Rodion Amirov, LW (Russia)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Speedy two-way winger with attitude, fine stickhandling, smooth hands and a good shot. Quick and mobile with a great work ethic. Reliable team player."
Craig Button's analysis: "Strong winger who gets in and around the net to score. Creates space for others and establishes himself in the areas that produce rewards. He is very adept at finishing off plays."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "Amirov is easy to spot on the ice when he has the puck because he's very quick and skilled. He has quick-twitch hands and can inside-out defenders while skating at full speed. He has the ability to pull off a highlight reel play. He can set up and finish plays well."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "The strength of Amirov's game is in his ability to protect the puck and change directions with control. This makes him particularly effective within the offensive zone."
Iaroslav Askarov, G (Russia)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Tall, athletic goaltender who likes to stay upright. High hockey IQ. Quick, involved, active and very mobile. Communicates loudly with his skaters."
Bob McKenzie's analysis: "A gifted and athletic Russian goaltender who's been labeled by some as the most exciting goaltending prospect since Carey Price. … The right-handed catching Askarov is supremely confident and has a marvelous international resume and reputation for stealing games and winning medals."
Craig Button's analysis: "His physical attributes and ability to read the play puts him in a category of excellent prospect. He has composure, an assuredness and a defiance in the face of challenges."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "He has elite attributes in terms of his athleticism, in how he reads the game and how aggressive he is. His quickness allows him to make the tough saves, although I don't find him scrambling and diving around the net a lot given how well he anticipates the play. He's a little jumpy in the net just due to how quick he is, but he's in control most of the time, staying with the play even when the puck is moving quickly. Askarov is often challenging shooters even in unorthodox situations, but he isn't often beat when he is aggressive, which speaks to his hockey IQ."
Soctt Wheeler's analysis: "Askarov has pretty much everything teams look for in a goalie. He's one of those rare prospects who is worth taking in the first round. He's big, he's athletic, he swallows rebounds, he can make those tough second-chance recovery saves and he does a good job staying center."
Kaiden Guhle, D (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "An excellent skater with quick acceleration who is mobile and elusive when defending. Can be very physical with big open ice hits. Likes to join the play for odd man rushes. The go-to guy on the blueline for his team. Possesses a solid one-time shot."
Craig Button's analysis: "Excellent skater with the balance, power and leverage to be forceful defensively and with the speed and quickness to move the puck up the ice. Physical, territorial and competitive in his approach."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "Guhle is appealing because of his physical attributes. He's 6-foot-2, he skates quite well and he knocks opponents off the puck with high frequency. His gap control is excellent, closing on checks with force and showing a preference for playing the body."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "He's one of the smoothest-skating defensemen in the class, and he's pushes opposing players around along the wall (and occasionally the rush). … His defensive game is already pretty refined. Guhle's skating is going to be an asset at the NHL level."
Dylan Holloway, C (NCAA)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Power forward who can get to the net effectively. Very hard to contain with and without the puck. Will be physical to gain possession of the puck. High hockey IQ and great competitiveness."
Craig Button's analysis: "Dylan combines his skill with a physical presence that allows him to impose himself on the game. Determined and finds ways to contribute. Compliments the games of others and is versatile."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "Holloway is a good skater who has a lot of energy to his game. When he gets a full head of steam, his frame he can be a handful to stop. He's hard on pucks and isn't afraid to get his nose dirty."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "He's a unique athlete in this class, an outstanding skater, a physical presence and a talented scorer and creator."
Seth Jarvis, C (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Smart player that does everything at high speed. Elusive and creative with the puck. Can impact a game in all zones."
Craig Button's analysis: "Very skilled, smart center who uses deception and guile to gain advantages and produce offensively. He has the ability to take advantage of the slightest opportunity. Don't underestimate him."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "Jarvis is a dynamic player who ticks a lot of boxes. He is highly skilled and intelligent with a lot of quickness. He has the skill to beat defenders 1-on-1, but more importantly, he does so with speed. The high-end pace of his game is what makes him so dangerous and will translate to the higher levels."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "I don't tend to like to make comparisons to other players, but he's a slick playmaker who reminds me a little of a blend between Nick and Ryan Suzuki. He's got the well-roundedness across his toolbox and the three-zone work ethic that Nick possesses, with some of Ryan's knack for the dramatic."
Hendrix Lapierre, C (QMJHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Great skater with powerful strides. Excellent puck skills and hockey IQ. Able to execute plays at high speed. Creates time and space with his puck skills and has the creativity to make plays. Strong two-way game. A complete player who brings a strong work ethic."
Craig Button's analysis: "A complete two-way center who can play in every square inch of the ice and be very productive. Outstanding sense and feel for all situations, with the ability to process quickly."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "He's a highly skilled and intelligent player. He makes a lot of tough plays, projects to run a pro power play due to very high hockey IQ and has the great individual skill to be slippery in open ice."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "He's a puck-dominant carrier who can transport the puck up the ice (or across it) with a sharp pass through a seam or his feet and hands. He's the kind of player every team wants running their power play. And when he doesn't have the puck, he'll chase it down to get it back and keep offensive zone sequences aside."
Anton Lundell, C (Finland)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Mature two-way center with a very good understanding of the game. Playmaker who makes smart decisions in all three zones. Reliable, solid team player who is trusted by coaches."
Craig Button's analysis: "Very solid two-way center who can be the conscience defensively for a line but also capable of getting the puck into the right places and on the right sticks to create offense."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "He competes well, he's strong on pucks and is responsible defensively with the ability to play on both special teams."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "He's a better passer than he normally gets credit for, he's heavier on the cycle than most of his peers, he can play through the middle of the ice and he makes decisions and reads quickly, which is just as important (if not more important) as his actual foot speed. It always feels like Lundell is involved and impacting a game (with and without the puck). Over the course of a game, that drives results."
Dawson Mercer, C (QMJHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Smart and skilled forward with a strong desire to make a difference every shift. Uses his speed and quickness to his advantage. Slippery and tough to contain. Plays in all situations - a responsible two-hundred-foot player. Very good hockey sense."
Craig Button's analysis: "Dawson is a plug-and-play player. He can play center or wing, and that adaptability allows him to move around the lineup and contribute. Competitive with very good skills."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "Mercer is a versatile player. Offensively, he's an exciting player. He has high-end skill with the soft hands and creativity to beat a lot of defenders. He has the quick-twitch in his hands to be unpredictable and make a lot of great plays in tight areas. He's a very smart player who moves the puck well inside the zone, finding seams and looking off defenders like a pro."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "Mercer's effective all over the ice by making a lot of little plays with pace and aggression. He attacks defenders when he has the puck. He attacks opposing carriers when he doesn't. He wins more 50/50 battles than he should by getting underneath his man and keeping his feet moving. And then he has enough skill to escape pressure, beat the first defender and make a play."
Jack Quinn, RW (OHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Dynamic skater that can fly with the puck on his stick. Lethal shot with an exceptional release. Strong two-way game. Plays in all situations. Sniper with highlight reel goal-scoring ability."
Bob McKenzie's analysis: "Scouts like his natural sniping ability but are also impressed with his high-energy two-way game and project that he could be a top NHL scoring forward who can play on the PP and the PK."
Craig Button's analysis: "Best goal-scorer in the draft. Is not a one-trick scorer, which makes him difficult to defend. His entire game has progressed to the point where he is a well-rounded player."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "He has very quick twitch hands and the ability to embarrass defenders 1-on-1. He sees the ice at a top-end level even though he didn't have nearly as many assists as goals. It's not just his vision, but his overall creativity and patience. He often saw plays on the ice that I couldn't see materialize."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "There's nothing in Quinn's game to dislike. Add in dynamic ability as a mid-range shooter, impressive athleticism and a late-blooming career arc and it's no wonder he broke the 50-goal plateau."
Lukas Reichel, LW (Germany)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Talented playmaker. Excellent skater who likes to go to the net. Good work ethic and attitude. Effective checker. Smart passer with good puck skills."
Craig Button's analysis: "Skilled, smart winger who can skate and make plays. In the offensive zone, he can create opportunities with his quickness and is equally good at making a pass for a goal or shooting for the net."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "I always saw some skill and speed in his game, but this season I saw a high level of creativity with the puck, making difficult plays through defenders and to his teammates. He has the skill and the pace to score in the NHL."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "Reichel has a finesse and touch to his game that makes him dangerous both off the rush and from the offensive zone in. The more I watched him, the more I appreciated the way his heads-up style allows him to impact the game as both a scoring threat and a creator for his linemates."
Braden Schneider, D (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting report: "Displays a strong presence on the ice. Makes big hits in all three zones. Strong on his skates and hard to knock off the puck. Used in all situations. Likes to join the rush using deceptive speed. A complete package on the blueline who can control a game."
Craig Button's analysis: "A fiercely competitive, in-your-face player with a take-no-prisoners approach. He is a player that opponents will have no joy facing. Has progressed significantly over three seasons in all areas."
Corey Pronman's analysis: "He's a 6-foot-2, right-handed defenseman who can skate well. He can rush pucks and close gaps well. Schneider moves the puck very well out of the defensive zone, showing great vision and patience on his outlets. He defends well due to his feet, but also doesn't shy away from playing the body and knocking players off pucks."
Scott Wheeler's analysis: "In his own zone, Schneider's one of the better defensive defensemen in this draft. He uses his length and strength well off the rush, too, but his biggest asset is his ability to take away time and space in the defensive zone, close out the wall, win puck battles and advance the play back up ice with a quick outlet."