2015-16 Team: United States National Development Program (#7)
Date of birth: February 11th, 1998
Place of birth: St. Louis, Missouri
Ht: 6’2″ Wt: 203 lbs
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2016 1st year eligible
THW The Next Ones Ranking (February): 60
- Craig Button (TSN): 100
- HockeyProspect.com: Unranked
Trent Frederic was an unheralded member of this season’s rendition of the United States National Development Team program, serving as the team’s second line centre and one of its most valuable special teams players on the penalty kill. One of several high-end prospects this year coming out of St. Louis minor hockey, joining Matt Tkachuk, Luke Kunin, and Logan Brown, Frederic probably won’t join that trio as first-round selections this summer. However, he has been a contributing member of the USA National Program for a few seasons, and looks to be a near lock to be one of the first 90 players to hear his name called.
Standing at 6’2″ and over 200 pounds, Frederic stands out on the ice due to more than just his high skill level. Playing behind potential lottery pick Clayton Keller with the US Development Program this year, Frederic wasn’t expected to shoulder the offensive load and flourished in a secondary role, drastically increasing his production from the previous season. After notching just 14 points in 55 games for the Under-17 team, Frederic reached the 20 goal mark this year, also adding 20 assists and added seven more points in just seven games for the bronze medal-winning USA squad in the World Under-18 Championships. Frederic also imposed his physical will throughout the season, as he also tallied 73 penalty minutes for good measure, the second-most of all forwards on his team.
Frederic combines a strong physical presence with a polished two-way game, which gives him the versatility to play anywhere in a lineup, and on both special teams. While he doesn’t seem to possess high offensive potential, as the 20 goals he scored represented the highest total of his minor career, his value as a jack-of-all-trades forward who is strong on faceoffs and is able to play centre made him a valuable commodity to his USA squad and will make him a starting player for the Wisconsin Badgers right away. His offensive creativity also isn’t the greatest, so he could be forced to transition to a wing position at some point, but his shot and skating abilities show enough promise to envision him as a potential 20 goal scorer in the professional ranks. His stickhandling ability is above average, but his puck protection skills and ability to play a possession game in the offensive zone is always of interest to NHL clubs.
Trent Frederic doesn’t possess the offensive acumen to be considered a candidate for a first or even high second round selection, but his strong skating ability and physicality are likely more than enough to cement his position as a top 100 pick this month. His hockey sense and offensive flair are lacking, but his size and speed should likely carry him to a role in the NHL, most likely as a checking centre. He is still fairly raw and could use some refinement against older and stronger competition, which he will likely receive at the strong University of Wisconsin hockey program. Taking Frederic with a high pick would be a risky move for an NHL team, but his high floor combined with decent upside is an intriguing combination not found among many players as late as he’s likely to be selected.
NHL Draft Projection:
Frederic’s physicality and north-south power forward game are always of interest to NHL teams, but his lack of high-end offensive potential should make teams hesitant to spend a high pick on him. However, his high likelihood of cracking an NHL lineup in some capacity should be valuable enough to get him picked in the late second or early third rounds.
Centre with good size who plays strong on the puck and good puckhandling skills. More of a North-South straight line skater with little lateral mobility. Displays a very good shot, with nice release. He might project as a future left wing, but he really needs to add to his offensive game and add more creativeness to his attacking skills. Drafted by OHL’s Niagara. He has committed to the University of Wisconsin and he may home his offensive side there.
Bill Plazcek, Draftsite.com
Trent Frederic shows good size, and plays a power forward style of game. He loves to get in on the fore check, pressuring defencemen, and throwing hits in the offensive zone… Frederic has the ability to score goals, with a strong wrist shot and good release. He is also able to score in close, taking the puck to the net when he gets the opportunity, or throw fast hands that get rebounds and deflections. Frederic shows good hockey IQ, finding open space away from defenders, and making smart safe plays… Frederic is a good skater. He has the speed and acceleration necessary to be dangerous off the rush, or be the first one in on the fore check… For a young player, Frederic is already developing a strong defensive game… It is unclear if Frederic has the agility, creativity and vision to play centre at the next level. A move to left-wing may be in his future, as he does a good job of playing a simple straight ahead game, and has the offensive ability to score goals.
Ben Kerr, Last Word on Sports
- Physical play
- Strong shot
- Excels at protecting the puck
- Two-way tenacity
Under Construction (Improvements to Make):
- Top-end skating speed
- Offensive creativity
- Shot release
Trent Frederic may not have elite offensive upside, but he takes care of his own end and isn’t a slouch in the offensive zone, either. His size and physicality will be his calling card as he moves into the pro ranks, however, and a few years at the University of Wisconsin could be what he needs to become a solid middle-six centre.
NHL Player(s) Comparison – David Backes
Risk = 2/5 Reward = 3.5/5
Fantasy Hockey Potential:
Offensive = 7/10 Defensive = 6/10
Shots From the Slot (Interesting Notes):
Frederic comes from quite an athletic family, as two of his three siblings went to university on athletic scholarships. His third sibling, Grant, faced off against Trent in USHL play the last two years as a member of the Green Bay Gamblers and is committed to head to the University of Miami (Ohio) next year.
THW’s The Next Ones prospect profile template design architect: Chris Ralph
Joseph Aleong is an At-Large writer for THW from Toronto, Ontario. He is a graduate of Brock University in St. Catharines, ON. Follow him on Twitter @josephaleong11