Carter Verhaeghe: A Closer Look

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The Leafs signed a young prospect who will report to the Toronto Marlies and likely take away another AHL player’s job. I can’t wait to see Don Cherry’s Twitter rant about it! What’s that? Carter Verhaeghe isn’t a college player? Oh. Never mind.

Jeffler wrote a little bit about Verhaeghe’s signing earlier today. Months ago, Justin Fisher wrote about Verhaeghe when the Leafs selected him in the third round, 82nd overall in the 2013 NHL Entry Draft

Let’s take a deeper look though.

I have seen Verhaeghe play in person while he played for the OHL’s Niagara Ice Dogs. I could pretend like I know his game top to bottom but that wouldn’t be fair and it wouldn’t be true. Rather than BS you all, I reached out to Mark Edwards, the Founder & Director of Scouting for HockeyProspect.com and analyst on The Prospect Show on NHL Network Radio & TSN Radio. He knows his stuff and he knows a thing or two about this Leafs prospect.

“[He] wasn’t overly skilled as a minor hockey player but has developed his scoring abilities. Always had a good work ethic. Was great with Brendan Perlini.”

Verhaeghe’s chemistry with Perlini, who is eligible for this summer’s 2014 NHL Entry Draft, is undeniable. This particular video of the duo lighting up Owen Sound for five points each is a great demonstration of that. Pardon the video quality.

There’s also this beauty against London.

More from Edwards…

“Not a flashy kid. Built on solid U18 last year which helped his draft stock and kept it going this year. I’m a bigger fan now than I was 12 months ago.”

Edwards’ comment that he’s a bigger fan of Verhaeghe now than he was when he was drafted makes sense. As Justin mentioned in his draft day post, Verhaeghe was an “off the board” pick. NHL Central Scouting ranked him 102nd among North American skaters. Not all skaters – just North Americans. With a ranking that high, it would have been reasonable to expect Verhaeghe to go in the fifth round or potentially not at all.

The Leafs have had some recent success in the third round of the draft. Nothing mind-blowing yet, but generally speaking, most third-rounders don’t become regular NHL players. A lot of them don’t even make it to 100 games or even 50. While they aren’t regular NHL players, Joshua Leivo (2011) played seven games this season and looks like he could be a player. Greg McKegg (2010) and Jamie Devane (2009) both played their first NHL games this season. Maybe Verhaeghe is next in a year or two.

As always, Jeffler has a press pass for the Toronto Marlies. Follow him for updates on Verhaeghe and other Leafs prospects.

Here come’s the next Wendel Clark! For realzies this time!

  • I was going to say something insightful, but then I remembered that I’m still mad at you guys for that April Fools article. #ShutUpJeffler #GetOffMeSteve

    On the more serious note, I’m excited to see him (due to his name sounding pretty bad ass) would be interesting to see where he slots with the Marlies

    On a slight off topic note, assuming the Leafs miss the playoffs, do you see them trading their first round pick? As this year is a fairly weak draft and the Leafs need top end forward prospects (which they lack) or someone that is an established NHL player that can help the core (Preferably someone from mimico)

    • First, I highly doubt the Leafs trade their pick.

      Second, I disagree this is a weak draft. Maybe the top picks aren’t at a Stamkos/Tavares/MacKinnon level, but there are, by my estimate, 8-12 solid prospects before a drop off.

        • I 100% agree. When there are no top end elite talents in a draft people tend to say its weak (although this draft still has some potential elite players in its top 5-10). I don’t claim to be an expert but from the junior hockey I’ve seen many draft eligible players have the potential to be regular NHL players, just maybe not top 6 forwards or top 4 defence. And that’s just the CHL (the Canadian Hockey League, not Corsi Hockey League if Steve Simmons is reading), maybe this ends up being a European or American heavy draft in terms or talented players. The point I’m trying to make is that judging 17-18 year old kids is a bit of a crap shoot at best outside the top guys, especially when guys may be peaking then and not get much better or a guy might just need the right coaching to bring it all together.

          P.S. Steve, love the podcast. Take it easy on Chris, he’s not used to a mediocre team like us leafs fans and need time to adjust