Dylan Guenther could become the first forward from Edmonton of the Western Hockey League to be chosen among the top 10 picks in the NHL Draft.
The 18-year-old right wing (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) led Edmonton in points per game (2.00) and was sixth with 24 points (12 goals, 12 assists) in 12 games.
“He was a highly regarded player coming into this season, so the expectations were high,” said John Williams of NHL Central Scouting. “His game progressed better than we had expected it might. He looks stronger, faster, and quicker. As a young player on a very good Edmonton team, he really drives the offense and does everything with quickness, which will translate well at the next level.”
The highest Edmonton player chosen in the NHL draft was defenseman Griffin Reinhart by the New York Islanders with the No. 4 pick in the 2012 NHL Draft; the highest forward was Curtis Lazar by the Ottawa Senators at No. 17 in the 2013 NHL Draft.
Here are NHL.com’s top 10 right wings available for the 2021 NHL Draft:
1. Dylan Guenther, Edmonton (WHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 5 (North American skaters)
Guenther is a highly skilled, elite goal scorer who is quick on his skates. He scored seven points (four goals, three assists) and had 34 shots on goal in seven games for first-place Canada at the 2021 IIHF Under-18 World Championship.
2. Nikita Chibrikov, SKA St. Petersburg (RUS)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 4 (International skaters)
The 18-year-old left-handed shot (5-10, 170) is a playmaker with great speed and strong edges who can handle the puck and backcheck. Chibrikov scored two points (one goal, one assist) in 16 games in the Kontinental Hockey League, and nine points (three goals, six assists) in 11 games in the MHL, Russia’s junior league. He scored 13 points (four goals, nine assists) and had 22 shots on goal in seven games for second-place Russia at the U-18 World Championship.
3. Matthew Coronato, Chicago (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 9 (North American skaters)
Coronato, born in Greenlawn, New York, finished first in the United States Hockey League with 48 goals, 19 power-play goals and eight game-winning goals, was tied for first with four shorthanded goals, and was second with 85 points and a 1.67 points-per game average in 51 regular-season games. The 18-year-old (5-10, 183) who led all scorers with nine goals, 13 points and a 1.63 points-per game average in six USHL playoff games, is committed to play at Harvard next season.
4. Isak Rosen, Leksand (SWE)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 8 (International skaters)
The 18-year-old (5-11, 156) has good acceleration, a good skating stride and the ability to change speeds, and his competitiveness makes him difficult to play against. He had one assist and averaged 5:45 of ice time in 22 Swedish Hockey League games and scored 12 points (seven goals, five assists) in 12 games for Leksand’s team in Sweden’s junior league. Rosen scored nine points (seven goals, two assists) and had 32 shots on goal for Sweden at the U-18 World Championship.
5. Fabian Lysell, Lulea (SWE)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 9 (International skaters)
Lysell (5-10, 172) is a mobile skater with good speed and creativity. The 18-year-old doesn’t have dominating size but is strong and capable of winning 1-on-1 battles. He scored three points (two goals, one assist) and averaged 7:22 of ice time in 26 SHL games, and scored nine points (three goals, six assists) in seven games for third-place Sweden at the U-18 World Championship.
6. Sasha Pastujov, USA U-18 (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 19 (North American skaters)
Pastujov (6-0, 181) had two goals and an assist and was named MVP of the BioSteel All-American Game on April 7. He led USA Hockey’s National Team Development Program Under-18 team with 65 points (30 goals, 35 assists) in 34 games, and his nine power-play goals were tied with left wing Dylan Duke (No. 29 in Central Scouting’s final ranking of North American skaters) for the NTDP lead. The 17-year-old, who plays a creative style to complement his 200-foot game, led fifth-place United States with eight points (five goals, three assists) and 31 shots on goal in five games at the U-18 World Championship.
7. Samu Tuomaala, Karpat Jr. (FIN-Jr.)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 10 (International skaters)
Tuomaala (5-10, 174) is a high-energy forward with good speed, quickness and puck control. The 18-year-old has good offensive skills, including a hard, accurate shot that helped him score 31 points (15 goals, 16 assists) in 30 games in Finland’s junior league. He scored 11 points (five goals, six assists) for fourth-place Finland at the U-18 World Championship.
8. Mackie Samoskevich, Chicago (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 17 (North American skaters)
The 18-year-old (5-11, 191) scored 37 points (13 goals, 24 assists) in 36 games and is an alternate captain for Chicago. Samoskevich, who has been consistent in his details away from the puck to become an even more dynamic player, is committed to play at Michigan next season.
9. Simon Robertsson, Skelleftea (SWE)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 11 (International skaters)
Robertsson is a skilled, hard-working two-way forward with speed and good offensive instincts. The 18-year-old left-handed shot (6-0, 190) scored two points (one goal, one assist) and averaged 6:58 of ice time in 22 SHL games, and scored 20 points (nine goals, 11 assists) in 15 games with Skelleftea’s team in Sweden’s junior league. He scored four points (three goals, one assist) and took 18 shots on goal in seven games for Sweden at the U-18 World Championship.
10. Tyler Boucher, USA U-18 (USHL)
NHL Central Scouting: No. 25 (North American skaters)
The son of Brian Boucher, a goalie for 13 NHL seasons, established himself as a power-forward in the 2021 draft. The 18-year-old had arthroscopic surgery on his knee April 2 but has since returned to the ice. Boucher (6-1, 205), who offers excellent compete, work ethic and hockey sense, scored 11 points (six goals, five assists) in 12 games (0.92 points-per game) this season after scoring 26 points (nine goals, 17 assists) in 43 games with the Under-17 team in 2019-20. He’ll attend Boston University in 2021-22.