March 16, 2010
In a perfect world, the NHL Draft this summer would feature a few thousand rabid puckheads in Team Tyler and Team Taylor shirts, screaming and squealing and fainting as they debate which one is the dreamier No. 1 choice.
Then again, the Draft is in Los Angeles this year, where more people could probably name the key grip on "Twilight" than either Tyler Seguin or Taylor Hall ...
The International Scouting Services prospect rankings for March have been released, and there's a change at the top: Plymouth Whalers forward Tyler Seguin is now the No. 1-rated potential draftee. From TSN:
Seguin, 18, was ranked No. 1 overall among North American skaters by NHL Central Scouting in their preliminary list last year. The 6'1" 172-pound centre led the Ontario Hockey League in scoring this season with 48 goals and 106 points.
Taylor Hall of the OHL's Windsor Spitfires dropped one spot to second on the list. Though he also tallied 106 points, Hall finished second in OHL scoring with 40 goals scored and six less games played because of his stint with Canada's national junior team.
The margin between the two players is razor-thin statistically and either could go No. 1, according to draft-nerds and pundits. Tim Wharnsby of CBC Sports was recently asked which one would be a better fit for the lowly Edmonton Oilers and said:
Oilers president Kevin Lowe admitted in a radio interview Edmonton's CHED last week that there is not much that differentiates Hall and Seguin other than "Hall appears to be a little more ready physically." But I believe the Oilers should take Seguin because he plays the centre position. A dominant centre is more difficult to find. Seguin is a playmaker, and although he is not as powerful as Hall right now, he can skate and play the game at full speed. I believe he has more potential to fulfill than speedy and determined Hall.
Jonathan Willis over on Hockey or Die has a great stats breakdown of the two star prospects, finding that Seguin might be a tad better at even strength than he's given credit.
Of course, this Draft could end up being one in which attention is paid to the two offensive players but we end up remembering Summer 2010 for defenseman Cam Fowler or another blue-liner. The only thing we can be confident about: None of these guys will be wearing a Maple Leafs sweater until free agency ...