With the NHL Draft approaching draft profiles and perspectives are being machinegunned out in every direction. Players are moving up and down boards with no relevant hockey actually being played by any of the soon to be NHL draft picks. With that reality in mind let's take a look at some prospects would might end up being undervalued later this month in terms of NHLE.
A simple definition of NHLE will suffice. Kent Wilson provides that from a post about the 2013 draft class prior to last years draft:
For those unfamiliar, NHLE is a method that corrects for league quality relative to the NHL, allowing us to compare kids across various leagues.
Of course, like all pure scoring stats, NHLE is blind to various external contributing factors, such as team quality, variance and other circumstances like a players role.
The aforementioned link has the NHLE from the 2013 draft. You may notice that Valeri Nichushkin is at the bottom. He is an example of the last few words of the definition of NHLE. He was 17 years old in the KHL. Getting a handle on what Val could do as a professional in terms of NHLE as presently constructed would be very difficult.
2013 does show us that NHLE can be pretty useful. The top five in terms of NHL were Jonathan Drouin, Nicolas Petan, Nathan MacKinnon, Aleksander Barkov, and Elias Lindholm. Numbers three through five were productive rookies right out of the draft with MacKinnon winning the rookie of the year.
The top two on the list both remained in juniors, but they were both still dominant. Drouin has 213 points in his last 95 QMJHL games. Petan has 233 points over his last 134 WHL contests. They can obviously score and should be coming to an NHL rink near you soon.
Lowetide published the 2014 list using Gabriel Desjardins' equivalencies last week. Several names you would expect to find near the top are near the top. Sam Reinhart leads the way. Leon Draisaitl, Sam Bennett, and Michael Dal Colle are all up there too. They're all very very very likely to be taken high.
But, there are some guys high on this list who could/should be available for the Dallas Stars at number 14. I took the list above and identified six high scoring players who could end up being good value picks based on their outside-of-the-NHL scoring rates.
Nikolaj Ehlers seems like a decent bet to go before the Stars, but the other guys could all be there and present the Stars with the opportunity to acquire some serious offensive upside.