The Athletic’s Scott Wheeler posted a list of his top 50 NHL prospects (non-goaltenders) this morning, and you’ve heard of four of them: Lucas Raymond is ranked 9th, Moritz Seider is ranked 11th, Simon Edvinsson is ranked 22nd, and Jonatan Berggren makes the list at #48. Wheeler hints heavily that Sebastian Cossa will make his list of the top 10 goaltending prospects as well.
Here’s what Wheeler has to say about Raymond and Seider (sorry, but his text is too broad to share everything):
I debated having Raymond as high as No. 7 and as low as No. 10, which speaks to both his persisting talent level and some of the reservations I still have about how it will come together for him at the NHL level. Raymond’s always going to be able to craftily run a power play from the flank or the point. He’s always going to be able to feed pucks into space for his linemates, control play under pressure and dictate with his clever on-puck skill. He’s always going to work hard when he doesn’t have it to apply pressure, come up with steals on the backcheck and intercept passes. His wrist shot has improved, adding a bit of oomph to make it more threatening than it once was. His straight-line speed has picked up half a step and is complemented by the impressive edge work he has always possessed. But I’m still waiting for him to find another gear in that acceleration so that he can get to the middle of the ice with a little more pace. And even with his improved shot, he’s never going to be a marksman scorer. And while I’m very confident in his ability to become an impactful top-six creator who picks up some freebies on the power play, I’m still not convinced he’s going to be the true game-changing star this next version of the Red Wings will sorely need.
11. Moritz Seider, RHD, 20 (Detroit Red Wings — 6th overall, 2019)
A few months ago, as Rogle BK finished their regular season and prepared for a playoff run that ended with them as the runner-up in the SHL, I asked Rogle head coach Cam Abbott for his take on Seider, who by then had become one of his top players.
This was his answer: “Seider is just unbelievable. He’s got a great balance between being serious in his approach, fully mature beyond his age — I mean it’s crazy — but not like a robot either. Personable, funny, cracking jokes, balancing between being loose and goofy and also dialing it in. He is the real deal. And he’s humble, which is so important too. His teammates are just drawn to him. And he’s smart. When you get into the everyday with a guy as a coach, you see the full portfolio of all of his decisions and it’s just ‘wow.’ He’s solid. And that’s so much easier to recognize if he wows you offensively, but when you have to appreciate the everything because you’re coaching him and that all counts, he’s even better.”
That’s the perfect synopsis of Seider as a player. He’s got more of the stuff that grabs your attention now that he did when he was picked. His game with the puck has become more commanding and less deferential. But that has never been what wows you about Seider. What wows you about him is the whole and all of the little things we have to look a littler harder to see in his play. And those are the things that allow a player to eat minutes like he now has in the DEL, AHL and SHL. Up next: the NHL, where he likely won’t flash like some of his contemporaries but could well be the better than them regardless.