Team: Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (OHL)
Hometown: Stratford, Ontario
Projected: Top 15
Jared McCann is a speedy center who plays for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds in the OHL. While he hasn't produced as many points as most top prospects he has the ability to be a solid offensive contributor due to his high hockey IQ, speed and passing, while also playing a responsible defensive game. Furthermore, he has shown the desire to battle for his team and go to the dirty areas to get things done.
He needs to put on some size but he would be a low risk player for a team picking outside the top ten. Much like David Legwand, I would expect him to be a guy that is able to contribute on both sides of the ice and make plays through battling and speed.
"He's started the season with an excellent goal-scoring pace and is around the puck and finishing scoring chances with regularity," Central Scouting's Chris Edwards told NHL.com. "He's playing with great energy that often comes from getting success early on. He has an excellent wrist shot, has shown great hands and play-making ability, and is an excellent skater with very good acceleration and speed."
"Centres who play every situation in the game, are involved in all areas on the ice and contribute both with and without the puck are in high demand. The cliche of being a '200 foot player' applies to Jared."
Where He Would Fit
If David Poile were truly looking to shake up the look of the Nashville Predators I wouldn't expect him to go after a guy like McCann. He doesn't really bring anything new to the team that Legwand, the kind of player which Poile is apparently trying to get away from, already does. I would also say he isn't that much different than Colton Sissons, other than his wheels. If anything I would expect a Josh Ho-Sang at that point in the draft.
Now, having said that, I would not complain were McCann to be drafted by the Preds come June. He has definite upside and it is always a safe bet to go with a guy with a high hockey IQ.