Is another Steve Yzerman coming to the NHL?

Fans hoping the Detroit Red Wings will find another Steve Yzerman to complete their rebuilding plan should know that one will be available next June.

But if the Red Wings play as well as general manager Yzerman hopes in 2022-23, they have no chance of acquiring him. The player is Regina Pats star Connor Bedard, and TSN draft analyst Craig Button said Bedard reminds him of Yzerman.

“Connor has all the skills, but what impresses me is his intensity like Stevie Y, the instinct of a killer,” Button told reporter Gare Joyce for his New York Times article.

Bedard is the first 17-year-old player in 35 years to reach 100 points in the Western Hockey League. It is dynamic and ultra-competitive.

“Bedard is fast and elusive,” said Sportsology’s Russ Cohen, who does preliminary analysis for Sirius Radio. “He has more energy per shift than most hockey players I’ve seen. He has a powerful wrist shot and his dekes are already pro level. His speed, cutting-edge work and elusiveness make him a generational talent.

Red Line Report Chief scout and publisher Kyle Woodlief believes Kontinental Hockey League forward Matvei Michkov of St. Petersburg could challenge Bedard. He broke Nikita Kucherov’s goalscoring record as an U17 player.

“Bedard and Michkov are clearly the top two, and both would be the No. 1 overall material in almost any draft year,” Woodlief said.

Woodlief says Bedard-Michkov is the NHL’s best duo since Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel faced off before the 2015 draft.

Tight race

“There is not much that separates Bedard and Michkov; both are quite small, but phenomenally skilled. said Woodlief. “(They’re) so skilled that anyone could become a 50-goal scorer, not a 35 or 40-goal scorer, in the NHL. ”

According to Cohen, the only negative for Michkov is that he is contractually tied to the KHL until 2026.

“He has magic hands,” Cohen said. “He is already far from the puck. When he plays at full speed, he is very difficult to manage. He has a quick-hitting ability… But the contract might scare off a few teams.

The first reading of the Bedard contest: It’s a battle between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Arizona Coyotes. But veteran Philly Hockey Now writer Sam Carchidi believes the Philadelphia Flyers are also in contention. The Montreal Canadiens may also be in the race.

But it’s all conjecture until the start of the season.

But after Steve Yzerman’s free agent signing spree, no one is listing the Detroit Red Wings as a possible entry into the Bedard contest. Even if the Red Wings don’t qualify for the playoffs, they should still be in the bottom 11 to have a chance against Bedard.

Deep draft

Under current rules, you can only move up 10 spots in the draft if you win the lottery.

Red Wings fans probably don’t expect to study draft favorites as much as they have over the past four seasons. But they can’t be sure.

This 2023 draft has other potential stars. Cohen likes Michigan center Adam Fantilli at No. 2, ahead of Michkov “(Fantilli) will one day be a top center in the NHL,” Cohen said. “He is very fast, very dangerous in the lunge.

Woodlief threw Slovak Dalibor Dvorsky to No. 3. “He would have been my No. 1 overall if he had been available this year,” Woodlief said.

Woodlief has good news for fans should their Red Wings falter this season and miss the playoffs for a seventh straight season.

Woodlief said, “The 2023 draft is pretty deep compared to the most recent drafts.”

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