Christopher Ralph is a hockey writer with a focus on prospects and the entry draft, as well as the Leafs’ correspondent here at THW.
“Full Potential” Prospect Profile:
33. Simon Despres – Laval, PQ – 6’4″ – 214 lbs – QMJHL – Saint John – D
One-Timer: Despres projects to be a shutdown blueliner at the next level. He can make a good break out pass out of his own zone and can play physical as well. The big d-man keeps things simple, but efficient. He registered 32 points in 66 games. Was once thought he might have a shot at cracking the Top 10, but will likely slip because of recent performance at WJC-U18s (see below).
NHL Player(s) Comparison: M.E. Vlasic (but bigger)
Scouting Combine Performance:
Despres had a poor showing at the recent WJC-U18 tournament displaying some poor decision-making skills on the ice, which is likely the reason why he drops down to late 1st round or early 2nd round.
ETA = 3 years
Risk-Reward Analysis: Risk = 3.5/5 Reward = 4/5
NHL Potential: 2nd or 3rd pairing defensive defenseman
Fantasy Hockey Potential: Offensive = 5.5/10 Defensive = 8/10
- ISS: 30
- CSB: 8-NA
- TSN: 14
- THN: 12
Chris is THW’s senior draft/prospect analyst and a Managing Editor. Watch for “The Next Ones” Prospect Profile series, exclusive rankings, mock drafts, as well as the annual THW NHL Entry Draft Guide. Follow @ChrisRalphYQ on Twitter as he infiltrates, dissects and analyzes all happenings of hockey prospects and the NHL entry draft. Email: cralph[at]thehockeywriters[dot]com