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As Jason Dickinson goes, so go the OHL’s Guelph Storm, or perhaps its the other way around, as the Guelph Storm go so goes Jason Dickinson. You see that is the problem that NHL scouts will have to face when it comes to the young powerforward. Dickinson was a point-per-game player early in the season, and the Storm were a high scoring juggernaut who were in first place in the OHL’s Western Conference. However the second half was more challenging as both Dickinson and the team slumped. The Storm would finish 5th in the conference and Dickinson would finish with 47 points in 66 games. The playoffs were also disappointing as Dickinson had just 2 points as the Storm would fall to their rivals, the Kitchener Rangers.
Dickinson would be added to Canada’s 2013 Gold medal winning squad at the IIHF Under 18 World Championships, however an injury would limit him to just three games in the tournament.
Born Jul 4 1995 — Georgetown, ONT
Height 6.02 — Weight 176 — Shoots Left
At his best, Dickinson is a creative playmaker, with excellent vision and passing ability who can make his linemates better. An excellent stickhandler, he protects the puck well, extending plays and waiting for openings to make a pass; especially when working down low on the cycle game. Dickinson shows a quick release, but could stand to become a little stronger and get more power on his wrist shot if he wants to become a real sniper at the next level. Dickinson also has very good hand eye co-ordination and is skilled in tipping in point shots, or burying rebounds from the front of the net. He is involved in front of the net and on the boards as well, but needs to be more consistent in doing so. In some games he is very involved physically and initiates the battles, in others he seems to shy away from the contact. The question here is if this physical game will become more consistent as he adds more muscle on to his lean frame. At 6’2″ he has the body type to become a power forward if he can add the muscles and the consistency. Dickinson also has very good hockey sense, and is able to find openings and soft spots in the defensive coverage.
Dickinson has a compact but very powerful skating stride. He generates good speed and has decent acceleration. His ability to change gears is good and allows him to fool defenders off the rush, and in cutting to the net off the cycle game. His agility and edgework is also solid, and his balance and power allows him to fight through checks.
One area where Dickinson has really improved this season is in his defensive game. He became an effective penalty killer for the Storm and really improved his defensive awareness. He has shown good gap control and really anticipates plays well, intercepting passes and starting the offence. He has shown his physical side in the defensive zone, and has really become an asset in that end of the ice, finishing the season +19, instead of the -15 he was in his rookie year with the Storm.
Jason Dickinson’s style is similar to Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks. However this is a style comparison only and not one based on potential. In terms of ceiling this is a real boom or bust type of prospect. He could become an excellent top 6 player, and an extremely valuable two way power forward or he could end up a fourth liner with some penalty kill skills. The talent is all there, its now up to Dickinson to develop the consistency.
Check back tomorrow for our number 39 prospect.
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Photo Credit: (Terry Wilson/OHL Images)