6 players for the Vancouver Canucks to consider with their 11th overall pick
Photo credit:@ianbethune_ on IG
By Faber21 days ago
No matter how hard we all tried to will it into existence, the Canucks did not win the draft lottery.
At least they didn’t drop any spots either though!
As of today, the Canucks hold the 11th overall selection in the 2023 NHL Entry Draft and there are a lot of exciting prospects who could be added to the team’s pool.
We will spend a lot of time over the next 50 days talking about who we like for the Canucks at 11th overall and who we may want them to stay away from.
Today’s article is just a little bit of a primer about some names we initially like for the Canucks at the 11.
Let’s hit it.
David Reinbacher, RD, 6’2″, 190 lbs, Swiss League
We’ve been saying his name for a long time around these parts.
David Reinbacher projects as a perfect partner for Quinn Hughes and could be in the AHL next season.
He’s big, handles the puck well, has some physicality that is growing as he continues to add size, skates well and played big minutes in a men’s league.
There’s a lot to like with Reinbacher and he is our favourite pick for the Canucks at 11th overall.
Oliver Moore, C (Left-Shot), 5’11, 180 lbs, United States National Team Development Program (USNTDP)
Some scouting sites have Oliver Moore on the edge of their top five but he can be found in the teens in other rankings.
Moore is a very skilled centre who thrives on his high-end speed and skill. He’s a playmaker first but can finish when scoring chances present themselves with the puck on his stick. Moore is a great puck-handler and makes his linemates better at the USNTDP. He’s not exactly touted for his defensive play but should translate to being an offensive-minded middle-six centre in the NHL.
The Canucks do need a centre to sure up their middle six — Moore is a solid addition to any team’s prospect pool.
Moore is off to the University of Minnesota next season and likely goes there for one season and jumps up to the NHL at the end of the 2023-24 season.
Axel Sandin Pellikka, RD, 5’11”, 180 lbs, SHL
Another right-shot defenceman will be in range for the Canucks at 11. Axel Sandin Pellikka may not have the size that Reinbacher possesses but ASP is a wizard with the puck on his stick. He broke out pucks with ease in the J20 and all of his U20 international play. He shined at the U18s and certainly helped his stock ahead of the draft with his big performance that saw him put up 11 points in seven games.
We worry about his defensive play because he was a liability at times in the SHL this season. He certainly has some offensive skill to be excited about but we found him out of position a lot in the SHL and he seems to play more of a rover than a defenceman. This type of style works when you are head and shoulders better than everyone that you are playing against but ASP will need to change his game to have success at the NHL level.
There’s a high ceiling but a low floor. We are seeing a lot of Victor Söderstrom in ASP’s game, so, take that as you will.
Samuel Honzek, LW/C (Left-Shot), 6’4″, 185 lbs, Vancouver Giants (WHL)
If you are looking for a big winger with nice hands and good skating, Samuel Honzek is one of the best in the 2023 draft.
Honzek has a very high floor. He looks like he will be a top-six player who will have success on the power play at the NHL level.
We know that some people want to see the Canucks draft a local player out of the WHL and though Honzek is born in Slovakia, he played this past season in the WHL and lit it up with 23 goals and 33 assists in 43 games.
There’s a lot of room to grow his game with the right development but he’s got a big body that looks like it’s ready to make a jump to pro hockey sooner rather than later.
Matthew Wood, RW, 6’3″, 190 lbs, University of Connecticut and Victoria Grizzlies (BCHL)
Here is your big local kid.
Matthew Wood has played some centre but project him to be a winger once he gets to the NHL. He’s got as nose for the net but looks to need some work on his skating. He looks like he’s skating really hard but there just seems to not be a strong enough push off of his strides.
We got a chance to watch Wood a couple of times in the BCHL and weren’t very impressed in his play away from the puck but he looked much better in the NCAA this past season. Seeing growth in a player’s weakness is always a good thing and the fact that he put up 34 points in 35 NCAA games this past season is damn impressive for a draft-eligible forward.
Colby Barlow, LW, 6’1″, 185 lbs, Owen Sound Attack (OHL)
A tremendous goal scorer out of the OHL, who dominates around the crease with his grittiness and quick hands — Colby Barlow is the type of winger that you want to have in your prospect pool.
He scores a lot of goals and has one of the best shots in the draft. His shot is at a level that allows him to beat set goaltenders with ease in the OHL and we expect him to continue to build on his strength and be a good shooter at the NHL level.
He may not be 6’4″ but he sure plays like it, and at 6’1″, he certainly isn’t small.
There’s a lot of Matt Boldy in this kid and we just saw Boldy explode on the scene with 31 goals this past season.
There’s a quick rundown of some options for the Canucks at 11. We are fully invested into draft mode now and can’t wait to really dive in on these prospects more and bring our findings to you here at CanucksArmy.
We’re not getting Bedard but as long as the Canucks don’t trade this pick for Pierre-Luc Dubois, they will be landing a new number one prospect for their pipeline.
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