R. Aaron Houde | June 13th, 2019
In the first round of the 2019-2020 NHL Draft, an anticipated 20 Forwards are to be drafted; 11 Centers, 7 Right Wings, and 2 Left Wings. With the increase in offensive output on the ice, it is no surprise that teams are looking to add skilled youngsters to their offensive lines. Today, I will be looking at Peyton Krebs of the Western Hockey League.
Peyton Krebs, born on Jan 26, 2001 in Calgary, AB, CAN finished the regular season in the WHL with 68 points (19 goals, 49 assists) in 64 games played for the Kootenay Ice*. While he is on the smaller side of the first round draft picks at 5’11”, 168 lbs (average height and weight for the projected first-round drafts is 6’0″, 188 lbs), his play in every zone on the ice, combined with his impressive faceoff abilities (538 faceoff wins for a 47% success rate), made him an easy prediction for top 50% in the first round draft. However, this is now subject to change, as Krebs had reportedly suffered a partial tear in his Achilles tendon when another player’s skate blade cut through his cut-proof sock and into his Achilles. After a successful surgery, he is expected to make a full recovery, but the timeline is unclear.
While it is unfortunate to place him at the back end of the draft, with the uncertainty of his recovery, it is likely that, if Krebs does go first round, it would be in the latter half, going to a team who is looking to free space in their Salary Cap or to replace their soon-to-be free agents.
Peyton Krebs was a proven asset to Kootenay, with his understanding of the defensive aspect of the game and his undeniable puck-skills. These aspects, partnered with smooth skating and a mix of speed, smarts, and willingness to go to the dirty areas and fight for possession, can prove to be a boon to any team, pending recovery is on Krebs side.
*Starting in the 2019-20 WHL Season, the Kootenay Ice are moving from Cranbrook, British Columbia to Winnipeg, Manitoba, reflagging as the Winnipeg Ice.Questions and comments?
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