RED DEER – In 2009, a young 17 year-old Taylor Hall took center stage in Drummondville Quebec, and led the Windsor Spitfires to their first ever memorial cup title in team history. Hall would later win Memorial Cup MVP to add to his OHL Playoff MVP, and once again do the same the following year, in his draft year.
Back in ’09, NHL scouts could only dream of hall being eligible for that year’s draft with prospects such as John Tavares, and Matt Duchene, (players who Hall defeated in the OHL playoffs at that time). Sadly, scouts had to wait the following year for Hall to be available.
The same will go for Brandon Wheat Kings center, Nolan Patrick. Not eligible till the 2017 draft, Patrick has been setting up gigantic numbers for a 17 year old player. Patrick, had 41 goals and 61 assists, which was good for 102 points and 5th in WHL scoring. Some say playoffs is a whole different animal, but Patrick didn’t stop there.
The 6’3 Centre led the WHL in scoring during the playoffs, with 13 goals and 17 assists for 30 points, while also leading the Wheat Kings to their first Ed Chynoweth Cup in 20 years. By no surprise, Patrick was named Playoff MVP, a huge accomplishment for a player who hasn’t even turned 18 yet.
With the pace Nolan Patrick has been playing all year, it’s more than likely he’ll have a fabulous Memorial Cup campaign, just as Taylor Hall once did as a 17 year old. Just like in 2009, NHL scouts will have to wait one more year for Patrick to be selected into the NHL.