Best Skater Category:
- Jean-Luc Foudy
- Jake Sanderson
- Jamie Drysdale
- Dylan Holloway
- Tim Stutzle
Move over Jack and Quinton, you’ve got company in the “best skating brothers” department. Two years ago, Liam Foudy finished first in Recrutes Annual Scouting Poll in the “best skater” department.
This year in our mid-term polling, Liam’s little brother Jean-Luc Foudy has the edge over USNDPT defenceman Jake Sanderson, son of former NHL speedster Geoff Sanderson.
Sometimes it’s good to have the genes. The Foudy boys are the sons of former CFL defensive back Sean Foudy and former Canadian Olympic silver medallist sprinter France Gareau. Liam, a first-round pick of the Columbus Blue Jackets in 2018, plays for the London Knights, while Jean-Luc toils for OHL western confrence rival Windsor.
Both sons followed in their mother’s footsteps…literally.
“Jean-Luc’s a big time track athlete, just like his brother and mother,” said one scout who gave him a slight over edge over Sanderson as the draft’s best skater. “He has quick feet, outside speed, and change in gears. Quick twitch runners muscles.”
Sanderson has wowed scouts in his two recent events, the 5 Nations Cup in Czech Republic and the All America Prospects Game, and shot up the rankings into serious top-five discussion based largely on his terrific skating skills.
“He has the ability to cover ice in all four directions.” said one scout, who essentially was paying tribute to his tremendous agility. “Simply a terrific skater; a natural.”
Jamie Drysdale is another extremely mobile defender that was quick enough to handle the world’s best junior speedsters adeptly at the WJC at the age of 17. He and Sanderson are neck-and-neck in both skating ability and consideration for the top defenceman selection.
“He’s got to be three if he’s not two,” said one scout in regards to his best skater ranking. “You had to like his performance in the world junior. He’ll make the step into the NHL within two years with that skating ability.”
Dylan Holloway is this year’s Chris Kreider…all strength and power.
“He’s already a man,” said one scout. “He bulldozes over guys six years older than him in college, and does it at high speeds. Powerful kid.”
Much like Drysdale, German sensation Tim Stutzle reeled in NHL scouts at the WJC, displaying his ability to skate with the best juniors on the planet, and in most cases, beat them.
“Quick!” said one scout. “Quick hands, quick feet, quick mind. He is going to best a lot of defenceman in his career with that speed. You also have to love his edges and his agility. He’s quite a talent.”