This guy is going to be special.
The Panthers 10th overall draft pick in 2017 has all the makings of an NHL superstar. 18-year-old Owen Tippett has several key skills that have led many scouts to label him as the best pure shooter in the class of 2017.
Tippett registered 75 points (44 goals) in 60 games for the Mississauga Steelheads of the Ontario Hockey League last season, ranking fifth in the league in goal scoring. He later recorded 19 points (10 goals) in 20 games as the Steelheads advanced to the OHL championship series.
He's a natural goal scorer with an elite shot who he can wire pucks by the goaltender with a quick wrist shot or a hard one-timer. Tippett also possesses high-end skating abilities, with quick acceleration that allows him to blow by defenders and create scoring chances both shorthanded and at even strength.
Tippett talked to Sportsnet about his relentless offseason work ethic and plans for 2017-18.
“I’ve been going non-stop since the draft. For me, it’s developing my 200-foot game and being more accurate with my shooting. It’s been a dream of mine to play in the NHL since I was a little kid, so I’m trying to develop my game and work as hard as I can to make that happen."
He also made a comparison to sniper Phil Kessel of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Both players are six-foot, 200-pound right-wingers selected in the top 10 who have very quick releases
“I have the upside of Phil Kessel —the speed, the shot, the way he can make plays. I also have some things I need to work on to be a 200-foot player,”
The Panthers inked him to an entry-level contract over the summer and are eager for him to try and grab a lineup spot this season.
Photo Credit: Keystone Press