2015 NHL Mock Draft: Ottawa Senators 1st Round Pick #18


Note: This has been an on going draft through the Fansided NHL deparment. The draft is an actual mock draft with participation from all 30 Fansided NHL websites, with each website’s editor acting as a GM. The post on Senshot today from Trevor is his opinion, and not the actual selections from our network’s mock draft. That said, 

“In the 2015 Fansided NHL Mock Draft, Senshot and The Ottawa Senators select…”

Kyle Connor

Youngstown Phantoms (USHL)

Position: C

Height/Weight: 6foot1, 183lbs

2014-15 Stats: 56GP, 34G, 46A, 80P

#5 by Hockeyprospect.com, #13 by ISS Hockey, #12 by Future Considerations, #12 by McKeen’s Hockey, #13 

*info gathered from EliteProspects.com

Kyle Connor is a dynamic skater and a possession driving center who just couldn’t be passed up with his fall to the 18th overall pick. The fall in Fansided’s mock draft saw players such as Travis Konecny, Jeremy Roy, and Paul Bittner chosen far ahead of Connor.

The rankings are broad but often rank Connor in the 12-13 range, making a fall to the 18th spot somewhat surprising. The highest of rankings have Connor in top 5 territory as HockeyProspect.com and Craig Button have Connor at #5 and #7 respectively.

Connor, a non NCAA player spent his past three seasons in the USHL, starting as a 15 year old in 2012. He lead the league in scoring this year and had over a P/PG pace in his sophomore season. The scouting reports on Connor mention his skating ability as well as vision on the ice.

"A dynamic two-way center with speed and creativity to burn. Consistently displays elite-level skating ability, and an astonishing top speed. Sees the ice very well and is constantly looking to either score or make a player; the confidence he has in his abilities lets him do things with the puck that other players wouldn’t even try.Skillful puckhandling skills, paired with a deceptively accurate shot, make him a lethal scoring threat. His will to compete and, ultimately, win fuels his defensive game; he tracks the puck well and creates a lot of turnovers. All-in-all, a highly skilled, proactive center that can dominate in all three zones. (Curtis Joe, EP 2014)"

Where Does He Fit?

While the Senators have some impressive depth at the center position, another addition doesn’t hurt. As previously stated, Connor is a few years away from the NHL so with Curtis Lazar, Kyle Turris, and Mika Zibanejad all at the NHL level, the Senators still have some time to evaluate.

More from SenShot

Something to keep in mind is that building up the center is always an intelligent thing to do. Centers are among the most important players on the ice as they are often the main piece when it comes to generating offence. Connor has played left wing in the past, so if the Senators determine he is a fit on the wing, that’s a possibility as well.

He’s a fairly versatile forward and one who is heralded as having elite skating skills—perhaps one of the most important evaluators. You can’t pass on a player of that caliber and given the fact that he allows you to build up the middle or play wing makes Connor a fit in any NHL organization.

The scouting reports certainly seem similar to that of current Senators forward, Kyle Turris. In fact, a player like Turris might be Connor’s closest NHL comparable. Turris, like Connor came from a non-traditional hockey league, Turris in the BCHL and Connor in the USHL. Both dominated those leagues as young players and although Turris had a rocky start to his career, the recent turn-around has proven he is a number one center. Connor holds many of the same prospects as Turris does. A smart, fast, two-way centerman who can score. I’d look for these two to be compared against in the future.

Previous FanSided 2015 NHL Mock Draft Selections:

.. and of course, the Senators select Kyle Connor, a fall to number 18. With that pick in the 2015 NHL Mock Draft, the Detroit Red Wings and OctopusThrower.com are now on the board.

Next: The Top 6 Is Fine

More from SenShot