With the 2023 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game taking place tonight in Vancouver, B.C., NHL Central Scouting has provided a behind-the-scenes look at their evaluation of players involved in the game.
The QMJHL has seven representatives, headlined by Sherbrooke Phoenix star Ethan Gauthier, while Moncton Wildcats defenseman Etienne Morin continues to see his draft stock rise.
NHL Central Scouting has provided the CHL scouting reports of all players that will take part in Wednesday’s game, detailed below, as they look to catch the eye of scouts ahead of the 2023 NHL Draft that will take place June 28-29 in Nashville, Tennessee.
The 2023 Kubota CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game airs live from the Langley Events Centre on TSN, TSN.ca, the TSN App, and RDS 2 on Wednesday, Jan. 25 at 7 p.m. Pacific.
Please note: the following scouting reports have been lightly edited for clarity.
Mathieu Cataford — Halifax Mooseheads (Team Red)
43GP / 22G / 51PTS
Second season in the QMJHL – Smart two-way right-handed winger who can also play centre – Versatile player who plays the power play and penalty killing unit for Halifax – Hockey sense is certainly one of his best assets –Reads the play very well, recognizes the threats defensively and has a great feel for the game in the offensive zone – Great passing skill, finds his teammates all over the ice – Solid player down low and around the net – Can play with pace and executes at a high rate – Good shot release and scoring ability around the net.
Ethan Gauthier — Sherbrooke Phoenix (Team White)
43GP / 17G / 47PTS
Brings a mix of skill and grit –Excellent skater in all directions; agility with an East/West game but also showcases a speed element – Creative player with the puck; good hands and playmaking skill – Good hockey sense and recognizes the opportunities in the offensive zone – Solid shot release, goal scoring abilities – Effective player on the forecheck – Will finish every possible check and can hit with authority – Certainly, a tough player to play against – Strong competitor who looks to make a difference every shift.
Tyler Peddle — Drummondville Voltigeurs (Team White)
43GP / 18G / 29PTS
Power forward type who plays the left side – Good size and physical strength to be effective on the forecheck – Finishes his checks with authority – His main asset is certainly his shot release and goal scoring abilities; can beat goalies from all angles – Hard wrist shot release, good one timer option on the power play and will get his share of dirty goals driving the middle lane – At his best when playing a physical brand of hockey and playing on a line with players who can find him in the open space.
Dylan MacKinnon — Halifax Mooseheads (Team White)
37GP / 5G / 17PTS
Right-handed defenseman with size who can bring a physical presence – Strong skater with a powerful stride – His agility and foot work is progressing well – Plays a strong defensive type game and will kill penalties for his team – Gets in the lanes and willing to block shots – Good boxout game clearing the front of his net – Will step up to defend teammates when needed – Plays a simple game with the puck – Efficient first pass – Intriguing prospect who can find a role at the next level – Quality skater with size and toughness.
Etienne Morin — Moncton Wildcats (Team Red)
42GP / 15G / 45PTS
Left-handed defenseman with excellent puck skill and offensive upside – Poise with the puck in all three zones – Handles it with confidence and will find his outlets all over the ice – Good passing skill; snaps them with authority and precision – Quality skater with agility and edge work –Puck carrying skill but would consider him a puck mover type who excels at supporting rush plays on a second wave – Excellent quarter back on the power play; can run it from the top – High level of hockey sense, vision and feel for the offensive game – His defensive game is progressing well – Can play with some bite and push back – Will finish some sneaky hard hits.
Matteo Mann — Chicoutimi Saguneens (Team Red)
25GP / 0G / 5PTS
Steady progression in his game. Big solid 6’5 right-handed defenseman with solid skating skill –Shows good agility, foot work and mobility – Solid defensive skill; good positioning and stick us –. Excels at angling opponents in dead areas; contains well, finishes his checks, and will pin his opponents with authority – Progress made with his puck game; executes well on retrievals, finds his options, and will hit his open mates with direct or indirect passes – Smart offensive activations and good blue line work.
Jordan Tourigny — Shawinigan Cataractes (Team Red)
45GP / 5G / 32PTS
Quality skater with a solid skating stride – Smooth mechanic and showcases great agility and edge work – Confident player with the puck on his stick – Finds his passing options well and executes at a high rate – Joins the offense whenever possible and is creative with his offensive blue line work – Strong hockey sense in all three zones – Potential high-ceiling when projecting him with added physical strength.