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Draft Profile: Frederik Gauthier

by Chris Lund / Ottawa Senators

Inside the Senate will be taking a look at 40 prospects ahead of the Entry Draft on June 30. Up next is Frederik Gauthier...

Every draft has their eye-popping physical specimens and in 2013 they don’t come much bigger than Rimouski’s Frederik Gauthier.

At 6-foot-5, 210 pounds the Oceanic centreman is an imposing player down the middle. He was a solid offensive performer in 2012-13, recording just under a point-per-game -- 60 points in 62 games -- before adding another two in six playoff games. Gauthier also appeared as part of Team Canada’s World U-18 squad in Sochi and posted four points in seven games on the big ice.

Gauthier’s clear asset is his frame. While he doesn’t impose himself physically in the traditional sense, he is a solid possession player who uses his size and reach to protect the puck effectively. Offensively, he shows flashes of great creativity. On defence, however, is where Gauthier shines. He is an effective shut down centre at the junior level and very effective on the draw.

Concerns with Gauthier revolve around his engagement with games. He struggles with consistency at times and there is a desire to see him use that size in a more physically imposing way. It’s also hard to forecast his production at the next level being anything greater than a traditional third line player despite having some good tools.

Whoever drafts Gauthier will do so with the intention of moulding him into their shutdown centre of the future. Players with his defensive and faceoff savvy are rare at that age and experience level and when they come around it’s generally not in a build that size. If he came with some additional nastiness his type of game would be guaranteed to be a very high pick, but those concerns may ultimately hold him back.

Expect Gauthier to be taken at some point in the mid-to-late first round. Though, with the modern premium on big centres in the NHL, a team could reach and nab him before 15 without too much surprise.

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