NHL Scouts Quotes Part 2
April 12, 2020
By Grant McCagg
Here are accumulated notes on the Ottawa 67’s two highly-regarded 2020 NHL draft prospects. Comments are from three of the top amateur scouts in the business. All are crossover scouts that see prospects in all of the leagues on both sides of the ocean.
Marco Rossi – C Ottawa OHL 2001-09-23 5-9 183
2019-20 Stats: 56GP 39 81 120pts Left Shot
Quebec-based scout Feb. 2020 – “He’s been a little bit off. He might be battling an injury. But when his offence is a little off, his defence is so good. He works so hard the other way. When you try to compare him and Perfetti…he’s a way better two-way player than Perfetti. So you’ve gotta decide what you want. He’s a great two-way center. You can’t miss on a guy like this, because the downside is that he’s a third-line guy. The thing about Rossi in comparison to Jack Hughes or Clayton Keller is that he’s built better than those guys..he’s strong, and he’s a better defender than both of those guys. I think he can play center because he can get back, he plays a 200-foot game, where those guys didn’t necessarily play a 200-foot game, they’re geared for offence only, so I like a Rossi because he’s coached the right way, and he does everything well. I just think Rossi is not 100 per cent. On Saturday he didn’t even want to take a hit, and that’s not like him at all. He might be tired.”
Ontario-based scout April 2020 – “I have to go off what I saw and he never wowed me. It’s hard to say that when he’s tearing the league up, but I must have just seen the wrong games. He’s good, but for me to project him out…I didn’t see it. How is he going to handle Ryan Getzlaf down low? How is he handling Byfield at 24? I’m not shi**ing on the guy, I just haven’t seen it. I don’t see him being the guy to crack the barrier for the 5-8.5 centerman to become a top-two center in the NHL. Max Domi’s awfully strong too, and he skates better. It can change game-to-game sometimes when you watch them. You’re not supposed to put too much into game ratings, but there’s a point where you’ve got to start thinking about the way the games are being played.”
Quebec-based scout April 2020 – He’s a 5-8 centerman. He’s good; I know he’s good. Is he gonna be your first-line centerman? I don’t know. Maybe he ends up being a winger at the end of the day; even though I do love him. He is one of the few guys where the downside is not very far. He knows how to play both ends of the ice.
Can Rossi match up against top centers? If you take someone else other than Rossi at that point, let’s say ninth overall…we used to get shit because we had to line up against Crosby for 15 years…well…how the hell does that have anything to do with us drafting a player? They picked (Crosby) one overall…what do you want us to do about that? You can’t do anything about it. You can put all the names up you want at ninth overall… if you aren’t taking Rossi …who the fu** are you taking? So ‘Oh my God; he can’t match up against an opposing big centerman’. If Rossi lines up against a Barkov or Crosby and he can’t win all of the battles; there’s not really a whole lot you can do if you’re picking at that point as far as finding a center who can match up against the top centers anyway. He can play first-line wing for sure. A team that’s on the build right now that has a first-line center; you’re just adding another great player for depth on your team that can be a second-line center; which is fu**ing important…you gotta have that. So…I just think a good player’s a good player. I know he’s small, but…if he’s the best player available at that point, I don’t see the problem.
What if he’s a Brayden Point? He’s kind of built like that; he’s kind of smart like that. He does a lot of things. He’s small, but…fu**…he’s a good player. I do worry about size a little bit, and depending on what your needs are; but you could take any one of those top forwards.
Ontario-based scout April 2020 – You just pick the best players, and that’s why you pay coaches the big bucks, so that they can figure out where to play them. How many times do we as scouts pick a center and the coaches end up putting them on the wing?
Jack Quinn – RW Ottawa OHL 2001-09-19 6-0 176
2019-20 Stats: 62GP 52 37 89Pts Right Shot
Quebec-based scout Feb. 2020 – “I saw him Saturday after 3-in-3 and couldn’t believe the jump he had. Quinn was pretty raw compared to others but he has really come on. Strength is everything with this kid. He’s a little behind physically as an ’01 but has some size potential. He is playing a lot of hockey too, and he’s been better than Rossi lately. He’s finding more strength. This guy is just driving up the list. I’m expecting this guy to be tired out, because he’s not nearly strong enough yet, and he’s playing well, and playing well defensively. Early on scouts were saying ‘I don’t know if he has enough upside here.’ I said ‘Yeah, he does’…but the good thing is that maybe now it’s not going for him offensively, but he’s playing great defensively, so take that into consideration..because he does have offence, obviously. F***…he’s leading the league in goals. There are no negatives; he just needs to get stronger. That’s it. The stride is fine, he’s just a little bit weak.”
Ontario-based scout Apr. 2020 – “I don’t know what is is about him, I just think he does a lot of things really well. Even if he isn’t scoring, he’s going to be reliable in his own end. He can finish checks, he can fill a third-line role. There are layers there that if he’s not scoring much for 12 games, he’s still going to be in your lineup because he does things. I like him.”
Ontario-based scout Apr. 2020 – He might be able to work into scoring areas better than Holtz. He can score from the top of the circles. Holtz, on the other hand, can work it in; he’ll hold onto the puck, he’ll battle, he can take that slash and check and hold the puck just for that instance, then he gets open…then he’ll take the shot…while other guys try to take the shot before that happens. Quinn may have a few more options with the puck. Holtz may have good intentions, but he doesn’t always see it to make the play, while can can make the play. Maybe being around guys like Hoelscher and Rossi really helped him with his playmaking. He’s got a great set of options in his game.
Rossi vs Quinn – “I do think the industry values goal scoring with a little bit of a size factor, so I think probably Quinn goes higher. But it’s so fu**ing close….Rossi is a special player. I think if it was us making the choice we’d take the winger, because that’s our bigger need…we’re pretty good down the middle. But if I was a team that needed a centerman I wouldn’t hesitate on Rossi.”