— Winnipeg Jets (@NHLJets) June 6, 2015
Though one of his teammates is also very highly touted going in to this entry draft, Brock Boeser is considered one of the USHL’s very best prospects this season. The hard-working winger possesses a full toolkit of offensive skills and can score goals any way you want him to.
Continue past the jump to learn about one of the best available American prospects in 2015.
- Age: 17.56 years old at start of season. Born February 25, 1997.
- Birthplace: Burnsville, Minnesota
- Frame: 6’1, 191 lbs
- Position: RW
- Draft Year Team: Waterloo Black Hawks (USHL)
- Accomplishments: 2014 Five Nations Tournament Gold Medal, 2015 Ivan Hlinka Tournament Bronze Medal, 2015 USHL All-Rookie Team, 2015 USHL All-Star, 2015 USHL Goal Scoring Leader
|PCS% 2014||PCS Pts/82 2014||PCS% 2015||PCS Pts/82 2015|
|PCS Most NHL GP||PCS Highest Pts/GP|
|Paul Ranheim||Kyle Okposo|
|Trent Klatt||Trent Klatt|
|Chad LaRose||Charlie Coyle|
- PCS = Our Player Cohort Success model. Click here for more information about PCS.
A dynamic offensive winger and natural goal scorer. Has great instincts and is able to quickly get into position for premium scoring chances; possesses an accurate release on his shot which he can get off in the blink of an eye. He always knows where his linemates are, and is a great passer; that being said, his individual puck possession play is incredible and sets him apart as an offensive player. He will need to work on defensive zone coverage and a slew of small details such as board battles, but Brock Boeser has a ton of elite-level scoring potential due to the way he can read, make, and finish plays.
Brock is a multiple force offensive player. He can score in multiple ways and gets himself into prime scoring positions. Creates opportunities off the cycle and from below the goal line. Nice touch around net but can score from 30 feet. Sets his hands exceptionally well to score with an excellent release and makes it difficult for goalies to get a read on his shot. Determined, driven player.
A big power winger who utilizes his size and strength to generate offensive chances…a real do-it-all guy…plays hard in all three zones…has a great compete level…protects the puck extremely well, especially with defenders draped all over him…fights through any contact he encounters…has a lethal shot, quick release and very accurate…drive the net…can also pull up and set-up his teammates with a skilled pass…defensively he does a great job taking away shooting lanes and forcing the other team to adjust their plan…a real pro-style player.
Boeser seems to be the consensus second best player coming out of the USHL this season, behind only Youngstown’s Kyle Connor, and it’s not hard to see why. Boeser is an adept goal scorer with patience and creativity with the puck on his stick, as well as a bump-and-grind game that exhibits a willingness to go to the dirty areas on the ice to jam in goals.
At the USHL level at least, Boeser is the full package offensively and can beat you in multiple ways. His shot is hard and accurate and he can locate it exceptionally well, but he also has the creativity to make plays out of nothing and manufacture offense independent of his teammates. He won’t shy away from contact either, as he’ll drive to the net effectively to jump on any loose pucks. He’s not as flashy an offensive creator as some of the other players in this draft, but he’s industrious and effective.
Craig Button compares Boeser to New York Islanders winger Kyle Okposo in terms of style of play, and Okposo seems to be a good fit statistically too. That said, many of Boeser’s USHL, USDP, and USHS offensive comparables the past two seasons never really translated their games to the next level. Trent Klatt is a pretty close comparable too, as are Chad LaRose, Justin Abdelkader and Charlie Coyle. It can be argued that Boeser has as high a skill base as any of those guys though, putting his ceiling closer to Okposo’s.
A Coyle-like career path wouldn’t surprise me either, as the former 28th overall pick has settled in to a very comfortable middle-6 role with the Minnesota Wild, producing at just under a half a point per game clip in his first two full NHL seasons. Boeser’s work ethic and competitive play will help him endear himself to NHL coaches and carve out a role at the NHL level even if his offensive game doesn’t develop, but his skating and defensive play aren’t great and could still hold him back if he doesn’t improve in those regards.
All in all, Brock Boeser has the potential to develop into an NHL scorer, and the tools to carve out a career even if he doesn’t. He may not be a first line guy down the road, but late in the first round, he’s as good a bet as any player to give your team some value.