The third member of the dynamic top line for the USNTDP, Joel Farabee lands in the 14th spot of the CanucksArmy prospect rankings.
Farabee is a reliable two-way player who doesn’t blow you away with his play but just seems to get things done all the time with some really creative plays. He complimented fellow 2018 draft prospect Oliver Wahlstrom well throughout the entire season and took his game to another level when 2019 draft eligible Jack Hughes joined the U18 program.
A leader on the ice, Farabee closed out the season with a four goal and four assists performance for the United States at the U18 World Juniors.
He may lack that sizzle that some other top prospects have but Farabee is a fantastic prospect who will hear his name called in the first half of the first round.
- Age/Birthdate:56/ February 25, 2000
- Birthplace: Cicero NY
- Frame:6-foot-0/ 168 lbs
- Position: LW
- Draft Year Team: USNTDP Juniors(USHL)
- USPHL 16U Champion
- USPHL 16U Forward of the Year
- USPHL 16U Most Valuable Player
- U17 WHC All-Star Team
- U18 WJC Gold Medal
- U18 WJC Silver Medal
- U18 WJC Top 3 Player on Team
Farabee committed to Boston University in November 2015 and hasn’t looked back since. He was selected by the Flint Firebirds in the 7th round of the 2016 OHL Priority Selection draft but he has never changed the direction of heading to the NCAA this fall.
Farabee saw some time with the U18 program during his draft minus one season including appearing at the U18 WJHC helping them win Gold in 2017. They were unable to repeat their success this April, winning Silver, but Farabee ended the tournament being named a Top 3 player for the Americans.
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Based on the games against USHL competition – Farabee checks out near the top in all the categories available.
Adjusted Scoring (SEAL)
For the most part, Farabee stands out in underlying numbers with his line dominating whenever together. He, Hughes and Wahlstrom were dynamite together after they were put as a line and it’s reflected in the above charts.
With only four matches, it produces a statistical success rate of 28.9%. He outscored the unsuccessful matches by ~0.25 points per game but those bring down the success rate a bit. That success rate is lower than some of the players around home but with that added context of difference between his matches alleviate that concern.
Personally, I view the draft class in the following tiers:
- 2 & 3
- 15 onwards (many tiers after that)
So Farabee falls into that third tier and could ultimately rise a couple of spots and that would be entirely justifiable. It would really just depend on team’s preference and how the draft board shakes out above him.
Farabee is a skilled player with tremendous drive and should be considered as one of the best playmakers in this draft class but isn’t limited to just that facet of the game. He is creative and intelligent with the puck to attack in a variety of ways. He is good at reading off a goal scorer like Wahlstrom or off offensive defencemen joining the rush.
He is patient with the puck, maintaining possession to move around defenders, causing them to scramble and leave an open space for his teammates. His spirited skating abilities allow him to maintain control of the puck with pace and agility.
His shot isn’t fantastic but should not be considered a weakness to his game. Instead, he relies on his puck movement skills and possession to get himself into high-end situations that allow his quick snapshot to beat goalies.
The American is elusive, skilled, and blessed with great skating skills that allow him to show off those fantastic offensive tools. He isn’t the biggest player and does things by pushing the pace to keep opponents retreating and scrambling.
Despite being a winger, Farabee is very effective in the defensive zone. You don’t need to worry about him being a poor position or beat in a race to the puck. Despite giving up size to many players, he isn’t afraid to get in and there and work for the puck. Obviously, his line was dominant offensively but his GF% of 74.4% and GFREL% of +10.7% illustrate his effective two-way game.
Farabee’s strongest attributes are his elusive and quick skating and his hockey IQ. It’s easy to think that his point totals were boosted from playing with two other elite players but Farabee was not a passenger and very much helped drive that offence. He has a complete two-way game that is aided by his ability to be all over the ice.
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From Future Considerations
Blessed with strong two-way puck sense, he is an appealing prospect. Not a tonne of flash in his game, but Farabee has no glaring holes in his game, which makes him an effective player. Skating, he works off his edges and opens up ice. He’ll not shy to drive towards the net and he knows how to find the soft spots on the ice. His shot is quick-released and he knows how to use it – and how to make a quick pass instead. The only drawback to his distribution game is that sometimes he’ll pass up a terrific shooting opportunity and opt for an attempt at a highlight-reel setup, which can end up as turnovers. This crops up especially on power plays. He’s shown lots of deception in the short game. Consistently, he creates chances with his skating and his playmaking ability. He stickhandles close to his body and can escape pressure situations with quick moves. The Cicero, N.Y., native’s compete level is high. He’ll race for the puck and battle along the wall in all three zones, and he knows how to attack a defender and suffocate space. He is a decent defensive player, but doesn’t show aggressiveness making plays deep in his own zone. Farabee is one of the most impressive forward prospects coming out of the U.S. this year, thanks to his elite stickhandling ability and his knack for making plays at top speed.
The captain of the U18 USNTDP, Farabee is a dangerous and prolific scorer amongst his age group. Blessed with top-level skating ability and a mind for creating offense, the New York native can also be trusted in his own zone which facilitates further opportunities from the coaching staff. His level of play seems to rise when surrounded with high-level talent as indicated with the recent boon of production next to fellow draft-eligible prospect, Oliver Wahlstrom and top 2019 pick, Jack Hughes. While Farabee lacks ideal size, his ability to use his edges to slash in and out of lanes keeps opposing teams on their heels and keeps him off of the IR.
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CanucksArmy’s 2018 NHL Draft Rankings