NHL Draft: OHL Countdown Prospects #15-11


Over the course of the week, Tyler Brenton will be sharing his Top 30 prospects eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft from the OHL. He will be counting down from 30 all the way to Connor McDavid.

The next five prospects display the upside of either a top 6 forward or a top 4 defenseman. They share the traits of having a strong offensive ability and good hockey sense that should help them transition into playing hockey at a higher level.

15. Blake Speers – SSM Greyhounds

Born: January, 2nd 1997 From: Sault Ste. Marie, ON
Height: 5’11” Weight: 185 lbs
Position: RW

With the super talented Greyhounds, Speers was able to showcase his offensive ability by putting up 24 goals with 43 assists in 57 regular season games. In the playoffs he played in 14 games and scored 3 goals and 6 assists.

Speers isn’t very large but his skating ability is able to compensate for his lack of size. He’s quick and he will likely rely on his motor to play at higher levels of hockey. He plays a smart game but still needs to engage in the physical aspect of the game.

Per Future Considerations:

"“A solid two-way winger…elite level speed with a very efficient skating stride…good lateral agility…lacks strength and can get knocked off the puck by bigger opponents…handles the puck well and has some deceptively good hands…makes crisp, accurate passes to teammates…has a decent shot…does all the little things to succeed…can kill penalties, work the power play, lead the rush or bring a strong forecheck…has good leadership qualities and possesses the intangibles that make pro aspirations a possibility in his future.”"

14. Andrew Mangiapane – Barrie Colts

Born: April, 4th 1996 From: Bolton, ON
Height: 5’10” Weight: 161 lbs
Position: LW

Mangiapane went off in his second OHL season by putting up 43 goals and 61 assists in 68 regular season games. For a small skilled player, his offensive stats will buoy him into the top three rounds of the NHL Entry Draft.

He is small but elusive. Mangiapane displays a strong skating ability, where he’s able to weave through defenders and evade checks. He has good vision and plays with smarts to find a good passing route. If he can fill out his frame, he could be a skilled winger with top 6 NHL upside. However I’m not sure he would be a viable option for a bottom 6 player.

Bill Placzek at DraftSite.com wrote this on Mangiapane

"” Diminutive OHL winger with a pinpoint accurate shot, a solid stride, quick feet , and both consistent and persistent efforts all over the sheet. Was basically a walk-on…wasn’t drafted, just won himself a sweater by taking advantage of one scoring opportunity after another. He is a smart positional player, who is always around the puck. The issue is he is 5’ 10” and 160. But will you bet against him? “"

13. Nikita Korostelev – Sarnia Sting

Born: February, 8th 1997 From: Moscow, Russia
Height: 6’1” Weight: 196 lbs
Position: RW

In Korostelev’s second OHL season he scored 24 goals and 29 assists in 55 games with was good enough to lead the Sting in scoring.

Korostelev has all the offensive qualities of a high skilled pro-style NHL winger. His shooting qualities are impeccable, he can protect the puck and he has good size. The biggest hindrance to him is that he still has a long way to come defensively, but that can be taught.

This is what FutureConsiderations.ca had to say about him

"“A goal scoring winger with decent size…handles the puck well and can deke his way through defenders…has the size and strength to also push his way to the net…skates very well with solid top speed and good agility…possesses a great set of creative hands…dangerous one-timer and lethal wrist shot…has a killer release on all his shots…can get too fancy at times, over handling the puck…not always consistent in his effort level…needs to work on his play on his own side of center ice…has an abundance of high-end tools to work with. (December 2014)”"

12. Vince Dunn – Niagara IceDogs

Born: October, 29th 1996 From: Peterborough, ON
Height: 6’0” Weight: 185 lbs
Position: D

The offensive defenseman improved his statistics this year by scoring 18 goals and 38 assists in 68 regular season games. He also put up 6 goals and 4assists in 8 playoff games.

Some people don’t like Dunn’s high risk offensive game, however he moves the puck with a calm demeanour either by skating with it or passing it up. Dunn will definitely need to get stronger as he is often beaten physically. He makes up for his lack of strength with his strong skating skills and good instincts. He likely has a future as a strong second potential pair.

LastWordOnSports.com had this to say about Dunn

"“Dunn has the potential to be a powerplay quarterback and a top two NHL defenceman for his team. Its a boom or bust type of pick though, as there are some questions about his defensive game in getting pushed around a bit too much, and being too risky in looking to create offense. With good coaching though, he could be a real steal. His game is similar in style to Duncan Keith of the Chicago Blackhawks, though I caution that this is a style comparison only, and not one based on talent.”"

11. Mitchell Stephens – Saginaw Spirit

Born: February, 5th 1997 From: Peterborough, ON
Height: 6’0” Weight: 183 lbs
Position: C

With 22 goals and 26 assists in 62 games with the Saginaw Spirit, don’t let the stats fool you, Stephens could become one of the better two way centers to come out of the OHL in the draft.

Stephens is a smart player with good skating. He is agile and moves his feet quick. Stephens has no true weak spot to his game. Plays gritty, scores goals and plays defense. He has the makings of a two way center that sees time killing penalties. General Managers love these kind of players who work hard and can do it all.

Per LastWordOnSports.com

"“Stephens has some things to work on but could be a second line centre with big defensive responsibilities if he can continue to develop his game, and improve his playmaking skills. Even without the improved playmaking, he could still be a second line winger, or a third line centre at the next level. Stephens game is reminiscent of the game that Mike Richards used to play for the Flyers and Kings, before his career went downhill. This isn’t a talent comparison but merely one based on style.”"

Check back on Monday for part five of the countdown, where we examine #10 to #6.

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