2019-20 Team: Saint John Sea Dogs (#54)
Date of Birth: June 2, 2002
Place of Birth: Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Quebec, Canada
Ht: 6-foot-1 Wt: 196-pounds
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2020 first-year eligible
- NHL Central Scouting: 18th (Final Rankings, NA Skaters)
- Future Considerations: 24th
- Josh Bell’s Final 2020 Draft Rankings: 37th (May)
- Larry Fisher’s Top-400 Rankings: 42nd (May)
In a perfect world, all NHL prospects would be well-rounded and capable of playing in the NHL at 18 years old coming out of their respective draft teams. Unfortunately, this isn’t a perfect world and certain players excel in specific areas while lacking in others.
For a player like Jeremie Poirier, there’s no better example of a player who can be a force offensively from the back-end but who needs to improve his defensive game.
In a league that is always looking for more scorers and offensive threats, Poirier has all the makings of a top offensive threat as a defender who can not only contribute at five-on-five but as a prototypical power-play quarterback as well in the NHL.
Looks could be deceiving with Poirier as his near-200 pound frame may catch some people by surprise. Make no mistake about it though, Poirier’s straight-line speed is faster than the average defender and his ability to work in tight spaces with his stick-work and his edge-work is right near the top of the class.
Possessing the ability to start a shift in his defensive zone and finish with a legitimate scoring chance in the offensive zone, Poirier excites on a regular basis with his skating as well as his high-end wrist shot which is emphasized by a quick release and accuracy.
His shot is only part of what makes him such a good option offensively and as a power-play option, however, as his passing shouldn’t be slept on either. Creative plays due to his high hockey-IQ in the offensive zone make him a top-tier offensive option. In 64 games in the QMJHL this season, he scored 20 goals and 53 points.
With the good, however, comes the bad. The offensive instincts are there and his physical abilities match those instincts perfectly. Defensively, however, Poirier is prone to stepping out of position to better contribute offensively. While this works to his advantage at times, he’s something that he’ll have to work on if he ever wants to make it to the NHL.
Related: 2020 NHL Draft Guide
In a league that emphasizes two-way play and the competence in the defensive zone, even the best offensive defenders in the NHL have to display a certain level of defensive prowess. If Poirier can develop that side of his game, he can be a very good offensive defender in the NHL.
Other THW Draft Profiles
Jeremie Poirier – NHL Draft Projection
Poirier’s offensive talent is first-round quality. It’s good enough that he legitimately could find himself taken somewhere at the tail-end of the first round but at the very worst, it would be hard to imagine him falling any further than the 45th pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft.
“An offensive defenseman with good puck skills, hockey sense and game-breaking ability who led QMJHL defensemen with 20 goals in 64 games.” – Mike Morreale, NHL.com
“Could be a Tyson Barrie-type defenceman who might be better suited to play wing in the long run.” – Sam Cosentino, Sportsnet
“He is smooth on his skates, working his way around the ice in a rover role at times. His passing is crisp and he has a deceptively hard shot from distance. His defensive zone play is questionable at times.” – Tony Ferrari, Dobber Prospects
“Poirier is a skilled and talented puck-rushing defenseman who can dominate in the offensive end using his elite puck skills, excellent offensive instincts and great creativity … Poirier’s flashy dekes and impressive end to end rushes catches the attention of many, but not to be dismissed is his ability to create scoring chances all around the attacking zone.” – Andy Lehoux. Future Considerations
- Elite shot
- Offensive instincts
- Passing ability
Under Construction – Improvements to Make
- Defensive positioning
- Defensive instincts
If Poirier can work out the shortcomings of his game, he has the ability to be a top-tier offensive defender. If he can skate alongside a player with elite-level defensive instincts, it could be a match made in heaven for him to skate in a top-four role with top-two potential. A second-pairing role with prime powerplay minutes is the most likely scenario for him though.
Risk – 4.5/5, Reward 4.5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential
Offense – 8.5/10, Defense – 4/10
- Hlinka Gretzky Cup Silver Medal – 2019-20
- QMJHL Most Goals by Defenseman – 2019-20