NHL Draft 2020: Canada’s Alexis Lafreniere No. 1 among North American skaters in final rankings

On Wednesday, NHL Central Scouting Bureau launched its final rankings for the 2020 NHL Draft and it need to come as no shock that Canada’s Alexis Lafreniere sits atop the North American skaters ranking.

The 18- year-old from Saint-Eustache, Que., has actually been the agreement No. 1 choice for months if not years. This past season he led the QMJHL with 112 points (35 objectives, 77 helps) in 52 games for the Rimouski Oceanic. At the 2020 IIHF World Junior Championship, he led Canada to the gold medal and was called the competition’s A lot of Belongings Gamer and Best Forward after publishing 10 points (4 objectives, 6 helps) in 5 games.

MORE: Ranking the leading efficiencies from draft-eligible players at WJC

“Lafreniere has exceptional skills and attributes which make him a scoring threat every time he steps onto the ice,” stated director of Central Scouting Dan Marr in a news release. “Whether it’s with Rimouski in the QMJHL or on the world stage he has continually shown that he is a force that can impact and be a difference maker in games. What sets him above in this draft class is the natural compete and battle traits that are ingrained in his game, allowing Alexis to lead the way and make others around him better.”

At 6-1, 193- pounds, the left-wing can play a physical game and toss the body around however likewise has a high level of ability with smooth hands that assist him weave through protectors. Talented with an inherent hockey sense, the QMJHL and Canadian Hockey League MVP for the 2018-19 season has standout playmaking capabilities in addition to a deadly shot.

“I think you could consider every aspect as elite when you look at his skating, his puck skills, obviously it’s above average,” kept in mind J-F Damphousse, local scout for Quebec and the Maritimes on a video call with press reporters Wednesday. “One of his best assets, in general, is his vision, his playmaking skills. Every game that I saw him play, he makes plays that you don’t even think those plays are possible and he still makes them. But I think what separates him from the pack is his compete level. He’s willing to play physical, he battles every game and any time the game is on the line you want him on the ice. He makes big plays in games and he responds under pressure.”

KOURNIANOS: Mock draft 2020 offers Lafreniere to Detroit

With the NHL season on time out, the draft lotto, which was initially arranged to be hung on April 9, is on hold as final standings are still to be identified. According to Tankathon, teams in the mix to pick first consist of the Ottawa Senators, San Jose Sharks and Los Angeles Kings, with the Detroit Red Wings holding the best chances.

Regardless, of who chooses first, they are anticipated to take Lafreniere, who would be the first Quebec-born gamer taken first total because netminder Marc-Andre Fleury was prepared by the Penguins in2003 He’ll likewise be the first Rimouski gamer to go No. 1 because Pittsburgh took Sidney Crosby in 2005; Tampa Bay Lightning star Vincent Lecavalier, chosen first- total in 1998 from Rimouski, was the last Quebec-born skater taken first in general.