We kick off our 2014 NHL Draft coverage today with our first prospect profile; over the next month Defending Big D will be dedicated to covering every aspect of the draft and the Dallas Stars needs and goals heading into the summer.
Today's draft profile looks at RW Josh Ho-Sang from the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL.
Josh Ho Sang, Right Wing, 5'11", 165lbs, Shoots Right
Josh Ho-Sang is one of the most talented individual players in this draft. His offensive upside is seen by some scouts as being unlimited. He's extremely fast and has elite or near about elite offensive skills. Ho-Sang is seen as being ultra creative with the puck and has been used as a powerplay specialist. His playmaking skill is among the best.
If Ho-Sang is such an offensive dynamo why would he be available for the Dallas Stars at 14? Despite his excellent offensive ability he can be guilty of over complicated a play. Instead of going for the easy option he tries something creative which can backfire on him.
His defensive work also has holes and he will likely need to spend a lot of time learning to adequately perform his defensive responsibilities. While he wouldn't be drafted as a two way forward by any means having a decent grasp of of the game in his own zone would be a big bonus to his game.
Another fact would be that he is not a very big forward, only 5'11", 165lbs, and to make it in the NHL at his potential he'd have to bulk up. Putting on some extra muscle would help with the rough and tumble of the professional leagues.
He's also had some trouble with discipline and attitude, he was originally suspended for 15 games by the OHL for a shove to the back that lead to the London Knight's Zach Bell breaking his leg. This, on appeal, has been reduced to six game. You can view the incident here.
Josh Ho-Sang has been described as the biggest boom or bust candidate of the first round. Are the Dallas Stars willing to take that risk?
Some scouting reports from across the web:
He is one of the most purely skilled players in the league. That said, there are also some very big red flags around him, and thats what makes him one of the most intriguing prospects in the 2014 NHL Draft. For a player with his skill set, he should have been a shoe-in to be a part of Canada's 2014 U18 World Championship team, but Ho-Sang wasn't even invited to the team's try-out camp.
The 17-year-old is not only a top-10 scorer with 81 points, but Ho-Sang has the same number of assists (52) as higher ranked NHL draft prospects Sam Bennett and Michael Dal Colle. That all comes back to learning how to play off his linemates, which include Montreal Canadiens pick Brady Vail. The offensive leadership has helped the Spitfires stay in the middle of the Western Conference despite trading captain Kerby Rychel to league-leading Guelph in December.