Calgary Flames select Hunter Laing at 170th overall in 2024 NHL Draft

Ryan Pike
24 days ago
The Calgary Flames have made their ninth pick of the 2024 NHL Draft. At 170th overall, the Flames have obtained forward Hunter Laing from the Western Hockey League’s Prince George Cougars.
A product of Kelowna, B.C., Laing is listed at 6’6″ and 192 pounds and he’s a right shot forward. His father is former Flames farmhand Quintin Laing, who played for the Abbotsford Heat from 2010-13.  The 2023-24 campaign was Laing’s first full WHL season, and he posted 11 goals and 25 points over 66 games.
It’s easy to see why Laing would be enticing late in the draft: his size and his potential. While he only played in the WHL recently, he spent the 2021-22 season at the RINK Hockey Academy in Kelowna, where he would have crossed paths with Flames special advisor Jarome Iginla (in his capacity as a coach).
Laing was listed as the 86th-ranked North American skater by the NHL’s Central Scouting Service in their final rankings. Over at Elite Prospects, they didn’t have Laing ranked in their draft guide, but they noted the following about his game: “A towering pass-first forward who slips away from defensive coverage for deflections, but lacks the physical game and skating to play in the NHL.”
Late in the draft, teams often take fliers on players based on perceived potential. As long as hockey is a physical game, teams likely won’t feel too afraid to throw Hail Mary picks at guys with (a) size and (b) a history of posting offensive numbers at lower levels. Laing didn’t jump off the page offensively as a WHL rookie in 2023-24, but the Flames are likely hoping that between his size and their likely familiarity with his game, he can continue to grow over time.
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