Flames Draft Targets 2015 – Jeremy Roy

A few weeks ago I took part in a mock draft put on by Lowetide and TSN 1260. I researched prospects a few days in advance and established a rough list consisting of guys like Timo Meier, Yevgeni Svechnikov, Oliver Kylington and Nick Merkley. Jeremy Roy wasn’t even on my radar until I started digging into his scouting reports and numbers. 

He turned out to be my pick in the draft.

Here’s what convinced me to change my mind in such a short period of time.

Scouting Reports

ScoutingReport

According to scouts, almost everything about Roy is impressive. A high hockey IQ defender, Roy plays top minutes and is said to be almost constantly aware of what’s going on on the ice. He has the talent to either skate or pass the puck out of the zone on the break-out and is offensively aware enough to quarterback a power play.  On top of all that, he’s a recognized leader. Roy wears an “A” for his club the Sherbrooke Phoenix’s and was the captain of the Canada Quebec U17 team in 2013.

Curtis Joe of Elite Prospects has this to say about Roy:

His absolute and total awareness of other players’ positions on the ice is a testament to his incredible knowledge of the game. Roy possesses the intangibles of maturity and character that can’t be taught, as well as the individual skill that turns heads every time he is on the ice. All-in-all, a highly intelligent defenceman that plays high-percentage hockey and is a catalyst for positive plays in all three zones.

Future Considerations adds:

Has a real smooth stride and is pretty mobile…very mature game with strong positioning and smart with the puck…tough to separate from it as he has a heavy stick…makes terrific passes and rarely has anything intercepted…has a good point shot as well and he gets it on net…has the vision and creativity to QB a PP…solid defensively, using his smarts and his strong stick to break up plays and take away chances…uses his strength on defense to play physically down low and contain his man…used in all situations…a big presence on the ice and slows down the play when the puck is on his stick.

His frequent NHL comparison? Duncan Keith. And in fact, according to the prospect projection tool, Keith is indeed a comparable to Roy according to his junior results. 

The only perceived downside to Roy’s game seems to be his slight below average size (6′, 190 pounds) and the fact he isn’t as fast as some would like him to be as a “undersized” defender. Otherwise, his play is already mature and well rounded by all accounts.

The Numbers

NumbersFN

Roy’s counting stats are almost as impressive as his scouting report. An offensively gifted defender who led his blueline in scoring at age 16 (and won the QMJHL’s award as the league’s top rookie defenseman), Roy’s season this year was cut to just 46 games. He nevertheless still led his team’s defense corps in scoring with 43 points, a near point per game pace comparable to possible top-5 pick Ivan Provorov.

Roy’s NHLe of 19 was the best in the QMJHL amongst defenders and the fifth best amongst blueliners in the entire CHL. Roy also contributed to over 27% of his teams’ scoring while he was in the lineup. No draft eligible defender had a better ratio in Canadian junior hockey. Roy was even top-5 in the QMJHL in terms of shots on net per game (2.61). 

The only wrinkle in Roy’s numbers is he scored a majority of his point on the PP this year, counting just 17 of his points at 5on5 (40%). That said, defenders tend to be more reliant on the extra man for their scoring in general, so it’s not as a major a concern as it would be in a forward.

Conclusion

Despite near universal praise for Roy’s game plus some of the best numbers you can find in the CHL for blueliners, he is frequently ranked in the latter half of the first round by most outfits. I don’t know whether the truncated season or Roy’s size is the culprit behind him being considered a kid to pick in the 20’s, but this means he will likely be around when Calgary takes the podium at 15th overall. 

The Flames don’t tend to choose players from the Quebec league very often, but the last time they did it was a rangy defender named Ryan Culkin. Roy might be good enough to convince them to try again this time around.

Flames First Round Targets

  • icedawg_42

    I like the sound of this kid. Unfortunately im firmly in the David Jankowski camp now. All kidding aside, I still see a lot of mock lists having the Flames grabbing Konecny. I know he’s not on your list of favorites, but are you thinking of doing a write up on him? If for no other reason that he seems to be a popular guess.

  • piscera.infada

    An undersized defenseman who isn’t particularly fast isn’t my ideal 1st round pick. He has a lot of good qualities but I hope the Flames are looking for someone else in the first round.

    • piscera.infada

      I think there’s a lot better forwards on the board there, but if the Flames are dead-set on taking a defenseman, and they don’t want to move up, I like him more than Chabot and a lot more than Zorbil. I would still say, taking a forward is a better use of “BPA” though.

      • T&A4Flames

        Kind of defeats the purpose of BPA if you are defaulting to that being a forward, don’t you think?

        BPA is the BPA whether that’s a fwd, D, G, whatever. And that isn’t based on McKenzie’s list or any other person other than on the Flames scouts and management groups.

        • piscera.infada

          I’m not arguing that. Let me rephrase: to me, the BPA at number 15, appears to–most likely (barring, of course, an unforeseen drop from someone)–be a forward. Again, I see Svechnikov, Merkley, Konecny, Meier, and/or Connor as a better player available than Roy, Chabot, or Zorbil.

          • I agree with your logic, but when I look at drafting a D, I don’t view it as doing it in order to fill “an organizational need.” Rather, I think skilled D are a far rarer commodity these days. Simply playing solid D is not good enough anymore and the solid, stay at home type can be had in the 3rd and even 4th rounds now.

            In today’s game, and I know this isn’t news to you, D need to be able to play that two-way transitional game. The Brodie model. Those guys are somewhat rare and therefore more valuable.

            So when I look at Zboril or Chabot or Roy, I see them every bit as valuable, even more so, than a winger who may be ‘technically’ more talented, if that makes any sense. A 2nd pairing D, in general, is worth quite a bit more than a 2RW right now, for example.

            With the number of picks available to the Flames this draft and with an unusually decent (with varied styles/sizes) number of D who can fit that bill, I say the Flames should stock up on skilled D this draft. Wingers are just so much easier to come by.

          • piscera.infada

            I don’t disagree with the substance of your post at all. I agree, skilled defenders are so much more valuable than wingers (as are centres). However, if picking the defenseman at 15–assuming Hanifin, Provorov, and Werenski are gone–does it not follow your logic to take the most skilled defender left? The prospect who oozes the talent of those aforementioned three, but for whatever reason hasn’t “put it together”? Would that player not be Kylington? That’s the highest upside defender I see there. And, like Christian, I wouldn’t be horrified with that pick, but is it really pragmatic to take that risk given where the organization is currently, and the other players still on the board?

            I mean, I like Roy and Cabot, I really do. However, if I was running the draft table, and they were my targets, I’d move down. Hell, I might even move down to take Kylington. Staying at 15 though, the forwards just seem to be the better pick there.

  • piscera.infada

    I like Roy. He sounds like he will be one of the better D taken in 2015. Hockey IQ is such a key trait. I’d take a smart player who hates to lose over a player with all the physical tools but limited hockey sense. For me, right now, I’d have it in this order: Barzal (probably not there at 15), Connor (probably not there at 15), Roy, Konecny, Meier, Merkley, Svechnikov, Kylington.

  • piscera.infada

    I also wonder if Ryan Huska is plugging Merkley. He coached him last year. If there is something there, you can bet the Flames have some very valuable insight from Huska.

          • smith

            Less points scored on the pp? 2″ taller? Better skater? A huge riser in the rankings like Sanheim last year? Greater year-to-year statistical increase? Are there team differences? Which way they shoot is, to me, a tie breaker, maybe, not an indication of talent?

            I like Roy a lot, but I was hoping for a little more insight.

          • Christian Roatis

            Greater year-to-year statistical increase?

            Wrong. Not only did Roy’s point/game rate climb further, he was better in his pre-draft season than Chabot was in his draft year.

            Roy Draft-1: 0.688 Roy Draft: 0.935

            Chabot Draft-1:0.400 Chabot Draft: 0.621

          • Christian Roatis

            Fair enough on that point, but when you go to mynhldraft.com and 10 out of 12 scouting lists have Chabot ranked higher than Roy, it peaks my interest for some real insight. If you don’t know, you don’t know, I guess.

          • KiLLKiND

            Personally from what I have read Roy sounds like he has more potential but has bigger holes to fix. Kind of like an in between of Kylington and Chabot. I would take Kylington over either because I believe with Calgary’s coaching staff specifically Huska. I have sen him coach for years in Kelowna and he can change Kylington into the player he can be. In that sense I also feel Roy could do better than Chabot, who sounds like a garanteed 3-4 D. While Roy sounds like at worst a PP specialist 5th with top pairing potential. I don’t think he has elite potential but he would be able to hold his own and be an upgrade over Wideman, Russel and Gio when he starts to get older. Especially as Roy is a right handed D which will allow Brodie to play on the left. BPA here I feel is Kylington though or you could argue Zboril but I don’t think he will fall to us.

  • everton fc

    If only Roy were still around when we made our 2nd pick.

    That said, I wouldn’t mind this pick. A year in the AHL will help size up his speed issues, though I’ve read this is an issue because of the way he plays the game, meaning he may not be all that slow. Hope that makes sense…

    Roy seems mature, and closer to “ready” than many. He may be a solid 3/4 defender in this league sooner, than later.

  • Craig Button has the Flames picking Colin White a Centre who battled Mono and a wrist injury last year.

    Of course, Button was the GM of the Flames at the beginning 2000-2003 Disaster years of Drafting.

    We don’t need another Centre as we have some of them playing the Wings already!

    • Sorry, trashed this by accident then quickly propped it. When I saw that from Button I was wondering if he was even following the prospects or just picking names out of a hat.

      *Watch now Calgary will pick White.

  • smith

    I thought it was Nicholas Roy everyone was talking about in the 15 – 20 range? Sounds much bigger and slower. Jeremy actually sounds better even if he seems to be listed later. It sounds like people in the comments are mixing up the two?

    Never mind. Just me who is confused. Nicholas is a forward. Never saw him before.

      • Christian Roatis

        IIRC Craig Button’s final ranking prior to the 2012 draft had Mark Jankowski at 14th overall – which was the Flames’ initial slot in that draft before trading down with Buf. That seems too lucky to be a guess – he have had info no one else did. I don’t want him back as GM either, but when he talks about the Flames I pay attention.