2015-16 Team: TPS Turku U20 (#48)
Date of birth: 6/29/1998
Place of birth: Turku, Finland
Ht: 6’3 Wt: 168
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2016 1st year eligible
THW’s Draft War Room May Rankings: 145
- NHL Central Scouting EU Skaters: 31
Big Winger with Some Offensive Upside
I always enjoyed watching Markus Nurmi of TPS Turku play. Although he is maybe not the most skillful guy out there, he has a lot of other ways to help his team. However, he does have a decent shot and showed with the Turku U20 that he can put up numbers and have some offensive upside as he was leading the team in goals.
What really stood out to me in international tournaments was his compete-level. Obviously, his big size helps him to be an intimidating player out there, and he does use his body well in board battles where he usually digs the puck out with success. He is also hard to separate from the puck as he uses his very long reach to protect the puck well and his size clearly helps him in physical battles at lower level. However, he is listed at 6’3” and he only weighs 168 lbs, meaning he will need to add muscle in order to be physically competitive at higher levels. This will be crucial for him as he won’t have the puck skills to outplay opponents, but rather needs to convince with his energetic play as a power forward.
— Jonathan Luomala (@JonathanLuomala) February 20, 2016
Nurmi does not have the most explosive first strides but he can hit top speed with few steps, and his drive and determination help him to raise his energy level. What I like about him is that he knows his strengths and can use them very well. He accepts his role as a bottom-six guy who can add some offense and dedicates his shifts to the team’s success. He is very effective in opening space for linemates with a strong play away from the puck.
He can be used on shorthanded minutes as his long reach makes him an effective poke-checker. Nurmi does not shy away from getting things going after the whistle and can get under an opponent’s skin with clean hits. Like mentioned above, he will need to add muscles to his big frame because at the higher level he won’t be able to dominate the physical battles with pure size like he does now in the juniors.
NHL Draft Projection:
Nurmi could be drafted somewhere in the fourth round or beyond. If an organization believes that he can overcome his lack of extra muscle he might slip into the late third round, although his offensive skills might not be advanced enough for that.
Nurmi is a 6’3” winger who will need to add some more muscle into his frame. However, he impressed me a few times this season. He already knows how to use his size and reach, with and without the puck. Shows flashes of skill and has a pretty quick release. Lacks some agility; however, once he adds some strength, I think his skating will improve. Could be a good late round pick as I think he projects well for the pro game.
Nurmi is a typical bottom-six role player who understands his role as such and executes at both ends of the ice. He uses his big size in many plays, but needs to add some extra muscle. Nurmi is a team player and knows his role within a team structure very well and is not afraid to get his nose dirty. He has a compete level, determination and energy level. He is able to deal with lower minutes and make the most out of them. Nurmi is ready whenever needed by his coach and is a nice addition to a skilled team.
- Play away from puck
- Understands his role
- Wins board battles
- Uses long reach effectively
Under Construction (Improvements to Make):
- No high-end offensive skills
- First strides could be more explosive
Nurmi is a player who understands his role of a power forward and does make the most out of his limited ice-time. He is best when he uses his high compete-level and when using his long reach and determination in board battles. If he manages to add strength, he can be an effective player in a bottom-six role.
NHL comparison: Viktor Stalberg
Risk: 2/5 Reward: 3/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential:
Offensive = 5/10 Defensive = 5/10
2015/2016: U18 WJC Gold Medal
THW’s The Next Ones prospect profile template design architect: Chris Ralph
Independent Scout covering European Hockey and Prospects for TheHockeyWriters. Located in Switzerland and blogging on www.scouting-factory.blogspot.com. Opinions on blog are my own