The vanguard player on a rebuilding Erie Otters squad, Jamie Drysdale hasn’t let stardom go to his head – in fact, talent hawks love his humble, laid-back personality.
On the ice, however, there’s no hiding just how advanced the blueliner is for the OHL. “He’s seeing everything quicker than everyone else right now,” said one scout. “We use terms like ‘new-age defenseman’ in the NHL, and he might be the poster child one day, the way he processes the game. If he gets his stick on the puck in the defensive zone, there’s a 90-percent chance it’s getting out and up the ice. His zone exits are off the charts.”
Drysdale shocked many by earning his way onto Canada’s loaded blueline for the WJC, but they needed him to play important minutes when Bowen Byram got sick before the semifinal.
Even more exciting? The kid’s just finding his groove. “He has another ceiling,” said another scout. “I really do think that. You watch him manage a game and he’s really good, but he can do more. Once he gets a little more confidence…the best is yet to come.”
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This excerpt is from The Hockey News' Draft Preview issue. Purchase a digital copy of the issue here.