2008: The Cream of the Crop
Oilers VP of Hockey Ops Kevin Prendergast handicaps the draft field
- Follow the link to view a video profiling the top prospects with Prendergast's comments: 700K
"He has everything. I'm sure Tampa's taking him, it's a no-brainer. He'll probably step into the NHL next year and play. He has all the attributes you want in a player. He can skate, he can shoot, he can score. I don't think there's any doubt heading into this draft who the best player is."
"Big, strong kid. Came into Peterborough this year. Great skater, still learning the game a little bit. Has all the basic tools to become a very good pro."
"Six-foot-seven and a great skater. That says a lot. He played at the Under-18s for Canada and showed very well. I think the sky's the limit for this young man."
"Offensive talent, moves the puck. He's today's type of defenceman. He's going to give you a lot of minutes, he doesn't tire out on the ice, he's able to control the game with his puck passing and score goals for you at the same time."
"Shutdown defenceman. Old school type of player, you don't see many of them anymore. He's the guy you put out against the top line to shut them down. Keeps the game very simple. He's never going to be a highlight type player but he's going to be a big part of any organization."
"He's one of those star Russians. He's exciting to watch, he wants the puck all the time, he can score. He sort of reminds me of a poor man's Kovalchuk in that he's exciting when he's out on the ice.
"Very intelligent young man. We met him in Toronto (at the draft combine). Speaks perfect English. We fully anticipate he's going to come over and play Major Junior Hockey in Canada next year."