Offense can sometimes be inflated by The Q, but Luke Green is a defenseman who seems at home chipping in offensively. With back-to-back 35-point seasons for Saint John, Green comes into the draft with some second-to-third round scouting grades (#40 in CSS's final NA rankings) after being the #1 overall pick in the QMJHL draft in 2014. He's definitely a defensive work in progress, but shows an offensive awareness to his game that could reward a team taking an early-to-mid round flyer.
Green thinks the game well and skates smoothly, making quick decisions with the puck. His offensive numbers didn't jump up a ton this season (which may be why so many scouts have somewhat written him off a bit), but he attributes that to a step up in playing time and responsibility, as players like Jakub Zboril and Thomas Chabot moved on.
He may be a diamond in the rough in the mid rounds, as his brain and his skating could allow him to be an offensive impact player with room to grow on the defensive end.
Current Team: Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL)
Date of Birth: January 12, 1998
Place of Birth: Halifax, Nova Scotia
Weight: 185 lbs
An excellent offensive defenceman whose killer instincts in the offensive zone allow him to materialize scoring chances. Very shifty skater who is highly mobile. Good puckhandling ability and puck control; makes quick decisions with the puck in traffic and under pressure. Reliable defensively, but is much more effective when utilizing his offensive tools at the other end of the ice. All-in-all, a smart, smooth-skating defenceman who can play in most situations and excel in an offensive position.--Curtis Joe, Elite Prospects
Luke Green is an elite-level skater with outstanding mobility on the blueline. He skates the puck out of danger in his own end, and can lead the rush through the neutral zone. He can pinch down low and race back to his own end defensively. ... He has good balance in his lower body allowing him to be strong on the puck, and to win puck battles on the boards, or clear the front of the net. ... Green is also a very good stick handler, and his confidence with the puck improved as the season went on. He held the puck longer, looking for openings and smart passes, and became deadly in starting the transition game, and good on the point of the power play. ... Green’s slap shot is decent enough, but could use more power. ... He does have a good wrist shot but could stand to improve his release. There is room to be a bit quicker which would help him avoid the traffic when making plays at the blue line, and get his shot on net.
Green’s offense was slightly down this season, which has been a concern for some. However there have been great improvements in his defensive game. Green’s awareness and positioning is much improved over his rookie season. He also has shown better hockey IQ, reading and anticipating opponents a lot better. This has led to him being able to create turnovers in his own end. Green has improved his gap control as well, keeping opponents to the outside. By no means is he a finished product defensively and there is still room to grow, particularly by adding more muscle to his frame, but Green has shown a strong commitment to doing so.
--Ben Kerr, Top Shelf Prospects
A Good Fit in Columbus?
It depends. He's a guy that could be there as late as the fourth round as his stock has taken a bit of a hit. Depending on what their board looks like, Columbus--without a fourth or fifth rounder at the moment--would have to make a decision early in the third round, or hope to make a move if he's a guy they really want. Decent size, right handed shot, skates well, good hockey IQ. Sounds like a nice project to me, assuming it's not a reach where he's picked.
Green In Action