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Jets Draft Update
September 11, 2019
The Jets wrapped up this years draft selecting a mix of picks, some who project as long-term projects in the prospect pool, as well as some they hope might be able to contribute within the next few seasons.

#38 Victor Olofsson LW - Olofsson impressed in his first AHL season as one of the leading goal-scorers in the league with 30g, 63pts, +12 in 66gp and was also very good overall during a brief 6 game call-up for Buffalo (NHL). He has been scouted as an excellent offensive winger with an NHL-caliber shot but is also a very capable passer. He has come a long way since being drafted by the Sabres (NHL) in the 7th round in 2014, improving his overall game including his defensive responsibilities and killing penalties. Olofsson is considered to be NHL-ready and is expected to earn a roster spot for the upcoming Sabres (NHL) season. The Jets will be watching his transition closely.

#69 Nathan Legare RW - Legare, who had a strong sophomore season in the QMJHL, is a big power-forward with great offensive instincts, crafty with the puck, and is considered to have one of the best shots in the draft. Legare, who impressed at the recent NHL Penguin's Prospects Challenge, skates as well as can be expected for a power-forward of his size but will want to improve in order to maximize his chances of reaching his ceiling. He will continue to play in the QMJHL for 2019-20.

#93 Dominik Kubalik LW - Kubalik, who along with Olofsson was one of the older prospects drafted by the Jets at 24 years of age, is a well-rounded winger with good size, a cannon of a shot, and a high hockey IQ. He was the MVP and leading scorer of Switzerland's top league this past season and one of the top scorers at the World Championship with 12pts in 10gp. Kubalik is widely expected to be a part of the NHL Blackhawks roster out of training camp so he should have the opportunity to prove if his international success can translate to the NHL level.

#105 Philipp Kurashev C - Kurashev had another strong year in the QMJHL but what most will remember is his outstanding performances at the World Juniors where he scored 6g, 7pts in 7 games and was considered one of the top players at the tournament. He has skill, high-end vision, a bullet shot and great offensive zone instincts. With that said, he will need to work on his consistency and play off the puck. Kurashev is expected to play his first season of pro hockey for the Rockford IceHogs (AHL) for the 2019-20 season.

#131 Jordan Spence D - Spence is a dynamic 2-way puck-moving defenseman with great poise, puck control, vision, passing and skating ability. Spence was entrusted with huge minutes and time on Moncton's (QMJHL) 1st power play unit and did not disappoint putting up 6g, 43a for 49 pts in 68gp. His efforts earned him a number of junior accolades including Rookie of the Year. As a slightly undersized defenseman, Spence faces an uphill battle but appears to have the strengths in the other aspects of his game to have a chance of making it to the NHL one day. The Jets were please to see that Spence was still available at #131, having been scooped up at #95 in the recent 2019 NHL draft. He will continue to develop his game in the QMJHL this upcoming season.

#137 Mitch Reinke D - Reinke played big time minutes in what was a great rookie season for a defenseman in the AHL with 45pts in 76gp. He amassed his offensive points haul in spite of being responsible for shutting down the opponent's best players. Reinke is a mobile dman with a good hockey sense who makes great plays on the breakout and in the offensive zone. He has demonstrated the potential to play in the NHL but faces stiff competition to crack the Blues (NHL) lineup this year and will more likely be playing another season in the AHL. The Blues (NHL) however have a capable defenseman waiting in the ranks for a call up.

Will any of them succeed at the NHL level? Only time will tell.

-Winnipeg Free Press
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