NHL Scouts’ Quotes – Wallinder/O’Rourke
April 26, 2020
By Grant McCagg
William Wallinder – D Modo SWE Jr. 2002-07-28 6-4 191
2019-20 Stats – 37 5 19 24 16 Shoots Left
NHL scout April 2020 – There’s more defined potential with Wallinder because he’s a big defenceman. He can defend, carry, can move pucks, he’s really aggressive, so there’s some things to like. I like him. I think there’s lots there. He’s struggled some in February, but that team wasn’t very good. I’m struggling with potential between him and (Shakir) Mukhamadullin; similar type players in terms of potential. I think there’s upside there, but what’s the projection? I think he impacts his shifts more consistently with the puck than the Russian, so he is less of a project.
NHL scout April 2020 – I loved him early, but now I don’t know what the fu** I loved about him. He didn’t look as confident later on, he didn’t look as smart. He doesn’t go out there and try to make a difference. It kind of looked like he was in limbo as to what he needs to be. More like 25th overall than 15. Earlier I saw size, range, competitiveness, had some decent puck games, made some decent decisions…and I said, ‘Okay, he’s a little raw, but he has some stuff to work with here.’ Then I saw flaws in reading the play, poor decisions…so I got a little gunshy on him. There are a lot of physical atributes there, but you gotta hope that that head is screwed on right.
NHL scout April 2020 – He’s a wild colt, but there’s some issues there too. He’s not very mature. I question his hockey sense and his defensive play. He is a projection. I’d have to take Schneider ahead of him. He was awful in the last U-18 tournament in February – poor gaps, poor decisions, giveaways…pretty tough to take him in the top 20 given all of the question marks with his mental approach to the game.
Ryan O’Rourke – D Sault Ste. Marie OHL 2002-05-16 6-0 178
2019-20 Stats – 54 7 30 37 79 Shoots Left
NHL scout February 2020 – I wish he was bigger, but he’s a competitive guy, pretty smart, really defends well. He’s a hard kid. He’s a four all day I think. A bit of a ‘tweener. You don’t know exactly what he’s going to be, but plays hard, good skater and his offence is okay. Based on his smarts and character alone he’s a first-round candidate, but he’s got some puck skills and offensive ability as well. Sault wasn’t exactly brimming with goal scorers and playmakers this season. He had more goals as a 16-year-old; in large part because he had Barrett Hayton and Morgan Frost feeding him. I think he has a decent point shot, and he’ll score some goals in the NHL once he has smart playmakers feeding him again. He has enough offensive skill to get some time on an NHL second power-play unit.
NHL scout April 2020 – He’s not very big, but he’s a really good player, competitive. He always gets pucks moving smartly, he’s competitive, I think he’s got character. He played a little hurt down the stretch but he’s a good player. He plays hards, skates well, has a hard shot. I like him.
NHL scout April 2020 – I just wish he was a little bigger for the way he’s going to have to play. His skating is fine. He plays within his limits; he doesn’t try to run up the ice all of the time. He knows how to pick his spots very well. He takes the temperature of the game and plays accordingly.