In my third installment of prospects I’d like to see the Rangers (#15) draft on June 24th, I take a look at C Mark McNeil who had 32g, 49a in 70 games with the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL last season.
The 6′ 1″ McNeil is said to be NHL-ready physically as he is able to muscle through checks and hits hard. He’s a good skater who’s tough to knock off stride, but he’s also agile, with solid top-end speed. McNeil has a long fuse, but when provoked, will defend teammates. Fights angry.
McNeill, who is known as an intelligent player, is not a liability in his own zone and has received significant time on the penalty kill.
On the negative end McNeil can be passive at times when not using his physical gifts. Ceiling is a second line center and could end up as nothing more than a grinding forward.
Here’s Central Scouting’s report on McNeil…
“One thing I like about him is that he’s a right-handed center, which is good to have. He’s really composed and has a real pro-style game. He has a nice touch, can dish, and has nice, soft passes. His on-ice awareness is very good and he’s paid attention to detail at both ends of the rink. He has good defensive-zone coverage as well as being offensive at the other end. All around I think he’s got a real solid game I think his offensive game will improve the older he gets and the more confident he gets. I think he’ll be a better offensive player than he’s showing right now. He’s good at both ends of the rink. He comes down low and helps out defensively.”
Video of McNeil…
Mike Morreale at NHL.com has the Rangers getting McNeil at #15 in his mock draft.