Notebook: Chayka, Hughes, Roy & More
Every season, FCHockey’s scouts are scouring the globe to get eyes on prospects eligible for the 2021 NHL Draft and beyond.
They spend countless hours watching both live games and game tape to get the best possible analysis on the prospects entering the NHL Draft. Our Unpacking the Scouting Notebook series takes a look at some of the reports that FCHockey’s scouts have filed over the past week.
From Russia’s Daniil Chayka to the WHL’s Sean Tscheigerl, here’s a glimpse at our scout’s analysis from the past week.
Daniil Chayka, D, Team Russia (Karjala Cup)
Russia 6 – Finland 2 – November 5, 2020
Scouting Report by Derek Neumeier
This Karjala Cup performance was a mixed one for Daniil Chayka, a Russian. Some of his talents were on display, such as a beautiful seeing-eye wrist shot that ended up in a power play goal for his team, but the overall results were hit or miss. His skating proficiency is evident, as he moves smoothly in all directions and can accelerate to a high gear in very little time. He’s a very range defender with his skating and reach, who isn’t afraid to activate to make himself a rush option or to move deep into the offensive zone. However, his defensive game and effort were both lackluster in this contest. He got burned very badly in a one-on-one defending scenario, weakly poking his stick and not using his body as a Finnish forward danced around him. He was also a bit of a mess exiting his own zone, failing to clear the puck cleanly on a couple of occasions. There’s no doubting that Chayka has some pure talent, so hopefully the rough parts of this outing can be chalked up to it being a lesser tournament.
Luke Hughes, D, U.S. National U18 Team (USDP)
Des Moines 4 – USA U-18 2 – October 30, 2020
Scouting Report by Ray Napientek
Luke Hughes is very active with his stick on defense. Shows good positioning with his stick to take options away from his opponents and shows a reach to disrupt action. Good with his body positioning. Not overly physical tonight but early exhibition. Works his way between the puck and his goaltender. Does a nice job anticipating action. Light on his skates. Shows ability to adjust in transition and turn his hips and defend in transition. Can really stop on a dime and use his edges well. Skating is strong and stride is smooth. Patient with the puck on his stick. Showed a nifty move along the blue line to get a puck on net after a quick drag and release. Looks comfortable with a defender in close and positions his body well to keep puck away from defender. Does not get anxious and has his head up looking to make the next play. Jumped into the action on several occasions and generated two excellent chances that he did not bury but found himself in close with the puck on his stick ready to score. Quarterbacked the power play. Flipped a few wrists shots on net, could use some strength that will come with time. Quick wrists. Finds open areas in the slot of transition plays. Generated a tripping call on the power play with his swift skating and even found himself jumping into a 3-on-1 when his team trailed late. Overall, played a smart defensive game while generating plenty of opportunities in the offensive end that just did not show up on the scoreboard.
Simon Robertsson, RW, Skelleftea AIK U20 (J20 Nationell)
Skelleftea Jr. 4 – Vasteras Jr. 5 – October 23, 2020
Scouting Report by Fredrik Haak
Simon Robertsson is a phenomenal player in so many aspects and he has taken new steps from last season. He has a fantastic flow in his feet and shows great balance with high speed. He has some top-qualities like his shot and his ability to always be around goal scoring opportunities. But besides that, he always seems to work very hard all over the ice which makes him a perfect player to use in Penalty Killing. He does his backcheck, he tackles, poke checks and lies close to his opponents to win the puck in every shift and when he gets the puck he always wants to do something creative with it. Robertsson handles the puck very well in high speed and likes to challenge opponents and he is a threat in every shift when he moves over the offensive blue line. Robertsson has a high hockey-IQ and knows where he has his teammates and when to pass the puck or when to hold on to it. He often makes quick decisions and opens up the game with diagonal passes through the zone. On the power play, Robertsson is an asset for his team when he controls the tempo and what is going to happen and if he does not find any player to pass he likes to go for goal himself. His goals today was an example of patience to find the right moment and a fantastic wrist shot from the blue line that surprised the goalie. Overall Robertsson is a player that could be interesting for many teams in so many ways. He is an all-round player with some really high end-qualities on the top.
Joshua Roy, C, Saint John Sea Dogs (QMJHL)
Saint John 9 – Halifax 7 – February 16, 2020
Scouting Report by Joseph Aleong
Joshua Roy, the first overall pick in the 2019 QMJHL Draft, started the season slowly but settled in and became a regular contributor before the stoppage of the season. Roy is a smooth skater, but his stride is very upright and doesn’t get great power from each stride, limiting his acceleration and top-end speed. Needs to have a more consistently low centre of gravity in stride, as it seems he only bears down when he sniffs a scoring opportunity or one-on-one challenge. Skilled puck handler who has good touch on his passes and shows the ability to make plays through heavy physical contact. Solid frame, and he uses it effectively to drive to the net. Works the cycle well with simple decision-making and slick hands, but could use more urgency and explosiveness in his skating to be more effective off the rush. Lethal snap shot, with a quick release and good balance to shoot while off-balance or under pressure. Displays great awareness in all three zones, particularly in the offensive end. He uses anticipation and strong positioning more often than hounding puck-carriers or using hits to create turnovers. Has solid vision and shows good puck protection while surveying his options in the offensive end, as well as the ability to find the second or third option. Supports his defenders well on the backcheck and in the defensive zone, pressuring players closely and doing well to switch checks after scrambles. Isn’t afraid to engage physically but more likely to make stick checks or timely defensive reads. Seems unable to reach another gear with his skating, will need more consistency in his stride to become a top-six prospect at the pro levels.
Sean Tschigerl, LW, Calgary Hitmen (WHL)
Calgary 1 – Medicine Hat 6 – March 6, 2020
Scouting Report by Justin Froese
I’ll be really interested in seeing where Sean Tschigerl’s game is at when the WHL season begins as I didn’t really love where he bookended in March. Watching the tape, there wasn’t really a lot of surprises to his style of play. His skating speed is at a league average and seldom strays from linear strides when attacking with the puck, showing weakness with short area quickness and strength. While it’s a great trait to have linear speed to his game to be F1 on the forecheck and create havoc once he gets to full strive, the lack of deception he has to his skating game often forces him to play most of his puck possession game to the perimeter unless he plays high as F3 and can sneak into the high slot as a support option. He’s not the most cerebral player and really struggles with patience and possession under pressure. He’s naive and doesn’t manipulate space to create a numbers advantage, instead often doubling down and going man on man, trying to outmaneuver and making himself vulnerable or making a rash decision. He was often caught with blinders on when he had the puck and was best suited for an uncreative system style which could yield results if he could consistently get to the net as a driver. His passing execution was fairly poor and although he saw teammates, by the time he made the move to execute on a play, windows of opportunity were slim and the puck was thrown into a poor spot. In the few opportunities he did have to shoot the puck I found that his upper body remained erect and he didn’t get a lot of down force on the puck, limiting velocity and not really getting a good handle. I did think that even though he lacked layers on offense that his play off the puck has some potential long term. He could use his frame a bit more to leverage opponents but the competitive base is there to be an effective energy presence and he made some strong positional reads and provided positive stick pressure at even strength and the penalty kill. Though dynamism is a long way from reality to expect in an eight-month absence from an updated view, I am curious to see if he can get some confidence and excel as a play driver in Whitecourt while he awaits the WHL to fire back up.
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