Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the daily column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day I will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2021 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow me on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! We have a complete listing of our draft articles here. Today we bring you our Oscar Plandowski Scouting Report.
Drafted in the first round, 18th overall, by the Chicoutimi Sagueneens in the 2019 QMJHL Entry Draft, Oscar Plandowski never played a game for his new team. Before the pre-season even began he was traded to the Charlottetown Islanders for future first and second-round picks. Plandowski had a decent rookie season with the Islanders, putting up 12 assists in 60 games. The Halifax, Nova Scotia-born Plandowski also represented Team Canada White at the Under 17 World Hockey Challenge where he put up four points in six tournament games.
Despite the stop-start nature of this QMJHL campaign, Plandowski was even better this season. He scored five goals and 12 assists for 17 points in 39 games. Plandowski added a goal and an assist in eight playoff games. Plandowski comes from a hockey family. His father Darryl Plandowski was a long-time scout for the Tampa Bay Lightning and is currently the Director of Amateur Scouting for the Arizona Coyotes. Older brother Michael Plandowski plays Junior A hockey in Nova Scotia. His younger brother Jack Plandowski was recently drafted by the Blainville-Boisbriand Armada in the 2021 QMJHL Draft. His cousin, Freddie Halyk is playing goalie for an Alberta Junior team.
Oscar Plandowski Scouting Report
Right Defence — shoots Right
Born May 18th, 2003 — Halifax, Nova Scotia
Height 6’0″ — Weight 190 lbs [183 cm / 86 kg]
Plandowski’s mother, Jill, is a high-end skating coach and it certainly shows in his game. He is an outstanding skater. Plandowski has excellent technique, this gives him elite acceleration and top-end speed. Plandowski can push the offence and still get back to his own zone. He also moves well when skating backwards. Plandowski’s agility, edgework and crossovers are all very good. This allows him to move quickly around the ice in any direction. It helps him to walk the line in the offensive zone as well as to maintain gap control defensively. Plandowski needs to be stronger on his skates. This will help him to battle on the boards as well as in front of the net. It should improve as he matures.
Plandowski loves to push the pace and be aggressive offensively. He marries his skating with good stickhandling ability and can skate the puck out of the defensive zone as well as lead the rush through the neutral zone. He is also not afraid to join the rush as the trailer or to pinch in to keep plays alive at the blue line. Plandowski is a good passer. He makes a strong first pass to start the transition game. He can also control the puck at the blueline, using his lateral mobility to open up passing lanes and get the puck to a teammate. His vision is also very good. He sees open teammates and can get them the puck when needed.
Plandowski also has a good slap shot. His lateral mobility allows him to walk the line and open up passing lanes. He also keeps his shot low and on the net, allowing teammates to get deflections and to pounce on rebounds. His one-timer is also good but he needs to do a better job of adjusting his feet to get it off when the pass is a little bit off. Plandowski has good power and accuracy on his wrist shot. He also has a quick release that helps him to fool goaltenders. Plandowski also uses his “slap-pass” where it looks like he will take a one-timer, but instead sends the puck cross-ice to a teammate.
Plandowski’s defensive game is a work in progress. His skating ability allows him to maintain good gap control. He tries to force attackers to the outside but can sometimes be a bit too aggressive looking for a poke check and allow them to make a quick cut and get past him. Plandowski also needs to work on his physicality. He can sometimes get pushed around in board battles and in front of the net. This may come as he matures and adds muscle to his frame. He also needs to work on his positioning away from the puck. He can sometimes be too focused on the puck and lose his man away from the play.
Projection and Comparison
Plandowski’s size and offensive tools make him an intriguing prospect going forward. He will need to work on his defensive game but with two more years in the QMJHL and then some AHL time he will have time to make these improvements. Some of them may come naturally as he gets stronger and improves his balance. Plandowski’s game is similar to Kevin Shattenkirk. This is a stylistic comparison only though and not one based on skill and ability.
The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages and features of Oscar Plandowski that are available on youtube as well as Twitter.
— Andy Lehoux (@Andylehoux1) October 5, 2020
— John Moore (@rinkrant) July 22, 2020
Oscar Plandowski 7 pic.twitter.com/AbrdHe7DVw
— rainvlo (@rainvlo2) April 13, 2021
🚨🚨🚨🚨🚨@OscarPlandowski with an absolute 🚀 from the point on the power play yesterday to open the scoring against Team New Brunswick.
— Nova Scotia CWG Male (@HockeyNSCWGMale) February 19, 2019
— Nova Scotia CWG Male (@HockeyNSCWGMale) February 22, 2019
Check back later for our latest NHL Draft article.
Oscar Plandowski Scouting Report Main Photo:
— High Button Sports (@thehighbutton) July 29, 2020