Welcome back to Top Shelf Hockey 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 2017 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.
Owen Tippet announced himself to the world at last year’s World Under 17 Hockey Challenge, where he put up five goals and eight points in six games to lead Canada White to the gold medal. He was named a tournament all-star for his efforts. Tippett would follow that up by representing Canada at 2016 Under 18 World Championships, and the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Tournament.
After putting up just 20 points as an OHL rookie, Tippett has exploded this season. He had 44 goals and 75 points in just 60 games. Tippett has also added six points in helping the Steelheads defeat the Ottawa 67s in six games, in the first round of the OHL Playoffs. The Steelheads might have started the season slowly, but they came on in the second half, and Tippett is a major reason why.
Owen Tippett Scouting Report: 2017 NHL Draft #8
Right Wing — shoots Right
Born Feb 16 1999 — Peterborough, Ontario
Height 6’2″ — Weight 204 lbs [188 cm / 93 kg]
Owen Tippett is an outstanding skater. He has excellent speed and acceleration. His ability to change speeds allows him to take defenders wide and drive to the front of the net, where he has the soft hands to finish in tight. He also has the agility and edge work necessary to make a wide variety of moves, and quick cuts that makes him extremely tough to defend. Tippett also has good balance, and the lower body strength and power to fight through an opponents checks.
Tippett is extremely dangerous off the rush. If defenders back off to respect his speed, he can use his excellent wrist shot or snap shot and beat goalies with a quick release. Tippett’s shot is amongst the very best of anyone in this draft class. He is a pure sniper who is dangerous anytime he finds open space to get a shot off. He also shows the ability to find soft spots in the defensive zone, and get open to let off a one-timer. Tippett also has excellent hand-eye co-ordination and can tip in shots from the point. He is not afraid to battle down low, and fight for the key space in front of the opposition’s net.
Tippett could stand to work on his play making skills. He can stand to slow things down and hold on to the puck just a little longer before rushing a play. This has improved as the season has gone on though there is still a bit more to improve. He has also improved his puck protection, and work down low in the cycle game. Tippett is good at fighting off defenders and creating time for teammates to get open in the cycle. Once he has a little patience to continue working the cycle a little longer, he should be able to get even more assists.
Tippett’s defensive game is a work in progress but has gotten better as the season has gone on. He shows commitment to bringing backpressure and supporting defenders, but has not always shown good reads and hockey sense. This has gotten better as the season has gone along, but there is still some work to do.
Projection and Comparison
Tippett has the potential to be a top line power forward in the NHL. He has some aspects of his game to work on, but the size, skating, and shot mean that he has a very high ceiling. In terms of style, Tippett’s game is reminiscent of former NHLer Bill Guerin. This is not a talent comparison, but just one based on style.
The following is a compilation of highlights, assembled from Youtube.
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our board.