Born: October 6, 1985 (19)
Weight: 190 pounds
Drafted: Blue Jackets first round pick, 8th overall, at the 2004 NHL Entry Draft
Has scored 93-104-197 in 206 career games in the QMJHL. In 2004-05, he set career-highs with 40 goals, 45 assists, 85 points, and 160 penalty minutes. He finished ranked among the QMJHL's top-10 in goals (T-6th), points (T-8th), and shorthanded goals (2nd, 6 SHG), while ranking tied for 11th in game-winning goals (6) and tied for 22nd in plus/minus rating (+20).
- Solid two-way forward with the offensive upside to become a regular on a scoring line.
- Has a good shot with a quick release. Is a proven goal scorer at the junior level (79 goals the past two seasons).
- Has good NHL speed. Should be able to beat defenders to the outside.
- Not afraid to take a hit in order to make a big play. He consistently plays in high-traffic areas on the ice and likes to play in the paint, similarly to a Rick Nash.
- Has lots of skill, tenacity, and confidence. Has a knack for irritating opponents.
Road to the NHL:
He has a chance to earn a roster spot with the Blue Jackets this fall. He has proven all he can at the Major Junior level and needs to show what he can do as a professional. Because of his physical, blue collar style of play, he will likely start his pro career as a third or fourth line grind wing, very similar to the way Dan Fritsche was used during the first half of the 2003-04 season.