Position: Right winger.
Junior team: Charlottetown (QMJHL).
Born: Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Measurables: 6-foot, 180 pounds.
2014-15 stats: 68 games, 39 goals, 49 assists, 88 points.
Central Scouting rank: No. 20 (North America).
Lowdown: While Sprong’s countrymen in the Netherlands got their kicks on a soccer field, he and his dad would skate at the only rink in town. The limited number of players interested in hockey meant Sprong competed against 13-year-olds when he was only 4. He’s hoping to become the first Dutch player in the NHL since Ed Kea in 1983.
The Sprongs moved to Canada in 2005 to help the forward develop. He set a record with his midget team in 2012-13, recording 48 goals and 104 points in 30 games. He’s led Charlottetown in scoring during his two seasons, totaling 69 goals and 156 points. His skating brings him to open areas, and he takes advantage of the room with his hard shot.
He started this season slow after putting too much pressure on himself. He’ll need to learn how to handle the growing expectations that come with being a first-round pick. He’s not physical and has been said to coast without the puck.
They said it: “He’s one of the most skilled prospects in QMJHL this year. He possesses good speed, good puck skills and is a goal scorer. He can execute at full speed and creates a lot of challenges for defenders.” – Troy Dumville 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 26-27.