OHL Prospect Profile: Deni Goure

Deni Goure is an elite shooter available for the 2019 OHL Draft, combining excellent speed and agility with a pro-level shot and an electric release. The unheralded leader of the Chatham-Kent Cyclones, Goure is projected to be a mid to late first round pick.

– Deni Goure –

Chatham-Kent Cyclones (Alliance) | Center | 2019 OHL Draft Eligible

Grande Pointe, Ontario | 5-foot-10, 157-pounds | July 15th, 2003

Deni Goure is a natural goal scorer with a shot that many are already labelling as pro-level. Projected as one of the Alliance’s top prospects entering the ’17-18 season, Goure has put up 5 goals and 12 points in eight games to start the regular season, as well as 5 goals and 11 points in eight tournament games.

Related: Check out our 2019 OHL Draft Ranking: October Top-20

Backed by an electric release, Goure is lethal on the rush, where he utilizes his high-end speeds and tremendous edgework to become a threat each time he collects the puck. He’s also a leader by example, showcasing a strong compete level at both ends of the ice regardless of the score.

Strengths:

  • Shot
  • Skating
  • Compete Level

Flashing a dynamic snap shot, Goure has placed himself in the top tier of snipers among the ’03-born draft class. With an exceptional ability to corral the puck on the rush and unleash a powerful shot, Goure also boasts impressive skating talent. He loves to wind up speed in the defensive zone before flying up the ice around defenders with relative ease.

Related: Check out the Top 20 Performers of the Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament

Goure also exhibits slick edgework and impressive agility on the fly, able to make adjustments and maneuver through traffic at top speeds. Further, Goure has a tireless engine, fighting for the puck just as hard in the defensive zone as in the offensive zone. He shows smart awareness all over the ice as well and is particularly reliable in his own end, eliminating passing options and working to turn the puck over.

Area of Improvement:

  • Strength & Physicality

Deni Goure shows off very strong lower-body strength when protecting the puck from opponents, but sometimes loses that instinct when engaging in board battles. Despite being a relatively average-sized skater, Goure tends to shy away from the physical aspects of the game unless absolutely necessary.

Strong on his feet, Goure shows flashes of good strength, but perhaps needs to apply this asset away from the puck as well. In any case, he plays a very impressive all-around game with tremendous offensive instincts. There should be no doubt that Goure’s game with translate well into the OHL level.

Future Potential:

Deni Goure is an elite shooter available for the 2019 OHL Draft, combining excellent speed and agility with a pro-level shot and an electric release. Goure is especially dangerous on the rush, where he is able to utilize all of his best assets at once to become a true force with the puck.

The unheralded leader of the Chatham-Kent Cyclones, Goure won’t go unnoticed at this year’s OHL Draft, where he is projected to be a sure-fire mid to late first round pick.

OHL Prospect Profile: Francesco Pinelli

Francesco Pinelli is a vastly underrated center who can accomplish anything asked of him. A responsible two-way player, Pinelli has impressive offensive upside and should be considered as a first-round pick for the 2019 OHL Draft.

– Francesco Pinelli –

Toronto Red Wings (GTHL) | Center | 2019 OHL Draft Eligible

Stoney Creek, Ontario | 6-foot, 177-pounds

Francesco Pinelli is one of the most underrated prospects in the GTHL right now, largely as a result of his team’s position in the standings. The captain of the Toronto Red Wings, Pinelli is a terrific leader on and off the ice, leading by example through his unparalleled compete level and being vocal with his teammates throughout the game.

Related: Check out our 2019 OHL Draft Ranking: October Top-20

Pinelli centres the Red Wings top line and is consistently relied on in all situations and at both ends of the ice. He is a five-tool player who can accomplish any assignment from his coaches and has the offensive upside to suggest that he has more to contribute down the road. Pinelli is a smart, two-way center with excellent skating abilities and high-end puck skills.

Strengths:

  • Instincts
  • Skating
  • Playmaking & Vision

Pinelli is a player that all coaches would love to have on their side. He makes those around him better through his leadership abilities and tremendous hockey sense. Pinelli is a very smart center who plays a very responsible 200-foot game and generates offence by way of his innate offensive instincts. He is a strong skater with good lower-body strength that allows him to protect the puck with ease. Pinelli has impressive top-end speed and edgework, and often creates odd-man rushes by jumping into the rush.

A creative thinker, Pinelli utilizes quick hands and impressive vision of the ice to become a dangerous playmaker. He can skate and move the puck into an area that creates passing lanes and thread tape-to-tape passes through skates and sticks. Pinelli loves to throw cross-ice passes on the power play that gift his teammates with tap-in goals.

Area of Improvement:

  • Shot Accuracy

Francesco Pinelli has a powerful release on his snap shot that he can release in an instant to catch goaltenders off guard. However, his accuracy could use slight improvements, as he often fires the puck over the net in attempt to pick a corner. His shot has the strength and deceptiveness to be extremely dangerous if he were able to pick holes that are available more often.

Related: Check out the 2018 Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament: Top-20 Performers

On a stronger team, Pinelli would likely be able to benefit in the goal department from better opportunities. However, he’s sometimes forced to play a “do-it-all” role with the Red Wings which often leads to making higher risk plays and trying to force shots while they’re available. However, Pinelli projects very well down the road as a potent two-way center who can lead his team’s forecheck.

Future Potential:

Francesco Pinelli would undoubtedly be receiving more hype if he were suiting up for a top three team in the GTHL. In any case, he is the type of player who you can’t take your eyes off of and seems to create an eye-catching play each shift. Pinelli is a speedy and skilled center with natural leadership abilities, who should continue to climb the rankings as the season wears on.

Pinelli projects as a first-round pick for the 2019 OHL Draft, and could potentially climb into the top-10 if he maintains a consistent pace of play all year long.

OHL Prospect Profile: Connor Lockhart

Connor Lockhart should be considered one of the premier goal-scorers in the 2019 OHL Draft class. With an electric release and separation speed, Lockhart is the total package, and is projected as a top-10 pick.

– Connor Lockhart –

Kanata Lasers (HEO) | Center | 2019 OHL Draft Eligible

Kanata, Ontario | January 21st, 2003 | 5-foot-9, 165 pounds

Connor Lockhart is an immensely talented offensive center who can dictate the pace of play and turn the game on its head with a flash of speed and skill. During his Bantam season with the Ottawa Jr. Senators, Lockhart put up a ridiculous 50 goals and 76 points over 30 games. He has led his league in goals over both of the past two seasons.

Related: Check out our 2019 OHL Draft Ranking: October Top-20

Now in his OHL Draft eligible year, Lockhart is suiting up for the Kanata Lasers in the HEO Midget league, comprised of ’02 and ’03 born players. Through 12 games, he is just starting to find his stride and has added seven goals and 15 points along the way. Overall, Lockhart is a complete offensive package, with unparalleled scoring abilities, tremendous puck skills, and separation speed to boot.

Strengths:

  • Shot
  • Puck Skills
  • Skating

Connor Lockhart is a natural goal scorer, through and through. He has an elite release that generates power behind his shot and can be unleashed in tight, through traffic, and in any position. Lockhart is able to change shooting angles and quickly fire an accurate shot on net that catches goaltenders in transition. He also has outstanding puck skills, with the ability to make defenders look silly on a regular basis.

Lockhart often looks like he has the puck on a string, and can dangle his way out of trouble and through opponents with ease. Further, his skating level is off the charts, with impressive top speeds and excellent agility. Lockhart utilizes his edges to keep defenders on their toes and can cut in and out of the slot with the blink of an eye. Up front, Lockhart has all the imperative tools to find success at the junior and professional levels.

Area of Improvement:

  • Physicality and Strength

As a modestly sized center, Lockhart will need to add some serious muscle in order to compete and thrive against bigger and stronger opponents in the OHL. Thus far in the HEO, he has been able to let his offensive instincts take over against opponents that are a year older, but he is sometimes knocked off of the puck or out-battled along the wall for a loose puck.

While his strengths will always make him a dangerous offensive force, Lockhart would take another step and become exponentially more dynamic by adding some muscle for the next level, or else he may have to project as a future winger as a result. For the time being, this area isn’t going to hinder his success, but it’s a thought for the future.

Future Potential:

All in all, Connor Lockhart is an electric player with game-breaking skills. He checks off all the boxes as far as his offensive game is concerned, and will continue to battle with Mason McTavish for the right to be the HEO’s top 2019 OHL Draft prospect. Lockhart also possesses underrated playmaking skills, and combines a tremendous and efficient stride with a profound pair of hands to be an offensive threat each and every shift.

Regarded as one of the most potent goal scorers available in this year’s draft class, Lockhart currently projects as a top-10 pick for the 2019 OHL Draft, with room to improve as he adapts to the Midget level throughout the season.

OHL Prospect Profile: Danil Zhilkin

Danil Zhilkin is one of the top prospects in the GTHL this season. He possesses an elite level shot and can pile up goals like no other in the 2003-born draft class. Zhilkin currently projects as a probable first round pick for the 2019 OHL Draft.

– Danil Zhilkin –

Toronto Marlboros (GTHL) | Center/Left Wing | 2019 OHL Draft Eligible

Mississauga, Ontario | December 19th, 2003

Danil Zhilkin joined the Marlboros for his Minor Midget season, and it seems to be paying early dividends. Zhilkin is currently committed to Boston University for the ’21-22 season. At the Titans Early Bird Tournament, Zhilkin tore up the competition en route to nine goals and 12 points in just six games, claiming the highest goal total among all competitors, along with the second best point-per-game rate behind only Shane Wright.

Related: Check out our 2019 OHL Draft Ranking: October Top-20

That trend has carried over into the GTHL Regular Season as well, with Zhilkin quickly establishing his reputation as a lethal sniper in the league. Despite being a late ’03-born prospect, Zhilkin is able to hold his own against the strongest of opponents and is consistently an offensive threat each time he takes the ice.

Strengths:

  • Shot
  • Puck Skills
  • Hockey Sense

Danil Zhilkin’s game is built around his ability as a natural goal-scorer. He is an instinctive shooter who can change angles and find shooting lanes through the most minuscule of holes. Featuring an electric release with impressive power, his snap shot is potent and can easily beat goaltenders straight up. He has excellent accuracy as well, often finding opportunities to sneak a puck in the short side.

Related: Check out the Top 20 Performers of the Toronto Titans Early Bird Tournament

Further, Zhilkin possesses terrific puck skills and can stickhandle his was through defenders with poise and confidence. He likes to chip the puck into a soft area before retrieving it himself as well. It is through these tendencies that Zhilkin’s hockey sense shines through. He can instantaneously read and react to a developing play and is able to slip behind defenders to make himself a passing option.

Area of Improvement:

  • Skating

One aspect in which Zhilkin could improve to become a truly dynamic prospect is with his skating. He sometimes flashes above-average speed, but is generally missing that separation speed that would make him exponentially more dangerous. Both his agility and acceleration could use some work, namely in his first three steps.

Zhilkin’s game would be much more well-rounded if he were able to work on these aspects, adding a crucial element to form a lethal combination alongside his elite shot. No doubt, Zhilkin has shown tremendous upside in his play through a natural scoring ability, but scouts may question his ability to keep up with the pace of the OHL with his current skating level.

Future Potential:

Danil Zhilkin is considered to be one of the elite prospects in the GTHL this season. Arguably the league’s best goal-scorer, Zhilkin has an electric release and pinpoint accuracy with his shot, and has impressive hands as well. As a late-born “03 prospect, Zhilkin certainly has intriguing upside, and likely won’t last long at the 2019 OHL Draft. He currently projects as a first round pick, although his NCAA commitment will certainly play a major role into his final draft position..