Scouting Report: Ty Wishart

For anyone who is wondering, here was Red Line Report's take on defenseman Ty Wishart heading into the 2006 draft. Wishart was ranked the 16th best prospect in the draft class by Red Line, and here is what they had to say:

"Huge, smooth skating defenseman had a terrific first half of the season. Defensive zone coverage and positioning is outstanding. Has long stick/reach and a knack for disrupting passing lanes, and one of the best poke-checks we've seen in a long time. Very wide stride and great balance. Stands up to hits well, but for a big man doesn't initiate contact often. Excellent pivoting and lateral agility makes him particularly effective at containment and clogging lanes in the defensive zone. Effective at using leverage and position to eliminate opponents and separate them from the puck. Improved his offensive game in the second half, but that was tempered by a slight decline in defensive zone coverage and decision making. Seemed to tire late in the season, which may explain increased mental mistakes down the stretch.

Projection: Top 3 defenseman who logs tons of icetime.
Style compares to: Henrik Tallinder

Since that time Wishart has certainly progressed offensively, leading to the impression that he may well exceed the expectations set for him in 2006. The young rearguard had 6 goals and 37 points in 70 games for Prince George in his draft year. In 2006-2007 he upped his totals, particularly in the goal scoring department, putting up 11 goals and 49 points in 62 games for the Cougars. Last season Wishart put up huge numbers between Prince George and Moose Jaw with 16 goals and 67 points in 72 games. He was scoreless in a 5 game ATO with the Sharks' farm team late in the season, but it appears fair to say that Wishart is progressing nicely in the offensive third.

Wishart should add to a fairly strong stable of young prospects patrolling the blueline in Norfolk this coming season. His former teammate Vladimir Mihalik is likely to be back with the Admirals and at this stage it appears that either Mike Lundin, who spent all of last season with the Lightning, or Matt Smaby will be joining the two former Cougars in Virginia. I'd expect the Lightning to make a move for one or two veteran AHL defensemen to mentor the blueliners in Norfolk by the end of the summer.