At one point this season Jakob Chychrun was considered the top defensive prospect in the draft. That was until Olli Juolevi went on to win the OHL Championship and the Memorial MasterCard Cup with the London Knights. Now many scouts have Juolevi going before Chychrun. But Chychrun would still be an amazing asset to the Arizona Coyotes, and a solid option should Juolevi come off the board before the Coyotes pick.
Jakob Chychrun - Defenseman - Sarnia Sting (OHL)
2015-16 Stats - 62 GP - 11 G, 38 A, 51 PIMs
Chychrun was born in Boca Raton, Florida and is still one of the top defensive prospects in the draft. He's big, he's skilled, and he's fast. Chychrun has worn the "A" with the Sarnia Sting since his arrival and put up an impressive 11 goals and 38 assists his second season there.
He's known for his strong physical presence on the ice but also his ability to direct the play on the ice and his extremely sharp shot on the power play. A two-way defenseman who has a keen eye on the puck and is talented at tracking the opponents movement, Chychrun is a force on the ice that not many want to mess with. Chychrun was selected to the OHL First All-Rookie Team and the OHL Third All-Star Team his first year in the league making the jump to the OHL Second All-Star Team in the 2015-16 season.
Though it seems that Chychrun has fallen in ranking since the season began, he would still become the Coyotes top defensive prospect with little to no competition. The defensive prospect pool is one area that the Coyotes severely lack depth in and is something that they have expressly stated that they would like to improve upon via their draft selections.
While he would not provide the right handed shot that many would like to see with Oliver Ekman-Larsson he would provide a strong counter-part for right handed shots like current defenseman Michael Stone or Connor Murphy. Perhaps he could pair with Murphy eventually and reunite the Stone Ekman-Larsson pairing or he could also make a strong middle pair with Stone if Murphy remains the top right handed defenseman until the team can seek to bring in more talent.
Either way it would be a while until the Coyotes saw Chychrun in the NHL. Defensive prospects tend to take longer to develop. But building depth is a step in the right direction, and when he would join the team he would be a huge force on Arizona's blue-line.