With the 2016 NHL Entry Draft just a week away many in the industry are releasing mock drafts.
Damien Cox of Sportsnet recently published (presumably) his final mock and had the Anaheim Ducks taking a versatile two-way forward - Pascal Laberge has played both center and wing - from the QMJHL with the 24th overall pick.
Pascal Laberge, C, Victoriaville (QMJHL), 6-foot-1, 170 pounds: Ducks may dangle a defenceman to move up. If not, GM Bob Murray could jump at this two-way pivot.
Laberge recorded 23 goals, 68 points and 64 penalty minutes in 56 games with the Victoriaville Tigres in 2015-16.
Laberge managed to lead the team in scoring by eight points despite playing at least six games fewer than both Maxime Comtois and Mario Huber, the team’s 2nd and 3rd leading point getters.
Pascal Laberge is a tough and spirited two-way forward with a high level of hockey sense. Hunts for turnovers and causes havoc whenever he is on the ice. Uses his size well to shield the puck, exert physical force, and win board battles. Has a good set of goal-scorer's hands, but tends to use them more to pass than anything. All-in-all, an efficient, yet exciting, two-way forward with potential to develop into a playmaking goal scorer.
Whether Laberge is Bob Murray’s choice at 24, assuming they stay there, remains to be seen but the Ducks selecting a two-way forward who can pile up points doesn’t seem like a bad idea - especially with many of the Ducks’ top forwards getting up there in age.