July 01 2013 08:29AM
James Lodge, C/RW, Saginaw Spirit OHL
- 6'2, 165LBS....on one site. 6' on another. Let's say 6'2.
- Shoots Right
- 64GP; 28G, 39A - 67Points.
- NHL Comprable: "poor man's Patrick Kane".
Well, well, well, looks like Kevin Cheveldayoff and the boys may have made a great pick here. My first thought when I saw James Lodge was "sounds like nice accomdations to stay in the woods one day". Never heard of him. Luckily, Google exists, and I was able to get a closer look at the Jets first 3rd Round Pick of the 2013 Draft.
Problem was, when I searched his name, actual 'James Lodge's' kept popping up. One, a James Lodge Mountain Resort in Gatlinburg, Tennessee, another oddly enough in Winnipeg. But no kick ass future Jet info. Why? Because his name is Jimmy Lodge. Formally James. Lucky for us, because while I'm sure there's much good about that Tennesse Lodge, it appears the Jets got a helluva steal in the 3rd round.
Sportsnet had him going 30th overall to Chicago in one of their Mocks. One sight said "The sky's the limit". Another sight called him "a poor man's Patrick Kane" - watch out WInnipeg Cabbies! One things everyone seemed to agree on was this Kid can skate well, move the puck well, and has tremendous vision. His size has got to help things out as well down the road, as well.
Here's what an expert in the field had to say:
Corey Pronman of Hockey Prospectus:
"Lodge is a skilled forward, who developed well over the 2012-13 OHL campaign, as he exceeded one point per game. He is not a finished product by any means, but he has a significant amount of upside. He has high-end puck skills, conveying the overall look of a skilled player. He is very coordinated in his puck handling, with the ability to make top-level plays. Lodge has good offensive instincts, manifesting both in his puck creativity and in his gifted passing and crisp distributions. He can execute difficult plays. He is a solid to above-average skater as well. Still, his physical game leaves a little to be desired. He has improved in that area, but he could stand to be more consistent in his physicality, as well as to gain strength. He also tends to fly out of his zone a tad too quickly."
I think it's clear that the Jets hit this one out of park. Sounds like a very solid prospect that lacks any MAJOR holes in his game, with room for some upside. Can't ask for much more than that. It's early to be declaring anything, but it's safe to say this kid is gonna be First Ballot Hall of Famer.