So if the NHL Entry Draft were held tomorrow, odds are Drummondville center Sean Couturier would be the No. 1 overall selection.
At least that's the gut feeling. It seems scouts like his tough two-way acumen and the confidence within. It certainly doesn't hurt being ranked sixth in the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League with 25 points, including 11 goals, in 19 games.
At this point in the season, Couturier's agent, former NHLer Gilles Lupien, would prefer not to have his client speaking with reporters. So, I spoke to Lupien about his budding prospect, who led the QMJHL in scoring in 2009-10 with 96 points (41 goals) in 68 games.
Lupien compared Couturier to a young Darryl Sittler, the former Toronto Maple Leaf, Philadelphia Flyer and Detroit Red Wing inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1989.
"He's a bright kid, he gets 95's in school, he's a brainer and quiet guy and doesn't say much," Lupien said of Couturier. "He's the type of guy who sits in the room, like a Bob Gainey and doesn't say much but shows by example. He's like a Joe Thornton, that silent type, and Darryl Sittler. Sittler was like that. He's tall and appears slow-moving but then, all of a sudden, poof, he's out like a rocket like Sittler."
Lupien has limited Couturier's interview requests during the early stages of the season in order to minimize the pressure of his draft year.
"I just want him to concentrate on being the best player he can be right now," Lupien said.