Two-way center with top six potential. More of a passer than a shooter and can be a power play contributor.
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September 2020 – Veleno will look to build off a solid first professional season where he scored 11 goals and 12 assists in 54 games with Grand Rapids. He will likely remain in the AHL to begin next season but could push for NHL minutes if he’s able to be a more consistent offensive threat. Veleno is a well-rounded center with good puck skills and hockey sense. He has the vision to facilitate for his teammates through the middle of the ice but needs to show it more often. If he can do that, he projects as a two-way second-line center at the NHL level. Nick Richard
May 2020 – Off the back of a great World Junior Championship and a solid season in Grand Rapids, Veleno may be in a position to push for a role with Detroit next season. There is no doubting his smarts and skills, but Veleno’s role will be reflected by his skating, and whether or not it catches up to his hands and brain. I believe Veleno has a good opportunity next season to get at least a nine-game trial and prove that he can be a worthy drop of oil to the Detroit machine. Ashley Glover
July 2019 – Veleno absolutely owned the QMJHL this past season, scoring 42 goals and adding 62 assists for a total of 104 points in only 59 games and another 17 points in 16 playoff games. Veleno has developed into an excellent two-way center who plays a smart and fast game. He can hurt you equally with his shot or as the set-up man. As he’s got nothing left to prove in junior hockey, Veleno will compete for a roster spot with the Red Wings in the fall. It’s likely however, with the signing of Valtteri Filpulla, that Detroit’s future number two center plays some games in the AHL before transitioning full time to the NHL. Mark Hillier
December 2018 – As the first exceptional-player from Quebec, Veleno figures he should have gone higher than 30th overall in the 2018 NHL draft, and he may not be wrong. Veleno continues to dominate the QMJHL, leading his team and the league in many categories. An excellent skater and playmaker, Veleno already plays a complete and consistent game. He has exceptional hockey sense, vision and a professional attitude. Veleno projects as a top-six two-way center. He was recently invited to Hockey Canada’s selection camp roster for the 2019 World Junior Hockey Championship. Mark Hillier
November 2017 – Veleno is the first player in QMJHL history to receive the exceptional status exemption and enter the league as a 15-year-old. Drafted first overall by Saint John in 2015 and in his rookie season delivered with 43 points in 62 games. Last year he was well insulated on a veteran and star laden team that won a QMJHL Championship. Injury limited Veleno to just 45 games in the regular season but his point production improved with 40 points in that time. Veleno was outstanding in the Memorial Cup posting three goals and four points in four games in a tournament typically dominated by 19, and 20-year-old super stars. In his draft year the Sea Dogs lost a lot of star power to graduation and Veleno has inherited the Captaincy. Despite the depleted roster he has produced 24 points in the first 25 games with just four goals.
Veleno’s strongest asset could be his skating. He has breakaway speed and acceleration, excellent agility and edge work and is strong on his skates. More of a playmaker than sniper Veleno does a great job of distributing the puck using his vision, hockey sense and puck skills to set up teammates. Veleno has a good shot but needs to more selfish and take more shots. Veleno has good size and strength and while not a very aggressive player, he isn’t shy to fight for loose pucks and can win puck battles along the boards with his high compete level. – Peter Harling