With the 30th Pick in the 2020 NHL Entry Draft, the Dallas Stars Have Selected Mavrik Bourque From the Shawinigan Cataractes of the QMJHL
About Mavrik Bourque
It’s tough for 16-year-olds to come in and make an immediate impact for their team. In Bourque’s case, he exceeded expectations. He’s extremely slick and crafty with the puck. Despite missing some significant play time in February as a result of a wrist injury, he was an offensive powerhouse and point producer for the Cataractes. He can hurt you with his speed, quick hands and excellent play-making abilities. He’s very deceptive and his decision making makes him one step ahead of his opponent.
Don’t let his 5-foot-10, 165-pound frame throw you off. He’s able to hold own as he has great balance and the mindset.
THW Prospect Profile Excerpt
“Mavrik Bourque has been Shawinigan’s go-to scorer since he entered the QMJHL as a 16-year-old. In his rookie season, he posted 54 points in 64 games and was the Cataractes’ first-line center. Bourque’s draft stock has been on a steady rise this season. Beginning as a ‘B’ level prospect in the NHL Central Scouting preliminary rankings, he’s now considered a lock for the first round. A lackluster showing in the Ivan Hlinka tournament in August likely caused his lower ranking.
Since then, he’s exceeded expectations by posting 71 points in 49 games. Highlighted by a seven-point performance against Halifax on Feb. 1, Bourque’s 1.45 points-per-game average ranked ninth in the QMJHL and second among first-time draft-eligible players, behind only Alexis Lafrenière. He was exceptional at even strength, where he posted 45 points, despite that his season was cut short in early February due to a wrist injury.
Related: Our Free NHL Draft Guide
Bourque is a highly-skilled offensive dynamo. He is an exceptional playmaker and excels as a point-producing forward. Thanks to a high hockey IQ, he keeps defenders guessing. He has soft hands and quick decision-making skills to be able to find a pass in any situation. Here’s an example of a beautiful back-door bullet pass on the power play.
Bourque is one of the most creative and slippery players in this year’s draft, whether he’s utilizing a no-look pass or beating defenders 1-on-1 with a fake. He isn’t the fastest skater, but he is quick on his edges and can create enough speed to beat defenders. He’s a big-game player who’s always looking to make a difference on the ice.
Despite being on the small side, at 5-foot-10, he can a hit and make a play. He’s strong on his skates and bounces off defenders due to his low center of gravity. He doesn’t play with a physical edge, but he isn’t afraid to drive hard to the net to complete a play.
Where Bourque’s game rises to another level is with his goal-scoring prowess and exceptional shot release. He has a quick, powerful and accurate shot that keeps defenders honest. He’s often given more space and has the ability to either create a pass or rip a shot past the goaltender. He produced over four shots per game this season which ranked second among first-year draft-eligible forwards, again behind Lafrenière.
There are some questions about whether Bourque will remain a center at the NHL level. His face-off percentage was exactly 50% this season, which isn’t ideal, especially in major junior. He needs to work on his defensive consistency if he wants to be a reliable two-way player. There are times when he commits and is a reliable back-checker, but there are other times when he gives up on the play; he can be lazy in the defensive zone. He’s a fine skater, but he needs to improve his acceleration and straight-line speed.”
How This Affects the Stars’ Plans
After a deep Stanley Cup run, the Stars came away with a great pick late in the first round.
With the defense being solidified with Miro Heiskanen and John Klingberg leading the charge, the Stars selected a major offensive threat in Bourque that can help them up the middle of the ice. He’ll be extremely dangerous in a top-six role and can be a major contributor on the power play. Bourque joins other top prospect Ty Dellandrea as the players the Stars will rely on for the future.
Hockey has been a big part of my life since watching my first Leafs game to currently coaching minor hockey. I previously interned at The Hockey News and worked on Toronto Marlies broadcasts for Rogers TV. Aside from hockey, I also enjoy drumming, animation and impressions/ voices.