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.
Today's prospect: Anthony Mantha - LW/RW (Val d'Or Foreurs - QMJHL)
Mantha zoomed up draft boards with a hot start that eventually led to his QMJHL leading 50 goal season. The 6' 4" forward from Longueuil, Quebec finished the 2012-2013 season with 89 points in 67 games; good for tenth in the Q.His size is obviously a huge plus as the 18-year-old has a 200 pound frame to go with the 6' 4" height. He is also a bit more mature age wise than most of his draft counterparts as he was born one day past the deadline to enter 2012's draft.
Scouts say that Mantha's offensive ability is great because he doesn't always have to be physical in order to have an offensive impact on the game. NHL Central Scouting's Chris Bordeleau said, "he has everything you need to succeed." Mantha shows up for big games as well recording seven goals and 16 points in 13 career QMJHL playoff games.
There are defensive inconsistencies in his game as evidenced by the wide array of differences in reports among scouts. Bordeleau said in the same NHL.com article, "if there's one negative, he sometimes has a tendency to take the easy way out. He might need to work on his defensive game, but he can be taught that." He will need to improve his play in his own end to succeed at the NHL level, especially on a Tippett coached team.
Central Scouting: 10th in North American skaters
International Scouting Services: 25th overall
Fit in Phoenix
It is no secret the Coyotes are in desperate need of depth at the forward position. Mantha is an offensively gifted winger that can be physical in the corners and on the opposition. His speed would compliment a line with Mikkel Boedker and Antoine Vermette. His physicality would compliment a line with Radim Vrbata and Martin Hanzal. When it comes to a forward with top-line potential, Anthony Mantha fits the mold and would be a nice fit in Arizona. NHL.com's Adam Kimelman's most recent mock draft has the Coyotes selecting Mantha with the twelfth overall pick.