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Posted On Monday, 01.26.2015 / 9:00 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

McDavid, Eichel continue to fuel offenses

Erie Otters center Connor McDavid and Boston University center Jack Eichel, the projected top two picks in the 2015 NHL Draft, continued their offensive magic this past weekend for their respective teams.

Eichel scored two goals in two games, including his second overtime goal in three games, to lead the No. 3-ranked Terriers (15-4-4) to a 2-1 victory against the University of Vermont at Gutterson Fieldhouse in Burlington, Vt., on Saturday. It was the third overtime goal of the season for the freshman.

After scoring an empty-net goal in a 4-2 victory against Vermont on Friday, Eichel tipped a point shot by senior Evan Rodrigues off the left post and into the net at 2:56 of overtime to send Boston University to the win on Saturday.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.22.2015 / 2:41 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Meier out to prove he can skate with the best

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Halifax Mooseheads forward Timo Meier has had the pleasure of competing alongside many of the finest junior-age players in the world this season.

That string will continue Thursday when he plays left wing on a line with Erie Otters center Connor McDavid for Team Bobby Orr at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Meridian Centre (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports).

Meier skated on a line with Nashville Predators 2014 first-round pick (No. 11) Kevin Fiala with Switzerland at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship and he usually skates with Winnipeg Jets 2014 first-round pick (No. 9) Nikolaj Ehlers on the top line for the Mooseheads in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.22.2015 / 2:23 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Bobby Orr, Don Cherry offer high praise for McDavid

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Hall of Fame defenseman Bobby Orr can understand the pressure that generational superstar Connor McDavid has been under the past three seasons.

Orr, who serves as the player agent for McDavid, the No. 1-ranked skater on NHL Central Scouting's midterm list of North American prospects eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft, discussed his client prior to the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m ET, NHLN-US, Sportsnet, TVA Sports).


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Posted On Thursday, 01.22.2015 / 12:01 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Line combinations set for CHL Top Prospects Game

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- What happens when the top two scorers in the Ontario Hockey League and another consistent point producer from the Western Hockey League are called into duty by Don Cherry to work the top line for his team at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game?

We'll soon find out since Dylan Strome (28 goals, 80 points) of the Erie Otters will center left wing Jake DeBrusk (23 goals, 43 points) of the Swift Current Broncos and right wing Mitchell Marner (34 goals, 90 points) of the London Knights for Team Cherry at Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports). They have combined for 87 goals and 216 points this season.

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Posted On Thursday, 01.22.2015 / 7:12 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

McDavid, Konecny excel in on- and off-ice testing

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Erie Otters center Connor McDavid on Wednesday provided NHL scouts one more reason why they should strongly consider him for the No. 1 pick in the 2015 NHL Draft at BB&T Center in Sunrise, Fla., on June 26.

McDavid, who will captain Team Bobby Orr at the BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports), excelled in the on- and off-ice testing to gauge the fitness and skill levels of all 40 participating players for NHL management and scouts.

The data that was supplied to NHL Central Scouting and distributed to NHL teams provides valuable performance benchmarks.

McDavid, No. 1 on NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of the top North American skaters eligible for the 2015 draft, finished first in the on-ice portion of the testing, which included 10 specialized drills, and third in the off-ice tests. All testing was conducted by Sport Testing.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.21.2015 / 2:10 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

McDavid, Strome among elite at Top Prospects Game

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Erie Otters captain Connor McDavid headlines an impressive list of 2015 NHL Draft-eligible prospects set to impress at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports).

The pressure of performing in front of an estimated 250-plus NHL scouts shouldn't be cause for concern for McDavid. He's been under the microscope the past three seasons in the Ontario Hockey League, and recently helped Canada win a gold medal at the 2015 IIHF World Junior Championship in a title game played at Air Canada Centre in Toronto.

McDavid, who will serve as captain for Team Bobby Orr, is the No. 1-ranked prospect on NHL Central Scouting's midterm list of North American skaters eligible for 2015 NHL Draft.

Competing against Otters teammate and good friend Dylan Strome in the Top Prospects Game is a bit of a concern for McDavid, however.

"It'll be weird; he's one of my best friends," McDavid said. "I find him hilarious and can hardly take him seriously so it'll be different lining up against him. But fun."

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.21.2015 / 12:23 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Ottawa goalie Herbst added to Top Prospects Game

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Goaltender Liam Herbst of the Ottawa 67's of the Ontario Hockey League will serve as an injury replacement at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports).

Herbst (6-foot-4, 194 pounds) will replace Barrie Colts goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood, who was sent home because of an illness. Blackwood spoke to reporters Tuesday but admitted at the time he was ill.

Blackwood is No. 1 on NHL Central Scouting's midterm ranking of the top North American goaltenders for the 2015 NHL Draft.

Herbst, No. 14 on the midterm list, is 12-5-2 with a 2.78 goals-against average and .902 save percentage.

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.21.2015 / 11:33 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Beauvillier excited as captain for Team Cherry

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Shawinigan Cataractes left wing Anthony Beauvillier was taken completely by surprise when he learned he would serve as captain for Team Don Cherry at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at the Meridian Centre on Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, Sportsnet, TVA Sports).

"I didn't think about being named captain but am very proud, especially since the captain for Team [Bobby] Orr is Connor McDavid," Beauvillier said. "It's an honor. I've seen Don Cherry on television a lot, so to have a chance to meet him will be great as it will be for everyone in the locker room."

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Posted On Wednesday, 01.21.2015 / 11:25 AM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Top prospects to have on- and off-ice skills tested

ST. CATHARINES, Ontario -- Before the top prospects for the 2015 NHL Draft from the Canadian Hockey League showcase their abilities at the 2015 BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game, they'll undergo a series of on- and off-ice tests that will provide NHL scouts and general managers an in-depth profile on each player.

All 40 of the players competing in the game Thursday (7 p.m. ET, NHLN-US, SN, TVA Sports) will be put through those tests Wednesday at Meridian Centre, home of the Niagara IceDogs of the Ontario Hockey League.

The tests will be conducted by Sport Testing Inc., which has been conducting similar tests on players in all three leagues that make up the Canadian Hockey League for the past five years, as well as at the bantam and minor-midget levels.

"We have been impressed with Sport Testing's professionalism at our events and their accuracy in assessing player potential," CHL President David Branch said. "Their data reports are a blueprint to on-ice success and will showcase our players to NHL scouts. Sport Testing also gives quantifiable skill and fitness targets to the rest of the CHL players and those young athletes hoping to one day join our league."

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Posted On Tuesday, 01.20.2015 / 8:10 PM

By Mike G. Morreale -  NHL.com Staff Writer /NHL.com - 2015 NHL Draft blog

Prospects react to NHL Central Scouting rankings

ST. CATHERINES, Ontario -- Erie Otters center Connor McDavid considered his No. 1 ranking on NHL Central Scouting's midterm list of the top North American skaters eligible for the 2015 NHL Draft to be "a little bit of a dream come true."

But McDavid realizes his work is not yet completed. NHL Central Scouting revealed on Tuesday its midterm rankings of North American skaters and goaltenders and international skaters and goaltenders.

McDavid is the first of seven Canadian Hockey League players among the top 10 on the list, including left wing Lawson Crouse of the Kingston Frontenacs (No. 4) and center Dylan Strome of Erie (No. 5). All 40 Canadian Hockey League players competing in the BMO CHL/NHL Top Prospects Game at the Meridian Center on Thursday are listed on Central Scouting's midterm rankings, including 32 of the top 60 skaters.

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Quote of the Day

The fans love it, and it looked like they were having fun. It was great to see this city [Columbus]. They had been waiting a couple years for this game. They did it right.

— Lightning captain Steven Stamkos after the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Game on Sunday