.” Due to nagging injuries in his second season, his point totals were less than his rookie adjustment season. Draft prognosticators and his St. John Seadogs team were looking for big things this season but he didn’t seem to be taking a qualitative jump as a dominant scorer, and he was giving a change of scenery with a trade to Drummondville. Through the middle of March he still hadn’t reached the 20 goal mark but contributed more than 50 assists and has generated offense. No one can argue with his hockey IQ, sense, composure and poise, or his commitment to being a 200 foot centre. He displays a good strong skating stride, and two step quickness at times. He’s got the size to compete and will. Reads the ice like a vet, and can pass off and exchange it smoothly. Fearless and tough, he usually keeps an even keel, but is not going to be a intimidated. At this point, is more of an offensive generator than high end scorer. The essential question is whether he has demonstrated an elite level of offensive skills and shooting ability to rank him as a player who someday projects as more than a complimentary offensive forward. How much of the exceptional status tag blocks honest evaluation? No matter. Whenever he comes off the board, his new team will be rewarded with “safe” player who will at very least play in the NHL.

    —Bill Placzek—

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