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Edit: Drafted 28th Overall by the Calgary Flames.
Its certainly been an interesting season for Morgan Klimchuk. His draft eligible season began with Klimchuk pulling on a Team Canada jersey and winning a gold medal at the 2012 Ivan Hlinka Championships.
He followed that up returning to Regina and playing for the Pats. While Klimchuk put up great individual numbers, and had a very good, season, the Pats struggled finishing well out of the playoff race. It was a rebuilding year, and as one of the best forwards on the team, Klimchuk played in every situation, and faced top competition night after night.
The season was bookended by yet another appearance in a Team Canada jersey and another gold medal, as Klimchuk was a key member of the IIHF World Under 18 gold medal winning squad, even playing on the top line with Connor McDavid and Sam Reinhart. Klimchuk showed his goal scoring ability and was impressive on the Team Canada powerplay.
Born Mar 2 1995 — Calgary, ALTA
Height 5.11 — Weight 180 — Shoots Left
Klimchuk is a natural sniper, gifted with a great wrist shot and an excellent one timer. His outstanding release fools and confuses goaltenders as he seems to have the puck in the back of the net before they know he’s even shot it. Klimchuk has good hockey sense and is able to find openings in the defence where he can set up to unleash that deadly shot. More than just a one trick pony though, Klimchuk works hard in the corners, often winning board battles despite the fact he is merely average size. He also does extremely well in the cycle game protecting the puck with his soft hands and excellent balance on his skates. Klimchuk gets to the front of the net and can use his soft hands to tip in shots, or to bury rebounds. He also has good vision and ability.
Klimchuk has decent top end speed, but it is his excellent first step quickness, and acceleration that really defines his skating. He also has very good agility. He ends up being one of those players who is more quick than fast, as he pounces on loose pucks, and darts through openings with ease, however he doesn’t have that pull-away gear that makes him a real breakaway threat. His balance if very good and he fights through checks well and is strong on the puck.
Klimchuk’s style is reminiscent of Michael Ryder, with perhaps a little more speed to his game. In terms of potential he can be a quality top 6 winger, capable of really helping on the powerplay, if he can reach his ceiling. Klimchuk has the ability to be a game breaker and his natural goal scoring ability will be highly coveted by teams around the NHL, as its just not possible to teach his innate ability to put the puck in the back of the net.
Thanks for Reading, and Check back tomorrow where we will reveal the number 33 prospect for this June’s NHL Draft.
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