The Case For Carter Yakemchuk

The Case For Carter Yakemchuk

As we slowly creep closer to the NHL Draft, we will focus on players who should be in range for the San Jose Sharks pick at number 14. With the Sharks having all but selected Macklin Celebrini already, the focus on what to do at 14 is the real intrigue for Sharks fans.

Carter Yakemchuk
6'3" 194 pounds
Birthday: Sept 2005 (18)

If you like offense mixed with a violent defender. This is your guy. Yakemchuk feels like a Mike Grier defender. Someone who isn't afraid to mix it up (120 PIM) but can also score (30 goals in 66 games). At 6'3", Yakemchuk is incredibly agile and can dangle with the best of them.

But isn't afraid to use his size to his advantage.

Carter Yakemchuk is a very polarizing player because of his size and offensive skill, but major questions about his ability to defend the puck and his skating are why he is not viewed as highly as players like Sam Dickinson. Elite Prospects compared Yamekchuk to Brent Burns, a player with a ton of offensive tools and is just a physical freak compared to his peers, but his hockey IQ is sometimes questionable.

While skating is an issue, this is the most correctable of the concerns. As Yakumchuk works with a skating coach and continues to add more muscle to his frame, it can help to fix some of the issues. Scouts also say that Yakumchuk needs to work on his pivots (which is something that Shakir Mukahamdullin struggles with). These types of issues feel more correctable with time and more defensive reps.

Carter Yakemchuk Hockey Prospecting Card

His hockey IQ and learning the intricacies of playing defense will ultimately decide Yakemchuk's future, but he has the potential to be a top-flight offensive defenseman.

Yakemchuk's offensive skills and puck handling are special. When he is on the ice, he demands attention, and the upside of another Brent Burns could be too much for the Sharks to pass up if he makes it to 14. While there are questions about his defense, he would be the Sharks' best defensive prospect in a long time, and that is worth the gamble for Mike Grier.