Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day our LWOS Prospects Writers will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2023 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow Ben Kerr, Kyle Pereira and Frederik Frandson 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”! Today we bring you our Bradly Nadeau Scouting Report.
Bradly Nadeau, who was born in New Brunswick and was drafted by the Rimouski Oceanic in the 2021 QMJHL Draft, opted to go to the BCHL and play for the Penticton Vees in order to maintain his NCAA eligibility. Nadeau is expected to join the University of Maine Black Bears next year. His older brother, Josh Nadeau, is already part of the Maine team.
Nadeau and the Vees had a dream season, as he was the clear best player in the league and Penticton was head and shoulders above all other teams in the league. The Vees went 50-3-0-1 in the regular season and 16-1 in the playoffs on the way to the Championship. Nadeau had 45 goals and 68 assists for 113 points in 54 games in the regular season. He added 17 goals and 18 assists for 35 points in 17 playoff games. Nadeau’s numbers led the league in all categories in both the regular season and playoffs. He also won both MVP awards and was a first team All-Star. Quite simply Nadeau and the Vees dominated at a level that few Jr. A Teams ever have.
Bradly Nadeau Scouting Report
Left Wing — shoots Right
Born May 5th, 2005 — St-François-de-Madawaska, New Brunswick
Height 5’10” — Weight 161 lbs [178 cm/73 kg]
Nadeau is a little undersized but he makes up for it with his outstanding skating ability. His first step and his acceleration are excellent. He can reach top speed in just a few strides. His ability to change speeds can be a real danger on the rush. Nadeau can speed up and go wide and cut to the net. Defenders must also respect his speed, so they back off. As Nadeau changes speeds, he can open up passing and shooting lanes. He also has very good agility and edgework. Nadeau can cut in and out of open ice with and without the puck. He can cut on a dime and accelerates well out of his turns. Nadeau is a bit skinny though. He needs to add muscle to his frame. The added muscle will help his balance and make him stronger on the puck.
Nadeau is a pure goal scorer. His shot is outstanding. His one-timer is particularly effective and one of the best in this draft close. He also has an excellent wrist shot. Nadeau has a quick release. Combined with his powerful and accurate shot, it can fool goalies and allow Nadeau to score from further out. He also has soft hands, marrying them with his excellent skating in order to create offence. Nadeau can make plays at top speed. He is not afraid to take the puck to the front of the net and can score in tight with quick hands. He pounces on rebounds, one-times passes from teammates, can deke a goalie in tight, as well as score on a deflection.
Nadeau is underrated as a playmaker. With his excellent agility and good hands he can make a quick move to open up a passing or shooting lane. Nadeau makes smart plays with the puck, setting up teammates for scoring chances. His vision and passing skill have been underrated by some due to his natural goal-scoring ability. Nadeau must get stronger to be effective in the cycle game and win battles along the boards. He will need to be a bit stronger to succeed against pros.
Nadeau is also a good defensive forward. His ability to read the play allows him to be in the right position, cutting down passing and shooting lanes. His speed and quickness also allow him to be one of the first forwards back. He is committed to brining backpressure against the rush and to supporting the defence down low against the cycle game. Once a turnover is created, Nadeau is able to quickly transition the puck up the ice and find offence. However, he can be overpowered at times by bigger opponents. This is another area where he will greatly improve as he fills out his frame.
Projection and Comparison
Nadeau is a dynamic offensive forward. The question at this point is if his game will translate at higher levels. While he did all that could possibly be asked of him in the BCHL, it isn’t the strongest league out there. Nadeau will face challenges in the NCAA and as he moves up to the pro game. Expect him to spend a couple of years in college and then some time in the AHL. If he can bulk up, he could be a real steal in the draft, as Nadeau is a boom-or-bust type of prospect. Nadeau could become a top-six winger, deadly at even strength and especially on the power play. His game is reminiscent of Cole Caufield, but this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill and ability.
The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages and features of Bradly Nadeau that are available on youtube and Twitter.
📹 | Carson Rehkopf recorded 2 points tonight, including this assist to Bradley Nadeau.
— Hockey Canada (@HockeyCanada) November 28, 2021
— 🏆 – Penticton Vees (@PentictonVees) October 1, 2022
Bradley Nadeau (@PentictonVees) is already on pace for a monster season in the BCHL (6GP-4G-8A). A dynamic dual-threat attacker, the RHS C is extremely proactive off-puck. Finds open pass seams & can layer. Absolutely wiring pucks on the PP w/ pinpoint placements. #2023NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/CT49SjX0h3
— Daniel Gee (@DanielGScouting) October 12, 2022
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Main Photo: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports