There hasn’t been a lot in the best way of alternative for members of the 2021 NHL Draft class to place themselves on show in a showcase state of affairs this season. That is why this 12 months’s BioSteel All-American Recreation, set for Wed., April 7 in Plymouth, Mich., should not disappoint.
Understandably, there’s a whole lot of pleasure set to stem from the occasion, although it’s only a single-game showcase for these eligible for the 2021 NHL Draft. The sport options gamers from the US U-18 Nationwide Group Improvement Program (US-NTDP) in opposition to a roster full of the most effective American-born gamers from the US Hockey League (USHL).
All 22 gamers from the USHL lineup are eligible for the July 23-24 draft, with 18 of the 21 Nationwide Group Improvement Program members eligible too. And, of the 40 gamers suiting up, 15 of them appeared in FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft Winter rankings.
Whether or not you’re a draft fanatic, a prospect aficionado, or an off-the-cuff hockey fan, earlier than the puck drops at eight p.m. ET (NHL Community within the U.S.) here is a few guys to maintain a watch on in the exhibition.
5 2021 NHL Draft prospects to observe within the BioSteel All-American Recreation
Jack Peart, D, Group USHL (Fargo Power)
FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft rating: 98
Peart, dedicated to St. Cloud State College, shredded the highschool circuit in Minnesota this season. He posted 11 objectives and 35 factors in simply 18 video games since returning to Grand Rapids Excessive after a profitable 18-game audition with the Fargo Power. This previous Monday, Peart was named Minnesota’s Mr. Hockey.
Preserve a watch out for his capability to interrupt the puck out of his personal finish and his capability to quarterback an influence play.
“Earlier than leaving the USHL to rejoin Grand Rapids Excessive to complete out his highschool profession, Peart was tied for the USHL lead in assists and was the second main point-producing defenseman within the league,” FCHockey regional scout Dylan Krill famous.
“Peart will catch your eyes in a variety of methods, whether or not or not it’s his fast and agile skating, his long-range stretch passing accuracy or simply watching him assume and course of the sport, making the environment friendly performs relatively than the expert play.”
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Chaz Lucius, C, Group USA (US-NTDP)
FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft rating: 15
It has been a troublesome 12 months for Lucius to get on monitor, lacking a lot of the season due to a lower-body damage; nonetheless, he rebounded in a giant means. Dedicated to the College of Minnesota, he is posted 18 factors (13 objectives, 5 assists) in simply 12 video games after getting back from damage and has solidified his standing as a first-round choose within the course of.
Lucius is supremely assured with the puck on his stick and takes a shoot-first strategy when navigating the offensive zone.
“Lucius has emerged as one of many prime forwards on this 12 months’s NTDP class, most certainly the highest ahead, so the highlight will likely be very brilliant on him on this sport,” mentioned Derek Neumeier, FCHockey’s head of video scouting. “He’s harmful within the offensive zone when he has the puck on his stick, although there are some points together with his skating and skill to create area for himself, making him slightly difficult to undertaking. After lacking the beginning of the 12 months attributable to damage this occasion will likely be an excellent alternative to showcase himself and make a splash.”
Matthew Knies, LW, Group USHL (Tri-Metropolis Storm)
FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft rating: 48
Knies is getting into the All-American Prospects Recreation as one of many USHL’s hottest gamers. He is amassed 10 factors (4 objectives, six assists) in his previous 4 video games and at present sits at 22 assists and 32 factors in 37 video games with the Tri-Metropolis Storm this season.
The College of Minnesota commit is a standout at 6-Three and 203-pounds however is healthier often called an offensive facilitator than a bruising, hulking ahead.
“At first of the 12 months, Knies had excessive expectations coming off a point-per-game season in 2019-20,” Krill mentioned. “Though his offense wasn’t nice, he was nonetheless enjoying a robust two-way sport, making use of nice stress and depth every shift. Knies has a few of the greatest palms within the draft so control a few of the performs he has the flexibility to make. His imaginative and prescient and shot are each very efficient, and he’s now constantly getting rewarded with factors.”
Cole Sillinger, C, Group USHL (Sioux Falls Stampede)
FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft rating: 19
Sillinger, who joined the Stampede after a standout season with the Drugs Hat Tigers (WHL) final season, has shredded the USHL competitors this season. He has 22 objectives and 42 factors in simply 29 video games and is fifth general within the league with a 1.45 points-per-game mark.
The twin-citizen is among the draft’s greatest pure purpose scorers.
“Sillinger has been feasting on the USHL this season as a dual-threat ahead who’s equally deadly at capturing the puck and distributing it,” Neumeier mentioned. “Nonetheless, like Lucius, there are some points together with his skating and skill to create separation for himself. Defending within the USHL is inconsistent at greatest, so I am very curious to see what Sillinger can do in opposition to the competitors supplied on this sport.”
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Sasha Pastujov, LW, Group USA (US-NTDP)
FCHockey’s 2021 NHL Draft rating: 50
Pastujov has been an offensive power for the Nationwide Group Improvement Program this season, amassing 26 factors (10 objectives, 16 assists) in opposition to USHL competitors this season. Pastujov, off to the College of Notre Dame within the fall, leads the NTDP in scoring with 52 factors (23 objectives, 29 assists) in 34 whole video games performed.
It will be his offensive prowess that is showcased within the All-American Prospects Recreation. Pastujov is a standout when he has the puck on his stick, each due to his imaginative and prescient and skill to navigate the offensive zone to create alternatives.
“You may anticipate a really eventful evening for Pastujov, as he will likely be desirous to showcase his extremely harmful ability,” Krill mentioned. “Pastujov is among the greatest offensive gamers on the NTDP and has the flexibility to get you out of your seat together with his extremely expert palms, imaginative and prescient and shot. Though his play with tempo and skating is a priority, he has a lot potential and will certainly be one of many predominant gamers to observe on this sport, and transferring nearer to the draft.”
Aaron Vickers the managing editor for FCHockey.