2014 NHL Draft Profile #75: Keegan Iverson
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Keegan Iverson has spent the last two seasons with the Portland Winterhawks. As a young player on a stacked team, he has not always gotten the type of premium quality ice-time that the veterans get. For example, he spent most of this season playing on the third line, but still managed to put up 22 goals and 42 points in 67 points despite a lack of power play time. Iverson would add 4 goals and 8 points in the playoffs, including an overtime winner against the Edmonton Oil Kings during a hotly contested WHL final. However it wasn’t enough as the Winterhawks failed to repeat the WHL Championship success from Iverson’s rookie season, falling in 7 games to the Oil Kings.
The Minnesota native also has international experience winning silver medals with Team USA at the 2013 Under 17 Hockey Challenge, and the 2013 Ivan Hlinka tournament.
Center — shoots Right
Born Apr 5 1996 — St. Louis Park, MN
Height 6.01 — Weight 216 [183 cm/98 kg]
Keegan Iverson has a very nice skating stride, leading to good top end speed and strong acceleration. He uses this to get in quick on the forecheck, and to absolutely hammer defencemen going back and picking up loose pucks. If there is a criticism in terms of his speed, its that his first step could be a little quicker, but this seems a minor concern. Agility though is merely average and he could use work in this area as well. He does have good muscle on his frame, giving him good balance for puck battles, and he is strong on the puck. He could be very scary if he can add even a little bit more muscle though.
Offensively Iverson plays a very straight ahead, simple game. He loves to hit and punishes defencemen at every possible opportunity to create turnovers. With the puck on his stick, don’t expect a lot of elusive moves, he’d rather just drive straight at the net, or pass to an outlet and then head to the net. His vision is decent and his passes are crisp and accurate. Iverson’s shot has good power and accuracy, but he could have a better release, which would help him. He grinds well in the corners, and plays an effective cycle game. Iverson is not afraid to battle in the dirty areas of the ice or fight for position in front of the net.
Iverson continues his physical game in the defensive zone, back checking deep in support and willing to put back pressure on the puck carrier and finish his checks if given the opportunity. He does seem to shy away from blocking shots though, and he can get himself out of position from time to time looking for those big hits. He does avoid taking bad penalties, but has been known to fight from time to time.
Keegan Iverson’s style is reminiscent of Dustin Brown of the Los Angeles Kings. This isn’t a talent comparison, but just one based on style. In terms of potential there is an outside chance he could become a second line centre in the NHL, but his potential is more likely as an effective third line player going forward.
Here are some highlights of Keegan Iverson in action.
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