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David Reinbacher “could go as early as third,” says scout

For some time now, we’ve been sensing a group of four prospects who stand out from the pack for the upcoming draft. The vast majority of pundits seem to see a quartet of Connor Bedard, Adam Fantilli, Leo Carlsson and Matvei Michkov breaking away from the rest of the prospects.

Will Smith is also a recurring theme, so much so that some are talking about a quintet. He may be a notch behind the others, but he’s not far off.

That said, another name that has been gaining ground for a while now is David Reinbacher. One of the few good defenders in this draft, he’s likely to emerge in the top-10 (and maybe even earlier).

And according to one scout (who, of course, requested anonymity), he could even go “as early as third”. At least, that’swhat he told Sheng Peng, who covers the Sharks’ activities.

A bit like Juraj SlafkovskĂœ last year, Reinbacher is climbing through the mock drafts at breakneck speed. He won’t surpass Bedard or Fantilli, but the mere fact that he’s linked with the third pick ahead of Carlsson, Michkov and Smith is surprising.

Remember that the Blue Jackets hold the third pick(but want to draft a center) while the Sharks have the next pick. If Reinbacher is selected before Kent Hughes reaches the podium, it will almost certainly be by the Sharks.

And in reality, that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing for the Tricolore. It would mean they’d have their pick of two of the five big forwards in the auction, and we can expect Michkov and Smith to be the two guys still available if Reinbacher goes fourth.

In such a scenario, I think the CH would select Smith. I could be wrong, but we know that he’s a good match for Kent Hughes and comes with fewer “problems” than Michkov (who would personally be my choice).

If the draft ever goes that way, Smith wouldn’t be a particularly unhappy customer. He would have no problem being drafted by the Habs, having already had discussions with the team and seeing himself in the blue-white-red uniform.

I’m not one of those who dislikes Reinbacher, but I think the Tricolore is in desperate need of a top-notch forward prospect. So, if the Sharks take Reinbacher at #4, it would not only “force” the CH to draft a forward, but it would give them a choice between two very high-quality prospects (probably between Smith and Michkov).

And I don’t know about you, but personally, I like that scenario.

On the other hand, it’s important to remember that this statement could also mean that the chances of the CH taking Reinbacher in the fifth spot (if he’s available) really do exist, especially since the Tricolore is linked to the defender. So, the Tricolore could really turn up their nose at one of the five big forwards in the draft and select Reinbacher.

And with the Sharks seemingly holding Smith (and Reinbacher) in high regard, it’s not impossible.

We’ll have to keep an eye on this one, but Reinbacher’s name has been gaining in popularity since the beginning of the process. I’m still hoping that the CH will choose one of the top five forwards, but the more time goes by, the more I’m thinking that Reinbacher really shouldn’t be ruled out as a realistic option for the fifth spot.

In gusts

– Impressive.

– Speaking of Will Smith.

– Good point.

– Read more.

My colleague Charles-Alexis Brisebois agreed with me this morning.

– Pretty crazy.

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