OHL Prospect Power Rankings for the 2018 NHL Draft: October

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POPRAD, SLOVAKIA - APRIL 23, 2017: Russia's Andrei Svechnikov poses after a ceremony to award the 2017 IIHF World U18 Championship bronze medals as they win their ice hockey match against Sweden 3-0 at the Poprad Ice Stadium. Yelena Rusko/TASS (Photo by Yelena RuskoTASS via Getty Images)

We’re a month into the OHL season and already trends have started to emerge.

Nick Suzuki is proving that last year was no fluke, as he’s primed for another 90-point campaign with 26 in 14 games so far.

Meanwhile, fellow 2017 Draft classmate Michael DiPietro continues to strut his stuff between the pipes for Windsor with a 0.930 save percentage and a 2.23 GAA.

OHL Prospect Power Rankings for the 2018 NHL Draft: October

Then we come to the draft eligibles. Up for selection in the 2018 NHL Draft, this is the time the high-end prospects start to separate themselves. Getting off to a hot start can get a few extra sets of eyes point your way and some extra opportunities in a crucial season. So far a number of players have made the most of their draft-eligible season, making their presences known early on. Players like Akil Thomas and Allan McShane have become key offensive contributors for their clubs, in hopes of hearing their names called early on in June’s draft.

With that in mind, we present the OHL Prospect Power Rankings for the 2018 NHL Draft. After each month, we’ll present the Top 10 draft eligible performers, based on their TI score. Their TI number takes into account goals and assists, plus-minus, and special teams points with each weighed differently to determine their impact.

OHL Prospect Power Rankings for the 2018 NHL Draft: October

1. Andrei Svechnikov, RW Barrie Colts – TI Score: 24.5

Svechnikov’s impact on the Barrie Colts and their hot start can’t be understated. He leads Barrie with 10 goals and is tied for third on the team in points (14). He’s also one of just two draft eligibles with more than one shorthanded point so far this year. Unfortunately for Svechnikov, this will likely be his last time atop this list in 2017, as he’s sidelined with a broken wrist.

2. Brady Hinz, RW, Sarnia Sting – TI Score: 24

The only draft eligible to have won the OHL’s Player of the Week award, Hinz has been on fire the first month of the season. Insulated by the likes of Jordan Kyrou and Adam Ruzicka, Hinz’s 10 goals and 16 points have Sarnia atop the West with a 14-1 record. A two-game scoreless skid has seen his seven-game point streak come to an end, but Hinz will take plenty of positive momentum into November.

3. Allan McShane, C, Oshawa Generals – TI Score: 22.5

Since coming over from Erie at the deadline last year, McShane has been dynamite. He has 39 points in 44 games with the Generals and leads the team in assists (16) this season. Already with a five-helper game to his credit this year, McShane did suffer a four-game scoreless drought. However, he put that behind him with five assists over his last two October games.

4. Akil Thomas, RW, Niagara Ice Dogs – TI Score: 20

A player that looked like a prime candidate to rise up draft boards this season, Thomas has done it all for the Ice Dogs. He leads the team in assists, points, and power play points, and is two off the team lead in goals. His nine-game point streak earlier this year also has him sitting second among draft eligibles in power-play points.

5. Ryan McLeod, C, Mississauga Steelheads – TI Score: 18.5

Although he scored twice in the first game of the season, McLeod and the Steelheads both had slow starts to the OHL season. Over the last ten, however, Mississauga is 5-5 and McLeod is at the heart of the turnaround. He has four goals and nine assists, and has at least a point in each of those ten games. While Mississauga is still at the bottom of the East, they won’t be for long if McLeod keeps this up.

6. Ty Dellandrea, C, Flint Firebirds – TI Score: 17.5

The Firebirds are scuffling, having lost four in a row, and it happens to coincide with Dellandrea’s four-game scoreless stretch. Before that, Dellandrea had points in eight of his first ten games, including three two-point games. Dellandrea joins Svechnikov as the only draft eligibles with two more shorthanded points this season.

7. Barrett Hayton, C, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds – TI Score: 16.5

After netting just 27 points in his rookie season, Hayton should leave that number in the dust comfortably. His six goals are three behind the nine he had in 63 games last year, and he’s already up to 14 points. He’s also been hot to close out the month of October, as nine of those 14 points have come during his seven-game point streak.

8. Riley Damiani (KIT), Ryan Merkley (GUE), Noel Serron (OSH), Curtis Douglas (BAR) – TI Score: 16

This four-way tie features a little bit of everything. Merkley is a dynamic offensive talent, but his -12 rating is worst amongst OHL draft eligibles. Douglas has been a steady performer for Barrie with a six-game point streak to his credit. He could also see a rise up the rankings with Svechnikov out. Serron is first on the Generals in goals (10) and third in points (14) and has eclipsed last year’s eight goals already. Damiani has done a little bit of everything for the Rangers, as his five goals include a power-play goal, a shorthanded goal, and a game-winning goal.

9. Kody Clark, RW, Ottawa 67’s – TI Score: 15.5

Sitting a point off of the team lead in scoring, Clark has already bettered all of last year’s major totals. A two-point and three-point game has helped his cause so far, and he rode a five-game point streak that saw him score in each game. His eight goals are good for second on the 67’s behind Sasha Chmelevski. Oh, and there’s this:

10. Aidan Dudas, C, Owen Sound Attack – TI Score: 15

Dudas sits fifth on the Attack in scoring, but he may get passed by considering their top three scorers have 20+ points each. Playing at a point-per-game pace (13 in 14 games), Dudas already has three two-goal games to his name this year. He also rounds out the top ten with a 1.5 point lead on numbers 11 and 12.

Honourable Mention:

Speaking of which, keep an eye on Pavel Gogolev and Semyon Der-Arguchinstev in Peterborough. The pair of Petes just missed out on this list and are driving the East’s best offence.

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