The Philadelphia Flyers are picking 11th in the 2019 NHL Entry draft. That much is certain. There are still a lot of question marks surrounding who the franchise will select with that pick and there are a lot of options for the team to consider. Over the next few months, we will focus in on the possible prospects the Flyers could draft this June. Today we will take a close look at American forward Cole Caufield.
Cole Caufield is a right-handed forward playing for the USNTDP. He is a native of Stevens Point, Wisconsin and has committed to playing for the University of Wisconsin next season. Currently, Caufield measures in at 5-foot-7 and weighs 163 pounds.
First and foremost, Cole Caufield is a lights-out goal-scorer. His accuracy, release, and power are all excellent. Most importantly, Caufield regularly gets into open space, making it easier to get his wicked shot off. Along with his uncanny ability to find the back of the net consistently, Caufield also possesses great hands and stick-handling skills. Of course, this makes his scoring approaches much more dynamic. His passing is solid-enough but is probably the one area of offense that needs the most work. However, Caufield is a finisher, not a pass-first player. In truth, he is arguably the most electrifying goal scorer in the entire draft class.
With someone as offensively gifted as Caufield, defense typically falls to the back burner. It is apparent that there is a level of hesitation when Caufield possesses the puck in his own zone. He wants to quickly pass the puck and get going in transition. His physical play not poor but does not stand out as a strength either. Overall, his defensive play needs the most work and should be the main focus of his continued development.
Caufield is a hardworking and intelligent young player. The offensive aspect of the game just comes naturally to him. He has good speed and quickness but could improve in both areas. His mobility and balance both stand out at as strengths as well.
Breaking it all Down
The Philadelphia Flyers could desperately use a natural goal-scorer of Caufield’s caliber. If he is still on the board when their turn to pick comes, it will be hard to pass up on him. However, there is a very good chance Caufield gets taken somewhere in the top ten. His recent success at U-18 World Junior Championships could result in a series boost to his perceived value.
Mandatory Credit: Photo courtesy of Rena Laverty, NTDP and USA Hockey
John Gove covers prospects within the Philadelphia Flyers farm system for Philly Sports Network. Follow him on Twitter at @JohnPGove.