2021-22 Team: Löwen Frankfurt (DEL2)
Date of Birth: Jan, 11, 2004
Place of Birth: Krefeld, Germany
Ht: 5-foot-11 Wt: 183 pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2022 first-year eligible
- NHL Central Scouting: 60th (among EU Skaters)
Luca Hauf is a smart, defensively-minded forward that can play either center or on the wing. This season, he worked his way up from the Germany3 division all the way up to the Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL), which is the top league in Germany. After joining Löwen Frankfurt of DEL2, which is the second division in Germany midway through the season, he helped them capture the championship and earn a promotion to the DEL for the 2022-23 season.
Hauf’s game was on full display at the World U-18s this year, leading Germany with three goals in four games. While the Germans had trouble in the tournament, he was able to stand out thanks to his strong defensive game. He understands where he needs to be in the defensive zone from a positional standpoint to break up chances and can defend against the rush. Lastly, he was good in the faceoff dot with a 50.6 win percentage during the tournament.
While Hauf’s main draw is his defensive game, he can also produce in the offensive end. He has good vision and can pick out teammates with accurate passes, and is strong along the boards. When he has the puck, it is very difficult for the opposition to steal it from him as his puckhandling and strength are two tools he has developed well. Based on his time in the Germany3 league, it is clear he has offensive talent; the question is, can he produce at a consistent level against tougher competition?
Related: THW 2022 NHL Draft Guide
It may be an overrated trait to some but what is very impressive about Hauf is his willingness to come back defensively. There is no lazy skate back, hoping there is a turnover that can spring a breakaway. This is a player who understands the importance of his defensive assignments, as he makes every effort to be one of the first players back on a rush attempt against. It is that level of determination that should get him drafted this year.
Overall, Hauf is a good project prospect. Once he gets more opportunities against tougher competition, he should be able to fine-tune his game and become a reliable center at both ends of the ice. His performance at the World U-18s showed when given the opportunity, he can have success against top players from his age group.
Other THW Draft Profiles
Luca Hauf- NHL Draft Projection
As mentioned, Luca Hauf is a project prospect. This means that if he is going to make the NHL, it will probably take some time. That being said, a team should still take a chance on him. As for a projection, look for him to be a later-round pick falling somewhere in the sixth or seventh round.
“Hauf is an offensive forward who can play both center and on the wing. It was a tough game for Hauf, who centered Germany second line that was heavily outmatched by Canada in this one. Hauf did not get too many puck touches but he displayed his solid puck skills, particularly his stickhandling in tight, 1v1 skills, his ability to get the puck off the boards.” – Miroslav Simurka, FC Hockey
“Hauf is a defensive center who plays a mature and responsible game in his own zone. Hauf’s commitment to playing a solid defensive game is consistent from shift-to-shift and is arguably his best trait. Often the first forward back in support, Hauf is very good at slowing down the transition of the opponent which minimizes odd man rushes against.” -Curtis Schwartzkopf, FC Hockey
- Defensive zone positioning
- Playmaking ability
- Versatility by playing wing or center
Under Construction (Improvements to Make)
- Playing against older competition
- Shooting more consistently
There is definitely a path for Huaf to the NHL. First though, he needs to show he can compete at a consistent level against top competition. He has lit up the German U20 and U23 leagues, now he has to do the same thing in the DEL or wherever he ends up next season. There is a lot of potential here, he just needs time to develop properly and work on his overall game. Once he gets more comfortable playing against older and tougher competition, he should be able to transition to the NHL as a bottom-six forward.
Risk- 2/5, Reward 3/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offence- 6/10, Defense 7/10
- Germany3 (Oberliga Nord) Rookie of the Year: 2020-21
- DEL2 Champion: 2021-22
Luca Hauf Statistics
Adam is excited to be joining The Hockey Writers as part of the Seattle Kraken and Vancouver Canucks team. His work can also be found at area51sportsnet.com where he covers the Vancouver Giants of the Western Hockey League.