Welcome back to Top Shelf Prospects, the daily column that brings you the next crop of professional hockey players. Each day I will bring you a new player profile or topical article in the lead-up to the 2019 NHL Draft. Be sure to bookmark the site, follow me on Twitter, and spread the word for the site that will bring you analytical and critical profiles and scouting reports! Last Word On Hockey Prospects is your new headquarters for everything “NHL Draft”! We have a complete listing of our draft articles here. Today we look at US NTDP forward Patrick Moynihan.
The United States National Team Development Program was exceptionally strong this year. Nowhere were they deeper and stronger than in the middle of the ice. This led to limited minutes for centre/right wing Patrick Moynihan. He was used as a third or fourth liner at even strength and received very little ice time on the power play. That has to be kept in mind when looking at his numbers. He scored 19 goals and 27 assists for 46 points in 63 games this season. Moynihan also put up three assists in seven games in the IIHF Under-18 World Championships, helping the U.S. team to a bronze medal.
Last season he put up 16 goals and 32 points in 61 games with the Under-17 US NTDP squad. He also put up two goals and one assist for three points in six tournament games in helping the Americans win gold at the IIHF Under-18 World Championships. Moynihan is committed to attending Providence College and playing hockey for the Friars next season. Moynihan’s CHL rights are owned by the QMJHL’s Saint John Sea Dogs.
Patrick Moynihan Scouting Report
Centre/Right Wing — shoots Right
Born January 23rd, 2001 — Millis, Massachusetts
Height 5’11” — Weight 183 lbs [180 cm / 83 kg]
Moynihan has very good but not quite great speed. He is able to keep up with the play and can even beat a number of other players on the ice. While he does not reach the elite level of his teammate Jack Hughes, he is in the next tier. He also has a decent first step and good acceleration. His skating is good enough to be able to match up against the best players on an opponent. Moynihan also has good edgework and agility. He can make quick cuts to change direction and avoid defenders. Despite that skill, he is much more of a north-south player than he is an east-west type when attacking. The lateral agility is useful in the defensive end. Moynihan is gritty and works well along the boards against his peers but could improve his strength before moving to the next level.
Moynihan plays a simple but effective game. He has a very good wrist shot and a quick release. He gets himself into good positions to take a pass from a teammate and fire the puck on net. Moynihan is also willing to get in quickly on the forecheck, pressuring opponents and creating turnovers in order to generate offensive chances. Moynihan gets to the dirty areas of the ice. He can maintain possession on the cycle game, protecting the puck well and moving it with short and quick passes.
Moynihan is not much of a creative playmaker. His assist totals come from keeping the puck moving and getting it to the open man. He does not move the puck through tight seams or take big chances. That style of game is effective for him, but there are questions if his skill level is high enough to really make a difference at higher levels.
Moynihan is a solid defensive player. He backchecks effectively. Moynihan is willing to provide support down low against the cycle game. He is also more than willing to play a physical and gritty game along the boards. Moynihan is a willing shot blocker. He also anticipates plays well, leading to him being in the right position to cut down passing lanes. An active stick is also helpful here. His lateral movement allows him to keep his body in front of opponents.
Moynihan uses tough, gritty play in front of the net to keep things clear. His gritty play extends to his work along the boards. However, he must watch himself and be disciplined to not take bad penalties. He is a bit undersized to play this style at the pro-level right now but should be able to increase his muscle mass in the coming years. He is already pretty good at face-offs and this should be valuable.
Projection and Comparison
There are still some questions on Moynihan’s offensive game. With a bigger role in Providence, will he take the next step and show that there was an untapped offensive game that could not shine through due to all the other top players on the US NTDP squad. If he can develop that aspect of his game, he could become a top-six forward in the NHL. Even if he does not fully develop those aspects, he still has a good chance to be a third line or fourth line forward due to his solid play in his own end and willingness to play a gritty game. His game is comparable to Jason Zucker, however, this is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill and ability.
The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages of Patrick Moynihan that are available on youtube.
Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our draft board.
Main Photo via USA Hockey