After a wildly inconsistent and disappointing lock-out-shortened season, the Phoenix Coyotes will look to continue to build their roster through the draft. The 2013 draft is very deep even after the top prospects (Seth Jones, Nathan MacKinnon and Jonathan Drouin) are off the board. Over the next few weeks, Five for Howling will break down a handful of prospects that could be available for the Coyotes with their pick at number 12 in this year's NHL entry draft, and discuss how the players might fit with the team.
The fourth edition of the 2013 draft profiles focuses on a highly skilled forward from Canada's capital. To see all of the previous draft profiles click here.
Today's prospect: Sean Monahan - C (Ottawa 67s - OHL)
Monahan is a complete two-way player with the offensive up-side indicative of being a number one centerman in the NHL. The 18-year-old has put up back-to-back strong seasons with the Ottawa 67s of the OHL scoring 78 points each season. In 2012-2013, Monahan put up 31 goals and 47 assists in only 58 games.
Corey Pronman of Hockey Prospectus describes Monahan as, "a smart two-way player," adding that, "His ability as an offensive playmaker is high end, as he has tremendous instincts, displaying the ability to make quality passes." Pronman caps off his review of Monahan (which can be read in full here) with his projection of the 6' 2" forward, "Monahan projects as a quality defensive center, capable of winning face offs consistently. He does not have a clear developmental weakness in his game, which bodes well for a team that may be looking for him to make the transition to the NHL within a year or two." The main knock on the forward is his average skating ability. It is the one part of his game that is sub-par although it is not a major deterrent to his overall ability.
Our friends over at In Lou We Trust also did a Monahan profile which can be seen here.
Central Scouting: 5th in North American skaters
Hockey Prospectus: 7th overall
International Scouting Services: 9th overall
Ben Kerr from Last Word on Sports is one of many to compare him to Eric Staal, while Monahan likens himself to a Jordan Staal or Jonathan Toews.
Fit in Phoenix
Monahan is exactly the type of player the Coyotes are seeking: an offensive skilled center with a strong two-way game with the ceiling of becoming a number one centerman for many years to come. Many of the offensively skilled forwards in the draft lack a solid two-way game at this point in their careers, leading defensively strong teams to be a little more nervous when considering selecting a player this high in the draft. Monahan provides no such worries, and his one negative, his skating, is an issue the Coyotes have not shied away from in the past (most recently the selection of Henrik Samuelsson in the first round of last year's draft).
Phoenix would be very fortunate if arguably the sixth best forward in the draft to fell to them at pick number 12.