Alex Newhook Scouting Report: 2019 NHL Draft #11

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Alex Newhook
VICTORIA , BC - JANUARY 27: Alex Newhook #18 of the Victoria Grizzlies skates against the Vernon Vipers during a British Columbia Hockey League game at the Q Centre on January 27, 2019 in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. (Photo by Kevin Light/Getty Images)

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St. John’s, Newfoundland native Alex Newhook opted to go west, playing for the Victoria Grizzlies in the BCHL rather than joining the Halifax Mooseheads after being drafted in the 2017 QMJHL Draft. Newhook is looking to maintain his NCAA eligibility as he is committed to play for the Boston College Eagles next season. Newhook put up 38 goals and 64 assists for 102 points in 53 games this season. He also picked up 11 goals and 24 points in 15 playoff games. He had the most assists and points in the BCHL. This comes on the heels of the 2017-18 season where Newhook was the leader in numerous rookie categories, including points and assists, and was named Rookie of the Year, to the league’s All-Rookie team, and to the First All-Star Team.

Newhook is currently playing for Team Canada at the IIHF Under-18 World Championships, where he scored a goal in the team’s first game. He represented Canada West at the World Junior A Championship, picking up four assists in six games. Last season, he played for Team Canada Black at the Under-17 World Hockey Challenge picking up a goal and four points in five games.

Alex Newhook Scouting Report

Centre — shoots Left
Born January 28th, 2001 — St.John’s, Newfoundland
Height 5’11” — Weight 190 lbs [180 cm / 86 kg]

Skating

Newhook has game-breaking talent. His speed is amongst the best in the class, and he has the acceleration, edgework, and agility to go with it. Newhook makes skating look effortless, almost as if he’s gliding above the ice. He is deadly off the rush, as he can beat defenders in a multitude of ways. His speed makes him a threat to blow by a defender to the outside and cut to the net. He can also make a quick change of direction and cut to the inside of the ice. Newhook can also slow down to open up a shooting lane and use a defender as a screen. He is strong on his skates and has good balance for his age. This can improve with more muscle going forward.

Offensive Game

Newhook combines his sublime skating with the hands to make plays at top speed. He also has the smarts to seemingly always make a smart play with the puck. He has the ability to beat defenders with his finesse, and the power game to play in the dirty areas of the ice. Newhook sees the ice well and can find teammates to create a scoring chance. He has the passing skills through tight areas on both his forehand and backhand. Newhook is a playmaker both working the cycle game and off the rush.

A multi-faceted offensive threat, Newhook also has a great shot and a quick release. His one-timer is a real weapon in the faceoff circles. He is not afraid to battle on the boards and to fight for position in front of the net. He is also willing to get to the dirty areas of the ice and take a hit to make a play. Newhook has everything that a scout could want in a top centre.

Defensive Game

Newhook has also shown the effort and instincts to be strong in his own end of the ice. He reads the play well and uses his strong positioning to cut down passing lanes and create turnovers. Newhook anticipates well and this helps him to be an effective penalty killer. He is also strong on face-offs. Newhook shows strength for his age and the ability to contain the play down low. He will get better at these aspects as he continues to grow.

Projection and Comparison

The biggest question mark at this point is the quality of competition Alex Newhook faces in the BCHL. This can make him difficult to rank. Newhook has been good, but not great, in international performances where he faced a higher talent level. That said, his performance at the IIHF Under-18 will have a huge effect on his ranking. As we get closer to the draft a strong performance against his peers could vault him up a number of draft boards. He is a real boom or bust type. The performance against BCHL competition is sensational, but there are questions against the higher level of competition. Newhook’s game is reminiscent of Mathew Barzal. This is a stylistic comparison only and not one based on skill or ability.

Highlights

The following is a compilation of some of the highlight packages and features of Alex Newhook that are available on youtube.

Check back tomorrow for the next prospect on our draft board.

 

Main Photo:
Embed from Getty Images

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