One of the forwards that the Canadiens may target with the 26th overall pick in the upcoming NHL Entry Draft is Daniel Sprong, a right winger for Charlottetown of the QMJHL. Sprong is a known goal scorer and overall offensive threat.
DOB: March 17, 1997 – Amsterdam, Netherlands
Height: 6′ 0″
Weight: 190 lbs
CSB: 20 (North American Skaters)
Hockey Prospect: 37
Future Considerations: 18
Hockey News: 25
Daniel Sprong is an interesting story of a Netherlands born player, whose family immigrated to Montreal when he was 7 years old to pursue an NHL dream. He was a dominant player in the lower hockey league ranks for many years. Most scouts believe that Sprong has top 10 level skill in many offensive categories. His skating is top level especially his acceleration which he can use to find an extra gear and beat a defenceman. He has decent size and strength and a low center of gravity, which makes it more difficult to knock him off the puck. His playmaking ability is very good, and he likes to stick handle the puck by the opposition. Sometimes he can over handle the puck, and could improve his situation by distributing the puck to a teammate. His shooting is excellent, with an NHL level wrist shot and snap shot. His character is good, and he’s shown the willingness to fight for a puck, but he doesn’t go looking to physically challenge an opponent without it.
His defensive coverage is still lacking as he does not always put in enough effort to cover a player in the other end of the rink. He’s not a physical player and can be a little lazy with defensive responsibilities. He’s had comparisons to NHL players like Patrick Kane and Phil Kessel for style by some scouts.
Projecting Sprong at the NHL level is simple. He has top line ability, and if he’s willing to learn how to play in the other half of the ice, then his ceiling could be more than a one dimensional offensive winger.
Like most players in this draft, Daniel has two more years of junior eligibility before he can make the jump to the pros. His offensive upside is huge, as he represents a first line type player that could eventually make it a reality for many of the teams in this draft. He’s likely going to need time to develop his defensive game which will likely occur in the AHL before he can make the jump to the NHL. He could surprise many at this draft by getting there in 3 years depending on the needs of the team that selects him. If the Habs are the lucky team to choose him he may be looking at 3-4 years, but Montreal could use a player like Sprong in their lineup.