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Draft: Ryan Leonard ahead of Will Smith in the eyes of some scouts
A number of names come up frequently when we talk about the players who will be available in the fifth round of the NHL draft, a selection held by the Montreal Canadiens.

One of them is Ryan Leonard. And, I must admit, I’m a little intrigued.

It’s interesting because the American describes himself as a versatile player on the ice, but also as a player with extraordinary power. He’s been described as a luxury power forward who can also add a certain offensive touch to his game.

Personally, I think he’s a bit like Matthew Tkachuk. The attributes are similar: two guys with offensive qualities who are capable of upsetting the opposition.

Leonard is such a special case that some scouts see him very high on their respective lists. Chris Peters, a journalist who covers the USHL and saw him play last season, explains why some scouts would choose Ryan Leonard…

Before Will Smith :

Leonard’s field hockey sense isn’t as sharp as Smith’s, which is elite quality, but some teams will value Leonard’s physical side more and conclude that his qualities translate better to the NHL.

We know how much NHL executives love big, talented players.

It’s not the same discourse as in the 80s or 90s, because the game has changed quite significantly, but these cases will always remain intriguing because we know how much they can help a team on the ice.

Just look at Josh Anderson in Montreal. When he’s in shape and working his butt off, everyone will agree that Anderson is a mean, good field hockey player…

And that’s exactly why Marc Bergevin decided to offer him a long-term contract. Players like him aren’t exactly a dime a dozen in the NHL, and they’re a dime a dozen.

All that to say, I understand the interest in Leonard. On the other hand, Will Smith is such an attractive player because of his offensive qualities that it’s hard for me to make up my mind between the two.

However, I’m of the opinion that they will both become good, even very good NHL players in the future. At that point, it’s a question of preference between their respective styles of play.

Breaking news

– Bravo for the gesture.

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– Too bad.

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