The 2018 NHL Draft Overager Team

Last year I put out a list of overagers to keep an eye on, and this season I had a whole other batch to put up, but I figured it’d be more fun to make a full lineup of names on my radar as potential draft picks this year. I scrapped the whole thing and started over, as you do. My methodology mostly surrounds who has improved over previous seasons and appear to be trending upward. A number of players have been eligible previously and not particularly improved since their first eligibility such as Kevin Hancock, Kyle Maksimovich, Stephen Dhillon and Austen Keating. These are names that have shown some level of progression, and should warrant a flyer in the draft. We’ve seen many older picks grow into successful NHLers, and I expect some of the names below will be the same. An undrafted player to me is a player every team can watch develop over the year, and if they like how a player is progressing, a delayed pick a year or two later can turn out to be exceptional value. A few of these players measure as ~1st round value even after age adjustment, and will likely be around well into the draft.

Here’s the 2018 NHL Overage Draft lineup in full:

LW C RW
Line 1 Linus Nyman Justin Almeida Jerry Turkulainen
Line 2 Mikhail Shalagin Patrick Khodorenko Einar Emanuelsson
Line 3 Joseph Gareffa Albert Micnac Razat Timirov
Line 4 Lucas Chiodo Kristian Reichel Shawn Boudrias
Daniil Voyevodin  Ivan Kosorenkov
LD   RD
Line 1 Scott Perunovich Sean Durzi
Line 2 Dylan Plouffe Mac Hollowell
Line 3 Graham Lillibridge Marcus Bjork
 Benjamin Gleason
G
Goalie 1 Shamil Shmakov
Goalie 2 Samuel Harvey

Unit 1


Linus Nyman – Kingston (OHL)

67GP – 37G+46A – 34.7%INV – 20.7 NHLeScore

  • Nyman was a guy who I was shocked to see go undrafted last year, and he’s only improved as Kingston added talent. He was one of their top scorers before their additions, and he finished the year fourth in team points per game behind Gabe Vilardi, Cliff Pu and Jason Robertson. Nyman scored 51 even strength primary points this year, at a rate of 2.63 per hour, which is well ahead of almost all other overagers. He went just one game without a shot, and just eight without a point this season. He also managed to get primary points on 64% and points on 81% of even strength goals scored while he was on the ice, well ahead of the average for forwards in the CHL.
  • He’s an all around offensive threat with a great set of wheels, and a strong ability to cycle pucks along the boards. His two-way play also improved greatly as he registered a 95%TotCat, nearly doubling even strength goals for relative to his team. His NHLeScore is indicative of 1st round talent, and I wouldn’t hesitate to have a look in the late 2nd or 3rd round.

Justin Almeida – Moose Jaw (WHL)

72GP – 43G+55A – 30.1%INV – 15.3 NHLeScore

  • Almeida is a name that grew on my over the course of the year. He exploded offensively this year, improving from 28 points to 98 this season. It’s hard to see him go undrafted again, especially as a centre, and when you couple that with his excellent even strength point production (2.42 primary points/60, 3.3 points/60), you could do worse down the middle than having a look at the ~100 point scorer.
  • His defense and his skating could use work, but scoring points on 78% of even strength goals while on the ice and landing 223 shots on goal indicate an offensive centre who should be able to dominate the WHL next season.

Jerry Turkulainen – Jyvaskyla (Liiga)

52GP – 10G+23A – 20.4%INV – 14.2 NHLeScore

  • If you live under a rock, you may not know that I’ve been a huge fan of Jerry Turkulainen for two years, and I’ve tried to catch as much of him as possible considering how underrated he has been. He’s very small, and looks even smaller, but plays much bigger than his stature would suggest. He’s tenacious and an absolute workhorse on every shift. He’s a quick skater who gives 100% every time he’s on the ice, and his production shows for it. He can be a sneaky net presence on a power play, but he’s at his best making plays off the boards or off the rush setting teammates up with solid cross-ice passes. He was a top scorer for his team in the Champions League and was a part of one of the best lines in the Liiga.
  • All this being said, I can see why there’s apprehension. He plays on big ice, and plays much bigger than he is. Whether that translates to the AHL or even the NHL is sketchy at best. Production aside, his teammates scored more, and his line was among the best in the league. He made some poor decisions in my viewings, and he’ll need to become an ox on skates if he’s going to camp out in front of an NHL net, but I still believe there’s upside there for an energy winger with offensive flair.

Scott Perunovich – Minnesota-Duluth (NCAA)

42GP – 11G+25A – 28.6%INV – 27.8 NHLeScore

  • I’ll admit I haven’t seen too much of Perunovich outside of the World Juniors he cracked as an overager, but I liked what I saw. He’s mobile, and a solid puck mover who is willing to shoot, scoring on a remarkable 18% of his shots. That’s certainly unsustainable for the defender, and I think someone may jump early and pick him, but if he slips to the later rounds, I may take a flyer. His NHLeScore is another 1st line talent, and technically indicative of a top draft talent, but his shooting percentage will likely decline significantly moving forward, automatically lowering that metric back to earth.
  • You can’t argue with a 19 year old defender leading his college team in scoring coming off a National Championship who also made the national junior team and won a bronze medal. His shooting percentage is high, but he’s a focal point of a very good team. Someone may jump early, but should he slip, I take a hard look.

Sean Durzi – Owen Sound (OHL)

40GP – 15G+34A – 28.8%INV – 21.6 NHLeScore

  • I know this take is ice cold, but Durzi is the sexiest overage pick out there this year. He’s been ranked as high as the mid-2nd round, and from all my viewings he’s got the makings of a solid two-way defender with offensive upside. He’s a sneaky and agile skater who is willing to pinch up to hold a blueline, and does so quite well. If he’s able to get stronger and faster, his upside is very solid. A 28.8%INV is excellent for a defender, and his even strength scoring rate was 3rd among my overage CHL prospects. His IPP and P1 IPP are fine, but his upside is his strong two-way game, and I imagine he gets picked relatively early on.

Unit 2


Mikhail Shalagin – Spartak Moscow (MHL)

63GP – 33G+30A – 28.6%INV – 13.2 NHLeScore

  • Shalagin is a curious name as a big winger who has been able to produce and shoot at a higher rate than the aforementioned Timirov. I haven’t caught as much of him as Reaktor, but he clearly took a huge step forward from last year, culminating in a few scoreless VHL games. He’s a big shooter and goal scorer with a nose for playmaking and is defensively responsible. He circles like a shark and constantly finds himself making dangerous plays often. I’d look for him to get a late round pick and he could be special if his straight line speed and first few steps could get better.

Patrick Khodorenko – Michigan State (NCAA)

36GP – 13G+19A – 35.2%INV – 18.3 NHLeScore

  • Khodorenko is another name I thought would’ve been picked last year, but he’s taken his talents to Michigan State and has done everything he can to keep a 2.5 goal per game offense afloat. The versatile forward had about 2.5 shots per game and a reasonable 13% shooting percentage. He’s a player I wish I could’ve seen more of, but his metrics are among the best for undrafted college players.
  • On my viewings, it’s pretty clear that team is led by Taro Hirose, who (I believe) cannot be drafted this year, but Khodorenko is an interesting one. I’d need to see a lot more intensity especially in his own end, but he’s grown well in his sophomore season.

Einar Emanuelsson – Lulea (SHL)

45GP – 13G+13A – 23.5%INV – 13.6 NHLeScore

  • Einar Emanuelsson has consistently improved over his career, and that trend continued through his fourth year of eligibility this year. He played a pivotal role on a poor Lulea team, but showcased his skill and creativity time and time again scoring 2.5 points per hour, and 26 points in 45 games. He paired well with Isac Lundestrom, and his future seems bright. His shooting percentage was over 20%, which is troublesome, but his best skill is his playmaking and skating off the wing. While not quite on the level of a Viktor Arvidsson, Emanuelsson could slot in on an AHL team as soon as 2020 and working towards a supplementary scoring role in the NHL if your team needs an accelerated project pick.

Dylan Plouffe – Vancouver (WHL)

60GP – 9G+31A – 20.6%INV – 16.2 NHLeScore

  • Plouffe is a two-way talent with good offensive tools that I could see getting a pick late. He’s a tough defender who has been known to drop the gloves. His INV% is very good, and he drove goal differential very well for a not-so-great Vancouver Giants team. His defensive play still needs some work, but for a potential bottom pair defender who plays a good meat-and-potatoes game, a late pick could be moved his way if he interviews and tests well.

Mac Hollowell – Sault Ste. Marie (OHL)

63GP – 12G+44A – 19.1%INV – 14 NHLeScore

  • Hollowell jumped off my tracking doc. His scoring rates are higher than Durzi, he’s an quick and agile skater, and he’s involving himself in more goals while he’s on the ice than any defender in the CHL overage crop. His defense needs a lot of work, however, so he will be a project, but his play in the transition and offensive zone are remarkable, even in the context of his excellent team. He’ll probably go later than Hollowell, but you could do much worse far later in the draft.

Unit 3


Joseph Garreffa – Kitchener (OHL)

68GP – 12G+53A – 26.4%INV – 16 NHLeScore

  • You’re probably sensing a pattern of smaller, high production players at this point, and Garreffa is no different. He’s been a personal favourite of mine for a couple years, and I’ve liked his skillset more and more as time goes by. He probably won’t be a top level player at the next level, but he’s a versatile forward who (I believe) I’ve seen slot in as a defender at times. He’s an excellent skater, always putting 100% into his shift, and he’s a creative player with the puck. He’s very skilled and should his defensive play be refined as a full time defender (if it were up to me), he could be a really interesting project to watch for the next few years.

Albert Michnac – Mississauga (OHL)

59GP – 21G+39A – 30.8%INV – 13.9 NHLeScore

  • Another personal favourite from my OHL viewings, Michnac is a decently sized speedster who can play very well with the puck and has a higher offensive ceiling than he’s presented. He’s dangerous when he steps on the ice, and can quarterback an offense extremely well, with points on 80% of even strength goals. He shoots quite often, and gets them from dangerous areas. His shot percentage is quite low for his shot selection, so it’s entirely possible he will improve quite a bit on his 21 goals from last year. I think there’s a dominant OHLer there for Mississauga, and for a centre prospect, he could be a great option for the mid-late rounds.

Razat Timirov – Nizhnekamsk (MHL)

57GP – 33G+30A – 32.7%INV – 14.8 NHLeScore

  • Bulat Shafigullin is the name on everyone’s lips these days, but I’ve always come away more impressed with teammate Razat Timirov. Timirov appears to mostly play left wing, and was often the one feeding pucks to Shafigullin that ended up in the back of the net. He’s a quick skater who plays a North-South game that would project well to the next level. His transition game is great and he’ll be looking for a bigger challenge next year. He was involved heavily on a good Reaktor team, and did more than his fair share in terms of shooting and scoring. He could be a nice flyer to take that you can monitor from afar as he continues playing in the Russian system.

Graham Lillibridge – Chicago (USHL)

56GP – 4G+41A – 22%INV – 11.4 NHLeScore

  • Over the last year, Lillibridge seems to have improved in both ends this season. After going back to the USHL before heading to Yale, the diminutive defender scored points at the highest rate of any overage CHL/USHL defenseman. He’s willing to shoot, and involves himself in team scoring almost as often as guys like Durzi and Hollowell. He’s undersized, but you draft him so that you don’t have to sign him after his time at Yale. A great skater who can QB an offense.

Marcus Bjork – Oskarshamn (Allsvenskan)

52GP – 13G+21A – 23%INV – 16.6 NHLeScore

  • I’ve been a Bjork fan more and more this year, and while he needs work in his own end, you can’t argue with a 20 year old defender leading his Allsvenskan team in scoring. A 23%INV is excellent for a defender in that league, and while his shooting percentage is high, he’s no stranger to jumping into the rush, and he is perfectly willing to get shots off as often as necessary. I could foresee a mid-late round pick being used on him to watch him develop in his own end with Oreboro in the SHL. It’ll be a new challenge, but I definitely see his upside.

Unit 4 + Extras


Lucas Chiodo – Barrie (OHL)

68GP – 30G+49A – 26.6%INV – 13.6 NHLeScore

  • Chiodo is an interesting case to me. He’s laterally agile, but not the best skater in a straight line. He played on a loaded offensive team, highlighted by Andrei Svechnikov, but he still managed to improve over his solid year last year. His scoring rates at even strength were the best of all overagers on my sheet, and he managed to get to dirty areas quite a bit.
  • My questions around him surround his projectability to the next level. He’ll need to get a lot stronger and faster to bring his game to the pros. He could be the type to have a great European career, but judging by his style of play and his production, the tools are there. With points on 88% of even strength goals while on the ice, he just keeps producing. His 26% shot percentage at even strength is extremely high, but in the 6th or 7th, he could find his way onto a draft list.

Kristian Reichel – Red Deer (WHL)

63GP – 34G+23A – 31.2%INV – 13.4 NHLeScore

  • Reichel was on my radar two years ago, but waned a bit until this year’s World Junior. He surprised me a ton with his energetic and fast style of play that when combined with his size, got him to dangerous areas and earned him some extra alone time with goaltenders. He gets a ton of shots and has been rewarded with a 30+ goal season. He’s a bit of a one-trick pony, but you know what you’re getting. A low ceiling potential NHL he may be, but he could be a good option in a developmental path starting in the AHL.

Shawn Boudrias – Gatineau (QMJHL)

60GP – 28G+32A – 31.9%INV – 17.3 NHLeScore

  • I was a big Boudrias fan last year and was very surprised to see him passed over. He’s a giant winger who can barrel towards the net. If he can get stronger, look out for him to be a guy you land in an energy role in the NHL. 32%INV is very promising, and when coupled with 42% of his shots being high or medium danger at even strength, the package seems intriguing. He drove a surprising amount of goal differential, and I don’t see him being passed on a second time. If you miss on someone like Serron Noel and you’re in the later rounds, Boudrias could be a good alternative.

Danil Voyevodin – Almetyevsk (VHL)

35GP – 10G+21A – 33.7%INV – 23.3 NHLeScore

  • I caught wind of this guy just recently as I started researching this article. After looking up some footage, it was pretty clear that Voyevodin was a name that really should be on a lot of radars. He’s an older D+2, born in September 1997, but he was a huge part of Almetyevsk’s “just ok” offense. He registered 3.75 points and 7.4 shots per hour, and makes plays just as well as finishes them. Playing around 14 minutes a night, he continued his production through the playoffs with a 30%INV before being eliminated by a powerhouse SKA team. He’s quick on his edges and is a creative player who can get into the dirty areas relatively well. He’s a guy you could add very late and watch just to see what happens in Russia.

Ivan Kosorenkov – Victoriaville (QMJHL)

63GP – 36G+46A – 32.8%INV – 11.9 NHLeScore

  • Kosorenkov was a guy I really thought Philly would bring in on an ELC after he surprised them in camp last year. He’s a skilled winger who has breakaway speed and silky hands. He improved quite a bit from last year along with his team and improved his two-way play to near the top of my sheet. If you want to swing for the fences with a mid-late round pick, he could be a great option. If you’re in the latest of rounds, it may be possible to wait and see if he goes undrafted. If he could almost force the Flyers to keep him, it’s likely he’ll do the same at some point this year when he’s free for anyone to grab.

Benjamin Gleason – Hamilton (OHL)

63GP – 9G+39A – 20.6%INV – 13.2 NHLeScore

  • Gleason’s numbers may not jump off the page for a D+2 OHLer, but he’s up near 1.5 even strength points per hour, which is solid for a defender. Gleason did a great job in both ends and drove goal differential very well on a great Hamilton team. He led Hamilton’s defense in scoring during the playoffs, and is currently tied with Robert Thomas for the team scoring lead in the Memorial Cup. As a 7th round swing that could jump into the AHL right away on the left side, Gleason would be an interesting option.

Goalies


Shamil Shmakov – Novosibirsk (MHL) – 2.03GAA – 0.933SPCT

  • Facing 30+ shots a game can’t be easy, but Shmakov did a great job doing it all year for Sibir’s MHL team. He also did it in style in my viewings. He was all over the place, doing whatever he could to get in the way of a puck. He is 6’6″ but plays like he’s 5’10” and it often works. If he can perhaps learn a bit more of the finesse of the game and use his athleticism to his advantage, he could be quite something. It’ll be interesting to see if he gets VHL time next year as a 20 year old.

Samuel Harvey – Rouyn-Nouranda (QMJHL) – 2.10GAA – 0.930SPCT

  • The CHL goalie crop is quite weak, but Harvey dominated the QMJHL goalie crop this year. His 0.930 during the year, and a 0.945 in the playoffs are staggering when compared to previous years. His high danger save percentage of 0.820 was excellent at even strength, and matched the same percentage in all situations. Size is an issue, but per 60 minutes at even strength, his goals saved above average (explained here) was up at 37 in all situations.

 

Edit: After viewing some more of Danil Voyevodin, I added him to the lineup and removed Rafael Harvey-Pinard. I just couldn’t leave him out after looking into him more. If that offends you, too bad. I like Harvey-Pinard, for what it’s worth. Here’s the blurb I wrote for him before cutting him.

Rafael Harvey-Pinard – Rouyn-Noranda (QMJHL)

67GP – 26G+50A – 32.3%INV – 15.1 NHLeScore

  • I’ve only seen a taste of this guy, but if he can get his feet moving a bit better, he could be a really interesting option. He improved his scoring greatly in a bigger role on Rouyn-Nouranda, and he drove goal differential at even strength better than almost anyone on my entire sheet, and did nothing but produce. He’s small, and sticks to the outside, but if he can get faster on his feet, he’s worth a closer look.
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