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Blueshirt Banter 2018 NHL Draft Rankings - #15 Dominik Bokk

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United States v Germany - 2018 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship
Dominik Bokk will surely become the highest drafted German since Leon Draisaitl went third overall in 2014.
Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images

Dominik Bokk, Växjö Lakers (SHL)

Vitals

Position: Right Wing

Age on Draft Day: 18.39 Years Old

Height/Weight: 6’1, 170 pounds

2017-2018 Stats (SHL): 15 GP, 1G, 1A, 0 PIM, +1

2017-2018 Stats (SuperElit): 35 GP, 14 G, 27 A, 12 PIM, +19

Other Rankings

NHL Central Scouting: 12th (European Skaters)

Corey Pronman (The Athletic): 8th

HockeyProspect.com (March): 21st

Jeremy Davis (Canucks Army): 21st

ISS Hockey: 28th

Scott Wheeler (The Athletic): 28th

Future Considerations: 33rd

Scouting Report

Full disclosure here that I (Adam) have never seen Dominik Bokk play in a game. Tobias, however, had been pushing Bokk as high as eighth overall. So, here is Tobias’ analysis of Bokk, with some light editing, followed by my reasoning for agreeing to slot him at 15.

Tobias

Bokk has good size, good skating, and high end skill. He has a really good shot that he loves using. His biggest strength is definitely his shot, and in my opinion it ranks among the top-three in this draft. He’s very good at using his skill in on-on-one situations to create space for his shot.

His defensive game is okay, but he needs to work on his strength along the boards. His skating while good is definitely a bit awkward at times. I’d love to see him after a summer or two with a skating coach to iron out the kinks.

Bokk spent most of the year playing for Växjö J20in SuperElit where he posted a very respectable 14 goals and 27 assists in 35 games. But the truly impressive part of his season is the 18 games he spent up with Växjö Lakers in the Swedish Hockey League and Champions Hockey League. On the surface, it might not look that impressive - one goal and one assist in 15 games in SHL, and the same in 3 CHL games - but when you dive deeper you see that he’s a shot generating machine who was most likely just very unlucky.

I see Bokk as a top-six sniper at the NHL level. I’ve seen a bunch of comparisons from others on him. Two that stuck with me stylistically are Nikolaj Ehlers and Tomas Tatar. Even though I think his defensive game is pretty solid, I think NHL coaches will use him in a purely offensive role because of the perception of danglers like Bokk. This can change if the old school coaches start to get replaced.

Adam

To my knowledge, there isn’t much advanced data publicly available for the Swedish Hockey League. Luckily, Tobias was able to get his hands on private data, and it really drives home his point about Bokk being unlucky.

With Bokk on the ice, Växjö generated nearly 60 percent of the shot attempts. That’s a massive number, and it looks even better when paired with the positive relative Corsi, meaning that they had a higher share of the shot attempts with Bokk on the ice than with him on the bench. Of course, there are other factors that could influence that, such as his usage and linemates; Bokk played often with wunderkind Elias Pettersson. At the very least, though, we know he was not a liability, and in fact actively contributed shift-by-shift against grown men in one of the best leagues in the world.

The 1.45% on-ice shooting percentage is absurdly low, and it might point to an inefficiency in how Bokk is valued as a draft prospect. Bokk was only on the ice for one even strength goal on 69 shots. During the 2017-2018 SHL season, Växjö as a team shot 8.99%, and in a theoretical world where that carried over to Bokk’s shifts, he would have been on the ice for roughly six even strength goals.

To connect the dots: Bokk was a major driver of possession in the SHL (albeit, in a small sample and often with Pettersson) and, with Växjo shooting at a normal rate, he likely adds three or four more points to his stat sheet. As Tobias said to me while we were compiling are rankings, what would the consensus be on Bokk if he had five or six points in limited minutes during 15 SHL games?

I also think lack of exposure offers a legitimate possibility of Bokk being a better player than many might realize. Thought he did play 15 games in the SHL, he spent the majority of the season in junior hockey. Furthermore, Bokk is German, and Germany did not play in the top flight of the World Junior Championship last winter, nor at other marquee tournaments such as the Hlinka Memorial Cup. Finally, this was Bokk’s first season playing in Sweden, which is both a massive jump in competition from Germany on the ice as well as a significant life change for a 17-year-old to go through away from the rink. With adjustment and comfort, could there be much more to come next season?

I’ve talked to people who have been in draft war rooms. While there is of course a lot of sophisticated analysis and debate that goes into teams’ rankings, sometimes it’s all about which scout is loudest and most relentless in a metaphorical (sometimes even literal) yelling contest.

That more or less explains the process that led to our ranking of Bokk. Again, Tobias had been in my ear about ranking him as high as eighth overall. This is the part of our draft board in which his passion for Bokk outweighed any that I had for the remaining players. That is not an indictment of the rest of the draft, but rather speaks to how highly Tobias thinks of him. Thus, despite being largely ignorant about Bokk aside from the data and a few highlights, I’m going to take a leap of faith here.

Is Bokk a realistic target for the Rangers? Likely so. Though we have him 15, he seems to be trending towards a range of 20-31 in majority of rankings. That being said, NHL scouts think it’s going to be an absolute circus after the first 12 picks or so, with no clear harmony of opinion on the remaining players. All it takes is one team to be enamored with Bokk - and it’s easy to see that happening - for him to get drafted in the mid-teens, but he could just as easily drop into the second round. As of now, he should certainly be on the Rangers’ radar at 26th or 28th overall.

What Others Have Said

Corey Pronman, The Athletic:

“He is one of the most skilled players in the draft. His puck handling is elite for a player his size and, when I’ve talked to management from his German national teams, they specifically point to his skill as his best attribute.”

German Hockey Coach Fritz Meier (via Der Münchner Merkur, using Google Translate):

“Dominik has game intelligence, an incredible technique, and he is fleet-footed.

Växjö SuperElit J20 Head Coach Janne Karlsson (via Frankfurter Allgemeine using Google Translate):

“He always knows what to do when he gets the puck. Few have this ability, and he is one of them.”

To read the rest of our 2018 NHL Draft Profiles, click this link.