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2019 Draft Countdown: Sasha Mutala, Vladislav Firstov, Henri Nikkanen, Jake Lee, Trent Miner

Welcome to Canucks Army’s 2019 Draft Countdown. Over the next four weeks leading up to the draft, we’ll be rounding up scouting reports, quotes, and videos about our Top-100 prospects available. Here are aggregated profiles on 2019 Draft Countdown: Sasha Mutala, Vladislav Firstov, Henri Nikkanen, Jake Lee, and Trent Miner.

No. 65: Sasha Mutala

Date of birth: May 6th, 2001

Nation: Canada

Position: Right Winger

Shoots: Right

Height: 6’1″ / 185 cm

Weight: 196 lbs / 89 kg

Profile: Mutala has been the modern day power forward for the Tri-City Americans this season. A speedy forechecker and a knack for getting the puck for getting the puck in the back of the net.

“The Vancouver-native brings a hard-working approach to the rink each night. Has quick acceleration and excellent top-end speed. This helps him cause havoc on the forecheck and create turnovers. Has a heavy and quick release.” — Cam Robinson

No. 64: Vladislav Firstov

Date of birth: June 19th, 2001

Nation: Russia

Position: Left Winger

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’0″ / 183 cm

Weight: 181 lbs / 82 kg

Profile: Skating and shooting are strength’s of the UConn commit, demonstrating that on the USHL’s Waterloo Black Hawks this past season, scoring 26 goals.

Firstov is a solidly built and skilled forward who skates at an elite level, is very explosive and really has a lot of power in his stride, making him a real force on the ice. He has good hands and puck skills and makes some really creative plays with the puck and reads the game very quickly. His shot is hard and accurate displaying strong finishing abilities. He competes at a high level and really works for his team. — Draft Prospects Hockey

No. 63: Henri Nikkanen

Date of birth: April 28th, 2001

Nation: Finland

Position: Centre

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’2″ / 189 cm

Weight: 185 lbs / 84 kg

Profile: The forward with very good speed, good size and above-average hands spread his time through three different leagues this past season. While playing in the Liiga, he only averaged 8:35 TOI but was still able to score two goals.

Big centre with good size and an effective passing game along with solid defensive instincts Projects as a possible bottom six player based on his penalty-killing, and his experience playing in the Finnish men’s league. Keeps things simple. —Bill Placzek

No. 62: Jake Lee

Date of birth: July 13th, 2001

Nation: Canada

Position: Defence

Shoots: Left

Height: 6’2″ / 188 cm

Weight: 216 lbs / 98 kg

Profile: The big body defenceman worked his way up and earned more ice-time on his Seattle Thunderbirds team. A prospect for a team that values size and physicality.

Long term developmental defender with nice size and girth. Has skills but may need a bit more time to steady them and adjust to the higher speed of the advanced levels he will be graduating into. Needs to make better decisions with and without the puck, handle the puck with more certainty and get stronger at handling the outside attackers then beat him to the inside. Still there is something there to like as he works on improving. —Bill Placzek

No. 61: Trent Miner

Date of birth: February 5th, 2001

Nation: Canada

Position: Goaltender

Catches: Left

Height: 6’1″ / 185 cm

Weight: 181 lbs / 82 kg

Profile: Rated a C grade in the NHL’s Central Scouting preliminary players to watch list in October, and by November had moved up to receive a B grade, which suggests he might be picked in the second or third rounds.

  • These are great, many thanks, but where are the SEAL and pGPS stats this year? Those help take us a little deeper into the numbers.
    Mutala and Firstoff might be worth looking at from this bunch, a bottom sixer and knuckle chucking Dman can probably be found easily enough apart from the draft, and MAYBE I’d throw a bottom round lottery ticket at the goalie, if no one is left on the board that we like.

    • Not sure your read on Lee is correct. Not mentioned in the article is the Kelowna Rockets traded for Lee at the Bantam draft this year. As they are hosting the Memorial Cup they need to gear up to be a contender. With the stellar track record of that organization finding and developing Dmen and Adam Foote as the coach Lee likely brings a lot more than knuckle chucking. Ideal 3rd round pick.

      • Agreed on Lee. Watched him against the Giants in round one of the WHL playoffs this year. Noticeable every game, and was actually suspended in that series for taking out one the Giants best players. I was surprised to find out he was first year draft eligible as I thought he was one of Seattle`s best players. Reminiscent of Kevin Bieksa as he played with a lot of edge but also showed some talent. 3rd round pick is a great time to take a gamble on a longer term development curve.