Calgary, Alta. – The Western Hockey League announced today 48 WHL players have been listed by NHL Central Scouting in its midterm rankings in advance of the 2019 NHL Draft, scheduled for June 21-22 in Vancouver, B.C.
Headlining the list are three WHL players among the top four skaters in North America, led by forward Kirby Dach (Fort Saskatchewan, Alta. / Saskatoon Blades) who is ranked second. Joining Dach in the top four are forward Dylan Cozens (Whitehorse, Yukon / Lethbridge Hurricanes), and defenceman Bowen Byram (Cranbrook, B.C. / Vancouver Giants). Joining the trio in the top 10 list of North American skaters is Kootenay ICE captain Peyton Krebs (Okotoks, Alta. / Kootenay ICE), who is ranked eighth. Mads Sogaard (Aalborg, Denmark / Medicine Hat Tigers) is the highest-ranked WHL net minder, ranked third among North American goaltenders.
Including, Dach, Cozens, Byram, and Krebs, nine WHL players are ranked inside the Top 31, including defenceman Lassi Thomson (14th – Tempere, Finland / Kelowna Rockets), forward Brett Leason (17th – Calgary, Alta. / Prince Albert Raiders), defenceman Matthew Robertson (18th – Sherwood Park, Alta. / Edmonton Oil Kings), forward Nolan Foote (26th – Engelwood, Colo. / Kelowna Rockets), and defenceman Kaedan Korczak (31st – Yorkton, Sask. / Kelowna Rockets).
The Kelowna Rockets lead all WHL clubs with six players ranked. In addition to Thomson, Foote, and Korczak, forwards Kyle Topping (195th – Salt Spring Island, B.C.), Alex Swetlikoff (217th – Kelowna, B.C.), and goaltender Roman Basran (11th – Vancouver, B.C.) find a place on the NHL radar. The Edmonton Oil Kings sit just behind the Rockets with five players named in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings. Four teams have a trio of players on the rankings while 10 more have a pair of players featured in the rankings.
Overall the list includes 27 forwards, 14 defencemen, and seven goaltenders from the WHL, representing 20 of the 22 WHL member Clubs. The Central Division leads all divisions with 17 players appearing on the list, while the 48 prospects are split evenly between the conferences, each claiming 24 as their own.
Of the 48 players listed in the NHL Central Scouting midterm rankings, 15 will participate at the 2019 Sherwin-Williams CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game on Wednesday, January 23 (8:00 p.m. MT) at The Centrium in Red Deer, Alta. Cozens and Dach will take a leading role at the event as the captains of Team Cherry and Team Orr respectively. Seattle Thunderbirds forward Dillon Hamaliuk had previously been named to the annual outing, but will miss the event due to injury.
2019 NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING MIDTERM RANKINGS (MANITOBANS) – SKATERS
|#||Pos||First Name||Last Name||Hometown||Current Team|
|160||F||Cole||Muir||Vista||Kootenay Ice (WHL)|
|204||F||Kyle||Bettens||Winnipeg||Steinbach Pistons (MJHL)|
|208||F||Reilly||Funk||Portage la Prairie||Portage Terriers (MJHL)|
2019 NHL CENTRAL SCOUTING MIDTERM RANKINGS (MANITOBANS) – GOALIES
|6||G||Trent||Miner||Brandon||Vancouver Giants (WHL)|