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Is draft prospect Carter Yakemchuk a fit for the Calgary Flames prospect pool?

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski/USA Today Sports
Ryley Delaney
1 month ago
The Calgary Flames have been eliminated from 2024 post-season contention, which means it’s time to lose for a higher draft pick!
According to Tankathon, the Flames are currently slated to pick eighth-overall with 73 points, three more than the Ottawa Senators. This gives them a 6% chance of moving up to the first-overall pick and a 6.2% chance of moving up to the second-overall pick. Their best odds are to remain at the eighth-overall selection, which is where we’ll assume they’ll pick.
Let’s take a look at Carter Yakemchuk, a right-shot defenceman who plays for the Calgary Hitmen!

Carter Yakemchuk scouting report and profile

Right-shot defenceman, born September 29, 2005 in Fort McMurray, Alberta; 6’3”, 201 lbs
The right-shot defenceman from Alberta – born in Fort Mac but raised in Calgary – is a big, nasty, scoring defenceman. This season for the Calgary Hitmen, the 18-year-old has 30 goals and 71 points in 66 games, along with an insane 120 penalty minutes. His 30 goals were the most for any Western Hockey League defenceman, while his 71 points was good for fifth in defenceman scoring. His 120 penalty minutes ranked fifth in the WHL.
Yakemchuk ranks as Scott Wheeler’s 12th-best available draft prospect, with FloHockey’s Chris Peters ranking him 10th, the highest ranking he was awarded. Daily Faceoff ranks him as the 12th-best draft prospect and his consolidated ranking is 15th, according to Elite Prospects. If the Flames selected eighth-overall, it would be off the board a bit, but it could be a risk that pays off.
The 18-year-old missed out on being a 2023 draftee by just a few weeks, but there’s a lot to like about the Calgary-native. Wheeler points to his confidence and skill, but also points out that he has a heck of a shot, as you can see by his 30 goals. He’s strong on the puck and is a good defender, but could improve his skating.
Chris Peters, who ranks Yakemchuk as his 10th-best draft prospect, notes that the 18-year-old is a goal scoring threat with a “lethal shot.” More strengths that Peters’ points to is that Yakemchuk’s puck movement is good and he can be physical, but notes that he is average defensively and can be out of position at times. Peters also notes that his skating isn’t a strength.
Tony Ferrai ranks Yakemchuk as his 27th-best draft prospect, the lowest of any site according to Elite Prospects. While Wheeler and Peters note that the skating is fine, Ferrari worries about his mobility at the professional level and also notes that there’s room for improvement defensively. Ferrari also points out that due to how bad the Hitmen were in 2023-24, he’ll look to shoot instead of pass.
What’s better than drafting the hometown kid who plays for the city’s WHL team? Yakemchuk has a ton of skill with his hands and is a legitimate scoring threat, and while his skating is seen as an issue by some, Yakemchuk could be the next defenceman drafted by the Flames.
Thanks for reading! You can follow me on Twitter @Brennan_L_D.
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