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Button's top 10 ranks dominated by centres and wingers

TSN.ca Staff

12/9/2013 4:44:20 PM

There is still over six months to go before the NHL Draft happens in the city of brotherly love, and in the meantime there are players putting on performances that are gaining the love of scouts.

If there's one thing we can count on heading towards the NHL Draft, it's to see teams go after value, and frankly that can be found in the centres and left wingers market.

The top 10 of the ranks is dominated by four centres and five left wingers but along with positional dominance, consistency is another trend to follow.

The presence of the Kingston Frontenacs is still being felt, as centre Sam Bennett and defenceman Roland McKeown remain in the top 30 of Craig Button's rankings, even considering the slight dip of McKeown in the ranks. Bennett remains among the elite and his efficacy is displayed in his statistics. His 41 points and plus-11 at center rivals top-rated Sam Reinhart's 50 points. Reinharts's only knock would be his plus-4 rating. Not bad, but pales in comparison to his contemporaries at the centre position.

The most significant movement in the positive direction would be by Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds' Jared McCann and  Leon Draisaitl of the Prince Albert Raiders. The respective centres have seen their stock increase over the last month by making the most of their time on the ice. McCann is sitting on a plus-11 rating while Draisaitl has a plus-6 rating. It's been a great statistical season for the latter, posting 47 points with 17 goal and 30 helpers.

Defencemen have seen some elevation in the ranks, as the play of Swift Current Broncos' Julius Honka and the Sarnia Sting's Anthony DeAngelo has garnered some attention. The most glaring difference between the two in the stat sheets once again comes down to plus-minus. Honka is supported by a respectable plus-11 rating, however, Deangelo's minus-11 stands out.

Not to be outdone by the other movers and shakers, USA NTDP defenceman Sonny Milano, along with Sodertalje right winger David Pastrnak, took the largest leap in the ranks, with each moving up eight spots. The aforementioned McKeown's six spot dip is second only to Peterborough Petes left winger Nick Ritchie, who took a nine spot dive.