We continue our series getting you ready for the 2019 NHL Draft. The time has come to identify my steal of this draft. This year, we’re taking a different approach than normal.
In past seasons, we reserved our selections for steal of the draft to those down on the draft list who we thought could deliver first round results. This season, my steal is someone who is expected to go in round one. However the thing that makes him a steal is that he cracks my top-10 overall but won’t go until later in round one. Heck he could go early in day two. If that happens, it’s a crime.
Setting Up Our Steal
Normally when you consider someone in the top-10, they check off three boxes at an elite level. Those boxes are speed, skill and size. My steal only checks off one of those boxes. However that box he checks off is so good that I can overlook the other things. His skill is off the charts.
If you’re looking for one of the best playmakers in this entire draft, you’ve come to the right place. In my viewings of this player, I just couldn’t get over how amazing a passer he is. He couples his passing with elite vision and hockey sense. He knows which option to take when multiple options present itself. This helped him become the best player in his league.
He is more than just a playmaker. When needed, he has a good shot and can finish. There is so much to like offensively.
While his offense is top-notch, he stands just 5-foot-8. If you want to point at a reason why this player isn’t likely going in the lottery, this is why. There’s also concerns about his skating stride. You normally like to see a level of explosiveness in skating when discussing a high-end prospect. Although he doesn’t have that explosiveness, I feel it’s a little overblown.
He can keep up with the pace of the game and does have some power in his stride. It’s a little weird to watch live, but by no means is it a liability. His playmaking stands out above any of his deficiencies. Who am I talking about? Meet Sioux City right-winger Bobby Brink.
Reviewing Brink’s Draft Season
One of the ultimate challenges for any prospect in their draft season is dealing with a significant injury. Thanks to a shot block, Brink broke his ankle and was forced to miss 19 games. Despite that, he still put up 68 points in 43 games including 35 goals. His 35 goals was a Sioux City franchise record. He was also fourth in league scoring even with all the missed time.
Brink’s season got the attention of many in the hockey world. He started as a B prospect on the initial Central Scouting list. By the time the season was over, he finished 19th overall on the North American list. Clearly his skill helped rocket him up the standings. He is now on the Brink of great things.
Brink’s NHL Projection
Brink will get his money as a playmaker. He can make passes not a lot of players can make. He also makes it look so easy. I feel his skating will improve with coaching and development. He’ll also get stronger. I’m not letting those things bother me at this point.
Brink will attend the University of Denver to continue his development. Given their track record of success, he’s on a solid road to a long NHL career as a playmaker and scorer. I expect he’ll make an impact on someone’s top-six while vastly improving their power play.
It’s not often you get this kind of skill late in round one or even early in round two. It’s for these reasons that Bobby Brink is my 2019 Steal of the NHL Draft.
I am a fully credentialed writer who covers the Columbus Blue Jackets, Cleveland Monsters and Erie Otters as well as the Ontario Hockey League and NHL Draft. The 2021-22 season will mark eight seasons with the Hockey Writers. I am also the site’s Credentials Manager.