Leading up to the 2014 NHL Entry Draft in Philadelphia, we’ll be profiling top prospects who may hear their names called Friday in the first round. Nothing too in-depth. Just enough so you know who they are and what they’re about.
Nikolaj Ehlers (LW)
Height: 5’10 Weight: 176 Shoots: Left
Team: Halifax Mooseheads (QMJHL)
NHL Central Scouting ranking: No. 13 among North American skaters
What kind of player is he?
We’ll soon find out. His scored an incredible 49 goals and 104 points in 63 games as a QMJHL rookie while playing alongside Jonathan Drouin, the third overall selection of the Tampa Bay Lightning in last year’s draft. So, put Ehlers with quality players, and, in turn, he has the potential to put up some quality numbers.
Also a well-rounded athlete with professional hockey in his lineage. He played soccer in Denmark’s national team program until he was 14, and his father played pro hockey for 16 seasons in Europe, according to NHL.com.
Maybe the one knock against him is his size, weighing about 10 pounds lighter than Drouin did at this time last year.
His speed and shot appear to be his greatest assets, as Mooseheads teammate Darcy Ashley emphasized to The Chronicle Herald.
“He’s one of those players who might not be as big as some of the other guys in the draft right now but scouts are looking at two or three years down the road.
“If you want someone on your team who can score goals, you’re not going to be looking for an 18-year-old to do that right away. You’re looking for a guy to do that starting when he’s 21 or 22. Nik’s a guy that will put on size. When you can skate like that and when he puts on 20 pounds or maybe even grows an inch or two, he’s going to be a superstar in the NHL.”
For more 2014 NHL Draft previews, click here.