We’re days away from the 2014 NHL draft, with the festivities getting underway Friday at 7 p.m. ET. Teams are finalizing their draft boards, and the last arguments are being made in favor of or against certain prospects. While the scouting staff of each club has a great sense of each player by this point, there are some fluctuations.
With that in mind, I took a look through my top 100 draft prospects and identified players whose stock has risen or fallen the most since we published the list on May 15.
The three main movers are all Edmonton Oil Kings, with the additional notes acquired during their Memorial Cup run. To be sure, players have not drastically improved or regressed since a few weeks ago, but part of the scouting process is always collecting more information. That process can lead to an evaluator, like me, changing his opinion as material acquired contrasts what you previously believed.
Here are a handful of players whose draft spot has been influenced during the past few weeks.
Sam Bennett, C, Kingston (OHL)
Original ranking: 2
Stock: Target of many jokes
Much noise was made during the NHL combine when top prospect Sam Bennett could not do just one pull-up during one of the sessions. Social media and parts of the Internet would of course take it too far, suggesting it reflects poorly on the prospect, meaning he's out of shape or won't be able to battle for pucks. This can't be farther from the truth.
Every time I've viewed Bennett, he has impressed with his physical game.