It’s NHL Draft season, and Zone Coverage is highlighting a dozen NHL Draft prospects that could be taken by the Minnesota Wild at pick No. 24 of the first round.
Jesse Ylonen – RW
- 6 feet, 165 pounds
- Espoo United (Mestis)
Ylonen’s skating is described as high-end, and he’s every bit the playmaker as he is a finisher, but probably more playmaker despite his goal-to-assist totals last season. Jason Zucker fits that kind of bill, though Zucker may be more on the scorer versus playmaker end of the spectrum. Either way, Jesse, son of former NHLer Juha Ylonen, is a premium offensive talent, as you’ll see in his highlight reel above. His only real area of concern is that he probably needs to bulk up a bit while he plays overseas.
I’m not a scout:
Opinions are a little varied on Ylonen, with McKeen’s Draft Guide spotting him at No. 36, and he didn’t appear in SBNation’s mock draft. However, The Athletic has given him plenty of love, with Corey Pronman ranking him as the 14th-best skater, and actually he was mocked to the Wild in their most recent mock draft($). Pronman’s write-up is fairly glowing, as he says ‘The sky is the limit’ for the talented Finn.
If you feel like being positive:
Well, that’s high praise from Pronman, and you’ve got to like hearing that kind of talk about a guy mocked to the Wild. He’s got an NHL pedigree, and he’s got skills and some solid numbers to back them up, so it’s reasonable to expect that he continues his development track upwards while bulking up for the NHL. While he lacks strength right now, he’s not really a tiny guy.
If you want to be negative:
Not only are they taking yet another Finn, this one is a bit of a toothpick. Even though plenty of prospects have lots of development to go, Ylonen’s lack of bulk doesn’t make him NHL-ready anytime soon. Also, Ylonen’s physical game may never fully develop, as he’s shying away from contact now due to that.
Tell your friends:
“This kid is supposed to be pretty talented. The Athletic had the Wild taking him their mock draft, so at least it’s Russo Approved.”