Cam Robinson’s 2018 NHL Draft Rankings: August 2017 Edition

Cam Robinson




For the ninth time in the past 10 years, Team Canada has left the Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament as champions.  This year, they defeated the host Czech’s to reclaim their title after falling all the way to fifth in 2016.


With another terrific under-18 tournament in the books, the official start of the scouting season is well under way. Several upcoming draft eligible players performed exceedingly well and have built a sturdy foundation for the most important year of their lives thus far.


Hlinka Notables


  • Dynamic forward, Dimitriy Zavgorodniy led the tournament in scoring (5+5) for the fourth-place Russians. The 16-year-old was a consistent threat to score and displayed terrific agility, vision and finishing skills. At just 5’9, he will need performances like these to vault himself onto the first page of many scouts’ lists.


  • Dynamic right-handed defenseman, Adam Boqvist shone brightly for the Swedes. The 5’11 rearguard scored a silky goal in the bronze medal game and added seven assists throughout to finish with eight points in five contests. Boqvist hasn’t yet turned 17-years old and will remain in Sweden to play in the U20 SuperElit league this fall despite having been draft by the London Knights in the CHL Import Draft.



Adam Boqvist – Ivan Hlinka Highlights

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  • Rasmus Kupari produced two goals and seven points in four games for the Finnish squad; leading the charge offensive for the team and displaying the creativity, quickness and deft playmaking ability of a centre to watch climb the rankings this year. He will fight for a job with Kärpät of the Finnish Liiga.



  • Joseph Veleno captained the dominant Canadian club that torched the competition by outscoring opponents 22-8. He was noticeable on both sides of the puck and looked every bit the part of a top 10 selection this June. The most recent player to be granted exceptional status displayed his ability to change the pace to suit his designs. That’s a relatable skill with many of the best players in the world. His vision and patience was on full display. Veleno will head back to the QMJHL this fall and contend for the league’s most productive player.


  • Spokane Chiefs’ defender, Ty Smith, Niagara IceDogs’ centre, Akil Thomas and Jack McBain of the Ontario Junior A circuit all stood out for Canada in their gold medal endeavor. Smith was clearly the team’s best all-around defender on a squad built around its top blue liners. Thomas displayed his unrelenting motor and two-way acumen in shutting d