Matthew Boldy of USA Hockey's National Team Development Program Under-18 team could turn out to be one of the most exciting players available at left wing in the 2019 NHL Draft.
Boldy (6-foot-2, 196 pounds) was a driving force for the NTDP this season and had 12 points (three goals, nine assists) in seven games to help the United States win the bronze medal at the 2019 IIHF World Under-18 Championship in Sweden.
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"He never overhandles the puck and he's prepped and ready to attack for the big shot, flipping a puck to himself or finding a teammate," NTDP coach John Wroblewski said. "To me, he's got to be one of the most exciting wingers of this draft. He's a power forward with that scoring touch."
Committed to Boston College starting next season, Boldy was named Most Valuable Player of USA Hockey's All-American Prospects Game after he had three points (two goals, one assist) to help Team Jamie Langenbrunner to a 6-4 win at Xcel Energy Center in Minnesota on Sept. 19, 2018.
Here are NHL.com's top 10 left wings available for the 2019 draft:
1. Matthew Boldy, USA U-18 (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 9 (North American skaters)
Boldy has an excellent release, accurate shot and can manufacture scoring chances for himself and linemates by playing an honest, hard 200-foot game. He had 81 points (33 goals, 48 assists) in 64 games for the NTDP, and ranked first on the team with four shorthanded goals and second with 10 power-play goals. He's fifth on the all-time NTDP list with 95 assists in 126 games in two seasons.
2. Egor Afanasyev, Muskegon (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 16 (North American skaters)
Director of NHL Central Scouting Dan Marr said everything about the 6-foot-3, 204-pound left-handed shot says NHL, including his size, speed, smarts, compete and his battle level. Afanasyev, a United States Hockey League Third Team All-Star, ranked 10th in the league with 62 points (27 goals, 35 assists) and has 76 points (33 goals, 43 assists) in 103 USHL games.
3. Nicholas Robertson, Peterborough (OHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 17 (North American skaters)
Robertson (5-9, 162), a Filipino-American, can score, make plays, skate and protect the puck as well as anyone in the draft. He was second for Peterborough in goals (27) and points (55), and tied for first in power-play goals (eight). The brother of Dallas Stars forward prospect Jason Robertson is always in motion and looking to make plays. He was named best stickhandler in the OHL Eastern Conference Coaches Poll.
4. Nils Hoglander, Rogle (SWE)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 11 (International skaters)
The Bocktrask, Sweden, native is a fantastic skater with a good first step and plenty of energy. Hoglander (5-9, 188) is strong on the forecheck with good offense instincts and quick hands. He had 14 points (seven goals, seven assists) in 50 games for Rogle, the most by an under-19 player in the Swedish Hockey League this season.
5. Brayden Tracey, Moose Jaw (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 21 (North American skaters)
Tracey (6-0, 170) made one of the biggest jumps in Central Scouting's final ranking of North American skaters, to No. 21 from No. 73 on the midterm list. He was named the Western Hockey League Eastern Conference rookie of the year after he led WHL first-year players with 81 points (36 goals, 45 assists) and 12 power-play goals in 66 regular-season games. He also tied for first in the WHL with 11 game-winning goals. Tracey sees the ice, anticipates well and is quick to get to openings for scoring opportunities. He had seven points (four goals, three assists) for Canada at the 2019 IIHF World Under-18 Championship.
6. Vladislav Firstov, Waterloo (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 23 (North American skaters)
Committed to the University of Connecticut starting next season, Firstov (6-1, 181) has good offensive instincts and good vision inside the offensive zone. He's capable of winning races for loose pucks and has an ability to beat opposing defenders wide. He had 58 points (26 goals, 32 assists) in 62 games and tied for first among USHL rookies in power-play assists (17) and game-winning goals (six).
7. Jakob Pelletier, Moncton (QMJHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 27 (North American skaters)
Pelletier (5-9, 165) was seventh in the QMJHL with 89 points (39 goals, 50 assists) and scored nine power-play goals in 65 games. He possesses elite hockey sense and can out-think opponents to beat them to open areas of the ice.
8. Pavel Dorofeyev, Magnitogorsk (RUS)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 12 (International skaters)
Dorofeyev (6-1, 176) is a late 2000-born skater with solid pro potential. Director of NHL European Scouting Goran Stubb said the left-handed shooter is good in traffic and along the walls, but is at his best with the puck on his stick. Dorofeyev had 31 points (17 goals, 14 assists) in 19 games in Russia's minor league before being promoted to Magnitogorsk of the Kontinental Hockey League, where the 18-year-old had two points (one goal, one assist) in 23 games.
9. Nolan Foote, Kelowna (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 37 (North American skaters)
The son of two-time Stanley Cup champion and Kelowna coach Adam Foote, and brother of Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman prospect Callan Foote, Nolan has a combination of size, reach and good hands around the net. The 6-3, 195-pound two-way forward led Kelowna in goals (36), power-play goals (17) and shorthanded goals (three) and was tied for second in points (63) in 66 games. He also played all season with a broken left wrist.
Video: Son of former NHLer Adam Foote speaks at Combine
10. Michal Teply, Benatky N.J. (CZREP)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 14 (International skaters)
A big, skilled, right-handed shot, Teply (6-3, 187) had 10 points (four goals, six assists) in 23 games in the Czech Republic's second division. He scored one goal in six games for the Czech Republic at the 2018 World Junior A Challenge and had four points (one goal, three assists) for his country at the 2018 Hlinka-Gretzky Cup. He plays with confidence and will go to the net to create offense.
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