Team: United States National Team Development Program U-18 (USHL)
Hometown: Massepequa, NY
Projected: Mid-First Round
Boston College commit Sonny Milano has been moving up the draft boards all season due to his impressive offensive ability; at the beginning of the year, Central Scouting had him as a B ranked player but now he is an A (possible first round pick.) He has exceptional hands, tries to make his line-mates better, and is a hard worker. He also possesses a very solid shot.
While Milano has a lot of flair, he doesn't stand out enough and he is not defensive enough to be picked in the top ten. With a strong work ethic and a good base to build on, though, Milano could be one of those players that teams look back on and say why did we not pick him. That might be a stretch but it is definitely not out of the realm of possibility. A good showing at the U18s could be key in boosting his rank in the draft.
"He probably has as much skill and puck skills as anyone I've coached in 15 years," USNTDP U-18 coach Danton Cole told NHL.com. "He does some amazing things with the puck."
"He's so dynamic, very good with the puck in traffic and in open ice and can make defensemen look silly," Central Scouting's David Gregory told NHL.com. "He enjoys chirping at other players too. He likes to get under your skin. He'll allow the play to come to him, take a hit and chirp it up before heading on a 2-on-1 in the opposite direction resulting in a goal ... I've seen it happen. He certainly has the potential of becoming a complete player."
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Where He Would Fit
Sonny Milano has the potential to fill some significant roles for the Predators in terms of position and style. The Predators are in dire need of first and second line left-wingers and they need offense; Milano brings both.
One of the signs of a great player is the ability to make players better so, in that regard, Sonny has the potential to be a very good player. Players like Hornqvist and Smith who really rely on production from their line mates could benefit greatly from a playmaker like him (and even more so because he is a lefty). Milano's biggest skill, his speed, is also something that makes him a perfect fit for the Predators, who have a lot of speed in their current and future "first" and second liners.
Something the Predators will need more of from Milano (should they draft him) is scoring. Milano is mostly known as a setup man but he also has a very good shot. If he can start to develop that part of his game more once he gets to Boston College, that would be ideal.