2016 NHL Draft Prospect Profiles: Alex DeBrincat - More than McDavid's Shadow
One of the top scoring prospects in the OHL, scouts keep passing up this "undersized" forward. Columbus shouldn't make the same mistake.
Position: Center / Right Wing
Current Team: Erie Otters, OHL
Date of Birth: December 18th, 1997
Place of Birth: Farmington Hills, Michigan (USA)
Height: 5'7" Weight: 160 lbs.
Alex DeBrincat is a fascinating story to look at. Despite being passed over in two OHL player drafts, he kept shredding his U-18 leagues and high school programs until the Otters finally decided to give him a chance, then hit the OHL like a bomb as a rookie, scoring 51 goals and 104 points on Conner McDavid's wing before he was selected 1st overall in last year's NHL Entry Draft.
Despite concerns that DeBrincat's numbers had been inflated by playing next to the high end prospect, he moved to the pivot for Erie this season and promptly did it again, recording back to back 51 goal seasons, though he "only" accounted for 50 helpers this year.
Yet despite being the only prospect to put up these ridiculous numbers, we're likely to see him drafted well outside the top 10 - possibly even in the second round.
Scouts have been pushing DeBrincat lower and lower on the draft board because of his size, fearing that his talents won't be able to stand up to the physical punishment of an NHL season. They may have a point, but on the other hand, these arguments sound a lot like the ones that surrounded Cam Atkinson in his draft year, and look how that turned out...
A Good Fit In Columbus?
A hard working, highly skilled, natural goal scoring forward who is going to have one MONSTER chip on his shoulder thanks to all the scouts and NHL pundits who claim he'll never be able to make it in the NHL?
Yeah. I think he'd fit in here just fine.
DeBrincat is small, but Cam Atkinson certainly doesn't seem to be suffering under John Tortorella's system, and Oliver Bjorkstrand isn't much larger, yet seems to be doing just fine in his professional debut.
More than that, the fact that DeBrincat seems to respond to these criticisms by putting his shoulder down and working even harder to prove people wrong by delivering results on the ice and goals by the bucketful is a quality that would fit perfectly into the Blue Jackets' locker room.
If DeBrincat is still on the board after the first round, Jarmo needs to run, not walk to the podium for this kid. I have a feeling that he's not going to waste any time showing the rest of the NHL what they missed.