The Winnipeg Jets seemed surprised to see that Cole Perfetti dropped to them at No. 10, but they were happy to take the highly-talented center/winger. As Darren Dreger noted, “Winnipeg had lots of opportunity to trade down. They didn’t and get a great player and terrific young man in Cole Perfetti.”
Heading into the draft, Perfetti had 37 goals, 71 assists in 61 games last season with the Saginaw Spirit of the OHL. In his first two seasons he produced 185 points. Sam Cosentino described Perfetti as “a magician in the offensive zone with his ability to change pace and find teammates.”
There are a lot of happy people in Winnipeg on Tuesday. This kid is special, on and off the ice. Some say his skating and pace of play are a bit of a concern but beyond that, he’s an elite dual-threat scoring center. Some say he’s the second-best shot in the draft and a kid with great hands.
After being drafted, Perfetti said when asked about his game and what he might need to do to improve for the NHL, “I’ve been picking out parts of (Nikita Kucherov’s) game and trying to put them into mine.” He spoke of the importance of hockey-IQ, intelligence, and creative vision on the ice. He added, “I think I’m a better centreman and can make more of an impact there.” That said, he noted he’s comfortable on the wing too and will do whatever his coaches ask of him.
Is Perfetti the Smartest Player in the Draft?
Chris Peters of ESPN noted:
Cole Perfetti was also the OHL’s scholastic player of the year. One time considered the college route and Michigan, ultimately stuck with the OHL. Some of the best hockey sense in this draft and an especially thoughtful player away from the ice, too.
The draft panel couldn’t seem to get past the fact he could solve a Rubik’s Cube in seconds. Needless to say, the consensus is he’s a pretty smart kid who most experts believe will be able to transfer those smarts into the NHL.
Next: Edmonton Oilers Select Dylan Holloway No. 14 in 2020 NHL Draft
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