Madison Bowey THW Close-Up
Date of Birth: April 22, 1995
Place of Birth: Winnipeg, MB
Ht: 6’1” Wt: 195 lbs
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2013
There are trends in every draft class. While the 2013 class will be likely best remembered for the breadth of talented forwards coming out of the QMJHL, there are also a lot of talented blueliners emerging from the Western Hockey League. Madison Bowey of the Kelowna Rockets may not be as flashy as Seth Jones or as highly touted, but he’s been extremely important to his team’s success in 2012-13.
At first blush, Bowey resembles NHL veteran Jay Bouwmeester. He’s a smooth skater, a good passer and generally a very smart positional player. While he may not have the complete package that Bouwmeester has developed into quite yet, he’s got a lot of strong tools. One part of his game that Bowey has that Bouwmeester doesn’t is an under-rated physical game. Bowey’s not afraid to mix it up in the corners or play the body, and he’s even fought a handful of times this season. That added element keeps opponents on their toes when Bowey’s on the ice.
Bowey’s stock may be elevated a bit by playing on a strong Kelowna Rockets club. The Rockets were near the top of the WHL in both team offense and team defense, which may inflate everyone’s numbers a bit. Bowey’s also benefited a bit from playing behind New Jersey Devils prospect Damon Severson, but he’s likely been Kelowna’s number-two blueliner throughout much of the season.
The part of Bowey that likely makes scouts the most optimistic is his general approach to the game. To be blunt, Madison Bowey won’t need to change too much to be an NHL defenseman. He plays a smart two-way game, is physical but doesn’t rely on out-muscling smaller guys, and is a smooth skater that relies on smart positioning. He may need to add a few pounds to his frame to be competitive when battling with the giants in the NHL, but Bowey won’t need to reinvent himself to make the transition.
“I like his size. I like how hard he works. I think everyone can become a better skater. When he keeps his game within himself and doesn’t do too much….the best way to impress the coach is to be real simple, real good and make smart sharp plays.”” – Stu MacGregor (Edmonton Oilers head scout; via Regan’s Rant)
Bowey has spent a lot of time representing his country and province. He represented Manitoba at the 2011 Canada Winter Games, played on Team West at the 2012 Under-17 Hockey Challenge and won a gold medal with Team Canada at the 2012 Ivan Hlinka Memorial tournament.
Risk 1/5, Reward 4/5
Top four defenseman.
- Good passer
- Strong skater
- Not a huge guy, but not afraid to play physical
- Good positional player in all three zones
Flaws/Aspects He Needs To Work On:
- Working to improve his offensive consistency
- Adding some muscle so he can win puck battles
Fantasy Hockey Potential:
Offensive 8/10, Defensive 8/10
NHL Player(s) Comparison:
His ceiling is probably at the level of an Alex Pietrangelo, although he’s more likely to settle into a Cody Franson role. He’s almost a smaller Jay Bouwmeester, albeit with more of a physical edge.
When He’ll Go In June:
Bowey is a first round pick in this year’s draft. Most likely he’ll go in the middle of the first round.
Ryan Pike has covered the Calgary Flames and the NHL Draft extensively since 2010 as a Senior Writer for The Hockey Writers and Senior Contributing Editor of FlamesNation.ca. A member of the Professional Hockey Writers Association, he lives in Calgary.