We’re starting to get to the point in the season where early hot or cold streaks are becoming trends. Many leagues have blown past the 10 games played mark and are pushing near the 20 percent of the season checkpoint. This allows us to more accurately assess what’s happened and better forecast what’s to come.
This week I’ll be highlighting some CHL players that are improving their stocks. Next week we’ll look at the USHL/NCAA and European leagues.
I’ve spoken about Dach a few times over the last 12 months. The massive pivot (6’4 200lbs) has been tremendous for Saskatoon early on. Leading the team in goals (7) and points (22) in 13 contests. The 17-year-old has a strong international resume, was the second overall pick in the 2016 Bantam draft and looks to be a locked-in top 10 prospect for the NHL draft this June.
If he keeps this up, he’ll be pushing for a spot amongst the top three or four selections.
Passed over in two consecutive drafts, Leason has been a man possessed early on in the Dub. The powerful right-winger leads the league in goals (15), shots (88), and points (32) in just 15 games. He’s also led his Prince Albert Raiders to the top of the CHL Power Rankings
Narey does a year goes by that we don’t see a 19 or 20-year-old come out of nowhere to smash a CHL league and earn an entry-level contract. Leason is gearing up to be that player in 2018-19.
My pick to lead the WHL in most scoring categories has not disappointed early on in his fourth WHL campaign. The Golden Knights’ first-rounder leads the league in points-per-game with 2.22. Sits second in assists with 16 and has done so in just nine contests.
He’ll be the top line pivot for Canada at this winter’s World Junior Championships and then it’ll be off to the pro ranks. Glass remains an A-level fantasy prospect.
After nearly making the Devils as a fresh-faced 18-year-old, Smith is back in Spokane and ripping it up. This time though, he’s without one of his favourite running-mates in Kailer Yamamoto. He did get a nice gift when LA returned Jaret Anderson-Dolan a couple weeks back. The two of them will act as co-captains for the club. They should both be with Canada at the World Juniors as well.
Smith has long been regarded as an efficient, poised and speedy two-way defender but he’s showing the world his high-end playmaking ability, even more, this season. So far he’s produced two goals and 16 points in 10 contests – good enough to lead all defenders in points-per-game at 1.6.
The Devils are building a nice stock of talent and one-day Smith will QB a top power play with Hall and Hischier. Who wouldn’t want a piece of that?