Dom Lunardo | May 27th, 2020
2020 NHL Draft Profile: Cole Perfetti
Speed, raw skill, high-hockey IQ, and on-ice intelligence are all hallmarks of Cole Perfetti’s game. Over the last two seasons, Perfetti has taken the Ontario Hockey League (OHL) by storm with high-level performance after high-level performance. Nicknamed “Goal Perfetti”, this is a player with tremendous upside and a shoo-in top-10 pick at this summer’s NHL Draft. Teams will be closely monitoring the draft floor with hopes of securing his services. Let’s dive in and take a look at Cole Perfetti, one of the most intriguing prospects descending on the NHL landscape.
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Team: Saginaw Spirit, Ontario Hockey League (OHL)
2020 Draft Prospect Ranking (Central Scouting): 5th Amongst North American Skaters
Superstar from the Spirit
Superstar? Oh, you can say that again. After turning heads at the Under-18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, that saw him tally 8 goals in 5 games, Perfetti had his eyes set on a new challenge. This challenge appeared in the form of his “draft year” and putting his best foot forward with the Saginaw Spirit. Perfetti has enjoyed two excellent seasons with the Saginaw Spirit. After a 74-point performance in 2018/19, the Whitby, Ontario native went on to eclipse the 100 point plateau this past season. In just 61 games played, Perfetti’s monster campaign included 27 goals and 74 assists for 111 points. He also had a +49 rating. Perfetti found himself in elite company and finished runner-up to Marco Rossi of the Ottawa 67’s for most points in the OHL. On many cold winter evenings in Saginaw, Michigan, Perfetti was, by and large, the most exceptional player on the ice. The best is yet to come for Cole Perfetti as his focus now shifts to the National Hockey League.
Perfetti and the NHL
The question is not “if” but “when” will we see Perfetti in an NHL uniform? The answer to that same question is real soon (I hope). A slam-dunk to go amongst the top-10, NHL teams will be “chomping at the bit” for Perfetti’s services. When we look back, few had a greater impact on junior hockey, as a whole, as Perfetti did in 2019/20. Many experts predict a high ceiling for Perfetti and a very bright future. Besides, Perfetti has all the tools to be a real impact at the NHL level. All that’s left to be decided is which NHL team greets him with their coveted draft hat and jersey. As if he didn’t already own a million-dollar smile, that ay will be music to the ears of the Whitby, Ontario product.
Perfect the Player
Cole Perfetti’s hockey skills are wide-ranging. From his ability to pass, score at will, and excel at top speed, Perfetti truly is a diamond in the rough. Perfetti is an agile skater with quick feet and an even quicker mind. He can evade checks intelligently and make space for both himself and others on the ice for goalscoring opportunities. Simply put, this is a player who is going to put up points and do some damage at the NHL level. Perfetti also has a real knack for the net. If he’s not scoring goals he’s setting up teammates in grade-A positions. Perfetti is strong in transition and can turn defense to offense “on a dime”.
Scouts have also been keen on Perfetti’s release and his ability to “quarterback” a power-play. After all, the 111 points he put up this past season were no fluke. While on the ice, opposing defenders need to be aware of Perfetti and the danger he accounts for at all times. He’s elusive, crafty, and creative and real dazzling talent. This is a player hockey fans from far and wide certainly need to keep their collective eyes on in the coming years.
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Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images