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Over the last two seasons, no CHL player born in 1996 has scored more regular-season points than the 148 put up by Moose Jaw Warriors centre Brayden Point. Not even sure-fire top 10 picks like Sam Bennett, Michael Dal Colle, or Brenda Perlini. To top it all off, Brayden Point has been an offensive juggernaut on a Moose Jaw Warriors team that is in the midst of a rebuild finishing well out of the playoffs and 10th in their conference in each of those years. While he hasn’t had the chance to play in the playoffs in either of those seasons, he does have WHL playoff experience, putting up seven goals and 10 points in 14 games as an underage call-up in 2012.
Point also has plenty of international experience, including a silver medal with Team Pacific at the 2013 World Under 17 Hockey Challenge, a gold medal at the 2013 Ivan Hlinka Tournament, and a bronze at the 2014 Under 18s with Team Canada.
Center — shoots Right
Born Mar 13 1996 — Calgary, ALTA
Height 5.09 — Weight 160 [175 cm/73 kg]
Brayden Point is a player who seemingly has it all, except for one thing, size. At 5’9″ 160 lbs, major questions exist if he will be able to endure the rigours of professional hockey. While he can’t do much about that height, he really will need to bulk up to make his NHL dream into a reality.
Point is a very good skater. He has good top end speed, very good acceleration and a quick first step. His agility and edgework are both very good, and his balance and strength on the puck is surprising for a player his size. He skates with a low centre of gravity and is very tough to take off the puck when he has it, and he can be gritty and win board battles due to this good balance. He plays bigger than his size as a result, throwing hits and being gritty in all three zones.
Point is an excellent playmaker. His hockey sense, vision, passing skills and decision making are all at a very high level. His stickhandling is also good. He has the ability to control the puck and the poise to slow the play down and wait for a teammate to get open. Point also has a very good scoring touch in close to the net where he tips in shots or pounces on rebounds, he also has the soft hands to make a move and fool a goaltender in tight. Brayden Point could stand to have more power on his wrist shot, but it is accurate and features a good release. Added bulk should improve the power of the shot though.
Point plays the game hard in all three zones. He is gritty on the back check and willing to battle against bigger players in his own end of the rink. He comes back hard, and is always moving his feet which really helps him in bringing back pressure off the rush. Point is also very good at anticipating plays and causing turnovers, or stealing the puck off of a bigger defender. While his balance can help him win battles for loose pucks, his size is a bit of a detriment when a bigger, stronger open does have the puck as he has some difficulty containing those forwards in the cycle game. Point also shows good skills in the faceoff dot, where excellent timing and quick hands serve him well.
In terms of comparison, Point is reminiscent of Brad Marchand, but without all the drama (aka dirtiness, and diving) that the Bruins winger brings. If he can continue to develop, and add that weight, he could become a top six centre in the NHL.
You can see some highlights of Brayden Point in action below.
Come back tomorrow to check out my #45 prospect for the 2014 NHL Draft.
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