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While the US National Team Development Program may not have an elite prospect like a Jack Eichel, Auston Matthews, Clayton Keller or Matthew Tkachuk in the draft this year, it is still producting a number of high quality prospects. Minnesota native Grant Mismash is one of those high quality prospects. He put up 61 points in 65 games for the US NTDP this season. He also added three goals and eight points in the Under 18 World Championships. Mismash helped the Americans to bring home a gold medal from the tournament. While they didn’t have an elite talent this year, the US NTDP had a strong four line attack, and Mismash was a huge part of that depth.
He is committed to the University of North Dakota next year. With Tyson Jost, and Brock Boeser exiting the program this year, Mismash will be looked upon to be a key offensive contributor right away. Should he change his mind post draft, his WHL rights are owned by the Red Deer Rebels.
Grant Mismash Scouting Report: 2017 NHL Draft #40
Centre/Left Wing — shoots Left
Born February 19th, 1999 — Edina, Minnesota
Height 6’0″ — Weight 186 lbs [183 cm / 84 kg]
Mismash has a good first step, and very good acceleration. However, his top-end speed lacks that elite gear. He is still well-above average in terms of speed, but he’s a notch or two below the elite skaters in this draft class. Mismash has decent lower body strength, and has the balance and power to fight through checks and win battles at the junior level. However, he must continue to get stronger before he is ready to play his style of game at the pro level.
Mismash is a goal scorer. He has a tremendous wrist shot. If it isn’t already NHL caliber, it is awful close. The release is lightning quick. His shot is heavy, as he is able to transfer tremendous power and flex into his stick. It is also deadly accurate. Mishmash has the hockey IQ to settle into open spots on the ice when his teammates have the puck, getting ready to unleash his shot. He also has a very good one-timer. Adding to his goal-scoring prowess, Mismash has the soft hands to finish plays in close to the net.
In terms of play making style, Mismash moves the puck well in the cycle game. He get the puck to teammates in good areas and keeps it moving effectively. He prefers the safe, simple play, and protecting the puck over trying something risky to really generate a good opportunity. Mismash does not make mistakes with the puck, but he also does not have the creativity to be a top level play maker. Instead Mismash creates assists through hard work. He gets in quickly on the forecheck and plays an aggressive game. He chases down loose pucks as well as forcing defencemen into making mistakes. His physical play along the boards and in front of the net can sometimes lead to penalty issues, and he will need to work to reign that in.
Mismash’s defensive game is still a work in progress. He is willing to put in the work in the defensive zone, providing back support and working down low in containing the cycle. However his positioning needs to be better. He also needs to be more disciplined. This is both in remembering to stay with his man instead of chasing loose pucks, as well as being more disciplined in avoiding costly penalties.
Projection and Comparison
Mismash has mostly played centre with the US NTDP. However, there are many who believe that his game is more suited to being a left wing at the pro level. Mismash seems to be more of a gritty winger, with a tremendous shot and goal scoring ability. A lack of creative playmaking ability and some defensive issues, suggest that he could be best on the wing instead of in the middle. He could become the type of top-six power forward that NHL teams covet, but will need to continue to work on some aspects of his game. He must get better defensively, as well as continue to bulk up before getting to the NHL. In terms of a stylistic comparison, Mishmash resembles Brandon Saad of the Columbus Blue Jackets. This is not a talent based comparison though.
The following is a compilation of highlights, assembled from Youtube.
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect available on our draft board.