Next up on our Draft Prospect Preview is Matt Duchene
Hometown: Peterborough, Ontario
Current Team: Brampton Battalion (OHL)
What they're saying:
Struggled a little early on last season adjusting to the OHL pace of the game, but made the transition later in the season quite well. Has great hands and possesses one the best shots in the OHL, with a very quick release. Was guilty of passing too much and not shooting enough, given the depth of line-mates he had. Make no mistake though. This guy is pure high-level sniper.
He's an explosive skater, and he can just blow by people, which not a lot of people can," said Stan Butler, Director of Hockey Operations and head coach of the Battalion. "I think his lower body strength...he has a similar build from the waist down to someone like Sidney Crosby.
Duchene has improved every year since lacing them up for the Central Ontario Wolves AAA minor midget team. He is one of two Brampton Battalion rookies to score 30 goals along with Raffi Torres. Duchene also played behind some kid named Cory Hodgsonwho had kind of a great career in the OHL. I always thought that a # 2 ranked player would be the top centre on his junior team but the pros know better I guess. The biggest shock about Duchene's ascension to the top of draft boards around the league came when Redline Report ranked him above Tavares. Needless to say, many were skeptical about the reasons behind the move. Hockey Prospect describes him as a complete player who has a well developed defensive game to complement his offensive capabilities. Bob McKenzie and the fans at Mile High Hockey are ready to welcome him to Denver. In fact, that McKenzie approval is pretty strong:
Here is a video profile of Matt Duchene from Rogers Sportsnet: