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Prospect Profile: Nolan Patrick (Brandon Wheat Kings), Gabriel Vilardi (Windsor Spitfires) & Maxime Comtois (Victoriaville Tigre


This week’s prospects include Nolan Patrick (Brandon Wheat Kings), Gabriel Vilardi (Windsor Spitfires) & Maxime Comtois (Victoriaville Tigres).

Photo by Tim Smith

Nolan Patrick – Brandon Wheat Kings (WHL)
Born: September 19, 1998 in Winnipeg, Manitoba
Height: 6’3"
Weight: 195 lbs.
Shoots: Right
Drafted: 2013 WHL Draft, 4th overall by the Brandon Wheat Kings

Nolan Patrick is ready to suit up in his third full season in Brandon after coming off a 102-point season in his sophomore campaign. Patrick’s elite hockey sense mixed with his goal scoring and skating ability make him a dynamic threat in the offensive zone. He is known for his ability to flip a switch and dictate the speed of the game. Patrick has the ability to anticipate how a play will develop and gets himself into position early. Ironically, Patrick is not a flashy player. While he is a very good stickhandler, he won’t dangle and deke around opposing players. Patrick has a very clear picture of the ice in his head and shows no weaknesses on the ice. He recently went under the knife for sports hernia surgery but appears to be healing and his return to the ice is imminent.

DID YOU KNOW? Nolan Patrick missed the 2016 NHL Draft by only four days. The cutoff date is September 15th, making Patrick one of the oldest draft-eligible players for the 2017 NHL Draft.

Terry Wilson / OHL Images

Gabriel Vilardi – Windsor Spitfires (OHL)
Born: August 16, 1999 in Kingston, Ontario
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 193 lbs.
Shoots: Right
Drafted: 2015 OHL Draft, 2nd overall by the Windsor Spitfires

Gabriel Vilardi has established himself as a workhorse who is ultra-competitive in the offensive zone. He has deceptive speed and an easy long stride to stay ahead of the defenceman. His strong lower body helps him down low and keeps the momentum in his favour when he transitions from offence to defence. Vilardi protects the puck extremely well using his long reach and does a good job of opening up space on the ice by drawing attention to himself. He is an above average stick handler who can knock a puck down from mid-air and keep skating at the same time without missing a stride. Vilardi will see action in all situations this season and will be one of the elite power forwards in the OHL.  

DID YOU KNOW? Gabriel Vilardi was named HockeyNow’s 2015 Ontario Minor Hockey Player of the Year after scoring 18 goals and adding 21 helpers in 21 games for CIH Academy’s minor midget squad, eventually going on to win the OEMHL AAA Player of the Year award.

Nicolas Simoneau, PIX M Photo Vidéo

Maxime Comtois – Victoriaville Tigres (QMJHL)
Position: LW
Born: January 8, 1999, Longueuil, Quebec
Height: 6’2"
Weight: 200 lbs.
Shoots: Left
Drafted: 2015 QMJHL Draft, 3rd overall by the Victoriaville Tigres

Highly regarded as a player displaying the IQ and physical presence well beyond his age, Maxime Comtois is a truly dominant force on the ice and one of the premier power forwards in the entire CHL. He has quick separation speed and acceleration combined with a hard, powerful, sizeable strides. He is a complete 200-foot player who will go into corners looking to disturb the peace with a big hit and takes the puck away while knocking bodies down to the ice. Comtois has slick hands around the net and makes good timely decisions on whether to pass or shoot from in close. He likes to snap a heavy wrist shot between the hash marks that seems to dance and handcuffs goalies. Comtois has shown very few weaknesses to his game other than the need to better contain his emotions and coordinate his speed/size combination.

DID YOU KNOW? Comtois finished second in Victoriaville in 2015-16, earning 26 goals and 60 points as an underage skater, only eight points behind team scoring leader Pascal Laberge. 

Tags: Prospects

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