Notebook: 2021 WJC Edition V2
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 Notebook series takes a look at some of the reports that FCHockey’s scouts have filed over the past week.
Here’s a glimpse at our scout’s analysis.
Matthew Beniers, C, Team USA
Russia 5 – USA 3 – December 26, 2020
Scouting report by Josh Bell
Excellent head checks, constant scanning from Matthew Beniers. Is almost the first forward back and one of the first in the offensive zone. He’s an absolute force, getting the puck deep and winning the race to it. Finds the lanes so well, using change of direction to find open ice for himself and create space. Is so good at jumping on the loose puck thanks to stellar positioning. Excellent awareness in the offensive zone for some no-look passes. Drives the play, looking to funnel the puck to the slot. Knows how to use his body to separate from defenders, box them out as he turns the other way. Hard on the puck carrier, forcing turnovers. Great hands to intercept a centering pass, get through traffic and get out of danger. He goes 100% trying to get back and support his defenders. Did get outmuscled on a couple of occasions. Bad, wide, backhand shot. Should have turned back and re-set. Potentially needs to show some more patience with the puck at times, find space and re-evaluate. There are times where you can see him directing where the puck should go, leading his team.
Kirill Kirsanov, D, Team Russia
Russia 4 – Sweden 3 – December 30, 2020
Scouting report by Chris Smith
Kirill Kirsanov is player who narrowly missed the 2020 NHL Draft with a late September birthday. He impressed me this game with his play at both ends of the ice, he scored a nice goal displaying a quick and accurate shot, was able to beat Wallstedt glove side high pinching down the left point. He’s a skilled puck handler on the back end and is capable of making a safe and simple first pass out of his zone, or taking the puck and beating the forecheck. Has quick feet but his stride will need work, doesn’t get full extension and his first couple of steps will need to be worked on going forward. Very good hockey sense and decision making under pressure, he shows very little panic and is poised with a heavy forecheck coming his way. Was used in all situations for Russia. Kirsanov understands positioning in the defensive zone, he rarely chases the play and is adept at blocking shots and getting himself into passing/shooting lanes. He’ll need to continue to work on his pivots, ability to turn and retrieve pucks quickly.
Senna Peeters, RW, Team Austria
Austria 0 – Sweden 4 – December 28, 2020
Scouting report bu Olivia McArter
In the second game of the tournament for Senna Peeters, the team as a whole is starting to look a little more comfortable. He is starting to stick out to me when I watch. Peeters had good puck battles and when he was able to gain possession he was able to pass the puck around to his teammates for potential plays. Peeters has very good passing abilities which led to some playmaking but was never capitalized on. One thing I liked that he did that I haven’t seen anyone on the team do much, was forcing their opponent into making a passing play which he did often. In the last part of the game, Peeters started off slow and was not doing well under pressure. When he got the puck into his control, he did okay with his puck handling and was able to keep it away from his opponents for the most part. Peeters was often able to block shots in the defensive zone which hasn’t appeared much with this Austrian team. I like how Peeters is performing and I’m intrigued to see how he keeps progressing in this tournament.
Stanislav Svozil, D, Team Czech Republic
Sweden 7 – Czech Republic 1 – December 26, 2020
Scouting report by Josh Bell
Stanislav Svozil shows impressive instincts at both ends of the ice. He can read a play and know exactly when to attack the puck carrier, taking the puck and starting the play back the other way. He can read the ice, knowing when to attack the offensive zone with a quick rush. Picking up the puck, he reads the pressure, quickly turning one way and make a nice stretch pass to get the puck out of danger. Svozil can get the puck out of danger with his feet too, utilizing crossovers to explode in transition. His feet are incredibly fast. He only uses them fully when he needs to, saving energy where he can. This comes from his stance, holding his knee over his toes, while keeping his head and chest square. Constant scanning of the ice results in quick cuts and fast decisions to really spread out the ice. There were occasions in this game that I don’t think Svozil was properly utilized by his team. Calls for the puck were ignored and his rushes weren’t met by the team at times – almost as if they weren’t expecting it. He thinks the game so quickly, you can see both his team and the opposition take a second to register what he’s doing. I do worry about his ability to defend the rush, as his backwards skating doesn’t match his forward speed and skill. He can get caught not moving his feet and losing his gap, taking too long to pivot around, at which point he’s just trying to keep up to the attacker. He’s a very skilled player and this will likely improve over time, but it could be something that impacts his draft spot.
Jesper Wallstedt, G, Team Sweden
Sweden 0 – USA 4 – December 31, 2020
Scouting report bu Olivia McArter
Jesper Wallstedt came in relief with about 15 minutes left in the second period and was amazing right from the start. I found that Wallstedt knew his zone really well and hugged both posts so no puck could get through. He often skated to the top of the blue paint to try and distract the opposing player. Wallstedt played the puck behind the net with ease, he was able to pass the puck up ice, often skated out near the hash marks and out near the boards to get the puck up to his teammates. There was an instance later in the second where he got out of position a little but recovered well. In the third, he faced a lot of shots and showed really good rebound control by having the pucks stay close to him where he could kill the play if he wanted to. Wallstedt’s mobility was also really good. He was quick into the butterfly position and was really good with his vertical and horizontal movements. Wallstedt had one notable scramble in front of him and had great composure. He stayed very calm, mobile and stayed in position and in control during that time. In my opinion, Wallstedt had a very strong showing in this game and is going to keep doing well throughout the rest of this time in this tournament.
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