Road to the NHL Draft / Tage Thompson - The Buffalo News

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Road to the NHL Draft / Tage Thompson

Position: Center

College team: Connecticut (NCAA)

Born: Phoenix

Measurables: 6 feet, 5 inches; 185 pounds

2015-16 stats: 36 games, 14 goals, 18 assists, 32 points

Central Scouting rank: No. 20 (North America)

Lowdown: Fans love to yell, “Shoot!” when a team has a power play. They don’t have to say it twice with Thompson on the ice. The big forward has a cannon for a shot, and he used it to lead the NCAA with 13 power-play goals.

The true freshman has been around the ice his whole life. His father, Brent, was an NHL enforcer with Los Angeles, Winnipeg and Phoenix. While Brent Thompson registered one goal and 352 penalty minutes, Tage is the opposite and would much rather score than fight. His one-timer from the top of the circle is his best punch.

While he’s good at protecting the puck and can play physical, Thompson could still use some weight to handle inside play. He’s working on his skating.

They said it: “He’s a pro player. For him to go into that program and get the ice time and production he’s getting, he’s getting bigger and stronger and his skating has picked up. He upgraded his skating even though he didn’t need to, so he’s one of these guys who can get in, protect the puck, get it to the net and he’s hard to check..” – Dan Marr, director of NHL Central Scouting, to NHL.com.

– John Vogl

The Buffalo News is profiling 30 prospects in 30 days leading up to the NHL Draft, which will be held June 24-25 in First Niagara Center.

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