The Dallas Stars have the third overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft and it’s one of the most intriguing spots in the draft.
Brandon Wheat Kings center Nolan Patrick and Halifax Moosheads center Nico Hischier are considered the top prospects in this draft class. There is some debate whether Patrick or Hischier will go first overall, but there seems to be a consensus opinion that neither will make it past the second pick.
That means the Stars could go in any direction at No. 3 and it’s not a bad spot. While this draft is considered weaker than past years, Dallas will still get a very good prospect at No. 3 and a player that should make an impact in the NHL.
Since the NHL Draft Lottery I’ve taken time to watch video and spoken with others that have watched these draft prospects closely to create my own scouting reports for 12 players that Dallas could consider at No. 3.
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6-foot-2, 203 pounds
Mississauga Steelheads (OHL)
Owen Tippett may have the best shot in the draft and is pure goal scorer for the Mississauga Steelheads.
Tippett, who is the seventh ranked North American Skater by Central Scouting, had 44 goals and 75 points in 60 OHL games this season. It was evidence of his shoot first, ask questions later mentality, and the right winger is dangerous from all areas of the ice.
The most impressive part about Tippett’s game isn’t his shot, it’s his ability to get it off in all situations. Some players with elite level shots rarely get to use it or lack the ability to create an opportunity to set up a potential shot.
Tippett is always in the right areas offensively, both with and without the puck, and he has good speed. When possessing the puck Tippett does a good job of protecting it and has a knack for holding onto the puck when attempting to get around a defender.
There are times he holds onto the puck a bit longer than he should, but he’s not an overly selfish player, and could be a long-time top-six scoring winger in the NHL.
Tippett isn’t afraid to play a physical game and he can do so with his 6-foot-2 (188 CM), 203 pound (92 KG) frame. He is by no means a shutdown defensive forward, but his work in the defensive zone in the OHL is a good sign he’ll be willing to buy into any defensive system in the NHL.
There aren’t many flaws in Tippett’s games, or at least there aren’t flaws that have showed up in his time in the OHL. Part of that comes with him playing on a very good team and the Steelheads are in the midst of the OHL Championship series against the Erie Otters.
If the Stars are looking for a pure goal scorer and a player that could make the jump as an NHL winger within a couple seasons, Tippett could be the ideal choice at No. 3.