College team: Wisconsin (NCAA)
Born: Chesterfield, Mo.
Measurables: 6-foot, 193 pounds
2015-16 stats: 34 games, 19 goals, 13 assists, 32 points
Central Scouting rank: No. 11 (North America)
Lowdown: With a new coach (Tony Granato) coming in after a rare losing season (8-19-8), Wisconsin is looking to rebuild to past glory. Kunin is the right player to get that started. The freshman led the team in goals by a large margin, with only two other Badgers reaching double digits and no one else topping 11.
Diagnosed with type 1 diabetes as a kid, Kunin was told he’d never play hockey. He fought through the prognosis and brings that determination to the ice with a two-way game. He works just as hard off the ice with heavy film work. His shot and decision-making are both on point. He’s a natural leader.
A good skater, Kunin could work on his first few steps and make them more explosive.
They said it: “The thing that impresses you the most when you speak to him is his maturity. He’s an 18-year-old going on 25. He is just about getting it done and getting it done the right way. He knows what his goals are in his life, and he just gets it done. He needs to get to a puck, he gets the puck. He does a lot of the little things, but also he’s got the flare to put the puck in the net and make plays.” – Mike Eaves, former Badgers coach, to the Wisconsin State Journal.
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.